Early Childhood Education
w/ Susan Evans
I have been meaning to write this post for more than a month now (since the homeschool conference I attended), and even though it is late I wanted to make sure to not let it slip by!
At the Inland Northwest Homeschool Conference I went to Susan Evans' workshop on Early Childhood Education. My oh my, was it filled good with good ideas! And is she ever filled with energy! You can tell why her children must just LOVE to learn! She is a former middle school drama teacher and she is filled with all the flair and spunk of one!
Susan is very into making learning alive! She emphasizes the use of voices when reading and puppets to drive home ideas. Some of her ideas were very simple, such as making sure to add measuring cups & spoons to water or sand play areas. She feels it is important to make learning accessible to children, such as mounting a Magna Doodle to the wall at kid height to allow for spontaneous fine motor development. She credits that very thing with her children's early abilities to write clearly.
One idea that I never would have thought of, but have been trying with Lion Cub, is simply going through a set of basic alphabet flash cards and making the letter sounds of each (not the name). She said that this simple practice of exposing the letter sounds to them at such an early age helped her children to read very early, without much effort. I am not a huge fan of flash cards, but I figure as long as it is interesting to him and not a burden I might as well give it a shot!
I really can't possibly cover all of her amazing ideas in this little post, but I sincerely encourage you to visit her website, Hand on Learning, for a whole host of ideas for not only early childhood education but well into the elementary years as well! The site itself isn't much to look at, but don't let it fool you- it is FULL of good information if you just look around!
I also want to extend a huge thanks to Susan for a great workshop and look forward to learning more from her in the future!