Homeschooling Preschool Goals

I wanted to follow-up our reasoning to homeschool with a more practical post. I hope this is helpful for anyone thinking about starting the homeschool journey with young children.

David and I, along with my Mama, were fortunate to attend the annual CHAP Curriculum Fair in May. It was a great blast from the past for my mom and I. It's amazing to see how the organization has grown and the types of options available.

For those considering homeschooling, definitely take the time to attend a curriculum fair if you have the chance. It's a superb way of getting your feet wet, seeing curriculum up close, and learning from those further down the journey.

My biggest take away: Know your child(ren)!! It's so easy to become overwhelmed by the choices, the claims, the merchandizing. Don't be blindsided and don't necessarily follow the crowd. Go with an open mind to see what options exist. As you peruse, consider your child's learning style. For us, we saw some very colorful, very kid (and parent) appealing workbooks for all sorts of subjects. However, we know our daughter. She would be more taken with the pictures, the color, the shapes than actually focusing on the work. For her, a more sterile approach is better. Black and white pages that she can color would offer far more learning potential than color printed worksheets.

How did we know this? It might sound silly, but we thought about when we struggle the most for her attention, her cooperation, her obedience. It's (generally) not when we're at home but when we're at places like the regular grocery store. It is designed to distract, to sell, to overwhelm. When we shop the bland decor of discount stores, Sweet Potato is calmer and less likely to throw a fit. Likewise, when she watches too much TV we often have sleeping problems. Her little brain has trouble calming itself down to the point that it interrupts the very thing (sleep) that she needs to be healthy.

With this is mind, we're selecting materials that promote calm, focused, learning over entertainment. It might seem silly, but if you take a few minutes to look at preschool/early elementary learning items you'll see there is a difference.

Since early childhood is all about exploration, we're going to have a short list of goals.
  • Master our alphabet sequence 
  • Master number sequence (1-25)
  • Introduce calendar (date, month, year) 
  • Introduce personal information (home address/phone number). 
The majority of the time will be spent playing, exploring nature, reading until hoarse, encouraging Sweet Potato's strengths and interests, and practicing areas of weakness. After all, she is only a preschooler and her #1 job at this point in life is to play, explore, and have fun.

As I make my final decisions on how to fulfill these goals, I'll be sharing with you. No sense in re-creating the wheel, right?

~Kristin

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