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Curriculum Post any curriculum ideas, activites or projects that wouldbe helpful to our Daycare community. What is your teaching philosophy?

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Old 03-19-2010, 07:00 AM
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Default What Curriculum to Choose?

I am looking at adding a curriculum into my home based daycare and I am looking for any recommendations I can get! I am looking for one that obviously reaches out to a variety of ages. I have children from infant up to age 8 and would like to find a curriculum that challenges each age. I have researched several, but just cannot decide so I guess I am looking for what other providers are using and what they would recommend! Thus far I have just used a pretty informal style and printed off of my computer and have done alot of planning outside of daycare hours which has turned out to be a time worthy job in itself and since I have two small children of my own I would like to have less prep hours and have something already prepared that I can just set up and get started when the kids get here and not so much searching on what should we do today!! Please let me know your thoughts and ideas and I would like to thank everyone ahead of time so Thank you!! : )
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Old 03-20-2010, 06:42 PM
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I use Funshine Express Right now. Next year I am looking into developing my own.
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Old 03-21-2010, 06:18 AM
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I started using Funshine Express a few months ago (thanks to OriginalKat's advice!), and I love it. I was spending alot of time prepping before as well, but now it's sooo much easier! I keep each day's worksheets, crafts & visuals in their own file folder, so I just grab the folder and the lesson book while the kids are eating breakfast. I grab whatever extra materials I need (glue, crayons, etc), and we're good to go! There are lots of activities to choose from for each day, and they can be scaled for each age group. My 8 month old does the craft about half the time, and always sits with us for circle/activity time, and the rest of the kids from 12 months and up, do everything, with varying degrees of help from me.

I pay extra because I'm in Canada, but it's worth every penny!
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Old 03-21-2010, 04:27 PM
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Default Funshine questions

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Originally Posted by DBug View Post
I started using Funshine Express a few months ago (thanks to OriginalKat's advice!), and I love it. I was spending alot of time prepping before as well, but now it's sooo much easier! I keep each day's worksheets, crafts & visuals in their own file folder, so I just grab the folder and the lesson book while the kids are eating breakfast. I grab whatever extra materials I need (glue, crayons, etc), and we're good to go! There are lots of activities to choose from for each day, and they can be scaled for each age group. My 8 month old does the craft about half the time, and always sits with us for circle/activity time, and the rest of the kids from 12 months and up, do everything, with varying degrees of help from me.

I pay extra because I'm in Canada, but it's worth every penny!
DBug and Original Kat, how to you go about payment for the Funshine curriculum? Do you have the parents pay upfront at the beginning of the year, or monthly or weekly for the cost of program? What do you do about the number of children when you get new children every so often added to the preschool class? Or are you already full and don't have to worry about additions during the school year?
Also, how easily could I apply the curriculum in my circumstance (I have 2 1/2 -3 yr olds 2 days a week and 4-5 yr olds 3 days a week). This works best for me as there'd be more children with a wider gap in age than I want to teach at one time (both classes combined would give me 12 children, without an assistant, since the owner would have to watch the toddlers). Would it even work to only do 2-3 days worth of curriculum each week? We also go by the local school district (no school there, no preschool either since we have school agers during the day on school breaks), so there'd sometimes be a whole week of no preschool (like Spring Break), and none at all in summers.
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Old 03-21-2010, 07:29 PM
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I answered this before but here it is again

I used to use Highreach Learning a LONG time ago, like 18 years ago. However after a few years I saw that the curriculum wasn't changing much and it kept on repeating itself.

I then made my own. I used a lot of material off the internet. We also have a chain of bookstores called Half Price Books. I would get alot of stuff from there. Also the local Goodwill store is good too. Both very cheap. In fact that's where I go now for the little boy I watch.
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Old 03-22-2010, 03:25 AM
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Like Former Teacher, I make my own up. Contact your local elementary school and get the kindergarten packet that tells what new kindergarteners are expected to know. Then go from there. There is way too much information out there for free to pay for a curriculum. I subscribe to one website, Kidssoup.com, and I love it.

I have also purchased a workbook or two for a teachers store and make copies.
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Old 03-22-2010, 05:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mac60 View Post
Like Former Teacher, I make my own up. Contact your local elementary school and get the kindergarten packet that tells what new kindergarteners are expected to know. Then go from there. There is way too much information out there for free to pay for a curriculum. I subscribe to one website, Kidssoup.com, and I love it.

I have also purchased a workbook or two for a teachers store and make copies.
I agree. I always make copies of things in books that way I can still use them.
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Old 03-22-2010, 10:51 AM
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With Funshine, you can order month by month, so you can completely skip the summer if needed, but I'm not sure about doing only a few days per week. There may be more cost-effective options out there. Since everything is in sequence and dated, you could either ignore the dates, or you could just skip days (which would probably be a waste).

You could compile curriculum off the internet yourself, but you'd have to factor in the cost of ink, the time spent surfing for it, and the prep time (cutting things out, etc). For me, it's not worth it, and I just don't have the time to do it all. I did also check out the Mother Goose curriculum when I was looking around. Perhaps they would have something that would fit your situation better?
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Old 03-22-2010, 03:15 PM
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Thank you DBug. I'm looking for another curriculum because the one I started out with in August just didn't end up being what I thought at first. Too academic based, not much hand's on, plus it was geared for pre-k, so I always HAD to come up with my own for the younger class. So I ended up doing my own thing each week for both classes, but I'm spending my entire weekend EVERY week to plan for the upcoming week. I'm talking hours spent EACH weekend, to get everything done (worksheets, projects, art, math, science, etc. and the learning sheet I send home at the beginning of the week, the cut-outs for the poster telling parents what their child is working on that week...on it goes). I'm getting burned out on teaching just because of the planning involved haha. So I'd like an easy, ready-made hand's on curriculum that can be used for 2 1/2-5 yr olds.
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Old 08-03-2010, 08:39 PM
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Default We switched to the International Preschool Curriculum

We switched to the International Preschool Curriculum and although we had a hard time proving we met their requirements we ended up impressing parents more than we thought was possible. The kids love it, especially the food and nutrition theme where they get to cook food, develop their taste buds and learn healthy eating. Highly recommended!

Preschool Curriculum
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Old 08-04-2010, 03:40 AM
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i use creative curriculum.

no worksheets, dittos, or cookie cutter crafts. all the materials are set out and they explore them as they choose. i follow the childrens lead when choosing "themes". this week they have found about 40 baby toads in the yard (fine place for momma toad to lay her eggs) and they are totally engrossed by them. so, this weeks theme is toads...lol

it only takes me about an hour to prep anything each week. now, during the summer, the SA really enjoy craft sets, and coloring books and such, so i have that kind of stuff available for them. anything else i just look for on the internet. there are so many free resources online i cant justify buying a prepackaged curriculum.

JMO
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Old 08-04-2010, 04:56 AM
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I have always done my own but this year I am going to purchase one I just don't have the time or the energy at the end of the day or the weekend to get things together and since I have more kids and more income I think I can afford to do this. I am going to start in Sept. when all my older kids go back to school. I have few that I'm trying to choose from
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Old 08-04-2010, 05:49 AM
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I'll be trying Mother Goose Time again this fall. I used it years ago and it was okay, but it looks like they've added a lot to it since then. Looks fairly comparable to Funshine Express which is also good for a box curriculum.
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Old 08-04-2010, 06:02 AM
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I've tried most of the ones mentioned a one point or another; I even tried doing my own last year. It seems I always go back to Funshine Express~I briefly thought about Mother Goose Time but then Funshine offered a 20% discount on a subscription so I ordered that for this year.
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Old 08-04-2010, 06:27 AM
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I personally make my own. I practice an Emergent Curriculum.....based on the child's currently developing skills and what they are interested in.
My environment is a HUGE part of the curriuclum. If a group of children is interested in a particular topic, I will add materials to each interest center that focus on that topic....for instance if a group is interested in trains....I'll add things to the block area like trains, tracks, and maybe even turn it into a train station, etc., math area I'd add a bulletin board with a big train so that they can count windows/wheels/etc. and make each train car a different color, we might make a train out of boxes for outside play-having the kids think about how to make the train and then allowing them to paint/cut/color the boxes as they wish, so on and so forth....each center would have materials about trains: book area, dramatic play, art, writing, etc. Each area would have books and writing materials. If a child is developing the skill of cutting I might put out some papers that have trains they can cut out, if they are learing colors, I might have a bunch of train cutouts in different colors for matching and sorting, and field trips are always great....we have gone to the railroad museum and to watch the trains go by on the tracks....then come back and write and draw about our experiences.... I think you get the idea.

I always start with circle time, then we move into interest centers where the children can particpate in small group activites or can choose free play.


We are always with or near the children facilitating their play....asking questions to encourage them to draw conclusions and expand their thinking.

I hope that makes sense?!
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Old 08-04-2010, 06:46 AM
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I used to use Carols Affordable Curriculum but I am trying out Funshine Express this year - I like that its actually cheaper than Carols and it looks a bit more creative - Carols I thought was too easy and sometimes boring with all the worksheets.

Only negative about Funshine is that I only need for 3 children and you can only buy in 2's so I will have one extra but I figure I can complete it too with the kids using the 4th one.
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Old 08-04-2010, 08:27 AM
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Smile Ipc

We also use the International preschool curriculum - the great part for me is that it has themes that the kids love and parents seem to love too.
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Old 08-04-2010, 09:58 AM
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So far I do my own curriculum, but I am having a really hard time with one of my dcb's. He is 4. He always complains when it's time to do crafts, workbooks, anything that involves doing things as a group and learning/writing/crafts. He often will just stare into space, or pay attention to the other kids work instead of his own. The other kids all finish before he does (even my own 2 yo), and even when the others leave the table to play he sits there and stares into space rather than finishing. I am pretty much forcing him to participate.

I have never encountered such a young child rejecting learning, crafts, etc... in this way. He is the boy that also plays by himself almost 100% of the day. So I'm not sure if it's related to group activities, or just learning and doing crafts in general.

Any suggestions to get him to participate without having to force him? Has anyone encountered a child who hated these types of activities?
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Old 08-14-2010, 03:31 PM
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Exclamation Mother Goose Time discount

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Originally Posted by DCMom View Post
I've tried most of the ones mentioned a one point or another; I even tried doing my own last year. It seems I always go back to Funshine Express~I briefly thought about Mother Goose Time but then Funshine offered a 20% discount on a subscription so I ordered that for this year.
Mother Goose Time also offers a 15% discount if you order a subscription of 9 months or more. So if you are using it all year, like we do - then you automatically qualify for their discount. The pricing is actually quite similar to Funshine - but I have found the value in Mother Goose Time in terms of product quality and content of materials is much, much higher in Mother Goose.
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Old 08-14-2010, 09:06 PM
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The two popular curriculums seem to be Mother Goose and Funshine and both offer discounts. Would you recommend purchasing either of their curriculums just for ONE year and then re-do it so you don't pay again or do they actually send you things that are handy besides telling you what to discuss and what crafts to do?

I would rather do my own because I'm creative and we have tons of free access online. If I could just choose weekly themes for each month and come up with ideas, in the end it will be organized and the children will be the ones doing the work....not me. Then again, this might be one of those "Easier Said Than Done" LOL
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Old 07-30-2011, 05:57 PM
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Default International Preschool Curriculum Home Based Version

Hey moms! I have been following this thread for some time and noticed how everyone has their views on Mother Goose, Funshine and IPC. So I was surprised to find out that the IPC has recently launched a home based version which is a lot cheaper ($620). I bought it last week and just got it yesterday. It came with 10 children's books, a hardcopy binder with the thematic units and access to parent induction/training which is actually very useful - even though I'm on my second child. The value for money part came with the research and rationale. Here's a sample:

"Rationale- It is important for children to acquire emotional and social development during their younger years. Emotional development should range from self awareness and all it entails to others, and the world around them, such as the environment. It is key to tie together their direct effect and role as a member of society. This will create an important sense of belonging and self esteem."

The activity that follows is called "I care" in which the child compares a growing seedling to themselves to better understand what they need to grow and prosper.

Its so cute!
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Old 08-02-2011, 12:57 PM
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Default preschool curriculum

Check out the Star-Brite Learning Program!

They offer over 100 hands-on craft and learning activites each month for ages 3-5 year olds.
All instructions and paper/craft materials are included in the package.
There are discounts available for pre-paying for a couple months at a time..$5 off any order of $68 or more...and previous months at HALF PRICE!
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