The ABCs of Home Preschooling
Homeschooling need not be expensive. There is frequently overlap between what products would be good for children in general, along with what would be good for children as “school work.” Remember the famous adage that “children’s play is work, and children’s work is play.”
The right mindset is perhaps the most important thing. Look at every situation as a potential learning opportunity. Going grocery shopping can be terrific for improving math skills such as counting (“We need three containers of yogurt. Here’s one. How many more should I take down?”), color identification (“Would you like to choose a green apple or a red one?”), and letter recognition (“This cereal starts with the letter ‘B’, just like your name. Can you show me the ‘B’ on the box?”). All of these skills are appropriate for preschool children to be developing, and chances are your trip, although a bit longer than usual, will also be more enjoyable since your children will be more invested in the process.
Paula Gopin, EdD, a Boston-based educational consultant and the director of the toddler enrichment program Creative Playtime, believes that parents should keep in mind that a well-rounded preschooler needs to develop his or her “whole child”—the physical, social, emotional, cognitive, and creative aspects that make a person well-rounded. Dr. Gopin encourages homeschooling parents to make sure they offer their children opportunities for growth in each of the basic areas of development. For example, emotional development focuses on the expression of needs and desires in an appropriate manner as well as the encouragement of self-esteem.
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