The Second Time Around

My youngest is 4 years old. I can’t say that I’ve done a lot with him as far as homeschooling. Well, maybe that’s wrong. I have, but it looks nothing like what I did with my older kids who are now teens. Partly, that’s because I have enough confidence now to take our own road and not feel that I have to copy the school system. Or perhaps more precisely, I know that my husband has enough confidence in what I do with the kids to not worry if I don’t have lots of worksheets to show him. Partly, it’s Continue reading The Second Time Around

Teaching a Preschooler at Home

I frequently am asked “What curriculum should I use with my preschooler?”

After teaching a lot of preschoolers in my home (including my own forever children as well as almost two dozen foster children), I’ve learned a lot about what works with most children and what doesn’t. I’ve learned that Continue reading Teaching a Preschooler at Home

Calendar Math

Our 3 1/2 year old likes to count but he keeps skipping over fifteen. And he’s been asking questions about what we will be doing in the near future. So I decided it was time to pull out the magnetic  calendar I previously used, several years ago, with his older siblings . Little did I know the thrill this would give him. He loved putting the number magnets in counting order (and didn’t mind when I Continue reading Calendar Math

Oh My Word! Have a Little Faith in Yourself!

Ever want to reach through the computer and shake someone? Of course, you wouldn’t actually do it. Neither would I. But if I were to ever meet certain people in real life, I might have to remind myself a time or two that shaking them is not something I would do. This is one such instance.

A woman explained online that she wants to homeschool but plans to use a public school online program, a virtual school, to teach because she thinks she’s not smart enough to teach middle school math because she had to retake a college math course 3 times to pass it. Hello? Lady, you may have had to re-take the class, but you Continue reading Oh My Word! Have a Little Faith in Yourself!

Time for Formal Reading Lessons?

A woman I know recently asked whether it was time to begin formal reading lessons for her preschooler. I realized, as I thought about how to answer her, that experience helps so much here. I have materials on hand to teach reading formally to my little guy who is now three and a half years old. But I’m sure that he isn’t really ready for the sorts of lessons those materials would push. Instead, I’ve stuck mostly to informal lessons because my goal at this point is to keep the learning fun; I want him to grow up loving reading and learning and wanting more. Continue reading Time for Formal Reading Lessons?

What A Preschooler is Expected to Learn

There’s a site I’ve recommended for years when new homeschoolers want a list of topics that they “ought” to cover. I just skimmed over the listing for preschoolers again as I was comparing their lists to what my three year-old already knows. I was rather surprised to find it now contains a section called “technology.” When I first found this list, long before my now 15-year-old was old enough to officially be homeschooled, there was no such section. I don’t believe preschoolers need to know how to do any of the things listed. I think technology can wait. But then again, if the preschooler is the youngest in the house, and you need to keep him quiet sometimes while lessons are happening with his siblings, the preschooler will definitely be more familiar with technology than his older siblings were at even in their elementary grade years. Sometimes practicality trumps theories.


Science Fair with a Preschooler

Often our preschooler gets in the way of the teenagers’ lessons; it tends to be because the little one wants attention, wants to learn, and wants to be a part of the interesting things the older kids are learning. He doesn’t really get that he’s only three–well, he’ll soon turn three; he can tell you his numerical age, but he doesn’t see why he can’t do everything the teenagers are doing.

Sometimes we fight his desire to be included, Continue reading Science Fair with a Preschooler