Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Toddler Preschool

What is Toddler Preschool? Toddler Preschool is my attempt to have a focused learning time with my two and a half year old for twenty to thirty minutes a day. When it became apparent last spring that my almost two year old could absorb much more than I realized, I began introducing learning activities to him. He quickly learned [almost] everything that I introduced to him. This fall, in an effort to build on this, I’ve set up a calendar of weekly themes around which to structure learning activities. I intend to plan short“lessons” on a variety of topics with an emphasis on necessary school readiness skills. Each week I plan to share in this blog the theme we are working on and the simple activities we’ll be doing within that theme. My hope is to offer preschool-type activities at home.

My plan is to share these weekly themes and learning activities with you in a simple format. I hope to post every Tuesday (although that may or may not be a realistic goal). I will share our theme, list of items to gather, and daily activities that we will be doing. I am sharing this on my blog as a resource for you. This is not meant to be one more thing for you to add to your “to do list” (and if that’s your motivation,click here). Instead, this is meant to be an easy way for you to have theme-based activities to do with your 2-3 year old. This is not meant to be only for “stay at home moms” nor is it meant to be only for moms who plan to homeschool; rather, this is meant to be a learning tool that is accessible for moms and dads to use with their toddlers. I will try to keep the blog posts simple and the activities simple (and cheap!). I will list only special items needed for each week, with the understanding that you already have basic items (glue sticks, construction paper, stickers, white paper, crayons, markers, etc.).

Prior to now, my son and I have already covered letter recognition, counting to twenty, colors, shapes, weather, and family. We will continue to review these basic skills by incorporating them into our various themes. Feel free to introduce those to your 2-3 year old interspersed with these themed activities (if you haven’t already).

In addition to the learning activities I share here, it is also my goal to read with my kids daily. As a former first grade teacher, I cannot emphasize enough the importance of reading to your kids (even when they are babies and toddlers). To read a few suggestions for fostering earlyearly literacy, click here. At this toddler stage, I am not focusing too much on having the books we read match our learning themes. You are, of course, welcome to do that yourself for your kids if you like; however, the most important piece is simply that you read to your kids.

There are two books that have been excellent resources for me in developing my style for toddler preschool. I highly suggest these books as resources for you, too!

I hope you have as much fun with Toddler Preschool as I do!

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