February 26, 2008,
H.F. asks from Los Angeles, CA on February 25, 2008
Looking for Some Good Homeschooling Books or Activities
Dear homeschooling mothers,
I have decided to take my son, age 4 and a half, out of pre-school as there have been a number of little problems with the school. In the meantime I could look for another school, but it seems silly to put him in a new school for the few months left until summer vacation. As I'm a stay at home mom anyway, I'm thinking about trying to homeschool him until he starts Kindergarten in the Fall. I would love to get some recommendations on good books on the subject. My son is very active and inquisitive, but doesn't really like sitting and tracing letters. Most of the workbooks I've bought for him, including some cute "Kumon" ones, he just has no interest in. I need some ideas for fun, educational, projects that will help him learn his ABC's and numbers so he isn't too far behind when he starts Kindergarten. Any suggestions?
L.B. answers from Los Angeles on February 26, 2008
Personally, I am happy you are keeping him home. In my opinion you are already doing the best thing for him. Choose what you like out of the following or the other ideas you are receiving, and he will be fine when he starts school.
You could probably just include learning his letters and numbers in your daily activities. Point out letters as you are driving, on the STOP sign for example, and when you read to him. Have him try to form his body into letter shapes. With my first child, we did a lot of letter and sound recognition in the bathtub with foam letters. Use sidewalk chalk, pudding, magnetic doodle boards. Count steps when you are walking. Count blocks or toys when you are putting them away. Have him help you set the table and count the flatware and dishes. Do simple addition, 1 bowl plus 1 bowl. You may already be doing things like that.
Hope some of this helps,
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S.T. answers from Los Angeles on February 26, 2008
If you go to Lakeshore (the teacher store) or on the web it is: Lakeshorelearning.com...they have great games. We have something where you build letters with the shapes, we just bought alphabet bean bags and they have tons of 'hands on' games like fishing for phonics (with a fishing pole).
If you follow the Charlotte Mason method of homeschool you would read 'real quality children's literature'...not kiddie books, and then make sure your child has plenty of time to play and explore in nature (harder to do in L.A. unless you have a fabulous backyard). Basically, go make mud pies and dig for worms :)
I am sort of a hybrid mom :) I homeschool but my kids have also gone to a fabulous developmental preschool...all hands on play based learning...no worksheets etc. They tend to learn better when motivated by play...playing 'bus' and making a bus ticket and asking 'how do i spell bus?' because they want to write it on the ticket. Instead of tediously sitting down and trying to pound out the sounds of eeach letter and tracing it.
Also...the leapfrog Letter Factory DVDs are amazing. Pop that in while you are making dinner and your kid will learn all the phonics in no time :)
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K.H. answers from Los Angeles on February 26, 2008
Check out http://www.preschool-learning-and-crafts.com/index.html and have fun!!!
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P.L. answers from Los Angeles on February 26, 2008
i think homeschooling your child is a great idea. you can never spend too much time with your children.i used to be a preschool teacher and i understand about the little problems that you have experienced like sickness every week,new teachers every few months,staff never really paying the attention as they should,etc.kindergarten is a whole different ball game and it is best for your child to learn what he needs to before he goes into this new world.hooked on phonics is a great program as well as sign language for kids,art projects,reading stories every night,and also just learning their ABC's.there are great teaching materials at several teacher's supplies stores in our area.check them out and have fun!!
G.W. answers from Los Angeles on February 26, 2008
When I taught first grade, I found that a "hands on" approach worked really well for my more antsy students. :) Try having your son "write" his letter of the day on a cookie sheet of rice. Or trace it in wet sand. Make an art project out of it. Look through old magazines with him for things that start with your letter of focus, and create a collage. Have fun!
C.A. answers from Los Angeles on February 26, 2008
H., go to Amazon.com and look for books. You can search by their age griup and also for their individual needs and the books are reasonable. They also offer guide books for teachers in which would be great for you since you are home-schooling!I also joined a book club called Children's Book of the Month Club. You will recieve eight free books of your choice just for joining and all of this can be done online and they will be delivered to your home. Just make sure you go online each month to decline selections you do not want or else they will auytomatically send them to you. I have two grand daughters age 11 and 6 years of age and the older one was having difficulty in math and I found an excellent book for her. So give it a try. Sincerely C. Anderson