Wordful Wednesday: First day of Home Preschool

My sassy independent smart little Monk is now 2 and a half. Ok, she’s 2 years old and 9 months. Which is just so crazy to me.

But being that she’s under 3 she isn’t old enough for any of the preschool programs in our area and we don’t want to put her in daycare just for the sake of having her out of the house for a while (not that we could afford that anyways).

So after hearing from a couple other mamas that were starting homeschooling or had homeschooled before I decided to start a little bit of Montessori-esque schooling with Cedella at home.

First things first was deciding when and how to approach things. Doing some in depth googling facebooking pinteresting research on the subject I came to the understanding that there really isn’t any such thing as a set curriculum for almost three year olds. Which was a relief.

And even more encouraging? After reading a lot of Montessori-based books and sites I realized I’ve been doing most of what is encouraged already.

We read books at least twice a day. I talk to both children constantly and explain what I’m doing. We did sign language with Cedella from 6 months on and I’ve already begun with Izzie. We encourage her to do things on her own and to ask for help when needed. She can go to the bathroom by herself, wash hands and brush teeth alone, picks her own clothes and can dress (the bottom half anyways) and put on shoes by herself. And we try to include her in the kitchen as much as possible. All things touched on in a Montessori program.

And while I always sang the alphabet song and pointed out letters and numbers to her, I owe a serious debt to Super Why and Sesame Street for teaching my kid all of her upper and lower case ABC’s and up to the number 20. She knows all her colors and most of her shapes too, though there are lots of times when she confuses one for another or just forgets all together. So looks like she needs a bit more work in those areas.

More than anything I feel like two things she would really benefit from right now is more of a structured schedule and more socialization. So in conjunction with “school” at home two mornings a week we’d add some at least one outdoor ‘class’ a week and a couple other classes or playgroups.

So last Tuesday we started our first official day of school. And the best part about homeschool? You can go in your pajamas.

Following the Montessori ideal of taking your cues and leads from what the child expresses interest in, I thought cutting and gluing would be a fun way to introduce both scissors (which she is hugely interested in but I haven’t allowed her to work with before) and glue (which she LOVES).

I busted out some old magazines in order to find pictures to cut out and glue and make collages.

She had such a great time doing her first collage that I improvised a second activity adding another level of learning.

We scoured the magazines for pictures of things that were blue. And here’s her blue collage.

Complete with a picture of the First Lady wearing a blue dress (to which Cedella said “Mrs. Bama is so pretty mommy and she’s wearing blue” Yes. Mrs. Bama. There may not have been an O there but I’m proud all the same.

And even Izzie got involved. Though in fairness she really just wanted to know what the magazines tasted like.

Though she hasn’t quite mastered scissors she did really well gluing and finding blue objects. Bottom line though? It was just so neat to watch her learn and try new things.

For our outdoor activity for the week we went on a hike with our local Moms group and BFFs Anna & Leslie.

In fact, Leslie and I had our 2 year anniversary (we met on a moms group hike when the girls were still tiny and in our baby carriers on our chests) and despite the fact that she’s about to have a baby on my birthday (only three short weeks of shopping time left for those that wanted to get me something special) she looked glowing and lovely as ever :) Love you lady!!

And on a whim, after dancing with her Teta and her Aunt Sabah, we signed her up for a pre-ballet class called Tiny Dancers. Sadly we were five minutes late, and the class had started and she was being super shy. Instead of going into the studio she stayed in the doorway of the lobby with me and the other parents for the entire class. And then cried at the end because she “didn’t get to dance”.

This is her all bummed leaving the studio. I call this photo “Sad Ballerina”. But seriously how cute is her leotard/leg warmer/Converse/sock bun combo? Love this kid.

So far I’m super encouraged by the idea that everything we do, every interaction, every outing, every silly drawing or picture, is adding to her education and independence. She really is such a quick learner and a remarkably bright child. Can’t wait to share more about this journey as we go.

Thanks to Mollie, Jen and Diana for the links and information and encouragement!

How do you encourage education in your home, whether it be reading or art or science? Any suggestions for how to add more independent activities she can do on her own?

Happy WW!! Hope the rest of your week is lovely 😉


  1. angie says:

    Looks like it was an absolute success! I did a homeschool preschool for a few of my kids and it was much more enjoyable each time than I anticipated. :)
    angie recently posted..Wordful Wednesday-Soccer Mom

  2. Teresha says:

    The sad ballerina pic is fit for a billboard. C is too cute! I love your laid back, mix-it-all up approach to learning. That’s how it should be. C is going to be way ahead of the game when she starts a preschool program. We have a Montessori classroom at home for when M is home with me. I am big on sensory bins!

  3. I just started preschool with my 4 year old and I am amazed at how much my 2 1/2 year old is getting out of it
    Twisted Cinderella recently posted..Wordless Wednesday: Hard at Work

  4. Aw, Happy Anniversary! Love you! (And love you even more for calling me “glowing” – let’s just say I appreciate the fact that pic is blurry!) I admire the work you’re putting in with the homeschooling. Maybe after this baby comes, on your birthday of course, I can get in on the action, too. And I love the sad ballerina pic, too! Hopefully next week goes better and before you know it she’ll be just like Natalie Portman in “Black Swan”. Except, you know, without the crazy mom and disturbing mental illness…
    Leslie Arends recently posted..Oh, hello.

    • Alexia says:

      Leslie Arends » I’m telling you, it’s not just because I’m lazy, well, kind of, but we should totally throw our girls into a room and you can teach them for a little bit and then I will, and we can take breaks and eat bon bons in between. Doesn’t that sound lovely? And yea, the ballet teacher might be the inspiration for the Black Swan.

  5. Kate says:

    Umm sad ballerina is ADORABLE.

  6. Brooke says:

    Yay!!! I was planning on starting homeschool with Ruby this week, but then, well, yah know… life intervened… But we’re starting on Monday for sure. 😀 You and Diana are my big inspirations!
    Brooke recently posted..21 weeks and Critical Aortic Stenosis

    • Alexia says:

      Brooke » Anytime is a good time to start from what I gather. But I’m also so inspired knowing that most of what I do with her on a daily basis is pretty much what she should be learning, just with a bit more structure. Good luck! And if you have any tips or projects you wanna share, let me know!

  7. Tracey says:

    Sad ballerina! Awwww.

  8. Scarlett Rose says:

    hi there !!!

    “Mrs. Bama” is a great step in the world of learning & “Sad Ballerina” is so adorable :)

    Scarlett Rose recently posted..Reason #215 – I scream at my kid

    • Alexia says:

      Scarlett Rose » Hello! I was so impressed my Mrs. Bama that I couldn’t even correct her. Glad (and maybe a little worried) as to how much she is absorbing from her world. Thanks for stopping by!

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