Monday, August 30, 2010

Teaching the Little Ones

I find it kinda funny how God brings things into your life at just the right time.  Since Josh was born, I had been searching online here and there to find a "curriculum" to introduce and incorporate in our day.  I never found anything.  I'm sure at the time God laughed and said "You want to add something ELSE to your day?" Now, when I actually have the time to write lesson plans, create teaching helps and actually "teach" - I have found a fantastic website.  We will be starting "school" after Labor Day.  (Even Nate!)  Now, don't panic - I'm not trying to get my kids reading by the time they are two or push them through school; instead this curriculum is a precursor to the author's older curriculum that is designed to help kids learn their letters.  Each plan covers two weeks and the majority of items (especially for Nate's age) are things you just incorporate into your daily routine.  She covers all topics - Literature (reading the same book every day for a week - kids love repetition!), Bible - a new Bible verse or, for the younger ones, a Bible story based on a rhyme, each week,  Nursery Rhymes, Speech and Vocab. (explaining every day things at bath time, meal time and play time), Indoor Games (for the 1 year old), Classical Music to listen to, Singing Children's songs, Exercising, Arts and Crafts (age appropriate) and even a foreign language. Plus sign language, Nature Study, Musical Exploration, Puppetry and Art Appreciation for the 1 year old.  The babies also get some baby massage thrown in!  Her suggestions/ideas/plans are so simple and just over all great ideas.  Plus - all of her lesson plans are free.  Yes!!!  Free!!  She gives ideas for literature but I am picking books off our own shelves and incorporating them; I got books from the library to help with some activity ideas, and I also plan on checking out the recommended book for Art Appreciation from the library as well (if I don't have it).  Most of the music you can find on youtube (either playing it that way daily or finding a CD to play) I also plan on "substituting" a Children's Worship CD in place of some of the lullaby's - especially for Josh since he loves music so much.  (He is shaking his booty to Jaci V. as I type this LOL)

I am starting Nate right out at the 8 month level but have decided to start Josh at the 18 month level for no other reason than it looks fun and will carry us through to March.  Than I'll move on with this same curriculum through Sept.  I may continue to use this or, I've also been looking at another curriculum to start with him a year from now. I believe kids should be kids - they will be in school for a long time - but we have alot of hours to fill at home and this particular "help" gives some awesome ideas and direction to use with kids.  Plus as with everything - use what you like and ignore the rest :-)

Feel free to check it out :-)

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