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Curriculum>If You Plan Your Own Curriculum
Movingforward 03:14 PM 06-11-2016
If you plan your own curriculum, when and how do you go about it.
Blackcat31 04:12 PM 06-11-2016
Originally Posted by Movingforward:
If you plan your own curriculum, when and how do you go about it.
I fly by the seat of my pants...

The kids and I talk during circle time (a.m. snack time) daily and I gather ideas from their current interests or topics of conversation then I plan topics and themes based around stuff they want to know and learn and create a curriculum plan for the next week.

Once I gather and decide on a theme and/or topic, I take a blank weekly lesson plan and basically fill in the blanks for an activity for each of the domains required by FCCRS/QRIS.

Every group of kids is different and different as a whole as they age so no curriculum is the same from year to year.
Thriftylady 06:14 PM 06-11-2016
I fly by the seat of my pants a lot also. I have finished a monthly list of themes and such and am loosely following them, but they are more of a guide for me than anything. Then I search online for stuff to fit in the themes.
Josiegirl 01:13 PM 06-12-2016
What are the ages you're all creating curriculum for and will you be doing this all through out the summer? Just curious.
I have a hard time thinking of things all the dcks can and want to do. Plus, for the summer we're(hopefully) going to be outside a lot. I may get more into it when September rolls around.
Blackcat31 01:41 PM 06-12-2016
Originally Posted by Josiegirl:
What are the ages you're all creating curriculum for and will you be doing this all through out the summer? Just curious.
I have a hard time thinking of things all the dcks can and want to do. Plus, for the summer we're(hopefully) going to be outside a lot. I may get more into it when September rolls around.
I have:
15 months,
20 months,
2yrs (3 of them)
3 yrs (3 of them)
4 yrs old (4 of them)
5 yrs old (2 of them)

Summer time is almost 100% free play with some fun structured activities tossed in when they fit but mostly all free play.

During the school year, we have a more structured curriculum that has intentional input/outcomes to meet QRIS requirements. Activities are split into age groups....infant toddler lesson plans and preschool lesson plans with each age group having specific domains that need to be covered.
Thriftylady 01:59 PM 06-12-2016
I have all SA right now. But I do have structured themes all year round. I am hoping to get more preschool aged kids this fall, and will be advertising heavily for it, because I have put a lot of work into preK lesson plans.
AmyKidsCo 08:43 PM 06-16-2016
I do about what BlackCat does. I consider what the children are interested in, what the season is, what's going on around us, and what I'm interested in to choose a theme for the month.

Then I look through my collection of Mailbox magazines and resources to fill out my lesson plan template. I've found that my kiddos love repetition so large motor, sensory, and circle time activities are repeated every week. Each day there's a different art activity and story time book, and each week there's at least 1 cooking, math, and science activity.
Controlled Chaos 06:06 PM 06-21-2016
I have monthly themes
Jan- things that go: cars, trains, planes
Feb- our bodies/ dr and dentist stuff and health
March- rainbows
April - gardens
May- farms
June- bugs
July- space
Aug - oceans
Sept- dinosaurs
Oct- fall and Halloween
Nov- thanksgiving, charity more fall
Dec- Christmas and winter

I am a control freak and love a list

Within the big themes we focus on different aspects of them each week. I have a tub of toys and books for each theme.
Unregistered 07:38 PM 06-23-2016
I have monthly themes too. I do lots with literacy such as charted poems, flannel board stories, rhyming, music and literacy fun, interactive prop stories, finger puppets, alphabet games, nursery rhymes, my name activities, etc.

I have a math games/manipulatives shelf mainly for math fun.

We do about three open-ended Art activities each week. We do Weekly Reader (well it's My Big Workd now and is only twice per month)which is great and helps fill in gaps. It focuses on science and social studies. $5.00 per child per year!

I have a small art center available... Markers, playdoh, paper, glue sticks, oil pastels, crayons, coloring books.

I have a three drawer bin by my circle time area that has all kinds of active, imteractive visual, fun learning activities that I pull from. Our circle time is 5-10 minutes.

I don't do much alphabet & number mastery. More just exposure.

I like to cook/bake regularly with the kids.

This is the basics of my curriculum.

Songs, music, movement
Creative art
Small science center with basic rotating items
Weekly Reader
Literacy fun
Math manipulative center- also some fine motor stuff on here
Sensory table filled with oatmeal for measuring/pouring/filling
Circle time

Sept. All about me, school, apples
Oct. fall, farm, Halloween
Nov. families, woodland animals, Thanksgiving
Dec 5- senses, Christmas
Jan artic animals, winter, health
Feb dental health, Valentine's Day, transportation
March pets, wind, St Paddys day, rainbows
April spring, occupations, dinosaurs
May insects, gardening

I mainly touch on these topics through books/stories, creative art, songs, fingerplays, etc. nothing too in depth

I also do a fairly tale of the month reading different versions, doing a flannel board version, etc and have a nursery rhyme of the month.
Movingforward 01:49 PM 06-24-2016
Thank you all so much! I also have a monthly theme but am struggling with planning the day to day activities. So far we've been singing it but I feel like parents are looking for more than free play activities. We do have regular 10 min circle time where we sing, read and just breifly introduce a letter (biweekly). Doesn't it take a while to plan and gather materials for the planned activities also needing to consider their age and abilities while planning? How long does it take you all to plan your activities?
Unregistered 06:34 PM 06-26-2016
Oh gosh it doesn't take long!
But I have years of materials that I pull from.

Beginning of the month I put up the nursery rhyme of the month( pre-made set of posters from An early childhood conference)

I change out the calendar

I ready art the morning we do it. I do open-ended art but it does relate to a theme. Tomorrow they are painting strawberries cut out of card stock and painting with water after sprinkling on dry un-sweetened kool-aid. Older kids can cut their own strawberry. It smells great and the color changes before their eyes! Great science fun!

I find my open-ended art is great for toddlers to school age. It's great to see how older kids approach it compared to the younger kids!
We do the same activity.

I change out the math manipulative shelf here and there.

I put out a simple science item every few weeks (like large sea shells and magnifying glasses or a 16 oz soda bottle with cut up pipe cleaners and a few magnet wands). Science stuff sits the long lunch table my husband built. Easy, simple stuff.

I have a sensory table with oatmeal in it. I just switch out the bins/containers seasonally.

I have my books in totes by month. I just get out the bin at the beginning of the month and have it ready.

I have a song board with monthly songs on index cards. The child of the day picks out two/ three songs and we sing them at circle time. Picture on the side facing kids, words on the other.

Music and movement is easy to plan into the day. Many songs are on YouTube now. I love Dr. Jean, Jack Hartman, Hap Palmer, Greg & Steve, Charolette Diamond for action songs. Google The Cool Bear hunt by Dr. Jean!

Partly it's easy because I have so many resources I've made and collected over the years.

I think if you are offering an open-ended art activity a few times per week and a fun circle time each day with stories and music it's fine and plenty!

I love
(or I used too, I have plenty now) to make flannel board stories, flannel board activities, and prop stories but it took me years. That doesn't mean you need to do that.

I like to cook with kids so I add that in. I like making math games.

its like I'm just sharing my interests.

I don't think you have to kill yourself planning. Keep it simple. Read some blogs or websites or Google preschool activities. See if there's anything you'd like to add slowly.

Some good sites are

Happy Hooligans she does family child care

Kiz club has great printable flannel board stories for common stories (it's kiz not kids)

No small potatoes-family child care. I don't think her blog is active any more but there are great ideas

There's more but Pinterest is probably your best bet!

Say I'm doing apples in the fall-

My planning would be

buy apples

Have two/three art activities planned

Have a cooking activity planned-biscuits, apple slices (kids cut up) they spread out biscuit, place on apples sprinkle on cinnamon and sugar, fold over.

Read some apple stories

Do some apple count down poems. You could use flannel Apples, real apples, paper apples

Good luck !!
Unregistered 06:36 PM 06-26-2016
Oh, bake the apple biscuit bites! Haha!
Unregistered 02:52 PM 06-27-2016
Also, check out Hubbard's Cupboard. I believe she used to teach kindergarten and may be homeschooling and/or doing family childcare now.

She has added lots of bible lesson plans but there are tons of regular literacy and math ideas. Things like math tubs/games. There are tons of ideas here!
Movingforward 11:24 AM 06-30-2016
Thanks for the break down and all the great resources! Activity planning on the way
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