Mothering Forum banner

Curriculum for Preschoolers?

899 Views 17 Replies 14 Participants Last post by  lilyka
Hello Ladies,

I am still undecided on homeschooling. My sons are in public school (I was working & single Mom when it was time for school)

I have my own business that allows me to stay home but I do spend a lot of my day working. I'm not as organized and scheduled as I would like to be. I know the idea of a curriculum for preschoolers may sound silly to some but I'd like to have something to go by - I need ideas and suggestions on what I should be teaching my girls and how to do it.

I am not sure I have the patience or organization skills to be a homeschooler but I'd like to give myself a year of 'teaching preschool' to see if it works for us before my older DD would be going to kindergarten.

Can anyone point me in the right direction? If we enjoy it and it works and I can show myself and my DH that this is a good thing for all of us then I may continue with homeschooling but if I have a hard time getting the hang of it and maintaining any kind of schedule & blance maybe homeschooling is not for us.

1 - 18 of 18 Posts
I just ordered Five in a Row. It's not here yet, but I think it will give us just enough "structure" and ideas to keep us busy. I like the idea of having something to do when we need it without actually doing a "curriculum".
Oak Meadow has a very good preschool curriculum.

You could also do a hodge podge of things that could give you enough structure that you seem to be looking for. At the preschool and Kindergarten level a few hours is all that is really necessary. Here are some ideas I have: M&M math (for math) ,a preschool science/craft activity book, Reader Rabbit CD roms for Reading and Math, Jump Start CD roms for Reading/math, is a free reading program that goes through 2nd grade, cooking, playing, reading,trips to the library and field trips.... that should be plenty to cover the level you are talking about. The most important thing is to have fun, happy kids and learning will happen naturally.

Also be positive and have confidence in yourself! That makes a huge difference for you and your kids!
See less See more also has a Pre-K curriculum that I have heard some people rave about, but it is very traditional- like school at home.
Have you ever thought about doing theme units? That's what I do. May will be dinosaur month. Everything we learn has dinosaurs incorporated into it. It just seems to make it easier for me to concentrate on 1 thing instead of 5 different things. Just a thought...
I got a recommendation for this book:

The Complete Daily Curriculum for Early Childhood, by Pam Schiller and Pat Phipps

I got a chance to glance through it at someone else's house, and it looked like a good overall guide. It was "themed", in that the first part of the book was about colors, with each color having lots of suggested activities, projects, etc. associated with it.

We are just exploring our homeschooling options, as our DD is 4. We lean more toward unschooling, but this looked like a decent resource to have around when I feel like I need some inspiration.

Any feedback on this book would be appreciated!
This might not be exactly what you're looking for, but it will definitely have some helpful activity ideas within it. Underneath the box of articles on this page is a set of annotated links to websites that have fun preschool age activities:

preschool/kindergarten learning activities

In the articles section above those links, these are two articles that might be helpful. Although they don't include 3Rs material, they do include a lot of other valuable activity ideas and materials suggestions:
A Homeschool Curriculum for Preschool and Kindergarten

Preschool Homeschooling

See less See more
I too have a preschooler and I'm looking for a curriculum to give me ideas to do with my preschooler. I'm looking for some waldorfy inspired things- I know at least one mom here wrote something? Could someone give me that link(s) or PM them to me?


Originally Posted by OTMomma
I too have a preschooler and I'm looking for a curriculum to give me ideas to do with my preschooler. I'm looking for some waldorfy inspired things- I know at least one mom here wrote something? Could someone give me that link(s) or PM them to me?
I don't know if this is what you mean, but Lucie has a very nice site that incorporates Waldorf ideas:
Wonder Homeschool

- Lillian
IMO, don't bother with teaching your pre-schoolers. They need YOU more than knowledge and you ARE teaching them at every moment. You can incorporate fun tasks and porjects for them to do as you are working at home without a curriculum. YOu can sing ABC songs, review colors, animal sounds, counting, and simple foreign language through play in your normal day. Trust me, at the end of the year they will know all those things and you will not have wasted your money, time or stress (i.e. guilt) level one bit.
Thank you all for the great in put. I will check into the sites you listed.

Eloquence - I do not disagree with you at all and that is pretty much what we have been doing. However, I am interested in homeschooling. My DH on the other hand is more eager to send the girls to an actual preschool and then on to regular school. My thinking is that if we could do some homeschool preschool and DH could see tangible things I am teaching the girls he would be more comfortable with them being homeschooled for preschool, kindergarten and into the future.

Thank you!
We are Waldorf Homeschooling. For a preschooler that means lots of cooking, baking, gardening, cleaning, sewing, making things. There is an emphasis on the child becoming involved in the life of the adult (which ideally has lots of the above activiteis to do, as opposed to being on the computer, talking on the phone, and watching television).

As for formal "school time" we have a circle and story that take less than 1/2 hour that I do a few times a week. Every other week we have a group.

I work part time, and part of Dd's homeschool experience is to come to work with me office downstairs from home), where she sees what I do and has requested assigned tasks.

I am new to this homeschooling thing, as my child is very young, but I've spoken to a lot of homeschoolers. My conclusion is, there is vast choice in curriculum, and the one for you is the one that works well in your household, and is enjoyable for you.
See less See more

Originally Posted by kerikadi
Eloquence - I do not disagree with you at all and that is pretty much what we have been doing. However, I am interested in homeschooling.
Funny - I was just going to post that I agreed with Eloquence. What she described is homeschooling. In fact, the Waldorf approach would do even less - they would leave out the ABCs, and, I believe, colors as a subject, counting, and foreign language. There are a whole lot of professional educators and researchers who agree as well. Here's something called A Call to Action on the Education of Young Children, by the Alliance for Childhood, with over 150 endorsements to far. There are a lot of wonderful things a young child can and should be learning that have absolutely nothing to do with traditional schooling.

Edited to note: Wow, I guess I'm more tired than I realized today. I misread that two times - I thought you said "I do not agree with you..."
See less See more
Confirming here that Waldorf doesn't emphasize presentation of facts. I feel good about the delayed academics. There's lots of evidence that early academics do nothing to give kids any kind of advantage.

With Waldorf, if the kid asks a question, you answer but you keep things at a level appropriate for age based on all levels of development, not just brain capacity. Mostly, our Waldorf experience has been an immersion in life.

The fun part is watching what Dd makes of it.
I have not found any preschool curriculum that my kids learn from better than just following their interests, reading lots of books, and playing outside. I know it sounds trite to say that your kids will learn more just by being kids than you could ever teach them, but at least for my kids, that's been true. I have contributed to their knowledge by showing them where and how to find out more about what they want to know, and reading to them continually, but I have not really "taught" them anything. The "tangible results" your dh wants to see are the tricks that kids in preschool are taught to make the parents think they are learning. The actual learning, well, at the preschool age it's usually not tangible, but if you observe your kids, you know it's there. If the kids express an interest, I get them books about it, find websites about it, show them a craft about, get a video about it, talk about it, etc. I don't direct their learning, I merely give them options.

Our "preschool curriculum" has consisted of:

*Children's museum
*Usborne internet-linked books that reflect the kids' interests, not what I want them to learn, and include links to websites that offer activities to add to what was read about
*Construction paper, paint, glue, scissors, glitter, crayons, markers, pipe cleaner, pom-pons, etc., available for them to use as they wish. The other day they made planets.
*Library storytime
*Riding bikes
*Singing songs
*Spanish class
*A big world map
*DK "First" books (Atlas, Encyclopedia, Dictionary, Book of Animals) to be consulted as the children desire
*Lots of card games
*Lots of board games
*Lots of legos
*Sitting together on the porch swing/on the deck/in the dandelions in the front yard and talking
*Body paint
*Making beds and putting away laundry
*Listening to world music/kids' music/bluegrass music/old timey music/classical music/punk music/Irish music/popular music/80s music/meditation music
*Going to the Dharma Center
*Watching videos about animals
*Hugging and kissing
*Taking naps
*Lots of bandaids
*Workbooks (Ramona's favorites)
*Fridge Phonics
*Jack's Big Music Show
*Taking walks
*Playing in the snow
*Puddle stomping
*Getting bored
*Finding something to do
*Arguing and making up
*Lots of snacks
*Visiting Daddy at work
*Riding the public bus
*Riding the merry-go-round
*Grocery shopping
*Temper tantrums
*Thousands upon thousands of books

Seriously, there is no preschool curriculum that could ever be dreamed up that would benefit your kids or produce more "tangible results" than these things do. IMO, you'd be wasting your money to even try (and this from someone who has wasted money trying)!

See less See more
I have never used it but I really liked little Hands to heaven and still might buy it for my youngest.

our library has "story to go packs" that we get occaisionally but we coulde asilymake a whole curriculum out of them. they include 5 story books, a puppet or other fun manipulative, movie and activitiy sheets with finger plays, games, songs etc all based aroud a theme.

We really liked Brighter Vision packs. You can get a free sample which is a eraly good deal.

we have also started using teh Kumon work books. Those things are like magis. I follow thier age guidelines even if they seem too advanced to me because they my kids just get it the way the present it. and they absolutely love them. My youngest who is 3 1/2 is doing the tracing one and I am amazed that she can do but she loves it and does a really great job. (I thought she would just sribble in it but she really wanted some "tool erk"). So I highly recommend. they are a little spendy for work books but they are printed on really nice paper and have really nice pictures and are a good size, they are ust really appealing. and whatever makes them different than other work book and other approaches must be very subtle because I am not seing it but they have helped my kids so much but completely painlessly.
See less See more
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.