If you are just beginning to think about what preschool at home will look like for you, there are a few ways to get a head start on your home preschool journey. These are things to think about and research in advance as you begin planning for home preschool.
Spending a little time doing them will help you save time when you’re ready to get started.
1) First look at the materials you already have that can be used for home preschool. Many people feel they need to buy a lot of items to effectively teach preschool at home. And sure there are a lot of flashy, cool things to use and buy, but you don’t “need” a lot.
So over the next week take a look at the learning toys, technology, books, and arts and crafts materials you already have access to at home. This will help you decide whether you really need to buy much to get started.
2) If you don’t already have one, get a local library card and take some time to explore the different materials and services the library (or libraries, if you’re lucky) in your area offers.
Some libraries have homeschool sections where you can check out learning games and toys that could be used for preschool at home.
Most libraries have free story times that are great for preschoolers. There might also be clubs or other free events that your library offers throughout the year.
Start making a list of these so you remember to utilize them.
Also see whether you can reserve books online and whether the library will pull them for you. One library where I lived would pull all books on a certain theme for me. And most allow you to reserve books from libraries within their system and have all the books sent to one location for pick up. This allows you to read even more books on a certain topic of interest to your child, not to mention it saves time when you are at the library so you can spend time casually perusing the books with your little one instead of frantically searching for all the books on your wish list.
3) In addition to the local library take some time to research other learning and play opportunities in your local area that would be fun to incorporate into your home preschool schedule.
Is there a zoo or botanical garden that offers preschool activities or workshops? Do you have a science center or children’s museum that offers discounted days or special events? Is there a preschool co-op that meets in your area?
What local business might welcome you for a “field trip”? Maybe you could visit a florist or nursery and learn about plants in the spring. Visit a bakery and see how some favorite foods are made. Fire station visits are a great way to learn about fire safety. There are a lot of opportunities if you spend a little time thinking creatively.
4) As you start recording all of these ideas and information, it’s also a good time to start thinking of how you’re going to organize yourself for home preschool.
I personally keep a lot of information on the computer…because I can almost always find it there. 🙂
But I also like to have a command station for printed materials that keeps my stuff organized. I’ve loved the All-Purpose Teacher’s Organizer for years. I first used it in the classroom and then for home preschool. It helps me divide the items we’ll need for each day of the week, and I can easily grab them when we’re ready.
Many people also love to use a mobile organizer like a 10-Drawer or 15-Drawer organizer.
If you’d rather not purchase anything right away, take a look around your house and see what kind of bins and shelving you already have that can be used for organizing your teaching materials.
5) Finally, and most importantly, you’re going to need to find some support, both online and in person.
Online, I’ll definitely be here to help you out. And you can find many others who are teaching preschool at home in our Home Preschool Help Facebook group. Be sure to join and participate if you haven’t already.
In person, you may already have a group of friends who are teaching preschool at home. Be diligent about interacting with them regularly.
If you don’t already have a group, then see if there are any co-ops, church groups or local meet-ups on meetup.com that you can relate to. Visit a few and see if you find one where you feel comfortable.
Use our handy planning checklist to help you tackle the tasks outlined here.
More Home Preschool Resources
If you’re just getting started with home preschool, you might also find our Guide to Getting Started with Home Preschool helpful. With over 130 pages of informational content, printable planning sheets, sample lesson plans, assessment checklists and more, you’ll create a strong foundation for home preschool whether you plan to create your own lesson plans, use ours, or use another curriculum. Read more about The Guide here.
Save Time and Eliminate the Worry with our Complete Home Preschool Curriculum
Teach preschool at home with confidence using our kid-tested, mom-approved hands-on lesson plans full of playful activities to help prepare children for kindergarten and beyond.