How I Teach Preschool at Home
One of my favorite things about being a Hebrew homemaker is getting to teach my children. Education was a huge part of my upbringing. My parents made sure we had quality education. They instilled a love of learning in me from a young age. Because of this, education is very important to me now that I’m a mother.
My daughter, Evette, will be three in May and my son, Jethro, will be four in a few days. They already love learning, as do a lot of children.
There is a lot of focus on early childhood education these days. What is currently working best for us is allowing my kids to learn in their own way and at their own pace. Below I’ve listed a few things that I incorporate into our homeschool preschool “lessons”.
1. Outside Play
Being outside is one of the best learning experiences for kids, in my opinion. I am blessed to live in a community that boasts a number of beautiful parks. Taking my kids to state parks and letting them play around on rocks, broken trees limbs, and muddy trails are some of our favorite things to do. It allows them to explore and test their own physical limits. It builds confidence.
In the winter, when the snow starts to pile up, we like to enjoy the outdoors and snow by venturing out from our apartment patio. We build snow men and dig trenches with kitchen spoons.
A lot of you know I’m a musician. So music is also an important part of our education. We listen to lots of music during the day and the children often dance and jump around to the beat. We like to sing songs that are educational like ABC’s, counting songs, color songs, and even phonics songs. Jethro and Eve have both learned number order, abc’s, and letter sounds through songs.
3. Edible Math
This is one of my favorite ways to begin exploring simple math concepts. Learning with food makes it fun. One grape plus one grape makes two grapes. They can actually see the “problem” and count the answers. The fun part is eating it afterwards!
Simple problems like “We have five apple slices then we eat two.” They can see how many are left. It’s easy. We like to use raisins, pretzels, goldfish crackers, or anything that is small and countable. They are starting to understand quantity and numbers in a way that is enjoyable and tasty!
Reading to my kids is another thing I am passionate about! Reading exposes you to creative ideas and exciting concepts. I started reading to my kids when they were babies. They love reading to this day. When I read to them, they often interrupt me with a million questions. Questions let me know that they are understanding and starting to draw conclusions for themselves. Get a library card and fill up your book bag!
Learning to control a crayon or pencil is a big step. We like to get preschool practice books from Wal-Mart and attempt to trace straight lines, slanted lines, circles, triangles. It is lighthearted and I always praise them for their efforts. Most of the time they can’t draw it, but the important thing is that they are challenging themselves in ways that are stimulating and fun for them.
Learning isn’t always in a classroom. It can be simple, fun, and child-led. I believe that part of my role as a Hebrew homemaker is to be a child educator. To me, that means inspiring curiosity and a love of learning from a young age.