Preschool Curriculum And Resources- Lacy’s Picks

Well, it’s that time of year again- time for back to school (or rather, not back to school for us homeschoolers). This year I have a 3rd grader, 1st grader, pre-K, and a 2 year old. I enjoy homeschooling all the kids, but I especially love the preschool years! I have taught preschool at home and at co-ops for the past 6 years straight. After all these years, I’m very comfortable with choosing our Preschool Curriculum- in fact, most of it I’ve now been using year after year, kid after kid. 🙂

Recommended Preschool Curriculum For 2+

choosing preschool curriculum for homeschool

Given that I believe in weaving the faith into all aspects of life for my children, I certainly keep that in mind when choosing curriculum. For the 5th year in a row now, we will be using Catholic ABC’s. Given that I wrote this book, it’s probably no surprise to you that I use it. 🙂

getting ready to teach preschool co-op

Something else that I use year after year and totally consider a part of our preschool curriculum is the Leap Frog Letter Series DVD’s. My 2 older kids have learned to read watching these movies. In this series, they make the letters into characters, and the sounds are what they say. Think of how young preschoolers can learn that a cow says “moo”. Leapfrog makes it just that easy in this series. All of my kids have loved watching these (ages 2-6!) The ones you want are the Letter Factory (teaches all the letter sounds in the cutest ways) and the Talking Word Factory (which teaches how to make letter sounds into words). None of the Leapfrog movies currently offered on streaming Netflix are the ones I’m talking about. These are the 2 you need. 

educational videos for preschool

I also have a selection of Montessori activities that are available to my preschoolers at all times. I organize them into these rainbow drawers, which are easily labeled with a dry erase marker on the front.

rainbow drawers

When it comes to Montessori activities, you have 2 choices: you can either make activities, or buy them.

I put the activities meant for the littlest preschoolers in the lowest drawers so they are easily accessible. I will be typing a separate blog post that will go into more detail about how I make this work.

Additions For Pre-K

Pre-Reading Curriculum: In addition to Catholic ABC’s, Violet, who is Pre-K this year, will also be completing All About Reading Pre-Reading. This is a great pair with Catholic ABC’s because it also goes letter by letter of the alphabet! My kids love everything from All About Learning Press. Their workbook pages are always fun for kids without being overly complicated. Their activities often need things like glue sticks, scissors, etc, but always things I already have at home. This is a great option for a fun, multi-sensory approach without wearing out mom, or frustrating your child. I always go with their basic package, not the deluxe package.

all about reading pre-reading preschool curriculum

Handwriting: For extra handwriting practice, I really like these handwriting pads (which are available at Wal-Mart). When first starting out, these are good because they actually have the letters dented into the paper. This way the kids can run their pencil in the groove to shape the letters. Then it has primary lined paper where the lines are raised, helping them stop exactly where they need to at the top and bottom of the lines. There are 4 steps in this same pad of paper until they are writing on regular primary lined paper. We are also likely to print various handwriting practice pages from the internet, and practice on with things like dry erase boards, sidewalk chalk, etc.

handwriting practice for preschoolers

Math: For early Math, I love the Mathematical Reasoning books from the Critical Thinking Company. I recommend this Mathematical Reasoning Beginning 1 for starting. (They do have a Beginning 2 that’s recommend for 4 year olds, but it will probably be overwhelming to them if they haven’t yet done Beginning 1.)

I’m a huge believer in Critical thinking skills. I love the Can You Find Me Pre-K book from the Critical Thinking Company. We also have the Beginning Thinking Skills. These riddles and rhymes are fun, colorful, and definitely require your preschooler to wear their thinking caps. These are great for cuddling up on the cough with and just having some good thinking fun.

cricical thinknig for preschoolers

Last, but certainly not least, read read read to your children! You can see how I organize our children’s books here. Also, I think you’d be surprised how early they are ready to sit through chapter books. We recently finished Charlotte’s Web and Violet loved it!

Other than that, my preschoolers will enjoy tagging along with our Science experiments, History coloring pages, field trips, and anything else they find interesting from my 1st and 3rd grade homeschoolers this year.

homeschooling multiple ages

*Please Note*- At pre-school age, I never force a child to do “school” that they don’t want to do. I don’t start forcing them to finish anything until they’re in first grade. The preschool years are a time to cultivate curiosity, a love for learning, and a time to learn life skills. Violet sees my other children doing school, and she wants to join in. This might not be the case with your preschooler, and that’s ok. Don’t over-do it. Enjoy these years with your littles. 🙂

None of these companies paid me to recommend these resources. I have used all of the resources I recommend above, and all opinions shared are my own. Some links are affiliate links, which do help support the cost of running this site, but don’t cost you any extra money. I am linking this post to the not back to school blog hop.

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Comments

  1. I like how you are using that rolling cart. How in the world do you keep the toddler from destroying it?

    • Lol! I think I might need an entire post about how I implement that. Basically, it is an earned privilege, and if it’s misused at all, I shut it down. You can either shut it down by turning it around to face the wall, or running painter’s tape up the entire thing going across all the drawers. I use painter’s tape. The toddler doesn’t destroy it because the toddler is allowed to use it. All of the lower drawers that a toddler could reach would be things they are allowed to get into. The entire drawer pulls out of the front of the rolling cart, they take the drawer over to the table, and they’re not allowed to leave the table without returning the drawer and the contents to the original place. This system has worked for me through 4 kids.

  2. This post is super helpful, thank you so much for sharing! Can you please do a post on what you use to homeschool your older children? There are so many choices out there and it’s nice to see what other people use/recommend.

    • Yes, I am hoping to post about what I’m using with them as well. Although I will say that I feel it’s easier to recommend preschool curriculum because I have so much experience in that area now. 🙂

  3. Tracy Bua Smith says:

    Hi Lacy!

    Great post, as always! We have the same Leap Frog CDs and my rising 1st grader still loves watching them. We also have the same rolling cart, but now you gave me new ideas on how I can use it. 🙂 I love your Catholic ABCs book that I purchased when it first came out.
    I have a rising 9th grader, 7th grader, 5th grader, 1st grader and a 12 mo. old this coming year in our homeschool and oh how I wish I could go back to teach preschool all over again to my older kids since there is so much more out there now, including your site. But, I still have a baby in the house so I can make up for lost times still right? 🙂 LOL! Have a blessed school year! We start Aug. 11 and I will be doing my 2014-2015 Curriculum and Classroom post this week sometime I hope!

  4. I can’t thank you enough for your recommendation for the Leap Frog DVDs! I had been dreading starting kindergarten with my 5 year old daughter. For some reason she never really picked up on letters and sounds like her sisters before her had. We’ve watched them a few times now and she’s really “getting it” now! My 8 year old loves the DVDS too and just asked me today if there’s any about math? Do you like any math DVDs from Leap Frog?
    Thanks, Lacy

    • I know, I LOVE those DVD’s! I haven’t found any math ones that are as awesome. Be sure you also get Talking Words Factory 2 (aka Word Caper) and the Storybook Factory. 🙂