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4/5/01 Question 11

Dear Visitors,
     I am a certified early childhood teacher but want to stay home with my children so I am planning to teach a preschool in my home.  I have been looking at curriculums trying to find one that I could base off from to add to and adjust but haven't had much luck.  I plan to teach two-hour sessions two days a week and plan on having a session for 3-year-olds and one for 4-year-olds.  I would appreciate any suggestions of curriculums to look at.  I'm not particularly interested in ones that supply all of the materials--they seem to costly. Especially if I didn't use all of the materials.
Curriculum Needed

Dear Curriculum Needed,
Try the High/Scope curriculum.  I have been working at a center for four years that uses this approach.  It is wonderful, and you can adapt it to your specific needs.

Dear Curriculum Needed,
I have run an in-home pre-school for 6 years.  I have developed a simple plan.  I have a written class plan prepared every season.  I have a craft day, an activity day and regular learning days.  We do crafts 2-3 times a month.  I think up clever craft ideas and go to a hobby store for the items needed.  I have several dress up and theme costumes, some puppets and and "stage" with a curtain.  I have two school tables and 16 chairs in a decorated "school room".  I have two used computers on computer desks with lots of software.  The jumpstart software is great!  I keep an inventory of products and paperwork for the season in a big closet kept well organized.  We have a bi-monthly safety lesson, and a monthly morality or health lesson.  We have a snack time and a play time.  I have a big play area indoors and out.  Everyday the kids have something to take home.  I charge a registration fee of $35 and provide a colorful bag a t-shirt to each child. 
Miss Jennifer, All Aboard Dayschool

Dear Curriculum Needed,
You should not need to buy a curriculum. Just have the essentials in your lesson plan. Most you can fill in using sites like . The essentials would be a craft or art project a day, a few math based activates, language skills, science activates, dramatic play, writing, small and large motor skills, music, cooking etc...

Dear Curriculum Needed,
I have two great programs worth your attention.  The firstone is MY favorite-"Sing, Spell, Read and Write".  This program offers a CD and cassettes for learning shapes, numbers, letters, sounds of letters, and more.  It also has games, puzzles, a tracking and  reward system.  The pre-K kit runs about $70. I have used this program in the primary grades and loved it.  I recently ordered the pre-K kit for my four year old and we can't get in the car without "her tapes". 
  My second favorite is "Before Five In A Row".  This book has great book reads and extension activities to do with each.  Down side is some of the books are no longer in print or hard to find.  Most of the books lend quite easily to science and math activities.  The cost of BFIAR is about $25.  Both programs have sites online with customer ratings.  Look 'em up! 

Dear Curriculum Needed,
I have been involved in early childhood ed. for many years and know I am teaching graduate students. I feel that you truly need to allow children to direct activities and there are many idea books out there. I have had good luck with Red Leaf Publications-there is one book-THE CREATIVE CURRICULUM FOR FAMILY CHILD CARE that might help you in your needs. The internet site is Good Luck, remember just giving out your time and passion is a great gift. Make it fun.
Donna M. Ray

Dear Curriculum Needed,
I am a first year preschool teacher, so I am not familiar with many preschool curriculums yet.  I have been using a combination of a few books that I find very helpful, they are:

1.  "Storybook-Based Curriculum," by Kate E. Fetherston, M.A., CCC-SLP and Kate Brady England, M.A., CCC-SLP.  1998

2.  "More Hands-On Reading," by Jane Kelly & Teresa Friend.  1995

3.  "I Can Cook, Too!" by Pat Mervine, Marie Mark, and Michele Burton  1995

I hope these are helpful for you too!

Dear Curriculum Needed,
Remember that preschool children need to connect with the world around them. They need experiences that will build their confidence and strengthen their physical, emotional, and social skills. You don't need a printed curriculum or a pre-programmed kit. Just use your imagination and materials all around you. Is it spring? Teach the children about flowers and birds and insects and growth. Let them plant seeds and sing like birds and watch ladybugs in a jar and look at their own baby pictures. Teach them the names of things and the sounds of letters. Let them count anything and everything. Read books every day. Let them draw and paint and cut and color and sing and dance. If you want ideas check and other sites. But don't get hung up on curriculum. Children need to learn EVERYTHING, but they need a foundation of basic skills, curiosity, and confidence. 
"teacher, teacher"

Dear Curriculum Needed,
I use several different sites when looking for material to teach my 2 & 3 year olds. This site has a lot of useful information,, Miss Alphabet and Miss Rosline are also good sites to check out.  There is a relatively new site called If you are unable to make connections with these sites you may e-mail me for the addresses.
Country Air Child Care

Dear Curriculum Needed,
Have you tried or or Enchanted

These web sites may help you as an early childhood educator.  Good Luck!

Dear Curriculum Needed,
The preschool activities used in my day care.  My curriculum I created using the alphabet, shapes, colors, numbers, and familiar things such as family, pets, holidays, etc.  I have enough to cover most all the school year.  I used 1 gallon freezer bags and one paper folder for each topic or letter. I then began looking for activities that I wanted to use on the internet at the library, I asked other day care providers. I used ideas from seminars from your local resource and referral and ours has a lending library with 100's of books to use.  I picked out activities that we inexpensive.  I made sure I had worksheets of some sort for each topic and began collecting books in my 1 gallon bag so we had something related with story time.  I learned to be creative in adding our lunch or snack items somehow related to our weekly theme.  I put out monthly newsletters and parents will bring items from home such as milk caps, dish bottles, just be sure to plan in advance when asking for these items.

Dear Curriculum Needed,
With your background AND education, you should not need to purchase a "canned" curriculum. You can develop your own. There are lots of good resources out there. The canned ones have alot of "busy" work, dittos, uncreative art.

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