Preschool is one of my favorite ages to teach. The love of learning is so strong. Everything is so exciting and fun for this age. With my own preschoolers, my goal was to be sure not to squelch but enhance that God-given love of learning. These tips for teaching preschoolers is from personal experience.
I do believe a schedule benefits children by building in them a sense of security. For this reason, I scheduled times to work with my preschoolers so they knew what to expect and what was expected of them.
Tips for Teaching Preschoolers:
1. Keeping Preschoolers Occupied
I found early on that to a large degree, my success in home schooling many ages at one time was dependent on how I managed my preschoolers. Preschool children have the potential of being a major distraction to the learning environment and must be handled wisely.
Do you feel bound by your curriculum? Do you feel guilty if you don’t do every problem? Are your kids overwhelmed, bored, or frustrated on a regular basis? I want to encourage you to free your children and free yourself, too!
A simple tip to remember is to give your child enough practice to challenge them, but not so much that you overwhelm them. I wish there were a simple rule for how much to give them. I used to think the textbook writers knew this and what was provided in the curriculum is exactly what every child needed. Boy, did I ever find out the hard way!
Summer is always the time I would reassign chores to each of my kids.
I made a master list of everything that needed to be done in our home on a regular basis. Then each summer, I would run off a new copy of the list and evaluate who in our home was the best choice for each chore for the next year.
The reason I did this in the summer was because that was the best time for training each child in the chore they were responsible for. It doesn’t work to just say, “Go clean the bathroom”, for instance. Your child will do what they think makes it clean but they need to be instructed and trained as to how to do it correctly.
It’s kind of fun to change up the chores each year so everyone learns how to do all the chores eventually, and since we’re not doing school in the summer, I took that time to train everyone. By training them in their chores in the summer, the school year would flow more smoothly, rather than having to train in chores as well as doing school work.
A: As much as possible, I tried to keep my preschoolers in the same room or general area while we were doing school. During the summer, I would prepare special fun activities they could do to learn from while the others were doing their school. See Schooltime Activities for Preschoolers for a list of ideas we used
Early on when my kids were little, I taught them how to do chores. With my family growing at a rapid rate ( I had a new baby approximately every 18 months- 2 years), my house was busy and got messy quickly. I realized there was no way I could do it all.
Q: Hello! I have read several of your books and enjoyed them. God has been putting it on my heart to teach my children at home. They are currently 4 and 5 yr. old, and I’m scared to death! I don’t know how to start. What do I teach them? What if I forget to teach them something of great importance? (math facts, etc) . How do I start?
When you see an interest crop up in one of your children, find the resources needed for them to pursue it.
Make it a part of their “curriculum” and let them pursue what sparks their interest. Maybe they’ll be immensely interested in something for a while and then lose interest and go on to something else as some of my kids did. That’s okay. Their interests will be broadened that way.
Never feel like you have to stick to the traditional school subjects.
Life is so much more varied than the average school curriculum.
More important than academics is the training and discipling of our children to love and follow the Lord God and His Word. Children must be trained and disciplined in order for them to be teachable. As I search the Scriptures, I find it inescapable that the primary responsibility for child discipline rests with the father.
“For what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?” (Hebrews 12:7b). Self-control, which is the goal of discipline in the Christian home, is not produced by correction alone. For a dad to be a successful disciplinarian, his relationship with his children must be far more.
My only claim to fame is that I have 14 children and don’t color my hair. I don’t claim to be an expert on fatherhood. I don’t know a man who does. If there is such a man, my guess is that his children are still quite young. So it is not with an attitude of authority that I write, but in a spirit of sympathy.We fathers are at a disadvantage from the start. It begins with childbirth, when the mother has the option of receiving or declining anesthesia. I’ve been through 14 births, and I’ve never even been offered the choice. Then once the baby is born, it becomes evident that women are endowed with a parenting instinct that their husbands cannot hope to match. I discovered this when our first child was born. Every time Rickey cried, Marilyn seemed toContinue reading Advice for Fathers #1 A Father’s Role in Home Education ~by Rick Boyer→
One great reason to home educate your kids is the advantage you have in being able to design your own curriculum for each child. Schools sometimes teach kids things that aren’t worth the time it takes to learn them (one history text featured eight pages about Marilyn Monroe). And of course, they sometimes omit things that kids really need to know, such as the principles of the Constitution and who Nathan Hale was. Sometimes, they teach information that has some value, but they teach it at the wrong age. I remember I was taught to balance a checkbook in eighth grade, five years before I would open my first checking account. It was no surprise to find that I no longer remembered how to balance a checkbook when I finally got one.
Individualized instruction. That means you don’t have to teach calculus to your daughter who wants to be a writer. Every hour that you spend on one thing is unavailable for learning another. Considering that you only get one chance to raise your children, it makes sense to design a specific plan for each one.