I’m a firm believer in learning begins at birth. Even our smallest infants are learning to process the tones of their families voices, the touch of hands gently stroking their head and the smells of dinner radiating through the house.
My Lydia turned three at the end of July. She is full of curiosity, joy and fantasy. Her vocabulary continues to expand and watching her make-believe play may be my favorite part of parenting. We continue to teach her at home- confidently following her lead, expanding her strengths and bringing up her weaknesses. As of now we are home-educating through an eclectic mix of learning philosophies.
I get asked all the time, especially now that she is three, what we are doing for school. My answer remains the same as it has since birth, “We play and read.”
But I am adding a tiny bit more structure to her play-based learning at this point. I have found that she loves having a theme at Roots and Wings Playschool and is delighted when I put together a display or books and toys based on a theme. Lydia is a naturalist to her core and an avid book reader, so I am using those interests as our pillars for learning this year. I will be doing quarterly themes.
September will focus on apples and introduce the beauty of trees bearing fruit.
October will focus on fall and the changing of seasons.
November will focus on giving thanks.
Each will be infused with literature, puzzles, and hands on learning about trees. We will dig deeper than we have before and work towards one of my “3 year learning goals” for her- identifying multiple trees in our backyard using her knowledge of leaf shapes.
December: Holidays/Winter (using The Little House Picture books as our guide)
January: Woodland Animals
February: Gnomes and Fairies
We will explore hibernation, animal homes, the changing of landscape, snow, and end with the whimsical study of fairies and gnomes.
We will begin tracking our weather as we transition from winter to spring. We will explore outside and learn about the moon phases.
We will enjoy summer gardening through the study of planting seeds, learning about all of the plants that make up our yard and neighborhood and watch our flowers bloom.
Most of these themes, I’ll just be doing activities that fit Lydia’s interest. We can add little learning themes throughout as we make our way through the year. I will pull from The Peaceful Preschool when appropriate. She knows most of her letters through play so we don’t explicitly teach them. I do plan to infuse letters and sounds into our themed studies a bit more than I have before since she loves language and is showing an interest in letters and reading. For those looking for suggestions on how we plan to integrate the letters with our themes, my plan is to loosely focus on a few letters each quarter. I will simply display them in our home and review them as they come up in books and our planned activities.
J- Jack o lantern
X- ummmm… because I have nowhere else to put this letter
Q- Queen (bee)
V- Vase (flower study)
Z- zzzz sound from a bee? 🙂