Tuesday, January 20, 2009

What Your Preschooler Needs to Know

I am slowly weeding through the myriad (and I do mean myriad) of options for homeschooling, (or "afterschooling" at our house since we haven't made a firm decision about school yet) and I came across this little gem.

What Your Preschooler Needs to Know is put out by the Core Knowledge series with the idea that there is a base set of common knowledge and culture kids are expected to know. And do these people understand preschoolers!

There are six sections: poems, songs, stories, history, science and art. The poems & songs are mostly well-known Mother Goose and Nursery rhymes, but the history, science and story sections are new information to us, broken down into 3-4 page segments with fantastic colorful pictures. Perfect for a preschooler!

Noah's favorite section is the science pages and he is loving learning about an ant colony! We have fallen into a nice routine of a morning walk or bike ride and then reading time/science info. I'm thinking about adding some of the Usborne Book of science experiments too since he seems to be so interested!
So, these are our early adventures in homeschooling/afterschooling! I'm considering the TATRAS phonics program as well, but I don't want to push reading, I'd rather start too late than too early, so we might not do that until next year. After all, I'm trying to balance a child who lacks self-control, with a mind that is ready for some info about his world! The last thing I want to do is make this seem so rigid that he doesn't want to do it! The quest continues...


Backofpack said...

This is funny, the day I pop in on your blog again, is the day you post about this book. We used the entire series, from K (that's where it started at the time) through 6th grade of the "Everything your..." books. My boys loved them! They were the jumping off point for many lessons. Great series!

Rachel B said...


I just want to encourage you on your road to homeschooling! I was homeschooled for most of my school years and now am looking forward to hs-ing my own child (or children if we're blessed with more:).

I know it can be challenging, but I know the rewards are GREAT in it! I think my middle sister is very similar to your son. She didn't read until she was 10...mostly because the teachers in the public school pushed her too hard when she wasn't ready and then she lost confidence in herself. In the public schools if you're not "normal", its bad, horrible, and sinful!

My sister did much better and actually ABSORBED what was being read to her if she were allowed to roll around on the floor playing with her cars or other toys while my mom read to her instead of being forced to sit in a chair with her ankles crossed and hands folded. She is the most creative person and has MANY talents! But she struggled all through school because of her "ADHD" and learning disabilities. Today she is a brilliant young woman graduated from our homeschool, serving Christ with her whole heart and ready to do His calling.

I am confident that if she had not been homeschooled after her experiences in K and 1st grade that she would not be confident in who she is and who God made her to be--because of the mindset in the public schools. She would have been inundated with the mindset of, if you can't sit and listen to this story, if you can't read, add and subtract, etc, at the same pace as everyone else, you're nothing. Public schools try to make cookie cutters out of the children--children who are made in God's image, children who are all differnt and all have different gifts that need to be developed!

I know its a really hard decision to make, especially when you've planned it one way all along! :) Keep praying about it and know I'm praying for you as well, as you and your husband make these difficult decisions! God will reveal what He has in store for your family in His own time!

Love in Christ,
Rachel (rrbeers on the Sewing Academy)

Mrs. G said...

What an exciting time you're at now! Do check out Ruth Beechick's writings, she's a very common sense educator. And Charlotte Mason, the 19th century English educator. Be sure to let us know what you finally decide about home schooling or after schooling!


MissNonaEleanor said...

Those phoinics books sound REALLY familiar; I think they where the ones I used when I was learning to read. We didn't use them at school, but I did at home.

Like what Rachel B was saying, I too was pressured in public elementry school because I was one of those kids that took forever to learn how to read. =P I wasn't fully able to read until I was in fourth grade and I'm sure if I wasn't pressured to learn to read,(not to mention feeling slightly humiliated when it was time to go to "speical ed" while all my other friends didn't) I probably would have learned to read at an earier age.


Cassandra said...

May I reccomend Mrs. Botkin's talk on homeschool curriculum? My mom and I both found it to be very helpful! http://behemoth.com/artist/4681/
Preschool is probably my favorite 'teaching' age. : )