Each book-based lesson plan is organized to fill one week. Each weekly lesson plan is comprised of 17 easy-to-follow individual subject lessons and activities to be taught throughout the week. Each subject lesson begins with a 2 – 3 minute instruction time followed by an activity reinforcing the lesson. Many activities are open-ended to let your child lead for as long as their interest holds. This user-friendly set up enables you to make teaching time work for your family’s routine. Prepare for and teach 2 or 3 subject lessons at a time scattered throughout the week or teach subject lessons one after another two mornings a week, however it works best for you and your family. Make teaching time fit to your time allowances, there is plenty of fun content to fill the week!
The preschool at home experience is aimed at being enjoyable for all so we suggest a teaching schedule that works best for your family. Figure out what that teaching schedule is then establish a flexible routine. Children respond positively to repetition and routine as they know what to expect. Keep in mind, children are able to focus and practice better self control when they are rested and fed. Aim to keep your teaching efforts steady and light-hearted, you have no pressure to perform or check off all the boxes.
We have feedback from different parents sharing a variety of schedules working for them. Some have found that a 2 – 3 hour morning school three days a week works for their family, others choose an hour of school each evening through the week and some families find a morning school on Saturdays and Sundays works best for them. Establishing a regular routine for reading, teaching/learning and sharing deliberate time together is the most important objective.
Yes, each weekly lesson plan is inspired by and based on a Caldecott Award-winning picture book. A copy of the featured book is needed to read aloud and refer to throughout the week’s corresponding lesson plan. You may choose to order a book from an on-line book source, buy from a bookstore or used bookstore, borrow from the library or create a Wish List for book gifts. By the end of the year, you will have created a family library collection of magnificent children’s books to enjoy for years to come!
With the you-know-all-too-well preschooler attention span, preparation is key for your Golden Days at Home experience to be a success! This is what we suggest to prepare, beforehand, for each week’s lessons:
1. Acquire a copy of the featured Caldecott Award-winning picture book and preread the book yourself.
2. Read through the weekly lesson plan, subject lessons and objectives and make your teaching plan schedule for the week. To support your lesson planning, calendars and note pages are available to print out under lesson planning in the site map. You will find visual samples of how the planning pages may be used, as well.
3. Refer to the “To Collect” and “To Make” lists under subject lesson headings, collect and make those items. For planning convenience, we have also included a single page overview of each week’s “To Collect” and “To Make” lists found at the end of each lesson plan. To assist in your preparation time, we have attempted to choose simple, familiar items and materials to be found around the home or easily acquired. Visuals to print and cut out for your lesson preparation are also included with each weekly lesson plan.
Two separate at-home teaching curriculums are available and included in your lesson plan purchase. For each weekly lesson plan, you will receive a full lesson plan specifically designed for a one-on-one teaching situation for parents teaching their preschool age child as well as a separate full weekly lesson plan developed for a small group teaching situation. Families with multiple preschoolers or parents desiring to create a small preschool group with other families have found the small group lesson plan to fit their needs. A small group experience with other preschool children enriches the learning experience by giving your child the opportunity to develop needed social skills enhancing their education and kindergarten readiness. Start a group with your friends and their preschool children!
We would suggest beginning the year’s curriculum after your child is at least 3 years old. The curriculum is designed for a full year beginning in September and continuing and building on through the month of August of the next year. However, you may begin with a first lesson anytime it suits you and your child and continue on month by month as the lessons build on from each other.