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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 09-27-2011, 09:23 AM
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Default Does Anyone Do A Curriculum?

If so, is it a canned one, or do you make on up? Does anyone have one mostly appropriate for toddlers? I used to use High Reach Kids years ago, and it was ok. I always feel like it's more for the parents than the kids...but they are the paying customers, and it can't HURT the children, since it's about 15-20 of their day, not all day long.
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Old 09-27-2011, 09:26 AM
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I tried mother goose time for a couple months, it was about $80/month for 6 children. I wasn't really crazy about it. So I'm skipping it this next month and trying to create my own.
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Old 09-27-2011, 10:05 AM
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I make my own. I just pick a theme/color/letter for the month and then go off that for example september is "apples" the color "red" and the letter "A" I keep it REALLY simple though. Read a few books about apples, use alot of red in the art center and we put some letter 'a" stickers on an apple and we have been singing songs about apples at circle time
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Old 09-27-2011, 10:29 AM
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I did my own for awhile first preschool has a ton of ideas but I was tried of using my printer and taking the time to print it all out. I now use carol's curriculm and I'm loving it I do it for four kids and its not too bad
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Old 09-27-2011, 10:51 AM
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I plan my own. It's lit-based and used mostly right now for my almost 3 year olds. i use a lot of internet sights for help with ideas. I really enjoy writing my own even though it can be a ton of work!
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Old 09-27-2011, 11:03 AM
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I bought the Abeka 4K curriculum, but supplement with some books that I bought at Sam's Club - I Can Trace, I Can Cut, I Can Paste, etc.

I've also found a ton of free printables on the internet that I print out and use.

Last edited by sharlan; 09-27-2011 at 11:04 AM. Reason: adding
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Old 09-27-2011, 11:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erinalexmom View Post
I make my own. I just pick a theme/color/letter for the month and then go off that for example september is "apples" the color "red" and the letter "A" I keep it REALLY simple though. Read a few books about apples, use alot of red in the art center and we put some letter 'a" stickers on an apple and we have been singing songs about apples at circle time
This is exactly what I do with my 1 -4 yo. Depending on the age, I simplify the activity. For instance, we did an Apple theme at the beginning of September and they all painted on paper plates to make apples. I had the older ones practice writing the letter A and the younger ones simply colored a letter A picture. On another day the older ones made a Johnny Appleseed puppet after we read the story and the younger ones just colored the picture.

Yesterday we started a Farm theme and are learning about the different farm animals. Today the activities and crafts will be centered around chickens. We usually only spend an hour doing projects and the kids all love it and get so excited It helps to break up the morning and it is their favorite time of the day!

I used the Home Preschool Program for many years and it ran $15/per child a month. It was great when I first started out and my own kids were small. Time saving and no planning required, but now I've been enjoying putting together my own curriculum and being able to have more variety. There are so many awesome websites out there with preschool activities and crafts and many of them are free.
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Old 09-27-2011, 11:16 AM
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I don't use a set curriculum.

I do a monthly calendar with a weekly theme. This week is "My senses" I do very simple projects to go along with our themes on MTW. TH and Friday are just play days.

I'm not a teacher so I don't teach a structured lesson etc. I don't have circle time. This week we will just talk about taste while we eat lunch. We will talk about smell while we bake some cookies for example. We will talk about touch while we play with different things (are they smooth, rough? etc)

I keep it super simple and the kids think we are just playing and having fun.

In these next few months I will do a little more as I am big kid myself and LOVE the holidays! We will do some Halloween crafts, Thanksgiving projects and lots of fun Christmas activities and decorating.
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Old 09-27-2011, 11:26 AM
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I get my curriculum through www.funshineexpress.com there are a few groups and ages you can purchase for. I use the "Buttercups" curriculum for ages 6-36 months since all of the children I care for are all in this age group. It's actually an American company (I'm Canadian) and the curriculum is American based but I think it's great and really easy. There are a ton of activities they suggest, and they send you with one craft to do a week with the children (for this age group), activity cards, sign language cards to teach the children, quarterly newsletter to give to each family, etc.
I did do it on my own but quickly learned that it was not only very time consuming coming up with ideas and putting everything in place, but the ink and paper for printing everything off was more costly then buying this curriculum.
I like this funshine express curriculum so far.
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Old 09-27-2011, 11:27 AM
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i plan my own using an emergent curriculum. which basically means if the kids show an interest in snowmen in july, or butterlies and bugs in winter...we go with it. lol

once i see an interest in something, i build ideas and activities from there.

right now, we are doing apples just because its that time of year, but we also have two other "mini" themes going on...trains and forest animals.

we continue with a theme until they no longer show interest in it. i actually just wrote about it on my blog, if you want to check it out....

http://mountaintopdaycare.blogspot.com/
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Old 09-27-2011, 11:56 AM
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Mother Goose activities are good....but their crafts can get very boring and not much room for self expression.
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Old 09-27-2011, 12:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JaydensMommy View Post
I tried mother goose time for a couple months, it was about $80/month for 6 children. I wasn't really crazy about it. So I'm skipping it this next month and trying to create my own.
I use Mother Goose Time as well.

Pros
  • They tell you exactly what to teach each day if you're not a "certified" teacher
  • A million projects to complete
  • Good books & "things" included
  • Themes every month
  • The parents are pleased & impressed

Cons
  • SUPER-D-DUPER EXPENSIVE if you ask me!!!
  • Too much "stuff"...a lot of it goes to waste
  • I don't want to do a project every day...again wasteful
  • Some of the work is too "cookie cutter" - the kids barely have to do anything
Right now I'm stock-piled with it. Once it runs out, I am going to try something else. I'd like something "in between" Mother Goose Time and Funshine Express.
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Old 09-27-2011, 12:05 PM
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Mountaintop:

OMG I want to BE you! I just spent time on your blog. It makes me want to cry...

The group dynamic I have right now is sooo challenging. It seems like I'm spending a lot more time just getting through the day than I should be. Being that creative right now doesen't even seem possible.

If it's ok with you, I would like to follow your blog, and borrow what ideas I can. Maybe slow is the way to go....

What, if any "rules", do you have with your sensory table? Can you make any recomendations; my group is 14 mo, 14 mo, 18 mo, 3, and 4. 4yo is part time....4 of 5 are sibs...
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Old 09-27-2011, 12:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meeko60 View Post
I don't use a set curriculum.

I do a monthly calendar with a weekly theme. This week is "My senses" I do very simple projects to go along with our themes on MTW. TH and Friday are just play days.
I'm not a teacher so I don't teach a structured lesson etc. I don't have circle time. This week we will just talk about taste while we eat lunch. We will talk about smell while we bake some cookies for example. We will talk about touch while we play with different things (are they smooth, rough? etc)

I keep it super simple and the kids think we are just playing and having fun.

In these next few months I will do a little more as I am big kid myself and LOVE the holidays! We will do some Halloween crafts, Thanksgiving projects and lots of fun Christmas activities and decorating.
I love the idea of Thursday and Friday being play days. I think I"ll start that this week. I'm having to learn to relax a little and enjoy the kids since I'm not a public school teacher anymore. This should be the first step to doing that.
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Old 09-27-2011, 12:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by melskids View Post
i plan my own using an emergent curriculum. which basically means if the kids show an interest in snowmen in july, or butterlies and bugs in winter...we go with it. lol

once i see an interest in something, i build ideas and activities from there.

right now, we are doing apples just because its that time of year, but we also have two other "mini" themes going on...trains and forest animals.

we continue with a theme until they no longer show interest in it. i actually just wrote about it on my blog, if you want to check it out....

http://mountaintopdaycare.blogspot.com/
I loved your blog, just subscribed!
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Old 09-27-2011, 12:24 PM
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I use funshine express. I like that is offers many options of things to do. I like to be able to send the kids home with things too. And i dont have to buy a bunch of things or spend time planning my own.

I have babies as young as 2 months so I really cant be busy doing really messy projects...there is only 1 of me and 7 of them.

Wish I only had 2 yo and up then I could do more creative projects like melskids but I gotta tell ya...it aint gonna happen at my house!! I never know when a baby is gonna need a cuddle..and they dont like to wait for you to clean up! haha
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Old 09-27-2011, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by bbo View Post
OMG I want to BE you! I just spent time on your blog. It makes me want to cry...

The group dynamic I have right now is sooo challenging. It seems like I'm spending a lot more time just getting through the day than I should be. Being that creative right now doesen't even seem possible.

If it's ok with you, I would like to follow your blog, and borrow what ideas I can. Maybe slow is the way to go....

What, if any "rules", do you have with your sensory table? Can you make any recomendations; my group is 14 mo, 14 mo, 18 mo, 3, and 4. 4yo is part time....4 of 5 are sibs...
oh, mine can be challenging too, believe me! we're just coming out of a few rough couple of months.

first, i gave up on things needing to be perfect. sometimes (well, everyday, really!) the most important things we need to get through the day are good food, lots of exercise, and a good nap. if that's all i accomplish in a day, then ive done good. (darn good at that ) thats why i dont particularly like canned curriculums. too much too do, and too much guilt when you cant get it all done.

and second, i'm a HUGE believer in learning through play. if you give them a good solid choice of open ended toys, that's your curriculum right there.

we can spend HOURS with just playdough and cover everything from fine motor to math to social skills to everything in between.

as far as my sensory and art rules...everything is out an accessible. we start very young learning to use things appropriately, and cleaning up. i stay within arms reach of the youngest ones, but by 3 years old, they all understand how things work around here, and i can confidently walk away a bit and trust them to make the right choices. my art center is RIGHT next to my couch, and i've NEVER had anyone go anywhere NEAR it with a marker or paint. lol

but if you are overwhelmed with trying to do it all, i would take a breath, and a step back. go back to the basics. get a good solid routine down, and work on teaching basic social skills (if thats where youre struggling). once you get a handle on the day, then slowly add in more creative activities/curriculum.

we all want whats best for our kids, and to give 115% all the time. As women, we feel we need to do it all. that's why so many providers burn out. i say, slow down and take the time to be in the moment. thats what matters to me the most. these kids arent gonna remember everything i did, but i know they will remember how i made them feel. to heck with impressing the parents with perfect curriculum....lol
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Old 09-27-2011, 12:31 PM
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Originally Posted by tbutler View Post
I loved your blog, just subscribed!
thanks! we have a facebook page too..... https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Mo...e/348397697472

Quote:
Originally Posted by MommyMuffin View Post
I use funshine express. I like that is offers many options of things to do. I like to be able to send the kids home with things too. And i dont have to buy a bunch of things or spend time planning my own.

I have babies as young as 2 months so I really cant be busy doing really messy projects...there is only 1 of me and 7 of them.

Wish I only had 2 yo and up then I could do more creative projects like melskids but I gotta tell ya...it aint gonna happen at my house!! I never know when a baby is gonna need a cuddle..and they dont like to wait for you to clean up! haha
i have two under two at all times. and the one 7 month old cries. ALOT. we do what we can when we can.

i, in no way, can complete a full curriculum all day, everyday. there's no possible way, especially with me being only human and all. Sometimes we can do alot in one day, but sometimes only one messy activity is all we can get to in a week!
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Old 09-27-2011, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by melskids View Post
thanks! we have a facebook page too..... https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Mo...e/348397697472



i have two under two at all times. and one of them cries. ALOT. we do what we can when we can.
Well Lordy!! Lady you are awesome!!! Rock on!
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Old 09-27-2011, 01:05 PM
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Originally Posted by MommyMuffin View Post
Well Lordy!! Lady you are awesome!!! Rock on!
i just went back and editied my post the same time you replied...lol

i didnt mean to sound like superwoman, ( i hope i didnt come across like that!) and im not gonna even pretend that i'd want to be...lol
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Old 09-27-2011, 01:41 PM
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Originally Posted by melskids View Post
i just went back and editied my post the same time you replied...lol

i didnt mean to sound like superwoman, ( i hope i didnt come across like that!) and im not gonna even pretend that i'd want to be...lol
No you sounded just fine!!
You are super!!! I am going to follow your blog for sure!
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