While homeschooling in the preschool years it can be challenging to know what it should look like. Keep reading to gather some great ideas.
Where Schooling Takes Place
When you look up homeschooling in preschool, you may find that people have fancy homeschooling rooms. It’s easy to feel discouraged and that you can’t homeschool because you don’t have a homeschooling room. This idea is furthest from the truth. If you have a special room dedicated to homeschooling, great! If you don’t have the space, that’s totally okay!
Learning can (and does) happen everywhere. From riding in the car to eating at the table, learning is happening. Preschool is all about figuring out how the world works and how preschoolers fit and interact in this big world.
You may find it beneficial to have a place, like the kitchen table, for your little one to do certain tasks. This way when you say that it is time for table work, your little one knows what to expect and where to go.
Who Does the Teaching
The first response most people would give would be Mom or the person staying home with the kids. But Mom doesn’t have to be the only teacher. Games, shows, other siblings, and other adults can also join in to teach. Teaching doesn’t just mean sitting down and doing worksheets. Teaching can be completed many different ways.
As silly as it may sound, the environment you set up for your kids can be a teacher too. Pictures and words on the walls, placemats, or tables can help teach your little ones. Many preschool classrooms have the items labeled with words (the door is labeled with a sign that says door, etc.). This helps the preschoolers connect the labeled words to the items.
When to Homeschool Preschool
Kids thrive on a routine. It may be helpful to write down what you do each day to see if you already have a natural rhythm. If you are interested in figuring out how to make a homeschooling schedule, we have a post all about it!
With that being said, learning happens everywhere. Be flexible and give yourself some grace.
What to Teach when Homeschool in Preschool Years
Homeschooling in the preschool years can look many different ways. Some of the main things that preschoolers should be exposed to are below.
Fine Motor Activities
Activities that require your little ones to use the muscles in their hands are considered fine motor skills. Holding a paint brush, picking up little items, using tweezers or clothes pins are all activities that use fine motor muscles.
Gross Motor Activities
Gross Motor Muscles are the large muscle groups. Give your preschooler opportunities to run, jump, balance, and hop are all important to help your little one learn how to use his body.
Read and talk about books with your little one. Ask what he thinks will happen next or what he would do if he was in the book.
Early Math and Reading Concepts
Counting and pattern work are both math items that can be covered in preschool. When it comes to reading, identifying letters is a great place to start. Don’t feel like you have to rush to get your little one reading and doing math problems. It isn’t a race 😉
Teaching your preschooler how to solve his own problem (or start to solve it…) is an important social skill to learn.
As odd as it may sound to ‘teach’ dramatic play, your little one may you to show him how to take on different roles and to act a part. Dramatic play is a safe way for little ones to see how others react to certain things. If your little one isn’t being kind during dramatic play, you can use your ‘character role’ to show how sad you feel when he treats you poorly. Your little one will carry this knowledge over to when he is interacting with people in his life and (hopefully) make different decisions.
Listening and Music Skills
Ever feel like you are talking to a wall when it comes to your little ones listening? Do some listening activities while homeschooling in the preschool years to help your little ones sharpen their listening skills. Play Simon Says or other games that require listening.
Another great way to practice listening is by listening to music and moving along with the songs. You can also clap (or tap) a beat and have your little ones echo the beat back to you.
Perhaps the most important thing to include while homeschooling in the preschool years is free play! There is so much your little ones can learn through playing. They use their imaginations and can figure out how different things work by investigating. ALWAYS make time for play!
When it comes to homeschooling in the preschool years, there are many different things you can cover. If there is one thing that you should be covering, no matter what, it is free play. There is no wrong way to free play, and it is a key component to helping your preschooler grow and thrive.