All of Sprout’s school supplies fit in this blue basket and an old shoe box.
What is in there?
The shoe box holds what I’ve been calling “activity bags.” I’ll share more about those in another post. The blue basket has
- a pencil pouch that holds a couple of pencils, a fun eraser, scissors, and glue;
- a box of crayons;
- a book of stickers;
- four workbooks;
- and a handwriting tablet.
I bought most of these things from the Dollar Tree store. I intend to use a more formal curriculum soon, so I am using the dollar store workbooks as a sort of introductory course. I don’t know if we will get through all of them before beginning a preschool curriculum or not — I’m taking things one day at a time, over here.
The workbooks are about
- colors & shapes;
- numbers 1-10;
- and printing practice.
Since beginning, she has only wanted to work in the colors & shapes workbook. It begins with a page about each color. Here is the first one:
Also at the bottom is the word for the color that the child can trace.
What is “school” like for us?
Each day, soon after breakfast, I ask Sprout if she would like to do school. Sometimes, she declines. Other times, she excitedly agrees. I let her decide. I do have two rules about scheduling: we don’t do school on Sundays or twice in one day. I want to protect her from burning herself out because she shows some signs of being like her mother. I am the sort of person who begins a project and gets so caught up in it, that I work and work and work until it is finished. I have had to learn to pace myself, and I think it is a good lesson to learn early on.
If she agrees, then she can pick which workbook she wants to work in. She has been choosing the colors & shapes book. I think that is because she is confident about it.
She doesn’t have to finish a page, but if she does, she picks out a sticker to put at the top.
She can skip to another workbook, but cannot go to the next page until the current one is completed. (We stared at a sad, blank apple before she would finally color it!)
Nothing has to be done perfectly, only to the best of her ability.
She has to follow instruction. In this workbook, it comes down to using the color specified in the instructions (she wanted to color the apple blue for one of those days), circling objects, that kind of thing.
She has to work left to right, which mostly comes into play when tracing words. Yes, she did want to trace “orange” backward.
Whenever she “does school,” I encourage her to show Daddy when he gets home. I have noticed that it helps fuel her the following day, and she will sometimes say, “If I finish this page and get a sticker, Daddy will be happy to see it later!”
If she completes a workbook page, she can do an activity from the shoe box. They are fun educational activities that she enjoys, and they make an excellent reward for her.
That’s it! Simple. 😉 Also, inexpensive. I like that.