Monday, August 31, 2009

Preschool From Home

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I recently wrote about our Learning Activity of the Day. Around the time McKenna was born, we started a different curriculum. Our Learning Activity of the Day was something I made up based on what I knew at the time. One day, someone (I can't remember who! Sorry!) mentioned this blog: http://www.ourpreschoolhomeschool.blogspot.com/. I visited the blog and thought it would be a great program to follow!

It is very similar to what I was already doing, except it adds a few elements. It adds in a theme of the week (cows, lighthouses, butterflies...). You also have a vocabulary word. It gives ideas for a gross motor skill activity as well as a fine motor skill activity. It also has you do a song each day that goes along with the theme along with a poem. You also learn a nursery rhyme each week. Here is how it breaks down:

MONDAY: Theme Day


  • Introduce theme
  • Read story based on theme
  • Share poem based on theme
  • Sing song based on theme
  • Gross motor skill activity based on theme
  • Introduce vocabulary word

TUESDAY: Shape OR Color Day (it alternates each week)

  • Review weekly theme
  • Read story based on theme
  • Share poem based on theme
  • Sing song based on theme
  • Review vocabulary word

SHAPE

  • Collect 3-5 objects to share with your child that are the shape
  • Walk through your home looking for the shape
  • Cut a shape out of cookie dough, playdough, etc.
  • Put a drawing of the shape on your poster

COLOR

  • Color the shape on your learning poster
  • Wear the color
  • Walk through your home looking for color
  • Add color to meals through food or plates, etc.
  • Color

WEDNESDAY: Letter Day

  • Color a print out of the letter of the day
  • Trace the shape in pudding, finger paint, shallow tray filled with rice, etc.
  • Find the letter in signs, cereal boxes, etc.
  • Post the letter on your learning poster
  • Review weekly theme
  • Read story based on theme
  • Share poem based on theme
  • Sing song based on theme
  • Review vocabulary word
  • Review shape/color

THURSDAY: Number Day

  • Give your child a snack in the number of the day (so if you are on number five, you eat five fish crackers or grapes, etc.)
  • Show your child the number on the learning poster
  • Add correct number of stickers to a counting book
  • Create matching index cards for the number of the week
  • Draw number of shapes (use shape of the week) for the number of the week
  • Walk around the house counting objects in your home
  • Review weekly theme
  • Read story based on theme
  • Share poem based on theme
  • Sing song based on theme
  • Review vocabulary word
  • Review shape/color
  • Review letter

FRIDAY: Review Day

  • Introduce nursery rhyme. Repeat this often during the next week
  • Read a book based on nursery rhyme if possible
  • Review weekly theme
  • Do fine motor skills activity for the week
  • Read story based on theme
  • Share poem based on theme
  • Sing song based on theme
  • Review vocabulary word
  • Review shape/color
  • Review letter
  • Review number
  • Play matching game with all numbers previously learned

BOOKLET

Create a booklet that has each thing you learn in it and add to it each week. I use a three ring binder and print out a page for each thing.

One page has the letter in uppercase and lowercase.

One page has the shape or color as well as the word written out (so it would say Oval followed by a picture of an oval). If it is the color, I write out the color and have several shapes in that color, but in various shades. So it would say "blue" and have a blue heart, circle, square, etc. I would have light blue, dark blue, blue, etc.

One page has the number in numerals, the number written out, followed by that number in the theme of the week. So for sheep week, it has the number 17, the word seventeen, followed by 17 sheep.

I then have a review page. At the top, it says the word for the them. I then have a picture that represents the them, along with the word and definition. I then have a picture of the vocabulary word, along with the word and definition. I then have a third picture that I think correlates with the theme.

MY ADDITIONS
I have added some things to this. Here they are.

SATURDAY: Field Trip Day
I thought it would be fun to take field trips based on the theme. The first week is cow week, and we live near many dairy farms. It was also spring, so there were a lot of calves around the valley (calf was the vocabulary word).

If Saturday doesn't work, you can do it in an evening during the week. During Horse week, we had a family reunion on the Saturday. We went for a field trip on Monday night instead. My parents own about 40 miniature horses a two full size horses. We went to their house and pet and fed the horses. We talked about our vocabulary words and had something "hands-on" to refer to all week.

Also, not all words will work for you. For example, during lighthouse week, there was no way we could visit a lighthouse without spending a lot of money ;) We don't live near them.

SUNDAY: Memorization Day
Our primary issued a challenge to memorize 13 scriptures over the summer. Brayden (four) is in the youngest class in the primary and they didn't expect that age group to actually memorize, but I thought we would try it out. To my surprise (and the shock of his teachers) he did it! He was the youngest child to get all thirteen memorized. We practiced the scripture each day, but he passed them off at church on Sunday to his teachers. I have decided this is great and will continue it with other good scriptures.

Kaitlyn (two) also practiced along with us, though she didn't memorize word for word. It doesn't hurt, though :) If you have a younger child who is your oldest, you might want to have your spouse model the process for your child. I am sure Kaitlyn understood what to do from watching Brayden.

Busy Books
I like to add more variety to the week. At the beginning of the week, I plan out a new, fun activity for each day. I typically get my ideas from my busy books (see Book Review: The Toddler's Busy Book). For color day, I look for fun art activities. For number day, I look in the math section. You get the picture. There are 365 ideas in the Toddler's Busy Book and 365 in Preschooler's Busy Book. There is also The Siblings' Busy Book, which has great reviews and I plan to purchase them.

Websites
You can also gather great ideas from the web. My friend, Manda, posted a bunch of great sites she has found on the last learning activities post:

SHARING DOCS

I had fully planned to upload all of the many review pages, coloring pages, activity pages, etc. that I have made to the Chronicles Yahoo! Group. I still hope to. My hard drive crashed a couple of weeks ago and I am still waiting to see if the data can be recovered. Yeah, a nightmare. I back stuff up every so often, but hadn't done it since McKenna was a couple of weeks old. Anyway, I will upload there if I can. They aren't hard to make, but they do take time so I thought I would spare everyone the time :) Here is a link to the group: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/chroniclesofababywisemom/

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18 comments:

The Culbertsons said...

This is great! I've been looking for a good curriculum to use this year for my 2 year old and this is perfect. Thanks for the info!

Lisa said...

Here is another great preschool program you can do from home. It's curriculum is centered around the Bible. I am currently doing it with my 2 and 3 year old. http://www.hubbardscupboard.org/index.html

Kyle, Amanda, and Tobias said...

I've actually found another preschool at home resources since I last posted :)

This one has fantastic themes and activities. It includes worksheets and games you can print out for a fee but I think the free lesson plans provide ample activities to keep a preschooler busy for an entire week. http://www.educatall.com/

Thank you so much for posting the link to the preschool homeschool blog, it looks great! Hopefully I can find some useful stuff for me and Tobias to do :)

Sarah Bragg said...

This is so great! I have a 15 month old and I'm wondering when you could start doing this stuff.

Dana and Tammy said...

Thanks so much for your blog! I check everyday:) I just started doing some verses with my 3 1/2 year old and I was wondering what ones you liked for that age - ones that they can really start to understand. Thanks! Tammy

Redheads said...

Great links! I cannot wait to use these in the future. I have saved them for when my DD gets older. She is only 7 months now. Any suggestions on "learning" activities for her now?

Christie said...

We do similar activities but based on Bible lesson a week. You can check it out at my blog:

www.mywalkwitheden.com

love these ideas everyone!

Kristy Shreve Powers said...

I just love the resources I found after going to www.ourpreschoolhomeschool.blogspot.com. Thank you thank you thank you!!! My 3-year-old loves the Preparatory curriculum but I am going to try the Letter of the Week curriculum instead because it will be more developmentally appropriate. There's an interesting link on the right of the home page, "How We Taught Our Sons to Read" or something like that. Based on that info, I borrowed the Leap Frog Letter Factory DVD last night from the library, as well as a "Bob Book" for beginner readers. By noon today, my son read for the first time! I am so excited I can hardly stand it. He acted like it was no big deal. He sounded out the letters in the Bob Book with no problem. We had already been doing Starfall.com sometimes and working on sounds of letters, but this clinched it! I can't thank you and your readers enough for pointing me to some amazing learning tools.

Plowmanators said...

Culbertsons, you are welcome! I think you will like it.

Plowmanators said...

Thanks Lisa!

Plowmanators said...

Thanks Manda! So what category would that one go under on the new blog? Preschool? Every category? lol What do you think?

Plowmanators said...

Sarah, you can definitely start now. You will be so shocked one day when you suddenly start realizing all your child has picked up on. It might be 6 months before you see any sign, or it could be 6 days :) You never know with kids.

Plowmanators said...

Dana, I would start with things that are shorter (John 14:15 is short)--but don't underestimate him! Here is a list of Old Testament verses I think are good:

Genesis 1:26-7
Genesis 39:9
Exodus 20:3-17 (ten commandments--I would treat each one individually--this might be a really good starting point)
Exodus 33:11
Leviticus 19:18
Joshua 1:8
Joshua 24:15
1 Samuel 16:7
Job 19:25-26
Psalms 24:3-4
Proverbs 3:5-6
Isaiah 1:18
Isaiah 29:13-14
Isaiah 53:3-5
Isaiah 55:8-9
Jeremiah 16:16
Daniel 2:44-45
Amos 3:7
Malachi 3:8-10
Malachi 4:5-6

And New Testament:

Matthew 5:14-6
Matthew 6:24
Matthew 16:15-19
Matthew 25:40
Luke 24:36-39
John 3:5
John 7:17
John 10:16
John 14:15
John 17:3
Acts 7:55-6
Romans 1:156
1 Corinthians 10:13
1 Corinthians 15:20-22
1 Corinthians 15:40-42
Ephesians 4:11-14
2 Thessalonians 2:1-3
2 Timothy 3:1-5
2 Timothy 3:16-7
Hebrews 5:4
James 1:5-6
James 2:17-8
Revelation 14:6-7
Revelation 20:12-3

As you have him memorize it, I would also talk to him about the meaning of what he is saying. Have fun!

Plowmanators said...

Redheads,

At that age, there are a few basics. One is to read to her often. Another is to work on sign language. Another great one is singing songs to her. She will most likley love songs that involve hand/body movements like Wheels on the Bus, Pattycake, Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes, etc.

Plowmanators said...

Thanks Christie! That looks fun!

Plowmanators said...

Kristy, that Leapfrog Letter factory movie is awesome. My kids love it. Last Christmas, I also got them the whole set (there is a word factory, storybook factory, number factory...). I also gave my friend Kelli (who did the milk supply post) the letter factory one year and she said it taught her son his alphabet and sounds.

I will have to try a Bob book! Brayden loves to read. So far, he is self-taught. I think Word World on PBS has helped a lot in that department.

Kristy Shreve Powers said...

We just found Word Factory at the library! I'm going to be looking for the others. The first Bob Book was exciting for my son. I haven't found or ordered the rest yet, so I'm not sure exactly how they progress. Word World and SuperWhy have been wonderful for my son, but he only learned limited things from them until he learned the concepts elsewhere--through Letter Factory and me and trying out the Bob Book. Now he really benefits from those shows because he knows the full concepts. Or maybe the shows helped him really get the ideas when they were introduced, and they all worked together. Who knows?

Plowmanators said...

lol Kristy. Who Knows. :)

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