Most people know I have a large family. It’s no secret we have nine children. What most people don’t know though is that I don’t normally do a structured preschool with my kids. I don’t plan out lessons or make plans for what they must do to learn their colors or listen to books be read. It’s just normal everyday stuff that we do, it’s not school.
When we got the chance to review a product from Alpha Omega Publications it was a really hard choice for me to make. We already use their Horizons math(which was a choice) but I was really curious about their preschool materials. We chose to receive their Horizons Preschool for Three’s Curriculum Set to review. I was eager to see how structured it would make our days! I am not using it with a three-year old though. I’m using it with a five-year old who has some learning delays. My four-year old is doing kindergarten materials this year(per her choice) and is doing really well. My two-year old is also using this preschool for three’s set a bit when she chooses. Again, I’m not a parent who is pressuring for school to be done before they hit the age of requirement which is 7 in our state.
First came the unboxing! My girls were all excited(well we are all always excited when boxes come) and once we got the box out of the box they were in love with the colorful box. Then we got out the books. I had to grab them quickly as they were being made off with. I think my kids were going to go play school with them before I even got a chance to look at them.
If you’re not familiar with Horizons, it is a subset of Alpha Omega Publications. AOP(Alpha Omega Publications) brings you such fun homeschool as LifePacs! While LifePacs are student led, Horizons is teacher led. They offer complete subject packages or complete grade packages. We fell in love with their Horizons math as it works for ALL of my children whether they are advanced, normal for age, or delayed. I’m sure you’ve all experienced the joy of a curriculum that just clicks for you too! So now you can see why I was excited to see what they thought we should be teaching our three-year olds!
Inside our box of goodies is a student workbook, a companion workbook, a teacher’s guide, and a brightly colored Bible story reader. Both the student workbook and the companion workbook are consumables. You can purchase those separately so if you’re using this with more than one child they can each have their own workbook. In my years of homeschooling I have found that my kids do things better with less complaining if they look forward to school. My children always look forward to using brightly colored workbooks and that is what AOP offers with their Horizons curriculum.
The Preschool for Three’s covers 40 weeks of lessons. You could easily move this into a two-year program or keep it a one year program depending on your child’s needs. I like that there are some hands on activities to help develop fine motor skills such as cutting, painting, and coloring. It also helps to set the foundations for them to learn reading/writing/spelling/math, etc.
A quick overview to help you see the breakdown. Lessons 1-20 deal with the Old Testament of the Bible. Through the Old Testament the children learn to count 1-10 and letters A-F. They also work on colors and shapes They learn body parts, about family, and so much more! My two little girls enjoy the running and jumping most. Yes they even put PE into their curriculum.
The second set or lessons 21-40 focus on the New Testament. Through the New Testament they learn about G-Z and more on counting, recognizing the numbers 1-10. They also work on patterns, organizing, fire safety, water safety, etc.
We have not made it to the New Testament yet, but I did peak ahead and it seems to continue along the same path as the first half does.
The Bible Story Reader puts a Bible story into easy to understand story format for your child. There are 40 Bible stories in the book, one for each week of lesson plans. They are brightly illustrated and include some thought questions and discussion for you and your child to help make sure the information is not only being heard but learned as well.
The student workbook companion contains the cut and paste type activities that go along with the student workbook. I love the one where you cut out a picture of the Earth and then your child gets to lace through the holes and make a circle around the Earth. These are the fine motor skills that so many children with delays have trouble with. For me, getting started working on those delays while they are young works so well! If you open your companion book each page tells you which lesson it goes with as well as what number worksheet it is so they easily can be found when you need them!
Here’s a short overview of how your week will go while teaching with Preschool for Three’s. This is showing a five-day work week. You could do a shorter week, but you would have to do more on the days you’re doing school. This program is set up for a five-day week with how they have it divided out having five worksheets per lesson, but you can do
- Day One: Read the Bible story and do the 1st worksheet. You also have an optional memory passage. We may not memorize them all but we do try. So on day one we read it and repeat it. I like to put these to music or at least a clapping rhythm as I find it makes memorizing easier.
- Day Two: Review the Bible story. Do the 2nd worksheet. Do some of the activities that are listed with each lesson. They have some fun stuff you can do. You pick and choose what works for you and your child and do it when you want!
- Day Three: Do the 3rd worksheet, work on the memory verse if you’re memorizing, and do more activities. There are plenty of activities so you can do as many or as little as you like.
- Day Four: You do the 4th worksheet and repeat yesterday in that you work on memory verse and do activities.
- Day Five: This is the 5th worksheet day and doing any of the other activities you want to do as it’s the last day on this lesson.
Each week has a new lesson. The lessons are divided up by Bible stories not by what letter or number they’re working on. There are some weeks that I only manage to do two days a week of school with my 5 and 2-year-old(both using this curriculum). When that is the case we just do extra worksheets. So say we do school on Monday and do worksheets one and two. Then when we do school again on Thursday we will do worksheets three, four, and five. You really can make this work for any schedule.
Now how did it work for us? My five-year old is loving it! My four-year old listens to the Bible stories with us but is past what the worksheets are teaching. My two-year old is in love but can’t focus to do more than one worksheet a day. I think this is a great little curriculum for Preschool for Three’s and if I highly recommend it like I do the other Horizons products we’ve tried!
If you’d like to learn more about Horizons and the great AOP products that members of the TOS Crew were able to review take a peek at the Review Page and read all the reviews! Also check them out on facebook, twitter, pinterest, instagram, and google +.