30 Days of Shapes – Lesson Plan for Preschool
I’m so excited to finally be able to start un-officially homeschooling our oldest (Farmer Boy) this fall! It’s un-official for a few reasons….
First, he is still quite young. We will be doing a more normal preschool type curriculum next year. But for this year we want him to start learning some basics and mostly just get used to the idea of a routine and following instructions.
And second, it’s not official homeschooling since I’m not planning on doing regular homeschooling but something more like half homeschooling and half un-schooling. We will see how that works as time goes on. 🙂 Basically we believe that life skills and creativity are just as important as “book learning” and we want our littles to have a healthy mix of both.
What do I know about homeschooling? Well if you didn’t already know, I graduated from being homeschooling (5th grade through high school). So I’m proud to say we are second generation homeschoolers. I’m no expert but now that my mom has well over 15 years of homeschooling experience, I’m relying on her expertise and my creativity to make our lesson plan for preschool happen. We’ve always hoped that it would be a part of our simple living journey and I’ve collected books for years (even before we had children) while dreaming about this day. Do I sound crazy yet? It’s ok, life isn’t fun without a little crazy!
Like most things in our life, we’d love to have you along for our homeschooling journey as well. A few weeks ago I asked on the Little House Living Facebook page how many homeschoolers are Little House Living readers and I was amazed at the response! Even if you don’t plan on homeschooling, you may be able to use many of the activities I plan on posting in your day to day lifestyle.
Ok, with all that out of the way now let’s get to how this is going to work! I have a plan but I’m open to seeing how it goes. I believe each little one should have an individualized learning plan and this is what we will be doing with Farmer Boy to get started.
- 30 days of learning (doesn’t need to be all in a row)
- Focus on one main topic during the 30 days
- To create a routine that is easy to follow each day
- To teach what “following instructions” means
We are hoping that if we achieve these goals with the next year of “schooling” it will set us up for an even better year of learning next year.
- School Time
- Free Play
- Snack Time
- Life Skills
- Free Play
- Story Time
I’m not putting a time on any of these activities, everything will happen in a natural flow and not a forced setting so it becomes routine instead of a strict and stressful schedule. Free play is indoor or outdoor play depending on the weather, school time is your typical “homeschool” time (ie: a worksheet), life skills is a project to do with mommy (ie: sweeping, dusting, cooking, etc), and the activity is what you will see in the section below. And yes, the nap is for the little ones, not for mommy!
Shapes Lesson Plan for Preschool
As I mentioned in the title, we are starting by learning shapes! This year I’m hoping to teach Farmer Boy: Shapes, Colors, Numbers (1-10), and Animals. Hopefully working in those basic areas will set him up to start learning the alphabet next year. Each study will be 30 days long and we don’t need to do a school activity each day depending on what is going on.
Each day will start of with a homemade breakfast. I’ve been working hard on meal planning to get back into my once a month routine and trying to plan out breakfasts and lunches as well so we have an easy day and no stress trying to figure out what’s to eat!
We will then move into “school time”. This will either be a page from Rod and Staff’s Preschool Books or a coloring or tracing page based on shapes. We chose Rod and Staff because of the simple set up of the preschool curriculum and we will first be going through the books doing the activities and tracing with fingers and then doing them a second time with a crayon or marker. The idea behind actually using some kind of curriculum is to reinforce the idea of following instructions.
After this it’s time for a session of free play either indoors or outdoors depending on the weather.
And then it’s snack time. For the shapes study I thought it would be fun to do different snacks that are in different shapes (or at least talk about the shape of his snack, “Look, grapes are oval!” I’m sure this won’t happen every day. 🙂
Then we will do some kind of life skill. For us this means having Farmer Boy help sweep the floor (he has his own little cleaning set!), or dust the furniture, or wash the windows, or even help with supper prep. Anything that is a basic skill that he will need to know as he grows older.
Back to free play again for some fun and creativity.
Story time is going to be a part of our daily routine because Farmer Boy absolutely loves books. During this time he will have one book that I picked out that reinforces the study (shapes) and then he can pick out as many books as he wants to have us read to him. We placed a bookshelf at his level in the dining room so he has his choice!
When he is done reading books we will have some kind of activity or craft that is on our unit topic (and you can find the list below). I have these all prepared in advance so we just simply need to pull out the bag with the pieces for the craft and can do it together.
After the craft is done there will be lunch time and then a good long nap and it officially will end our “school” day.
Shapes Crafts and Activities
Each day we will have a craft or activity to do that reinforces the unit study of shapes. Here is the list of the shapes activities for the 30 days of study.
Day 1: Circles Bear
Day 2: Chalk Shapes (outside, weather permitting)
Day 3: Shape Bean Bag Toss Game (homemade bean bags tossed onto shapes cut out of construction paper)
Day 4: Heart Lion
Day 5: Goo Shapes (drawing shapes in one of these sensory bags)
Day 6: Shapes Mobile
Day 7: Train Shapes
Day 8: Shape Hopscotch
Day 9: Shapes Game
Day 10: Shape Chicken
Day 11: Shapes Matching Game
Day 12: Highway Shapes
Day 13: Contact Paper Shapes (shapes stuck to the sticky side of contact paper)
Day 14: Heart Raccoon
Day 15: Shapes Game
Day 16: Shapes Scavanger Hunt
Day 17: Matches Game
Day 18: Shape Hopscotch
Day 19: Little House Shape Craft
Day 20: Oval Mouse
Day 21: Shape Suncatcher
Day 22: Playdough Shapes (using homemade Play Dough)
Day 23: Dump Truck Shapes
Day 24: Shape Bean Bag Game
Day 25: Little Red Hen Craft
Day 26: Shapes Game
Day 27: Car Shapes
Day 28: Matches Game
Day 29: Contact Paper Shapes
Day 30: Shape Pumpkin
All of the activities are something I have been able to put together with craft supplies I have here at home and a few games that I’ve picked up as used book sales or garage sales. I did buy a few things to supplement our study and that was a Shapes Puzzle (that we will also use for the colors study) and a Shapes Chart. (Farmer Boy loves looking at pictures on the walls so this will be great reinforcement of our study that we can hang on the wall in our library room.)
Well, that’s our plan for our Shapes Unit Study! I’m excited to see how things go as we get into it further and to start working on our next study which will be colors. I will have the next study up for you to see later this year, along with any changes we’ve decided to make to our routine.
Are you planning on homeschooling or supplementing your child’s education at home? What does your daily routine look like?