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Recently I've been browsing homeschooling websites. These families are incredible. Like Jolanthe at Home School Creations. This lady is supermom. Seriously! I don't know how she does it. It takes so much planning and work to create a structured learning environment at home. I never really thought about homeschooling our kids because it seems like they'd miss out on making friends and creating memories. However from what I've been learning many homeschooling families have meetup groups and do co-learning groups a few times a week. That and they have their kids involved in sports or other extra curricular activities. I still don't know that homeschooling will be the route we take, but I do love learning and making it a part of our daily life. I have totally slacked in teaching Little Wright anything structured. She can count and spell her name and knows shapes, colors..blah blah blah. I guess that's good. I don't know. I have nothing to compare it to. But what I do know is there is so much I could be doing with her.
And so, on top of my mounting pile of supermom tasks I've decided to try monthly preschool themes. There reallyare some wonderful sites out there and a wealth of ideas and information. I didn't really think about teaching Little Wright math at 2 1/2, yet there are simple things to teach toddlers to build a foundation for an interest in math. For example teaching her about volume and weight (heavy versus light) and length (short versus long) as well as counting.
Science is another subject that can easily be taught to toddlers. Especially with the theme of plants and flowers. We can learn that plants and flowers need water and sunlight to grow.
I found this really cute printable of a potted flower and petals. You cut out the petals and the flower pot. Then laminate the pieces so they last longer. Your toddler can practice counting the dots on the petals and matching the petal to the correct number. Keep all the pieces in an envelope and this is a fun game you can bring along on the go.
There is a second flower pot that goes up to number 10
For math we will also practice counting seeds, weighing water when we water our plants and maybe Ill get some more ideas this month to incorporate math.
I printed and laminated these sequence cards which allows toddlers to learn the process of growing a plant. We will keep these in an envelope too.
For science I have a few more ideas we will do this month:
-Go outside and find some leaves and flower petals and laminate them
-Plant some seeds in pots
-Go to a park and identify different types of flowers
-Learn about what plants need to grow (sunlight, soil, water, etc)
-This parts of the flower printable maybe a little advanced, but I'll print it out and try it
-Find some books about flowers/plants
-Practicing tracing the letters of the alphabet with these cards (I printed and laminated so we can use a dry erase marker to trace)
-Practice learning the days of the week with these printable flower pots (also laminated)
I'm sure I'll come up with a few more ideas and be sure to update.
-Family Hand flower
-And more ideas TBD Ill post more ideas/links as I come up with them
So at the end of the month the plan is to compile all this into what is known in the homeschool world as a "lapbook". This concept is still new to me, but basically you create a file folder and put everything from that month's theme into the lapbook. Not only is it a portable learning folder with fun activities, but its a neat way to keep and save all the crafts.
So once the lapbook is done I'll post all links and ideas I ended up doing and hopefully someone else will find this stuff useful :) Id love to hear ideas, tips or links if anyone else does this type of thing.