The authors are a mother and daughter team. Martha has a Masters in Accounting, is a CPA by trade and homeschools her son. Her mother Caroline has worked with preschool and kindergarten children for over 30 years and has a Masters in Early Childhood Education emphasizing on Special Needs.
My kids and I used the guide for about a month to see how it worked. I say “kids” because all of them got involved with the activities a couple of times over the course of the review period, despite the guide being designed for young preschoolers. That alone should give you a hint about how fun it is to do. But I’m jumping ahead now…
What is the Guide all about?
It’s a “whole child developmental approach” for teaching children, available as a download (which I got as an international reviewer), or as a physical book. The guides are designed to follow the developmental stages of children. Since my Little Swimmer is 4 yo we got the last guide in the series which is for Volume 5: Four to Five. To see the other guides in the series, click here.
How did we find it?
We used it almost every day of our school week (that would be 5 days approximately). Here’s what we thought of it:
It was fun, fun, fun! My LS had a blast with the activities. Among the highlights were:
Our trip to the Fishing Village (Fun Ranch at Tiendesitas Valle Verde).
It was a man-made body of water, nothing more than a little pool really, but it helped start off a discussion on natural bodies of water and creatures that live in it. Unfortunately the water bodies near our home aren’t accessible so we had to make do with this.
Parking Lot Concrete Chalk Art.
We couldn’t draw on the sidewalk or street so we made do with our parking slot. And of course, older brother wanted his own parking lot graffiti…
A trip to the Butterfly Garden…and….
It was detailed… I put a premium on having lesson plans that walk me through most of the work I need to do without too many explanations. With 3 kids to care for and teach, planning and prep time is precious. I found the guide’s instructions easy to follow and do.
…Yet flexible….The guide lists the lessons and activities by month, theme and days. You can swap themes or use them over and over again. You can start in the middle and work from there. This was a big plus for me because it allowed us to choose which theme and month to start with and not worry if we were missing anything because we started in the middle.
It lays a strong foundation for the love of reading If I was to say only one thing about the Curriculum Guide, this would be it. The guide emphasizes reading to your child which is always a source of pleasure for us. We used traditional paper books and experimented with eBooks.
However, it involved a lot of painting! Don’t get me wrong, we love to paint but with the other 2 kids to teach and the housework to get on with, setting up the arts supplies and cleaning up afterwards almost every day for one of the themes we studied was too tiresome. In our homeschool, painting becomes everyone’s activity so that meant the 2 siblings wanted in on the fun (and tripled the clean-up work for this Momma).
It’s hard to believe that even babies and preschoolers can have their own “study” guides. But I was excited to use this because my LS would often get “neglected” when the older 2 had their lessons. Having that dedicated time together made him feel extra-special. Having a curriculum all his own made him feel as if he was a “big kid” like his siblings.
The Volume 5: Four to Five guide retails for US$ 38.00 (or approximately 1550.00 Philippine Pesos). I think that’s a fair price for 12 months’ worth of daily educational plans and 24 theme studies. If you order it now from www.FloweringBaby.com you can get a 10% discount by using the code “Blog10”.
I received a free copy of this product through the Schoolhouse Review Crew in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with the United States Federal Trade Commission (US FTC) Regulations.