Homeschooling an early pre-schooler (3 - 4 year old)

Since the pandemic struck, schooling across the globe has come to a grinding halt. Different schools have opted for different approaches such as Zoom sessions, educational websites, mobile apps etc.

These are great options for older kids but as a mum of 3.5 years old I strongly feel that homeschooling is the way forward specifically for toddlers and here is why...

The first and foremost benefit I believe would be that you can initiate a child-led learning process.Child-led learning is all about following your child’s interests and signs of readiness for both academic skills and their own curiosities, I have personally experienced that the learning that is gained through this process is long term and very effective.

Besides this there are many more benefits of this one to one homeschooling system like time flexibility, bonding with your child while passing on your values and beliefs, you can focus on what needs attention, you get more chances of putting the learning to practical experience, here there is a scope of teaching your child with your innovative ideas and tricks, and not to forget the more you get to spend time with your child the more you can identify his/her hidden talent that you can nurture. 

Now that we know why homeschool, let's find out what all you should include while in your homeschool routine (3 to 4 year old) and how . 

Homeschooling for toddlers should focus on holistic development and not just academic goals which includes:

1) Literacy Skills: Literacy skills are all the skills needed for reading and writing. It includes vocabulary, spelling, and comprehension. The basic literacy skills for a 3-4 year would be the ability to read, match and recognise both the uppercase and lowercase alphabets and recognise their sounds. If your child has mastered this you could proceed with 2 and 3 letter word formations. 

Suggested Activities - alphabet books, puzzles, make letters with play dough and popsicles, matching uppercase & lowercase alphabets, basic worksheets.

Literacy Skills Activities
Image Source: @eshuandmom


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2) Numeracy Skills: Numeracy is the ability to reason and to apply simple numerical concepts. One could look at teaching recognition of numbers and the concept of counting leading to simple addition.

Suggested Activities - Simple counting, adding beads, High & Low, Fast & Slow, Close & Far, Playing counting games, Proportions (Half & Full)

Example activity for Numeracy Skills

Image Source: @eshuandmom

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3) Awareness of Self and Environment: According to the school curriculum for this age group, it's important for kids to have a basic understanding of the environment, which includes self awareness, human body, food, living & non-living things, air, water & land, animal habitats, hygiene, safety etc

Suggested Activities: Books, family tree, community workers, fruits & vegetables, flora and fauna etc.

Example of Self-awareness and hygeine activity

Image source: @eshuandmom

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4) Cognitive Skills: Cognitive skill refers to the thinking abilities, it involves the progressive building of learning skills, such as attention, memory and thinking. This will eventually help the child to process sensory information, learn to evaluate, analyze, categories, reason, compare, remember, recall information, understand cause and effect and problem solving.

Suggested Activities:  Puzzles, maze, building blocks, riddles, I spy, hide & seek, memory games, sorting and stacking, obstacle course, treasure hunt.

Example activity for Cognitive Skills

Image Source: @eshuandmom

Check JoGenii's collection or products focusing on Cognitive Skills.


5) Fine Motor Skills: Fine motor skills are the ability to make movements using the small muscles in our fingers, hands and wrists. They involve the coordinated effects of the brain and muscles, they are built on motor skills.

Suggested Activities: Looping, lacing, scissors skills, manipulating play dough, activities with straw, weaving, salt sensory tray, Q tip writing, puzzles, coloring and drawing, activities with kitchen tongs or tweezers.

Example activity for Fine Motor Skills

Image Source: @eshuandmom

Check JoGenii's collection of products focusing on Motor Skills.

6) Pattern Recognition Skills: In this case would refer to the ability to process and recollect images, signs, patterns and information. This can be developed by simple game of shadow matching, colour, shape or print matching, memory games, popsicle alphabet building.

Example of Pattern Recognition activity

Image Source: @eshuandmom

Check JoGenii's collection of Puzzles to enhance Pattern Recognition Skills.


9) Sensory Skills: Sensory skills are the skills that stimulate the senses such as touch, smell, taste, movement, balance, sight and hearing. There are number of activities that can enhance sensory experience in kids such as Water play, sand pits, play dough, slimes, sound box, egg shakers, water beads and many more.

Example of Sensory activity
Image Source: @eshuandmom


There are tons of other activities that you can do, but what I want to emphasise on that keep it simple and keep it playful. And also, don't stress yourself or your child. Stress can affect your child's learning abilities, so go with your child's pace and see them flourish. 

Happy Home Schooling!!


About the Author

Rumana is a fashion Design graduate with a post graduation in Fashion Retail Management, worked for years as a Visual Merchandiser, Store Design and Stylist for leading MNC's in India in the past.
Currently enjoying motherhood and her passion for early education while she raises her 3 year old little human, commited to apply her creative instincts and design background to provide a holistic environment for her child. She believes in gentle parenting and the montessori inspired play based learning approach.
Her Instagram blog is her happy place where she shares their learning journey that is designed to develop all the necessary skills in a child through DIY hands on activities, different learning tools & toys and a child led play based learning environment.
BlogEarly childhood educationHome learningHomeschoolingPre-schoolerSkills

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