I’ve been writing this blog about what we do in lieu of preschool for the past year and a half. And yet, I’ve never really shared a post on how to home preschool. With my oldest turning 5 in a month — say it ain’t so!!! — and kindergarten looming only a few short months away, I am about to graduate a child from my home preschool. Now I feel confident enough to finally tell you a little about what we’ve done over the past 2+ years.
How to Home Preschool
Who can home preschool?
I have a BS in elementary education, a MA in reading education, and National Board certification in reading-language arts, but you don’t need any sort of degree, paperwork, or classroom experience to be a teacher for your child. Mostly you just need a genuine drive and desire to do it. It’s not for everybody, but if it’s something you’re considering, then it probably is for you. You know your child best of all, and so that gives YOU the advantage over everyone else in the world when it comes to teaching your child. You can always give it a try and see how it goes. I constantly evaluate where we are and where we want to be and then make decisions for the future based on my evaluations. You don’t have to commit to a 2 or 3 year program. Just take it a day at a time.
School vs. Homeschool
Some teachers and parents don’t like the idea of homeschooling, and some homeschoolers don’t like public or private schools. I just want to be clear up front that I love both! In fact, I am still torn over whether Luke will go to kindergarten or continue at home for K. There are so many pros to sending your child to school and so many pros to homeschooling. I worked at a preschool throughout college, I have 7+ years experience in K-5 public school classrooms, and now I’ve homeschooled my own two children for 2+ years. While both school and homeschool have their flaws at times, I see nothing wrong with either choice. Whether you send your child to school or you choose to home preschool or homeschool needs to be based on your particular situation — your family, your children, and your needs and wants. It’s not a decision you can make based off of what someone else is doing, because if you do, it’s very likely not going to work for YOU and your family.
Why preschool at home?
I home preschool for lots of reasons, but here are a few of the most important ones to me:
- I know my children better than anyone, so it’s easy for me to feed their interests, work on their weaknesses, and challenge them while keeping their frustration levels in mind. It’s also a lot easier to teach when your class size is small, and for me, it’s 2. I have to say I do a heck of a lot better job with my 2 children than I did when I was a teacher with 30 kids in a classroom.
- I’m not an attachment parent to the book, but I do have a lot of the same ideals. My husband and I have done a lot of babywearing, co-sleeping, and cloth diapering over the past years, and we’ve loved it. Home preschooling just seemed an extended way to bond with my children and I hope that we are creating special memories that will stay with them forever.
- I quit my teaching job by choice to stay at home once my first was born. I wanted to be a stay at home mom so I wouldn’t miss a minute of their childhoods. When time came that everyone else was sending their children to preschool, I thought, well, I’m certainly capable of teaching them, and I enjoy watching them learn, so why don’t I do it myself? I’ve never regretted it for a moment. My absolute favorite part so far has been teaching my oldest to read. I’ve helped lots of kids in school learn to read, but there is just something so touching about hearing your own child as a beginning reader and knowing you helped him get there! It’s really special.
Is home preschool working?
The ABCs of How to Home Preschool
Read more in “The ABCs of How to Home Preschool” series:
I hope if you are considering doing preschool at home, if you already are homeschooling, or if you just want to find some additional ways to work with your child whom also attends school — I think that’s called afterschooling — that you will find this to be a helpful resource. It is meant to be a help for EVERYONE, no matter where your child attends school. After all, YOU are your child’s first and best teacher!
More helpful moms share their ABCs of…school activities:
- A Waldorf Mama from Triple T Mum
- After School Activities from The Educators Spin On It
- Hands-on History from Adventures in Mommydom
- Home Daycare or Family Child Card from My Buddies and I
- Homeschooling from Enchanted Homeschooling Mom
- How to Home Preschool from In Lieu of Preschool
- Math Activities from Blog Me Mom
- Montessori from Living Montessori Now
- Science Activities & Play from Science Sparks
- Teaching Math from Montessori Tidbits
- Thrifty Teaching Tools from Kindergarten & Preschool for Parents & Teachers
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