What Is Home Preschool?
Home preschool is just a word describing what Stay At Home Moms have been doing since forever. It’s education at home. Learning begins at mother’s knee and the truth is, every parent who is a Stay At Home Mom or Stay At Home Dad is already homeschooling his/her child. The reason why homeschool families say they’ve been homeschooling since birth is simply because babies and children are learning all the time. You can’t stop them. And so education really does begin at birth. If you care for your own child (or children) twenty four hours a day, seven days a week, then you are homeschooling already.
WHO DOES HOMEPRESCHOOL?
Homeschooling is commonly considered the domain of the Stay At Home Mom, but Work At Home Moms and moms who work outside of the home part time or full time can and do homeschool for preschool too. There are even some Dads out there who homeschool for preschool.
Any parent who has the time and the inclination can do homepreschool. It takes some planning and preparation, sometimes it’s spur of the moment, but it’s awful hard to go wrong homepreschooling a two year old! Just seeing your little one get all excited and run all around and jump up and down because you’re taking the art and craft supplies out of the closet, well, it’ll make you feel pretty good!
WHEN DO YOU DO HOMEPRESCHOOL?
Young children are learning all the time. Although I may set aside 45 minutes to read a book and do a painting project with my two year old and call it homepreschool, the reality is that we are homeschooling all day long. All day long he’s learning how he fits into our family, whether he’s important, how to show love, get along with others, set the dinner table, put his train tracks together, take them apart without throwing them all over the living room! He’s learning how to put things away, follow directions, pour the right amount of syrup on his pancakes. For very young children there is so much more to learn than just the abc’s, counting, colors, and shapes. They’re learning all day long.
WHERE DO YOU DO HOMEPRESCHOOL?
You may think the answer to this one is a great, big duh – you do homepreschool at home, but you’d be wrong! You can do a lot at home, but you have to leave the house to go to the museum, library, park, playgroup, market, swimming, hiking. All the world is a learning experience when you’re a toddler or a preschooler.
WHY DO HOMEPRESCHOOL?
Some families are already homeschooling and for them homeschooling for preschool is a natural extension of what they’re already doing with older kids. Some families homeschool for preschool as a way to test the waters. That is the case in our family. The decision to homeschool after kindergarten is not one to be taken lightly, but for preschool there’s not much you can do wrong. In some instances homeschooling for preschool can alleviate familial pressure to conform and to send the children to a public or private school. Toddlers and preschoolers are endlessly inquisitive and they thrive with one on one attention. As your child grows, as you feed that inborn thirst for knowledge and let him progress at his own pace, you will see the results of your homeschooling effort. So will other people.
But even if you’re not considering education at home for the long term, you may want to homeschool for preschool just for fun! It’s beneficial to your child. It can bring a special closeness between you and your child. I can attest to that. You just can’t put a price tag on being there when your kid mixes blue and yellow and tells you for the first time that he sees green or on just sitting and watching him watch with fascination as the homemade slime drips through his hands and off of his fingers for half an hour. It is absolutely intoxicating to my husband and me to watch our son enjoying himself and to see him learning. Sometimes it’s as if we can actually see the wheels a turning in his mind.
A NOTE ABOUT HOMEPRESCHOOL STYLES
Sometimes in the cyberworld you may find a bit of a rift between people about homeschooling styles. At one end of the spectrum you have very structured curriculum based homeschooling. At the opposite end there is the very relaxed unschooling style. And then there are plenty of homeschoolers who fit somewhere in between. No one way is better than another way. What works in your family is what counts. Whether you choose to do activities that you find on the Web, or purchase a set of lesson plans, create your own or buy a couple activity books from Walmart; whether you follow a schedule or keep no schedule at all; don’t let anyone dampen your enthusiasm about the way you choose to homeschool your toddler or preschooler. How ever you decide to classify, define, describe your homepreschool style there’s one common factor…love. It’s all about watching our children grow and learn and providing the resources and opportunities for them to spread their wings. It’s about letting our children grow originally and individually.
Homeschooling…homepreschooling…is about love.
Thank you Shawn, from Abecedarian Academy, for giving me permission to reprint this article. I think it says it all.