Adding More STEM to Preschool
This post sponsored by our affiliate Little Passports.
This Fall was our first semester of officially homeschooling. Although our kids have obviously been learning since birth and not a whole lot in our daily life has changed, this is the first year we sat down and actually decided not to send them to Preschool. We haven't decided what we're going to do for Kindergarten, but for Preschool being at home is working well for us right now. At the end of August, we made some goals for the year and I've been checking back at them periodically to see what process we've made. I feel like it is unfair to my kids to publicly share the goals they've met and not, but here are some of the goals we are working on this year.
Some of the goals for three year old preschool:
*recognize and spell own name
*write own name
*remember details from earlier in the day and about familiar people, places and events
*recognize and label shapes
*count with one-to-one correspondence to 10
*create and extend patterns
*use a scissors to cut
*ride a trike
*balance briefly on one foot
*persist at solving a problem even when frustrated
*show empathy for others
*communicate allergy to others (for our dairy allergy child)
This is by no means a complete list. In general I try to work in time to focus on each area of development every week, although often times we do a little of each every day.
Areas We Cover Weekly:
In reflecting on the first half of the year, I realize that we spend a lot more on subjects that I love (like literacy) and less time on subjects I don't (like science). My kids on the other hand, despite a great love of reading, are huge tinkers and experimentors. They are endlessly curious and creative. My main goal for the second half of our year is to work more STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) into our days and more specifically into our interest based projects. I find my biggest failing is not so much providing them with science or math activities, but tying it into their interests and projects like I do with other topics. I have so much fun planning literacy and creative invitations and provocations for them that often science and math get overshadowed.
Here are some of the ways, I'm going to increase the integration of STEM learning into our days:
Use brainstorming, teaching resources, and Pinterest to plan more activities that relate STEM areas to their interests. I've added a box for each STEM area onto our project planning sheet (previous there was a Cognitive box that included Math and a Science/Sensory box) to help myself focus more on each area.
2. Utilize our Membership to the Mississippi Science Museum
We have a family membership to the science museum which is nearby, fascinating to our kids, and often has fun events. I am going to incorporate at least monthly trips to the science museum into our calendar of activities.
3. Subscription to Little Passports
We are excited to incorporate the Little Passports program into our homeschool preschool. Each month they will send us activities and materials to explore themes such as landmarks, oceans, natural wonders, space, and dinosaurs. We've heard these are quality and engaging materials geared towards the preschool age and are excited to try them out. Many of the topics, specifically oceans and space already relate to current interests and will be easy to tie into their learning. As a bonus, our twins adore getting mail and having a new package arrive each month will be thrilling.
Want to try out Little Passports along with us? We will be participating in the Early Explorers program from 3-5 year olds, but they also have a World Edition for 5-10 year olds and a USA edition for 7-12 year olds.
Click this link to order your own subscription.
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