Here in Maryland kids start kindergarten only if they are 5 before Sept 1 or something like that. Sam's birthday is in Nov and Ben & Carlee's is in Oct. That means that it will be two more years until Sam starts kindergarten and three more years for Ben & Carlee. So technically if we were to send them to preschool, we wouldn't send Sam until next year. However, we are not convinced of the benefits vs the costs of preschool yet. But because they are all ready for something more structured we decided that we would do home-preschool.
I spent alot of time online looking at preschool curriculum's and found two that I really liked, both are biblically based which was an absolute requirement for me. Hubbard's Cupboard is a free curriculum and is nicely laid out. The other is Horizons Preschool.
As much as I liked the Hubbard's Cupboard, I decided on the Horizons curriculum because it seemed more indepth biblically and it was easier to adapt it to a group setting. Afterall, I have my very own built in preschool class!
The entire Horizons preschool curriculum is quite expensive and I didn't think that I would use all of the media set. So I decided that I would not get the multi-media. However, I did buy the Character Builder DVD set on TCM.com . I am glad that I spent the money on it because it ties some of the lessons together really well. To save even more money, I found the teacher guides, resource pack and one of the workbooks on ebay. I have also just ordered two more workbooks from christianbook.com so that they each have their own workbook rather than me photocopying them everyday.
Once we got back from our trip to Canada I started to organize and prepare lesson plans. I was slightly overwhelmed and began to look for ways to better organize our preschool day. That is when I stumbled across the Workbox System created by Sue Patrick. I did not buy her book, but I did alot of searching in other blogs for how others have adapted the system. The benefits of this system are huge as it is designed to encourage the students to do much of their work independently.
However, we are only at the preschool level and are all doing the same work. At this point there is not much that they can do independently. So I adapted the system to one set of 12 drawers (I bought 4 Sterilite 3 drawers from Walmart). I fill each drawer with the resources or worksheets that we need for each topic or subject.
So far I am thrilled with the curriculum and now that I am organized with the subject drawers I am finding that the day is going very well. Other than trying to keep the level of chaos to a level that we can actually learn something!
One of the projects from the first day of preschool yesterday was to draw a picture of yourself and your Daddy. They didn't know how to draw people (obviously we have not spent alot of time drawing) so I drew a couple simple stick people to show them what they could do. Here are their interpretations...
Carlee thought it was hilarious that she drew hair on Daddy because Daddy doesn't have any hair! She was so excited to show him all her work this was the very first thing she pointed out.
Sam drew a picture of him and Daddy and then he turned the paper over to draw monsters. Love his interpretation of happy and bad!
And then there is Ben!