How to Homeschool Kindergarten & Preschool

 

So here you are, a mom with a preschooler or kindergartener and you are venturing into the world of homeschooling, trying to figure out what the best way is to go about teaching your children at these ages. Or perhaps you are wondering what your littlest one should do while the olders are “doing school.” Invariably, moms getting ready to figure out how to homeschool kindergarten and preschool all deal with the same questions at some point: 

  • What curriculum should I use?
  • What method is best?
  • How do I give them the best start? 
  • Are we doing too little?
  • Are we doing too much? 

Sound familiar? 

**** HEY! Don’t miss the curriculum GIVEAWAY, coupon code, and freebie opportunity at the bottom of this post! ****

 

How to Homeschool Preschool and Homeschool Kindergarten without the guilt

How to Homeschool Kindergarten and Preschool

If you’ve spent any amount of time looking into how to homeschool kindergarten and preschool, you’ve likely discovered there are a lot of different opinions out there. It looks a little something like this: 

Q: How do I teach preschool and kindergarten?

A: Don’t stress it. They’ll learn what they need to. Don’t bog them down with “school” too early.

True.

A: Focus on Christ and the Word of God. Scripture memory and character are all they need at this stage!

So true.

A: Read, read, read! Have frequent read-aloud times, use audio books, build your library, and expand your own reading!

True.

A: Teach them life skills and basic reading and math.

True.

A: Focus on exposing them to great learning experiences and helping them love to learn.

True.

A: They love to “do school!” And, be honest. So do you. Pick a curriculum and use it!

Also true.

A: Pick a curriculum and use this phase as a time to develop routines and your own self-discipline while exploring things like homeschool methods, learning styles, etc.

True.

A: Well, this is the best time for kids to learn a foreign language, you know…

All true.

Sigh. Make it stop!

So What Should You Do? 

Homeschooling opinions are a lot like parenting opinions. Everyone has one, and no matter what you decide about how to homeschool kindergarten and preschool, someone out there will think it’s the best thing ever and someone out there will think it’s the worst thing ever. So don’t let yourself be sidelined by it when it happens! 

Bottom line: do what you want. While it can be inspiring and useful to find out what others are doing and glean what is helpful, don’t let it stress you out! Don’t allow yourself to dwell in worry about all the opinions or articles that say you should be doing this or doing that, or doing nothing at all.

Comparison steals joy. Worry steals peace. 

Three Steps to Getting Started

Here are the three things I suggest you focus on above all else when it comes to how to homeschool kindergarten and pre-k. From experience, they’re the essentials. 

1) Pray for Wisdom. There’s no homeschooling tool more effective, more reliable, or more accessible than PRAYER. Learn now to go first to the Lord in prayer and He will guide you. Ask for help in finding the approach that is right for you, your kids, and your current situation.

2) Don’t Get Stuck. It’s a good thing to seek advice, do research, and find out what more experienced homeschool moms recommend. Weird homeschoolers like me actually consider that a good time. 😉 However, don’t get stuck in analysis paralysis! Glean the useful tidbits and be sure to move on to #3. 

3) You Do You. Only you as the parent are the best one to determine what your child needs at each stage. Trust that processes and God’s leading in your homeschool. Choose an approach that seems reasonable and just try it out, adjusting as needed based on what you observe about your child’s developmental readiness, needs, and family dynamic. 

ABC Bible Curriculum for Kindergarten

My Changing Approach to Homeschooling the Early Years

I have tried a lot of different things in these years of homeschooling, and I still have 3 out of 6 kids in what I’d consider the early education stages. I am always learning more about how they learn and how to best teach them.

Here’s what our homeschool years have looked like for preschool and kindergarten. Note that I don’t regret ANY of them. 

  • Formal Pre-K / Kinder Curriculum: I spent time and money on our firstborn doing formal preschool. I don’t regret it! We both had fun! He is not in therapy because of it and still loves learning. 
  • Delayed Academics: Over time I have done less and less in the first few years, delaying formal academics until about 1st or 2nd grade (and for some subjects even longer) focusing instead on character, play-based learning, and habits. I don’t regret this either! It is a fruitful use of our time and they aren’t behind at all. 
  • One Room Schoolhouse: As a large family mom, we do a one-room schoolhouse style for subjects like history, Bible, science, art, music, read alouds, etc. so that they all benefit at their own level. We LOVE this approach and they learn so much by tagging along. The olders take some opportunities to teach the youngers basic things, too, which is a blessing all around. 
  • Fun “School” Activities: My pre-k and kinder kids still enjoy “doing school” sometimes so we use fun workbooks, worksheets, activities, and apps.
  • Introducing the 3 R’s: When our kids start “reading” books and show readiness, we begin teaching reading. When they begin “writing notes” and leaving them all over the house (with their various scribbles), we begin teaching handwriting. Somewhere around the same time we start living math activities (games, counting, etc.) Sometimes we use apps. It’s not based on their age, but their readiness based on our observations, and usually starts around 4-7 depending on the kid. In the end, the all catch up to each other so we don’t stress too much about when they start. 

What is the Best Pre-K and Kindergarten Curriculum?

Well… I hate to say it but there is no “best” preschool or kindergarten curriculum. It is a blessing that we have so many options to choose from these days, but it can also be overwhelming. There are several great ones to choose from and a lot of times it comes down to things like preference (for you and your child), learning style, and budget. 

You already have a peek into what we do for our own kids at that stage, so as you can imagine, we don’t rely much on curriculum.  Sometime I’ll write about the various resources we have used (it’s a short list), but for now I wanted to share one in particular because it’s become the first place I go to for fun “I want to do school” activities as well as lessons for when our kids are beginning to show readiness.

The Crafty Classroom – Educational Resources for the Early Years

The Crafty Classroom is a high quality educational resource site for pre-k through 3rd grade!

 

We have been using The Crafty Classroom more and more in our homeschool. The materials are very well done, teach the subjects effectively, my kids always enjoy them, and I find them easy to use. That’s pretty much a rockstar curriculum description in my book! 

Here are a few of the offerings that I love from The Crafty Classroom, some of them we’ve already been using, and some from our wish list! 

  • Bible ABC Curriculum Notebook – Such a sweet letter-of-the-week style curriculum with over 600 pages with activities, games, worksheets, charts, coloring pages, math explorations and more for each letter!
  • Maze Writer (My 5 year old LOVES this one) – Over 200 pages with mazes of various levels of difficulty for each letter of the alphabet. 
  • St. Patrick’s Day Experiments – We used this for our homeschool science fair last year and it was a blast!
  • R.E.A.D. Kindergarten Reading and Language Arts curriculum that so many families have loved and enjoyed for teaching reading. 
  • Interactive Math – Comprehensive kindergarten math curriculum provides you with a full year of hands-on math lessons, games and activities.
  • U.S.A Geography – Activity packs, mazes, bird cards and more to teach U.S. geography!
  • Writing Curriculum – Various options for Kindergarten to 3rd grade, everything from simple sequencing to writing a research paper!
  • Much more!

NEW Sight Word Curriculum

The latest offering from The Crafty Classroom is the new Sight Word of the Week curriculum! This covers 40 sight words for preschool and kindergarten. Each week goes through one sight word with engaging worksheets, activities, games, and hands-on resources. I have plans to use it with my kinder/1st grader next month, but my friend Jamie from The Coffee Filled Mom has already been using it, so I asked her to share a review with you all today so you can get a peek inside the curriculum! Click here to check out that detailed review

Start teaching sight words in kindergarten with this fantastic resource for homeschooling!

{Giveaway, Freebie, & Coupon Code!} Win $40 at The Crafty Classroom!

I reached out to the owner of The Crafty Classroom to do some fantastic partnerships to bless YOU this month! Check this out:

  • Get 10% off ANY ORDER at The Crafty Classroom by using code MARCH10 
  • Get the K-2 Daily Writing Notebook (reg. $5) FREE on any order over $25 by using code WRITEFREE
  • The deals can be combined with each other but not other offers, and both deals expire after March 22, 2018

 

Enter the Crafty Classroom Curriculum Gift Card Giveaway and get 10% off any order plus a FREE writing pack with purchase!

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67 thoughts on “How to Homeschool Kindergarten & Preschool”

  1. Pamela Noldan

    We love Crafty Classroom’s R.E.A.D. curriculum! Handwriting has always been a huge struggle for us. Asking my daughter to write the letter ‘A’ to answer a question would end the day for us due to the fights we’d have over it, so you can imagine we weren’t getting much done. When I tried this, even though her reading level is beyond Kindergarten, her whole attitude changed. She LOVES the R.E.A.D program and can’t wait to do it every day!

  2. I look at the crafty classroom a lot. Right now I’m leaning towards the bible abc’s and the sight word of the week but that could change at any moment.

  3. Jeanette Atkinson

    I have been using the READ program with my son and LOvE it!!! It has just the right balance of dependent and independent work. For the child that says “I can do it myself” but really still needs help, this is perfect. If I won the gift card I would like the Sight Word of the Week to use with my daughter. To be honest, I would like one of everything 🙂 I also have Maze Writer and really like that one too.

  4. I have LOVED everything I have done from Crafty Classroom!!! I would love to try their R.E.A.D. since we did the Bible ABC’s this year for preschool. I also have all the 10 commandments printed and hanging on my wall.

  5. Lots of great ideas and encouragement in this post. Practical and so helpful for taking the pressure off. I adored the early education years with my own girls and I’m excited to start with our grandson. He’s 2 1/2 and so much fun to read with, play with, and explore with! Little ones have so much curiosity and enthusiasm. Just love it!

  6. Thank you for being the voice of reason in the face of “but I should do…” for my preschooler! This post was light and joy for this mama’s heart. 🙂

  7. What a great giveaway! If I won I’d probably buy the Bible ABC curriculum, maze writer, maybe some experiments, writing curriculum…

  8. I will be starting Pre-K soon so I would focus on the ABC books and beginning reading books. I think she would especially like the ABC Mazes book!

  9. The sight word curriculum is what I would buy! We’ve used the Bible ABC so it’s time to move up a step 🙂

  10. I would love to get the new sight word of the week program. I am also interested in the R.E.A.D. and the Interactive Math curriculums. But there are many other good choices as well.

  11. So many great options! I would love to try the alphabet curriculum notebook, the USA activity pack, the USA state bird art cards, and pretty much everything else! Thanks for the giveaway!

  12. The crafty classroom has created so many wonderful products. We’ve learned a lot using the states package this year!

  13. I have already started buying stuff from crafty classroom and love their curriculum. I would be interested in helping both my kids with the writing k-5 as well as the sight words. Also the color curriculum and much much more for my Preschool and kindergarten kids

  14. I’d love to win this, I already have some of their products and would love to grow my library for when my toddler gets a little older. thanks for the competition, Hope it’s open to worldwide participation if not then do disregard,

  15. Thanks for such an awesome giveaway! I am very intetested in the writing bundle, how to write a paragraph, and maze writer. Crafty Classroom has such awesome curriculum!

  16. Caitlin Weaver

    I would buy the Sight Word curriculum for my 1st grader, but there are many things I’m interested in for my up and coming kindergartener!

  17. I am interested in the Sight Word of the Week book. My 3.5yr old wants to read so badly and keeps trying. I just know when she is ready for it, that I will need help teaching sight words. That teaching concept can be so difficult!

  18. I completely agree with delayed formal academics and the one room school house model for subjects that can be combined.

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