Friday, July 15, 2011

the truth about preschool….

I just ran across this article about preschoolers…

I’d been wondering recently if I should buy a nice days of the week/month/weather calendar. Seth has been asking about that more. And I don’t think it would be a bad thing to have.

BUT… I like to hear that it isn’t necessary. I like to look at preschool educational ideas, and we have lots of educational games and toys around here. Honestly, there is so much out there that it overwhelms me…

These days, my goal is for us to spend a good bit of time reading together, step back and let the boys create imaginative play together, and do 2-3 short learning activities.

Yes, I did some alphabet themed preschool. I may go back to it sometime. BUT… I think Seth and Evan can learn the same things that they got from that without me planning it all out so much.

Here is a typical day with preschoolers around here:

Seth gets up and puts on his clothes. I point out if his shirt or shorts are on backwards, and he corrects it. Evan puts diapers in the trash can. That’s his “job.” Seth puts his own bowl and spoon from breakfast in the sink.

We read several books together. Evan picks some, and Seth picks some. They will ask me to read a lot throughout the day. At this point, Evan has the attention span to make it through many of the books that Seth reads, including “Frog and Toad.” Pretty good for a barely 2-year-old boy, I think.

I spend about 20 minutes with them doing little learning activities. These can include a few worksheets with Seth from his Rod and Staff preschool workbooks, a letter matching or number matching game, building with multicolored bears, a memory game, doing increasingly more difficult puzzles, playdough, sticker books, etc. We often sit at our little table together, Evan on my lap, and he either tries to do what Seth is doing, or I have a little activity for him to do. We don’t do this every day if we’ve got something going on, but if we don’t, we do this.

If I’m cooking something, Seth helps me dump and stir, and we talk about measurements. I encourage them both to make up rhymes and songs. They pretend all kinds of neat things, often based on books. Seth packed a “picnic” and sat on a “rock” (the sofa), just like Frog and Toad in one story.

I feel like they’re thriving, and I’m trying not to stress about whether or not Seth can recognize all his lowercase letters and his numbers. Since I know he doesn’t know them, I throw more of those games or activities in there for him. David came up with the idea of having him pick a number from the number puzzle each afternoon, and he only gets that many Goldfish crackers. Talk about an incentive for learning numbers… heh heh.

Sooo, preschool? I think we’re doing well here for now. I care most that they’re using their imaginations and loving to read, and I figure that’s most important at 2 and 4…

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