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Homeschool Kindergarten Curriculum

Updated on January 23, 2012
Marye Audet profile image

Marye Audet-White is an internationally known food writer, food editor for Texas Living, cookbook author, and food blogger.

One question many new homeschoolers have is whether or not they should use a homeschool kindergarten curriculum. While lesson plans and curricula are necessary in the conventional school setting they serve little purpose in a homeschool kindergarten. In fact, many experienced homeschoolers choose to wait to do any serious academics until after first or second grade.

Teaching Kindergarteners at Home

Your baby learned to walk, talk, and interact with you without any formal lessons at all. In the same way your five year old can learn what he needs to know just by daily activities. Since children of this age instinctively like to help their parents, and they have short attention spans, learning side by side with you is the best lesson plan possible.

A trip to the zoo is an excellent teaching tool.
A trip to the zoo is an excellent teaching tool. | Source

Common Scope and Sequence for Kindergarten

While every kindergarten is a little different here are common things that kindergarten students learn:

  • Know colors
  • Numbers to 20
  • Letters and beginning sounds
  • Retelling (narration) of short stories; being able to tell you what the story was about
  • Interaction with other people
  • Sort items by shape, color, etc.
  • Skip counting by 2, 5 , 10
  • Measuring
  • Sit in a chair throughout meal time (yes this is really in a REAL scope and sequence)
  • Keep hands and feet to self
  • Use the bathroom independently including use of toilet paper (I swear, this is from another scope and sequence)
  • Know first and last name
  • Know address and phone

There are some other things listed in a similar vein. You can probably see that most of what a five year old is expected to learn are things that he learns easily at home. Many of these things your child probably all ready knows.

If you would like to follow a good scope and sequence PBS has an excellent one.

Activities for Kindergarten

Kindergarten is a great time to read stories aloud to your child, bake cookies together, and go to the zoo, science museum, and other outings. The more that you introduce your child to at this age the bigger his world will be and the more open his mind will be to learning.  Remember, at this point you are setting a foundation for the rest of his education.

Pushing a child to far too fast can cause him to hate school, resent learning, and become an underachiever for years to come. By encouraging your child to follow his interests, spending time with him, and encouraging a variety of experiences and activities your child will have more interest in educating himself later on; he will be on his way to being a lifelong learner.

This morning at breakfast my seven year old wondered what 'octopuses" eat. I explained that the proper term for more than one octopus was octopi and then encouraged her and her brother to go search on the computer to see what they found out about the eating habits of octopi. It wasn't too long before they came back and told me several interesting facts about octopi, squid, cuttlefish, and starfish. Science completed for the day!

At this point, allowing a child to observe nature closely, find answers to his own questions, and explore his world is the best education you can give him.

Choosing a Homeschool Kindergarten Curriculum

If you really feel the need to have a set curriculum in your home you can find lesson plans for kindergarteners in many different curricula. The subjects that are taught in each one can vary a lot so research to find one that fits you and your child the best.

You should consider the readiness of your child. Some curricula like Abeka are quite advanced in the amount of work that they require and not all kindergarten students are ready for that intense amount of work.

If your child has trouble focusing for more than fifteen minutes, is not ready to read, or doesn't have fine motor skill development yet then choose a lower key approach to kindergarten. Some possibilities are:

  • Ambleside Online, a free Charlotte Mason curriculum through 12th grade.
  • Sonlight has a gentle approach to kindergarten.

Your time commitment is another thing to consider. How much time do you have to work with your child on school? Be realistic. Most curricula require at least two hours a day of committed school time, and that doesn't include any research or preparation that you may need to do.

Other Curricula that you may want to consider if you plan on using a prepared curriculum are:

Each of these requires a different amount of preparation on the part of the parent.

Kindergarten Lesson Plans on the Internet

You can find anything on the Internet, including kindergarten lesson plans. Choosing a lesson to do once in awhile is a great way to supplement what you are all ready doing and add a little punch to your homeschooling.

The following websites have some great lessons for kindergarten complete with crafts and themes.

Define Your Reasons

Before you go and buy a homeschool kindergarten curriculum, define your reasons why you feel that you need one. A curriculum can be a security blanket in one sense but it can also hold you back from getting the most out of your time with your child.

Make sure you really need a curriculum before you spend the money on one at this point in time. There is plenty of time for scheduled academics when you child is older.


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    • profile image

      Bethany Culpepper 6 years ago

      If I had only known!!! Actually, it wasn't Kindergarten that got us down - it's the upper grades. Thank you for sharing your own experience.

    • agusfanani profile image

      agusfanani 6 years ago from Indonesia

      It's a very good hub for those who need ideas what to teach at kindergarten or parents can use them as practical guidance of good kindergarten.

    • Rose West profile image

      Rose West 6 years ago from Michigan

      Great hub! I remember kindergarten as a great time, and look forward to the time when I'll be able to teach my own kids in kindergarten. You had a good point about encouraging children to become good learners. It's important for them to know how to learn and how to find out things, not just for them to take whatever is given them.

    • CARIBQUEEN profile image

      CARIBQUEEN 6 years ago

      Oh Marye: You did a wonderful job with your children. I now see that homeschooling does have a lot of advantages, so this is something that I will promote. It is good to know that other families are supportive. Thank you.

    • chspublish profile image

      chspublish 6 years ago from Ireland

      Homeschooling gives kids a great start in life and more time to grow under the watchful eye of their parents. Many books on home schooling back up the philosophy on natural learning. Had the privelege with two of my children and it went brilliantly and they decided to join the 'mainstream' of their own accord. They have been great college students, doing really well with their choices of subjects and their heads in the right place. It was well worth the experience and there is much support out there for parents. Well done.

    • Marye Audet profile image

      Marye Audet 6 years ago from Lancaster, Texas

      Oh...and my oldest daughter is an accomplished oldest son is currently a crew chief on F-16s stationed in Iraq... My 18 year old has a degree in Audio-Engineering... My 17 year old is going to college pursuing an art degree... and has all ready sold artwork. My 15 year old is pursing a modeling career. with 3 more to go, I am pretty satisfied with the way things are turning out.

    • Marye Audet profile image

      Marye Audet 6 years ago from Lancaster, Texas

      In 22 years of homeschooling (my kids range from 29 down to 7) I have not experienced a problem with socialization. Is it more realistic to have 20 7 year olds all together and call that socialization or to have children interact with different age groups, cultures, etc? I would say in real life we rarely "socialize" with 20 other people our exact same age and maturity level...and I don't think that is healthy.

      Sunday school, neighborhood friends, co-ops, etc. all provide plenty of time for socialization and developing social skills, IMHO.

    • smackins1974 profile image

      smackins1974 6 years ago from UK

      This is something I wish I could talk my husband into, I would love to homeschool our daughter but like much of society my husband thinks homeschooling is abnormal and that she should go to school like everyone else!! As for the previous comment about socialising with others I looked into this in my area and there are quite a few homeschooling families that meet up regularly to socialise so not only do the children interact with their own age but also with older and younger children too which gives wider scope to learn social skills above their own age ahead of time moreso than they would in a class of all the same age in a school setting.

      Great Hub


    • CARIBQUEEN profile image

      CARIBQUEEN 6 years ago

      Marye: Homeschooling is wonderful but I am more concerned about the socialization process. Most times children need to learn how to interact with other children in order to become well-balanced. Wonderful hub.

    • Just About It profile image

      Just About It 6 years ago from southern CA

      Very nicely written with great information about homeschooling.