Let’s Go Swimming!

 {This is a sponsored post for Tom Dolan Swim School.}

Kids in the pool! We want them to be safe and we want them to develop confidence as swimmers. As spring arrives, we start thinking about getting kids prepared for the upcoming summer swim season.  I love to share good resources when I find them and here’s one for learning how to swim or strengthening existing swimming skills.

Tom Dolan Swim School

Image courtesy of Tom Dolan Swim School.

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Beach Time

The Creekside Learning family is on vacation this week. The beach was calling. We answered. 

“Hello, Ocean. I’m here.”

creekside learning

We will be back soon. I have lots of exciting new posts brewing. In the meantime, the Hands-On Science and Preschool: Learning Is Fun! boards are hopping over on Pinterest. Check them out, repin and follow to get more great learning ideas in your Pinterest feed.

Follow along on our travels on Instagram. Creekside Learning

20 Great Science Activities for Preschoolers

There are so many fun ways to incorporate science activities for preschoolers into your home or school day. What better way is there to have hands-on, sometimes messy, always fascinating learning, right in your own kitchen or classroom?  Here are 20 terrific  preschool science experiments.

science activities for preschoolers

  1. Make a comet using a tennis ball and glow sticks.
  2. Learn about the phases of the moon with Oreo cookies. 
  3. Make constellations with rocks and sidewalk chalk.
  4. Learn all about the stars and make a Star Jar. 
  5. The Galaxy Experiment. Learn about the spiral motion of The Milky Way.
  6. Experiment with freezing and melting in the kitchen.
  7. Change solids to liquids using candles, ice and chocolate.
  8. What makes ice melt? And what doesn’t.  [Read more...]

Bird Study : Learning About Birds of North America

Learning to identify backyard birds in a Bird Study can be a wonderful springboard of learning.  Here are some wonderful bird activities to go along with learning about birds of North America from bird feeding to habitats and much more. These activities are geared for preschoolers to elementary schoolers.

Bird Study Learning About Birds in North America

 What do birds eat?

Free Homeschool Preschool Curriculum : 20 Favorites

While many families choose to forgo formal instruction in favor of life experiences in the preschool years , others feel comfortable with some structure or a curriculum to guide them. There’s something for everyone in this list of  Free Homeschool Preschool Curriculum.

Homeschool Preschool Curriculum Free

From on-line research, my own experiences, and via asking my readers on Facebook (are you following us on Facebook?), here are…

 20 Favorite Free Preschool Curriculum Ideas

  1. Lots of terrific free printable themed activities from Homeschool Creations, Confessions of a Homeschooler, 1+1+1, Royal Baloo 3 Dinosaurs and Teachers Pay Teachers.
  2. Complete lesson plans, full homeschool preschool curriculum (free), from Easy Peasy All-in-One Homeschool and Mud Hut Mama.
  3. Your public library. Make weekly trips to grab books of all kinds, use what sparks your child’s interest as a springboard to learn more about all kinds of topics.
  4. Pinterest! So many ideas. Here are some great preschool pin boards to follow:  Teach PreschoolIn Lieu of Preschool, P is for Preschooler, and our own Preschool: Learning is Fun! board. 
  5. Websites like Starfall and PBS Kids.
  6. Museums and nature centers. 
  7. Nature study at home. Count birds, plant seeds, collect rocks, go on a nature walk in your neighborhood and bring a bag to collect treasures. 
  8. Create together. No need for expensive art supplies. You can re-use items from around the house. There are whole blogs and pin boards devoted to recycled crafts.
  9. Make music. Sing, play instruments, dance. Music teaches early mathematical concepts and playing instruments and dancing helps fine and gross motor development.
  10. Do science experiments in your kitchen. Make a volcano, learn how ice freezes and melts, mix stuff together and observe what happens. 
  11. Play, play and more play. “Play is the work of the child.”  Maria Montessori said that.   Preschoolers should spend more time playing than anything else.
  12. YouTube (pre-screened, of course). This is a great go-to resource for those wonderful questions preschoolers have. “How fast can rhinos run?”  ”What is it like to walk on the moon?”
  13. Free apps. There are tons. Here are 16 to start with
  14. Free books online.  KC Edventures tells you where to find them
  15. Before Five in a Row {affiliate link}  A wonderful way to create science, art, history, language arts and geography lessons from award-winning children’s books. Available at most libraries. 
  16. Share/trade resources with friends. Tired of what you have? Need to clean off your shelves and stock them with some fresh books, games and learning toys? Arrange a trade play date with other homeschooling families. 
  17. Not cheap-but close: Scour thrift stores and consignment sales for wonderful books and educational toys.
  18. Homeschooling Forums have wonderful ideas for free homeschool preschool curriculum resources.  Here are a few:  Well Trained Mind, Secular Homeschool, and Simply Charlotte Mason.
  19. Check your local community parks and rec department for free programs.
  20. Start a book club or science club with another family or two. Themed play dates with a learning focus. Read a book, do a related activity and serve a snack that goes with the theme. Or do a science experiment together.

Have any other free homeschool preschool curriculum resources? We’d love to know! Share them in the comments.