Early Education At Home – A Review!

by bosssanders on July 25, 2011 with no comments

Random fact #223 about me:  I love learning.

I think I could be a full-time college student for the rest of my life (we might have to creative with the timing and classrooms, though) and love it.

But, it doesn’t stop there.

I also love helping to instill the love of learning in others.

Ask my students.  My kids.  My husband.  Anyone who knows me…

However, with all of that said there was one part of the learning process that made my insides cringe.  The basics.  The very first building blocks.  The Pre K and Kindergarten age stuff.

See, for me, the other stuff was easy… it was building off of this great foundation of learning that had already been poured and meticulously cared for.  But, what do you do when there is no prior foundation?  –When that’s YOUR job?

I’ve thumbed through a LOT of different Pre-K and Kindergarten “tools” and “curriculum.”  Some, I found too dry and others required me to take constant trips to the library or required more purchases that I couldn’t afford with a baby and already-stretched income.  Not to mention, some of these curricula were $50-$200 just to take the plastic wrappers off!

In my head, I knew what I wanted.  I wanted something that would:

  • not kill my budget.
  • offer structure but also allow me the freedom to pick and choose what we did.
  • combine several learning styles and strategies to keep my children entertained and excited about learning.
  • offer creative and inexpensive/free ways to demonstrate the lessons.

Early Education at Home by M. Jean Soyke proved to be just the book I was looking for.  Unfortunately for me, Google doesn’t yet have a search engine just for curriculum for me to plug in all of my wants/needs into.  But fortunately for you, after a lot of searching, none of that matters!

Early Education at Home is a curriculum guide for parents of pre-schoolers and kindergartners (ages 3-5 ish).  In this wonderful book, M. Jean Soyke bypasses the typical “worksheet-style” curriculum and jumps into hands-on learning, which is perfect for this age range.  What’s more is that the author uses common everyday materials and objects to teach lessons and leaves plenty of flexibility!

As a parent, I love that that this book can be used for both Pre-K and Kindergarten and I love that it never failed to get my daughter (and I) excited and involved in the learning activities.  Unlike some curriculum, this one can be adapted to your lifestyle.

Are you trying to entertain more than just your Preschooler or Kindergartner? Great!  These activities can be modified for younger or older children if needed to keep hands busy!

Do you sometimes run out of ideas for creatively teaching lessons? No problem!  The author gives you many to choose from!

Are you unwilling to invest in expensive curriculum without knowing what’s inside or if your child will like it? ME TOO!  The beauty of this book is that it costs around 20-40 dollars, depending on where you buy it.  Not only is the book itself inexpensive (for 3 years worth of learning: ages 3-5), but it also doesn’t require expensive materials!

Does your schedule sometimes seem to disappear into a deep, dark black hole, leaving you feeling anxious and overwhelmed about “getting it all done?” If it makes you feel better, we no longer have schedules.  We have a general routine (wake up, breakfasts, ……whatever comes…., lunch, nap, ….something else here…supper, bedtime).  And that’s about all we can handle right now!  I’ve tried planning out weekly learning plans, but every time I try, it’s like I’m just tempting fate.  Each time, some sort of plague or SOMETHING attacks!  And then, for the rest of the week or month, I’m beating myself up for not keeping up or being able to cram.  BUT, with Early Education at Home, the lessons are SO versatile.  The author provides plenty of activities to choose from but is very clear that not all of them are needed.  In fact, some kids grasp onto some of the ideas so quickly that activities can be skipped for that lesson.

Bottom Line – Would I recommend this curriculum?

Yes!  I can’t wait to use it with my other kids (when it’s time, of course)!

Approximate Cost:

Somewhere between $20-$40, depending on who you choose as your store.

View a weekly sample lesson plan.

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