Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Preschool

With Grace in school this year for the first time EVER, I am back to the basics of homeschooling. Moses is almost 4 1/2 years old and we're doing a very informal preschool together this year.

I started our homeschooling adventure with Grace in Kindergarten in 2004 when she was 5 years old. Although I loved homeschooling and being with Grace, looking back I know I was too rigid and uptight about it all. As a result, we were both burned out at the end of our first year. Neither of us enjoyed school and we were both glad to be done with it each day. I just didn't have to right ideas and attitudes about school at home. We didn't have an atmosphere of learning and I didn't foster the joy of discovery in Grace, but instead focused too much on "getting it right" and "finishing this page" so it would look like I was a good teacher and so I would "have something to show" for our homeschooling efforts.


Hopefully I've learned enough by now to avoid that with Moses. I want Moses to love learning. I want him to learn without knowing that he's "doing school." I want to follow his lead a little bit and let him "take off" with the things that really grip his imagination. And I hope my goal isn't to have a workbook full of perfectly finished pages, but a little boy who is eager each day to discover more of what the world has in store for him.

The world is so full of a number of things, 

I'm sure we should all be as happy as kings.






We're also doing a relaxed and informal preschool co-op with my dear friend Debby. She has a Kindergartener and a preschooler, as well as a toddler and new baby, so it's both very fun and a little chaotic. We take turns teaching and hosting and have two co-ops a month. We have a "theme book", a letter and sometimes a holiday/season theme. Moses totally loves it.

So here's some of the things we've been doing, and at the bottom of this post are some resources that I rely on heavily for inspiration and encouragement. Judah, of course, also joins in on many things Moses and I are doing. After all, that's what homeschooling is about, right?!







My first co-op was "T" for tree. The kids glued sticks, bark, pinecones and these little fabric leaves I got from the dollar store onto a letter 'T' printed on cardstock. 
Didn't they do a great job?





(This is Judah's)  =]






 These are the tops of trees waiting to be stuck onto their trunks. 
(Project found here)




A trip to the apple orchard is full of fun and learning opportunities!














We've had lots of other fun learning experiences, but unfortunately Mama hasn't gotten pictures of much. Moses is totally into snakes, basic electrical wiring (I'm very serious), learning how to write all his letters, and drawing elaborate scenes and creatures. Judah is learning so much just by being around Moses, which is nice! I didn't have the experience with Grace, obviously, of a younger child just picking up stuff from the older ones.

Hopefully I'll be able to post more about our preschooling adventures this year! Here's some great resources:

Websites:




Simply Charlotte Mason: 


Elizabeth Foss - 
     Serendipity


Articles:




World Book Preschool Course of Study  (Good for reference but not as a rigid "to-do list")


Books:







The Big Book of Home Learning : Preschool and Elementary


2 comments:

kristin said...

: ) thank you.

Christopher J said...

Great Post, Miss! Those pictures are awesome!