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First time mom is going to attempt homeschool pre-school…help

Posted by on Aug. 3, 2014 at 10:01 PM
  • 11 Replies

Hello everyone! In September I will be doing pre school at home with my daughter (she's four) and I'm not sure what activities I should do with her. I plan on buying some workbooks so she can write her letters and numbers, but what I else should I do? She counts to 20, recognizes colors, shapes, can name parts of the body, knows the alphabet by heart, she knows her upper and lower case letters, when you present her numbers on a flashcard she can tell you what the number is up to about 13, she follows directions pretty well (I do need to work on her listening skills when it comes to a series of instructions). I plan to introduce cutting and using scissors safely and of course we'll be doing some physical education during the day as well. My mother-in-law is totally against homeschooling and she's making me feel like a terrible parent for doing preschool at home, I just want to make sure come kindergarten I didn't make a huge mistake for my child. We live in NY if that helps any. Thank you!

by on Aug. 3, 2014 at 10:01 PM
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by on Aug. 3, 2014 at 11:17 PM
First, dont overshare with mom if she isn't supportive and dont accept her dissention. tell her clearly that the decision is yours to make.

Second, start getting to know your state laws about what you need to do.

Third, build up a support network maybe by going to a new homeschooler meet in with a local co ops.

Fourth, research various homeschooling styles and decide what might fit well.

Finally, relax...she is four. She doesn't need to work on a college thesis. You are already doing it.

by Group Admin on Aug. 3, 2014 at 11:41 PM
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Sounds like you have already started preschool with her. Don't talk about homeschooling with people you know are against it. Like you were told earlier find a group. Preschool is lots of crafts and fun. Look into Letter of the week if you are worried. It is a good preschool program
by on Aug. 4, 2014 at 4:50 PM

How And What To Teach the Pre School Child

Your State Home School Association provides free information on New York's State Laws,  and support groups too.  See links at the top of the page to navigate their site. 

by on Aug. 4, 2014 at 6:28 PM

Read to her and read with her a lot!  I think that preschool is before any laws about homeschooling come into effect, even in New York, but I don't know for sure.  It sounds like you are off to a great start! 

by on Aug. 5, 2014 at 12:15 AM
For preschool we used the behind the backpack app on Nick jr to determine readiness. Not sure if its still on there but it is with Dora. Also you can find what thestate requirements are. As for Mom in law, I wouldn't include her. You are seeking what you think is best for your child and if she can't see that then she has nothing to say. You aren't a terrible mother for wanting to do this for your child. I personally heard it all from my side of the family when we decided homeschooling. My response was "They are OUR children not yours and what we feel is best for them doesn't need to be okayed by you!" They sooner or later backed off and now support it. Which in all reality .. they have no choice! Either they support me in homeschooling or they can kiss my you know what. I dont have an excellent relationship with my family. They all turn against everyone and I only keeo them in the loop because the kids love them and are attachec to them. There are also pre k workbooks at walmart that you can look at or pick up. I'm doing that for our pre schoolers this year! :)
by Silver Member on Aug. 5, 2014 at 9:27 AM

Do a lot of play! 
Does she know her letter sounds? If not, start working on that and get her started on the path of reading! My little guy knew all his letters, lower and capital when he was really really little, but we still kept with the basics and went over them again when he was 3/4, but then we introduced sounds. I had "Riley's Writing Book." It was a binder with a TON of page protectors. Whenever we learned a new letter, I would put in a handwriting page in the book and he could practice over and over again writing on that page with a dry erase marker. We would also do an art project of some sort. I had purchased All About Reading's Pre Level 1 Reading program, and it was easy for him, but we did the letter projects in it - both upper and lower case in one day, and the rest of the week we focused on how the letter sounded. (So instead of going through the book how it was set up - which it is divided into 3 sections - we did all three at once for that letter). So on the day we did Aa for instance, we did whatever the art proejct/activity was from AAR, then he would get the A and the a handwriting pages, and practice tracing and writing the letter on his own. Then we would erase the pages, and he would practice them all week.
I also did that with shapes, and for colors, I had him practice writing the colors out. We also did it with numbers. He loved it. It was his own special book and his own special markers. We could take it just about anywhere with us, and he'd have something to do, including in the car. It was his favorite road trip activity. I had also put in match the upper case with its lower case worksheet in there, and a worksheet on patterns.
After he started mastering the sounds, we moved onto All About Reading Level 1.  

For "science" we went outside and we studied shadows and caterpillars (including catching one we discovered was safe and watching it go through the whole life cycle, and then let it free). We watched a plant grow. We went on hikes around the neighborhood looking at different leaves... It was all fun simple stuff...

My little guy at 4 liked the Math U See Primer too for math. But he was also content with just putting legos together to add the little nubs on top...

I ended up using actual curriculum with him simply because of my oldest and he wanted to do "school" like his big sister. All of this stuff can be done without an actual curriculum too. has free stuff, and can help learn letter sounds...

And like the other ladies have said - sourround yourself with support, and don't talk about homeschooling with the nay-sayers. It's freaking preschool, and from the sounds of it, you're already doing an awesome job.  

O yes, and if you get the "complete" workbooks, rip the pages out and put those in page protectors too - you can use them again and again then, and spend less that way than having to buy tons of workbooks over and over again ;)   

by Silver Member on Aug. 5, 2014 at 10:10 AM
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So_if you've never homeschooled before, how does she know what she knows? My point being that you don't have to call it "school" for her to learn, and it doesnt require any special equipment or materials. Just keep doing what you're doing and following her readiness level.
by Member on Aug. 7, 2014 at 3:21 PM

Have fun and explore the world!  In my opinion, instilling a love of learning and awe of discovery are far more important at four than the educational checklist. Sounds like you know what you want. It sounds like she's already ahead on the "educational checklist," anyway.  Have fun!

by Kim on Aug. 7, 2014 at 7:12 PM
There's a ton of resources out there for preschoolers - confessions of a homeschooler has a PDF with activities for $15, it's a full year curriculum I guess? also has free online curriculum.

I buy a months worth (1 box) curriculum from adventures in learning & it's a box with 20 days worth of art projects, letter & number activities, etc. I add in my own stuff so the box lasts me like 3-4 months, if I do 1-2 activities 3-4 times a week
by New Member on Aug. 10, 2014 at 1:25 PM

There is so much you can do. I would start teaching her letter sounds (this will help with reading). Also start doing pattern worksheets or activities with her ( lady bug, butterfly, lady bug , butterfly, what comes next_____), there is also compare and contrast activities. These are helpful pre math skills. I really like to follow the montessori method for all things. Allow her also to do sensory activities. Remember children leanr by touching, smelling, feeling, etc not just with paper and penicl. Incorporate playdough and manipulatives into your lessons. Also allow her to learn practical life skills, put everything she uses down to her level so she can begin to do things for herself such as pouring her own water,etc.  There is a ton of blogs and websites out there. This is one of the many websites I love,

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