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Preschool hs co-op

439 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  USAmma
I mentioned in the thread about preschool and hs'ing that a friend and I are trying to form a hs'ing preschool co-op. Here are our ideas so far:
  • Meet once a week for 90 minutes, longer if we have a field trip planned
    Take turns hosting the week's meeting
    Decide on themes for each month and have activities tie in to those themes
    Plan field trips for our usual co-op day
    Do art or craft or cooking each time
One of our problems is finding other younger hs'ers to join us.

Has anyone here done something like this? Do you have any advice for me? Tips? Suggestions? Things to watch out for? Would it be better for one parent to host for a month and then go to the next parent, or rotate parent to parent to parent on a weekly basis, opr something else entirely?

Some of the unit ideas we've been thinking about are transportation, gardens, the 5 senses, math ideas (money, measurement, etc) and time.

I have the book Playful Learning and it has been a good resource thus far. I'd like to include both free time and structured time for the kids, with a nice mix of indoor and outdoor time as well.
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We have one going in the Phoenix area and it's worked out really well! We started with 3 moms and their kids the first time and now have around 10 regulars, with an average of 5 moms meeting each time (we've been hit hard with flu season and vacations lately). Most of the kids are in their 2's-- some just turned, some almost 3. Some of them have younger siblings who also come and are included as much as possible, and older siblings will also participate as they feel like it.

We do:

-- Hello song with each child's name in it
-- usually pick a topic for the day (counting, a letter, music, an animal)
-- try to find songs and activities that match the theme, plus some regular favorites like ring around the rosies
-- sometimes include books but have found they don't pay attention too well so we are starting to drop this a little
-- sometimes try to include a simple arts and craft but some do it, some don't
-- the felt board has been a big hit, with the kids taking turns putting objects on it during the short lesson

The class only lasts 20-30 minutes. Any more than that and they lose interest.

We bring snacks as we feel like it and have a free play while moms visit at the end. Usually lasts around 2 to 2.5 hours total, with most of it being chatting and free play.

We rotate who hosts and have it once a week. In the hot summer we had it at people's houses, but as it's getting nice out finally we may start to meet in parks sometimes. The host mom is responsible for planning the theme and activities that day.

We haven't planned any field trips due to weather but may start to plan some soon.

Hope that helps!
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