As parents, we wear many hats. Some days we are physicians, mediators, and chefs all in the same hour. Moms of toddlers and babies bear a lot of the responsibility of providing for their child’s every conceivable need. We provide nutrition, education, socialization, healthcare, and more! It’s no surprise, then, that mothers are looking to the experts to learn how to better manage and balance these competing roles. In the pursuit of academic greatness, some parents are even choosing to educate their children at home or with tutors! Homeschooling might seem a bit much for toddlers, but the concept of curriculum-building and progressive learning can shape our own mothering. Here’s how you can build a lesson plan to educate your toddler at home!
Teachers everywhere build their lesson plans around timely topics. So, too, should parents! The changing seasons are my personal favorite theme for little ones. Because weather and climate are objective, I like to sprinkle in several opportunities to learn about the season firsthand. Our favorite park has a water table area that explores seasonal flooding and our local watershed! When we’re stuck inside on rainy days, we visit the water table and make our rain indoors! My husband and I are planting a vegetable garden this year; our toddler will be helping us as much as he can! This is a perfect chance for us to learn about worms and bugs, soil and water, and how the sunshine feeds our plants!
As we’re surprised by unexpected happenings, we do our best to incorporate them into our lesson plan on the fly. For example, when my father-in-law broke his leg and needed surgery, we decided to tackle the topic of surgery. Shep’s favorite take-apart dinosaur toy helped us explain that surgeons can fix our broken parts. Now, this is a first step into the world of medicine and health sciences instead of just a “really big owie” for Grandpa! You can do something similar with scheduled wellness checks or immunizations, too!
April showers bring May flowers - and as we see flowers begin to peek up from the soil, I’ve added several days of flower-themed activities. My toddler can identify numbers, so we’ve created a flower matching game with paperclips and foam shapes. Even my one-year-old can join in the fun when we decorate paper plate flowers with scraps of construction paper! Pump up the sensory experience by plucking a variety of flowers, leaves, and plant stems. Let your toddler sort the items into different cups. Afterward, toss them into a makeshift sensory bin with other items from the outdoors - pine cones, stones, twigs, and leaves. Talk about the difference between the dry, dead leaves and the soft, supple spring leaves.
Building a seasonal curriculum can help you take advantage of life’s naturally teachable moments. Even better, a lesson plan rooted in the real world around them can help children feel grounded and connected! As a stay-at-home mom, I’ve found it difficult to continuously create educational experiences for my kids. I’m not a teacher, but I can do my best to learn from their example!
Join me as I build my own “93 Days Of Spring” Lesson Plan!