Kindergarten is an exciting time for both children and parents. It is the very first official school year for the little bundles of joy and the beginning of their formal learning journey. Most parents already try to provide stimulating and entertaining activities for their children, and Kindergarten is a natural progression of learning at home. However, once the kids enter Kindergarten, the parents become slightly more intentional about teaching than just having fun.
Many American families are skeptical about sending the young ones to physical schools in the current pandemic scenario and have opted for Homeschooling instead. I think it's an excellent choice, but many parents shudder at the thought of teaching everything to their kids by themselves. Many feel they are not qualified enough and don't know where to begin. Let's try to address these concerns and find a way for parents to homeschool their kids for a successful and rewarding kindergarten year.
Why Homeschool in Kindergarten?
A typical kindergarten kid is 4-5 years old. It's a highly impressionable age, and kids learn things quicker than you would expect them to. A home is the safest space for a kid and the right place to prepare them for the learning journey in the coming years. The kids of this age are most in sync with their parents. Anything taught by them is like the bible. I believe that more than anything else, the overall objective of Kindergarten is to teach kids how to be comfortable and learn in a structured environment. Also, no teacher can give as much personal attention to a kid as the parents would. You need not worry about missing out on any topics taught at school as most parents are more than qualified and have sufficient knowledge to cover everything a kid needs to learn at this age. If you have no clue on how to homeschool, here are a few homeschooling beginner tips for you to get started.
Learning objectives in Kindergarten
- Identification of uppercase and lowercase letters
- Understanding of letters and their sounds
- Count on numbers other than 1
- Add and subtract within 5 and 10
- Understand the concept of time in terms of yesterday, today, and tomorrow
- Know basic colors
- Spell and identify their first and last name
- Retell a story
- Know addition is putting things together, and subtraction as taking away from
- Identification of basic shapes like square, triangle, circle, and rectangle
- Use their five senses and make simple scientific observations
Tips for Homeschooling a Kindergartener
Have fun: Kindergarten shouldn't be a stressful and hard-core experience for the kid. All kids will reach different milestones at different times, and that is absolutely fine!
Engage multiple senses: Engage kids in activities that prompt them to use more than one sense. Multi-sensory education allows them to process information more quickly and efficiently.
Use minimal textbooks: Unlike the typical classroom focused on textbooks, use riddles and puzzles to stimulate your kids' brain cells. Kids learn more if they enjoy the process. A platform like Cuemath would be a great start with its extensive repository of brain teasers and games.
"The things the kids remember about Homeschooling have nothing to do with a textbook."
Heidi St. John
Choose a style: Choose a homeschooling style you like but don't feel tied to a particular method. If it doesn't work, it's okay to change the curriculum and the style.
Read: Kids can be exposed to a variety of topics by parents reading to them. Besides learning facts, they also realize that books teach and that is an important lesson. So read a lot to your kid. And then some more.
Teach life skills: There is more to life than doing accurate calculations and writing grammatically correct sentences. Instead, focus on teaching skills like gardening and making their own bed.
Subjects: Choose subjects that you want to focus on. Don't overburden the kid with a plethora of topics to study but only a handful of them for better concentration and results.
Local laws: A parent shall also check with state-specific homeschool laws in America to have a smooth and successful Homeschool year.
5-year-olds are learning every moment; when they fold something, put something away, make something, look at something, hold something, and test something. They learn much more by DOING and EXPLORING than they ever could with a piece of paper and pencil. Your kid is about to start his academic journey, and they must start off on the right foot. It will ensure that the child enjoys the process and develops a life-long love for learning.
Cuemath, a Google for Education Partner, is the world's leading online math and coding platform. Cuemath offers Live Online Math classes and Coding classes for kids from KG to 12th grade. Book a Free online demo with them to kickstart this journey by experiencing their adaptive Math-Tech approach.
-By Abhishek Deswal
Abhishek is an engineer with a math-focus outlook on life. Through his writing at Cuemath, he puts forward his belief that life makes more sense when seen through numbers. A former analytics professional, he enjoys theatre, football, and long runs.