2 1/2 year old almost done with Pre-K program.
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  1. #1
    TDos is offline Junior Member
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    Question 2 1/2 year old almost done with Pre-K program.

    My son has almost finished completing the Preschool 1 & 2 program, and he's turning 3 in May. There are still a few areas I need to work on with him to ensure he's proficient in a handful of topics. When we finish the Time4Learning Preschool program, is it too early for him to begin the Kindergarden program? Areas I need to continue to focus on right now are:
    1) Mixing Colors: He understands mixing colors, but doesn't necessarly remember what color mixed with what color makes another.
    2) Ordering: He doesn't remember the exact order of all the letters in his name yet, and he gets mixed up on some ordering stuff while other times he seems to understand perfectly. If I'm sitting with him giving instruction (for example, pick which item is smallest and it goes here or now select which item is smallest out of the items left and it goes here), then he gets the answers correct most of the time. I don't tell him the answer, but I repeat the instruction after each selection. If I don't, I believe he just starts dragging the items to each spot until it fits correctly in one and doesn't automatically return to the list of options to choose from.
    3) Shapes: He seems to remember some, but not all. For example, he always remembers circle & triangle, but gets confused with square and rectangle if he has to choose between the two.
    4) Rhyming: I don't think he gets this much at all yet.
    5) He can recognize uppercase letters, but not all of the lowercase letters. He also still refers to 'A' as apple, D for Daddy or N for NaNa even though I feel he knows it's an A, D, or N. I don't think he knows the sound each letter makes yet, but I know he does a few of them. I'm not sure if he coorelates Q and q are the same letter, but then other times (B and b) doesn't seem to stump him at all. Basically, we are still working on letters. I feel good about uppercase recognition, but still need work on lowercase.
    6) I'm not sure he would be able to concentrate on the stories being read enough to be able to answer questions about them without me making sure he is focused as each page is read. I usually sit behind him when he is working on a new activity. When a story is being read, I sometimes re-read or repeat key points to him on each page to make sure he didn't miss anything. This usally depends on how well he is focused or if there is a recall activity on the story.
    7) Listening Skills: There are many times I feel he just wants to click click click the mouse instead of listening to instructions, stories are hearing the question being asked. As a result, he'll click the incorrect answer sometimes - even when I know he knew the correct answer. Maybe this is part of being 2 as well as loving to get on the computer to see what will happen when he clicks on something. If he returns to an activity we've done in the past or goes to the playground, I generally don't sit with him and he seems to follow instruction well. With that said, he's returning to activities he's already figured out how to play like match cards or clicking on the letters in the ABC lesson, etc... He plays the Playground Clifford game alot and he has to listen to instruction to identify which item or direction to go to next and seems to do very well.
    8) Patterns: He hates doing the pattern activities. I feel he has a handle on the simple ones, assuming he'll pay attention and not get in a hurry to just click. The more complicated patterns, I don't think he would answer correctly since he doesn't focus long enough on the pattern to figure out the correct answer without making him do it with me. I always make him give me the answer, but sometimes it's painful for both of us getting to that point. I've even tried doing patterns without the computer, but after a couple of patterns he's just as bored with that too. I can't figure out if it's just too hard for him or he doesn't have the attention span for it. Many of the other time4learning activities don't require you to look at something very long to figure out the answer.
    9) Matching: He can match items very well. He especially loves the Memory card game (match firetruck to firetruck or red square to red square). But when it comes to drawing a line from 1 item to another with 3 choices he seems to mess up (firetruck to fireman or fireman hat OR policeman to police car OR red & blue mixed together matches to purple). I can ask him which item goes with the other and he knows the correct answer most of the time, but he doesn't necessary get it correct on the computer. Part of me thinks this is a result of his desire to want to click the mouse all the time vs. making sure the line goes from one picture to the one that matches it. As long as he sees the line he's happy, even though it's not to the items he just told me out loud match.
    10) Syllables: I don't think he gets this at all, but he enjoys playing the drum.
    11) Painting: When we started the time4learning program, he loved the painting activities, but now he seems to be getting bored with them. After painting a couple of pictures he's done with the activity unless I sit down and paint a picture too. I think he still enjoys the activity, he just spends too much time on the 1st or 2nd picture that he's bored before he gets to picture #4 (he paints one picture several times prior to moving on to the next picture).
    12) He can count to 14 with no issues, but doesn't recognize all his 0 - 10 #'s yet (he recognizes 1 - 4 plus some others, but then can get confused if you show him an 8 and a 3 or a 6 and a 9). He can count items up to 4 without any trouble, but then he tends to mess up after that (either counting an item twice or skipping around so that he misses some).

    Overall, my son enjoys time4learning and he can't wait to do his daily "blue learning computer game" lesson. From the minute we wake up, he's ready to login to Time4Learning. He loves the playground, but I always make him do a lesson first. Most days I only let him play Time4Learning about an hour a day (this includes playground time).

    I would really like to move him on the Kindergarden activities, but don't want to jump ahead if he's not ready. I even thought starting Kindergarden a couple weeks after we complete the preschool program to ensure we have an opportunity to focus on some of his challenges. The problem I will have is he's on a routine of doing a new activity each day and he knows that's expected prior to playground time. He thinks it's fun and I hate to take the game away from him, but I can always have him go do prior activies so that's not really that big of a deal. I even thought about proceeding forward to Kindergarden as soon as preschool is completed, but just spending additional time on each subject once we completed the Preschool activities.

    Thoughts or Suggestions?

    If my son was 4 years old, I probably wouldn't even be asking the question and I would just proceed forward to Kindergarden. But since he's not even 3 years old, I want to make sure the lessons are not too difficult for him to the point he'll get extremely frustrated and not want to play on the computer anymore. I did take a peek at the Kindergarden lessons and at a glance the lessons didn't seem unreasonable based on what he already knows. Overall, the Kindergarden lessons seemed to foucs more time on specific areas (i.e. 1 -4, 5- 8, etc..), which is more like what I'm starting to teach now. Preschool was more general and I'm trying to teach him to recognize specific shapes, numbers, letters, etc... that he doesn't already know.

  2. #2
    hearthstone_academy's Avatar
    hearthstone_academy is offline Administrator
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    Hi. It sounds as though your son hasn't quite mastered all of the preschool activities, so I would be hesitant to move him on to the kindergarten program yet.

    Children this age need a LOT of repetition. The preschool program is designed so the activities can be done over and over. It wouldn't hurt for him to go back to the beginning and do it all again! If he has completed the entire program, some time has passed since he has seen the initial activities, so they should feel "fresh" enough to him.

    Try extending the online activities into everyday life. For example, at the dinner table make a pattern of fork, spoon, knife, fork, spoon, knife . . . Or, use toys or anything else he is interested in.

    Make sure he has mastered all of the preschool skills, as he will need to know his letters, have an idea of rhyming, be comfortable with patterns, know numbers and understand quantity, etc. to be successful in the kindergarten program. Don't feel you are "flunking" him or that there's something "wrong" with repeating the preschool program . . . several times, if necessary. That is how two-year-olds learn best!

    Sounds like you are doing a great job with your son.

    Mom of six . . . current students and homeschool graduates. Enjoying using Time4Learning since 2006!

  3. #3
    Momma Crystal is offline Senior Member
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    After reading your list of things he can and cannot do I agree with Kelly that he hasn't mastered preschool yet. It would do him well to repeat, maybe even twice! I have some gripes about some of the activities in the preschool program. They don't have to master it all to move on. For example my son does fantastic with patterns when away from the computer but the pattern activities in that preschool program are terrible and he can't do it on the computer. But all in all your son will get much more out of the program the 2nd and perhaps 3rd time he goes through it. I repeat a lot of things with my kids and it amazes me what they get the 2nd go round that they missed the first time.

  4. #4
    mcmary is offline Member
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    I personally think that children under the age of three shouldn't be exposed to television and videos (for optimal brain development- there is a lot of research on this subject) so would personally be hesitant to use excessive computer-based learning. I think that even educational screen time should be limited for all kids, especially little ones. For young children I think that nothing is better than reading, reading, reading to them. If you are reading with him and he's interacting physically with books then you probably are giving him a solid enough basis for eventually reading. Ask him open ended questions so that he is encouraged to make comparisons etc. You mentioned that he doesn't rhyme yet. Rhyming is a pre-reading skill. You can encourage it by reading Dr. Seuss out loud to him. In terms of math, sorting, categorizing, and sequencing are important to encourage at a young age (blocks are wondering for this). When you are out and about you can ask him what he notices about this and that- he will be naturally making the connections and learning the skills (in a multi-sensory fashion) necessary for future school. It sounds like you are doing a great job at making sure your child is getting a good basis. It sounds like, by age four, he'll be ready to venture into kindergarten learning.

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