Well, Spencer is getting a LOT of quality time right now. His preschool doesn’t start for a few weeks so we’ve dove headfirst into lessons. I thought I’d share what I’ve decided to do with him this year.
1. He does 3 workbooks. One about numbers, one about letters, and one about something else (it’s rhyming right now). Most of what I’m focusing on is writing. That’s a big issue for little boys, and so I put a lot of emphasis on it. I’m not talking about making stories, I’m talking about actually forming letters. Plus, sitting down and focusing on something is a great skill to learn. The books we’re using right now also have a lot of coloring included with them, which is good. Spencer has just recently REALLY gotten into coloring. It’s one of my favorite phases. Most of our workbooks were bought at Costco. It’s a GREAT resource for the preschool sect (as well as good summer learning stuff for the older kids).
2. On the first day of the week that we do lessons we do a physical math thing. I have a great box from costco (here it is online). I LOVE this box, because it keeps them all there and organized. It has beading for patterns, counting blocks, foam shapes to build things, a spinner for some of the activities, and a set of cards. I highly recommend the set. I started Spencer with it when he was about 3, I think. I just started adding a page from the workbook along with the physical skills. The workbook is fairly advanced. He’s did fine with it. The other days of the week I’m gonna rotate between:
- name writing (first and last — including capital letters in just the right places — there’s a lot of great places to make these worksheets online)
- cutting (saving up all the kids catalogues I get — btw, this is a skill we JUST started because I have a scissor paranoia — that’s a blog for another day)
- dice math (he rolls the dice and we add or subtract the numbers — I got giant dice from the dollar store — they’re a big hit)
- flashcards (probably will do some sequencing and some rhyming, possibly some sentence making)
- games (nothing better than a good educational game)
- and crafts (I still have some left from www.achildswork.com )
3. Then we do reading. I got some good readers that Conner’s school was throwing out last year. The kind where they progressively get a little more difficult. However, you could easily do this at your local library, getting a few new books each time you go. I learned from Conner’s teachers that re-reading the same things over and over really enhances their ability to read. I’d never really thought of it (and I think I actually did the opposite with Conner, making sure he read a huge variety). Now we read each story 3 times (of course there’s a sticker chart involved — I am ALL about the sticker charts). It really has helped. It’s good for him to recognize words he didn’t get right the first time. And it’s a feeling of accomplishment when he can read it through all by himself on the 3rd time and he “graduates” to a new story.
So far, this is taking about 45 minutes out of my day. Since he is SUCH a meticulous color-er right now sometimes it’s taking longer, but since he can do some of that independently I’ll clean out the dishwasher or do some little tasks while he’s doing it.
Anyway, that’s what I’m doing, but I’d love to hear what you guys do with your kids! I’m looking for new things to add to our cutting skills, etc.