Preschool Books on Double Duty

If you heard our podcast on raising a multilingual child with Melissa Galvan, you might remember, okay, I’ll remind you, that I recommended using a series of Spanish pre-readers that I found a few years ago at Wally mart.

Preschool Books On Double Duty

I think I said I was going to use these for part of my Toddler’s read-aloud time to make sure he is hearing the language, since I tend to drop the ball and speak English all day if I don’t make time to schedule in Spanish.  Even when I did schedule it in the past, it tended to be the first thing on our schedule to get dropped if we had to move things around because something came up.

 

However, heaven and earth must be moved, or something short of that, for me to drop my reading times with my little babies.  That’s something I don’t easily compromise on….I was even so exhausted recently that I FELL ASLEEP READING! I know, crazy, I think it started with me thinking, “I’ve memorized all of these books, so I’ll just rest my eyes while I recite them and baby boy will never know!” Well, he knew, because before I knew it I felt some tiny, chubby little fingers gently prying open my eyelids! Who knows how long I’d been sleeping through the Spanish version of Elmo and his babysitter?!

 

Anyhow, all that to update you ladies and let you know it’s working out really well with the pre-reader Spanish books.  The girls even take turns a few times a week and take over the reading [gasp! yes, I have to cook dinner, so I sadly must relinquish some of my read-aloud times].

 

What has happened is that this has turned into THE BIG KIDS’ spanish reading class with our preschool books working double duty as preschool read-alouds and middle school readers! The girls’ Spanish vocabulary has increased and their Spanish pronunciation and reading are both coming along beautifully! I love these homeschool moments 🙂

-Claudia

Thinking of Homeschooling Your Preschooler?

If you’re thinking of homeschooling your preschooler but have some reservations or perhaps flatout anxiety, you’re in luck because we just recorded a podcast on just this topic!  So, pull up a chair and join us on our little chat over on Itunes or Stitcher 🙂

First and foremost, RELAX!  Thanks to the many trailblazers that have come before us, homeschooling is now easy peasy! Anyone can homeschool, all you need is 1) a child and 2) mommy (or another loving grownup).  You can homeschool on any kind of budget, you can even homeschool for FREE! Here are some of the resources I may have mentioned on the show to get you started, and maybe one or two I left out.  Grab a cuppa joe, look around and email us any questions or suggestions for further homeschool podcasts/blog posts.  We LOVE to hear from you.

Thinking Of Homeschooling Your Preschooler

 

HSLDA – Is it legal to homeschool in my state?  In short, YES, ABSOLUTELY, it is legal in all 50 states.  However, each state has its own set of laws pertaining to homeschoolers. The HSLDA website is a great starting point to learn more about the rules in your own state.

 

Can I afford to homeschool? Absolutely. You can even homeschool for FREE, yes, you heard me right. One great resource I found for practically homeschooling for free is the Easy Peasy website.  You will need an internet connection and access to a printer.  This amazing Mom has shared all of the curriculum she’s used in her own homeschool with all of us…for FREE! Alot of it seems to follow a model of homeschooling that I love and talked about on the podcast, the Charlotte Mason way of Learning, but she also has tons of free printables and other “school-y” kind of materials.  I’m sure you’ll find it very useful.  When I started out I was on a very small budget.  I did not have a wonderful website like this one to guide me, but even without it, homeschooling my preschoolers was SO affordable.

 

How do I know WHAT my preschooler needs to know?  In our interview, I told Marisela to relax and not stress out about a preschool checklist. Just READ ALOUD to your child every chance you get , play, play, play with your little one and get outside every single day, if possible.  But seriously, I know she and many of you are going to go “google-ing” a checklist anyway, so here is a very complete curriculum guide for a typical preschool course of study.  If you look closely, you will see I’m right 🙂 it boils down to spending TONS of time with your little one, talking about everything you see and do, reading together, and of course playing! That’s it, all of you Mommies who are taking the time to read this information are ALREADY doing these things, so take a deep breath and keep up the good work!

 

How do I schedule in my Preschoolers with my older kids and get housework done? On the podcast I shared how I set up our homeschool routine very GRADUALLY, it took us months to get into a good groove.   Furthermore, I TOTALLY EXPECT it to change, without any advance notice, AT ANY GIVEN time, that is just the nature of REAL LIFE! But, generally, below is the routine we’ve set up for our little homeschool. It can give you Mommies of Preschoolers a glimpse into how to fit in your Tiny Ones.

For their “school” or “Table Time” and “Play with Mommy or Big Sisters” times I am using toys from My Father’s World Curriculum Toddler’s package, more fun toys from Timberdoodle and plenty of homemade Pinterest finds for activities for keeping Toddlers busy.  I don’t like doing crafts just for the sake of making something pretty, but I DO LOVE and get all crafty when it comes to making my own educational homemade toys for my kiddos, like this easy baby book we put together so baby can “read” while going down her homemade infant crawling track. crawlingtrack The internet is full of fun hands on ideas to keep your little ones busy doing “school” while you get some one on one teaching in with your older kiddos or make dinner and get daily household chores accomplished.  Just for fun, and because personally it helps me SO MUCH to look at other people’s routines to get ideas for our day, here is what our Homeschool Daily Routine looks like right now as we are jumping in to the 2014-2015 school year.  We are on Week 3, and so far so good!

2014 – 2015 Homeschool Daily Routine

 

What do you do for P.E.?  Aside from Bible stories, feeding my kids very nutrient dense foods from the beginning, bathing and making sure my kids get lots of hugs, kisses and REST….Physical fitness TOPS m y list of things I absolutely MUST include in my children’s day.  We swim almost every day, weather permitting.  We go on, once again Charlotte Mason-style nature walks, play at the playground and or just play in the yard almost every single day.  From the time my children are born, I believe that THE NUMBER ONE way to grow their brains is to get plenty of oxygen to them.  We begin a physical program for our little ones as soon as they come home from the hospital with many ideas from the Institutes for the Achievement of Human Potential. (Our infant crawling track idea and the beautiful pictures for our baby book,  from the picture above, came from The Institute). I have some strong kiddos, and trust me (this from a mommy who cannot do ONE pull up or cannot even do a “boy” push up) this is NO ACCIDENT and it’s definitely NOT passed down from their mommy’s genes. Well, have fun and please leave a comment so we know you are out there!  Hey, we’d even LOVE to have you come on the show and ask the questions yourself if you’d like.  We’re here to encourage you and walk along side you on this wonderful journey!

– Claudia (currently homeschooling my 2 Tiny Tots, 2 Middle Schoolers and 1 High Schooler…oh and MYSELF, as we’re never really done learning, are we?!).

Tips For Traveling With Babies And Toddlers

Hi awesome mamas!  Well the summer is coming to an end as kids return back to school (not going by actual vernal equinox dating).  I bet you’ve done your fair share of summer travel.  So have we!

Tips For Traveling With Babies And Toddlers

So Claudia and I thought it would be fun to share the tips for traveling with babies and toddlers that we’ve found useful.  We figure us mamas can always use a brainstorming session and possibly take away new ideas.

I invite you to listen to our latest podcast where we share the lessons we’ve learned and things that have worked for us in traveling with babies and toddlers.  Please add your own tips in the comment section below 😉

What to do next?:

1.  Listen to this podcast (below).

2.  Have any additional tips?  Leave us a comment, we could use the advice as well.

3.  Like it?  Pin It or Share It on using the buttons above or below the post.

4.  Found this useful?  Please take a minute to rate us and leave us an honest review on iTunes or Stitcher.  It’ll really help us increase our reach so we can encourage more mommies.

Letting Go and Letting God

 

 

Letting Go And Letting God

We usually spend our time around here blogging about preschoolers and very young adults because that’s what we know. Today, however, we have a special treat for you as we chat on the PodCast with Lisa Garr, a veteran Stay at Home Mom who has one daughter currently attending college and one son who is a senior in high school this year.

I talk to her about real anxiety and fears that moms face in this new phase of transition such as: How will we pay for college? What career is right for my child? and Will my child find friends who not only claim to share our faith, but who really walk the walk?

She has a special prayer for each and every one of you Mommas who are either right in this chapter of your life or are wondering what that chapter will be like one day. I walked away feeling renewed and strengthened, full of hope for the upcoming years and I really hope you do too! Please share and show your love for us by leaving a review on Itunes and leaving any comments here. We would love to hear your experiences and answer your questions! We know you are out there, we are getting a lot of listens in our stats lately, so please, pretty please don’t be shy!

-Claudia:)

Can’t listen now?  No problem . . . download the episode as an MP3 directly from this player and listen later while you drive or are doing chores 😉

What to do next?:.

1. What motherhood fears do you have?  How can we pray for you?  Leave us a comment, we want to know!

2.  Like this episode?  Pin It or Share It using the buttons above or below the post.

3.  Found this useful?  Please take a minute to rate us and leave us an honest review on iTunes or Stitcher.  It’ll really help us increase our reach so we can encourage more moms.

4.  Want to know our secrets and special news?  Subscribe to our email list using the subscribe box over on the right 😉

Where We Have Been And Our Summer Burn Out

We disappeared on you didn’t we?!  So sorry, life is just swallowing us up right now.  But we took a little breather to catch you up on where we’ve been and how we are dealing with our summer burn out.

Summer Burn Out

Please listen in.  We’ll try to get the ball rolling again.  Don’t leave us!! 😉

Can’t listen now?  No problem . . . download the episode as an MP3 directly from this player and listen later while you drive or are doing chores 😉

What to do next?:.

1. What have you been up to this summer?  Has life swallowed you up like it has us?  Leave us a comment, we want to know!

2.  Like this episode?  Pin It or Share It using the buttons above or below the post.

3.  Found this useful?  Please take a minute to rate us and leave us an honest review on iTunes or Stitcher.  It’ll really help us increase our reach so we can encourage more moms.

4.  Want to know our secrets and special news?  Subscribe to our email list using the subscribe box over on the right 😉

 

-Marisela

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