Early Learning & Preschool
Children learn from birth, so the concept of homeschooling a preschooler is easy to contemplate. Get information on how to make early learning fun and enjoyable for you and your child.
Homeschool Preschool Curriculum
Time4Learning
The Time4Learning preschool program combines technology, animated characters, original stories and fun music to inspire a love of learning in the littlest e-learners. Ed Mouse and his friends guide children through more than forty topics such as numbers, letters, rhymes, self, time, music and colors.
Sonlight Homeschool Preschool Curriculum
Finding the right homeschool preschool curriculum is important. For many children, this will be their first introduction to organized learning. Giving your child the right introduction to the world of knowledge can help them become life-long learners. To learn how to choose the right homeschool preschool curriculum for your child, consult the resources offered at Sonlight.
Numbers Plus - Preschool Mathematics Curriculum
The Numbers Plus Preschool Mathematics Curriculum is a comprehensive set of detailed plans for small- and large-group early childhood mathematics activities, with ideas for extending learning throughout the program day. What’s special about Numbers Plus is that children’s mathematical learning is sequenced within activities — each activity has a built-in progression so children of different developmental and ability levels can participate together and have a positive and meaningful learning experience. By actively engaging young children with materials and ideas, Numbers Plus builds on the latest knowledge from research and practice about early mathematics learning and how adults support it.
ABC Mouse Homeschool Early Learning Academy
The ABCmouse.com Homeschool Early Learning Academy offers these features:
  • More than 5,000 learning activities in Reading, Math, Beginning Science, Social Studies, Art, and Music
  • A full online preschool, pre-k, and kindergarten curriculum
  • A Step-by-Step Learning Path that guides your child through the curriculum at his or her own pace
  • Our powerful Lesson Builder tool that allows you to create your own lessons for your child

ABCmouse.com’s curriculum focuses on the important educational basics, helping children establish a foundation of knowledge that they can build upon with confidence and success. Because ABCmouse.com Early Learning Academy offers a curriculum carefully designed in collaboration with nationally recognized childhood education experts, you can be sure that, while homeschooling, your child will be learning all of the important basics.

ABCMouse.com offers a First Month Free Subscription Offer.
Five in a Row
Five in a Row provides a step-by-step, instructional guide using outstanding children's literature for children ages 4-8. Unit studies are built around each chosen book. There is a series for preschoolers called "Before Five in a Row," along with other volumes for older children.
Things to See & Do in New York with Preschoolers
Utica Zoo
Located in Roscoe-Conkling Park, the Utica Zoo is part of a recreational complex featuring over 200 animals. Of the 80 acres of land set aside for the zoo's use, 35 are presently developed. Also offers educational programs.
Rosamond Gifford Zoo at Burnet Park
The Rosamond Gifford Zoo is located in Syracuse. Central New York's embraceable Zoo boasts youngsters that are endearing to kids of all ages; elephants youngsters who love to play in their pool, two year old lion cubs who hone their instinctive hunting skills through their play and the young siamang whose athletic antics are favorites in the social animal world. The Zoo is open year round and offers educational programs as well.
The Children's Museum at Saratoga
The Children’s Museum at Saratoga is dedicated to creating an interactive community that inspires curiosity, sparks imagination and nurtures discovery. The Museum is also committed to fostering active parent involvement in children’s learning, to serving as a resource for school districts in the area, and to ensuring that its programs and services are accessible to all children.
Buffalo Zoological Gardens
The Buffalo Zoological Gardens is the nation’s third oldest zoo. Located in 23.5 acres of beautiful Delaware Park, the Buffalo Zoo exhibits a diverse collection of wild and exotic animals, and more than 320 different species of plants. Animals on exhibit include the lowland gorilla troop, rhinoceros, hyenas, polar bears, and many more.
Children's Museum of the Arts
The mission of the Children’s Museum of the Arts is to introduce children and their families to the transformative power of the arts by providing opportunities to make art side-by-side with working artists.
New York Aquarium
Located in Brooklyn, the New York Aquarium offers exhibits featuring over 8,000 animals. Learn about animals living as far away as the Southwest coast of Africa and the Arctic to those found locally in our own Hudson River. Hightlights include the Alien Stingers exhibit, Sea Cliffs exhibit, and Aquatheater presentations, featuring California sea lions.
Maritime Explorium at Port Jeff Harbor
The Maritime Explorium encourages visitors to explore and play together in our hands-on interactive maker space rich with nautically themed science based exhibits and activities. While our focus is children ages 2-12 and their caregivers, we welcome visitors of all ages. Families exploring the fun and interactive hands-on exhibits at the Maritime Explorium at Port Jeff Harbor will enjoy the excitement of scientific discovery, develop a broadened cultural awareness and experience a sense of artistry while learning about Long Island’s rich and varied maritime heritage.
Prospect Park Zoo
At the Prospect Park Zoo in Brooklyn, naturalistic habitat exhibits feature many different animal species. Three major exhibit areas were designed to engage children: The World of Animals, Animal Lifestyles, and Animals in Our Lives. In the World of Animals, youngsters can meet prairie dogs nose-to-nose, and walk among wallabies. The Animal Lifestyles building's centerpiece is a spectacular habitat for hamadryas baboons. Animals in Our Lives exhibits encourage children to observe and draw wildlife; outside, visitors can interact with friendly, touchable species in an inviting barnyard.
Bronx Zoo
The Bronx Zoo is the flagship of the largest network of metropolitan zoos in the country, with exhibits featuring over 4,000 animals. View Western lowland gorillas in the Congo Gorilla Forest , snow leopards in the Himalayan Highlands Habitat, and almost an acre of an indoor Asian rain forest. Offers educational programs and special exhibits.
Children's Museum of Science and Technology
SUNY Poly CMOST strives to engage the community to help co-create the museum experience, while also providing unique STE(a)M learning experiences. The operation of the museum as part of the Colleges of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (SUNY Poly) supports CMOST's mission to "instill a sense of wonder and discovery in young minds, inspiring a lifelong exploration of science and technology," and is complementary to SUNY Poly's mission to provide pioneering nanotechnology education and prepare New York's future workforce with a comprehensive education of the highest quality.
Trevor Zoo
The Trevor Zoo is located on Millbrook School Road, six miles east of the village of Millbrook and four miles west of the village of Amenia. It accommodates more than 120 exotic and indigenous animals on six acres.
Cradle of Aviation Museum and Education Center
The Cradle of Aviation Museum and Education Center is Long Island's air and space museum. It offers galleries, a planetarium, IMAX movies, and more.
The Strong National Museum of Play
The Strong is a highly interactive, collections-based museum devoted to the history and exploration of play. It is one of the largest history museums in the United States and one of the leading museums serving families. The Strong houses the world’s largest and most comprehensive collection of historical materials related to play and is home to the International Center for the History of Electronic Games, the National Toy Hall of Fame, the World Video Game Hall of Fame, the Brian Sutton-Smith Library and Archives of Play, the Woodbury School, and the American Journal of Play. Together, these enable a multifaceted array of research, exhibition, and other interpretive and educational activities that serve a diverse audience of adults, families, children, students, teachers, scholars, collectors, and others around the globe.
Staten Island Zoo
The Staten Island Zoo exhibits animals in a variety of settings, including the African Savannah at Twilight exhibit, a Tropical Forest, the Aquarium, the Serpentarium, the Children's Center, and various outdoor exhibits. Also offers special exhibits and an educational program.
Children's Museum of Manhattan
CMOM inspires children and families to learn about themselves and our culturally diverse world through a unique environment of interactive exhibitions and programs. Since opening in a neighborhood storefront in 1973, they’ve grown into a unique 38,000 square-foot learning facility with outreach programs at nearly 50 sites throughout New York City.
Long Island Children's Museum
Long Island Children's Museum invites visitors of all ages, backgrounds and abilities to explore freely, discover their passions, and appreciate the communities and world we share. The museum features 14 themed galleries and a 145-seat theater. Children will love exploring the two-story ClimbIt© structure with ramps going up and down in a spiral pattern. They can create giant bubbles in the Bubble Gallery, make "rain" in the outdoor Our Backyard gallery, play musical instruments, learn about Long Island and much more.
Central Park Zoo
From a steamy rain forest to an icy Antarctic penguin habitat, the zoo leads visitors through tropic, temperate and polar regions to encounter fascinating animals - from tiny leafcutter ants to tremendous polar bears. The Tisch Children's Zoo lets little animal lovers meet gentle creatures up close. Year-round education classes and innovative public programs - including the zoo's "Wildlife Theater" -- encourage all ages to learn more about our natural world, and become involved in its protection.
World Awareness Children's Museum
The World Awareness Children’s Museum has been a NYS Designated Charter Museum since 1995 with a mission to inspire curiosity and foster understanding and appreciation of worldwide cultural diversity. Its collection is comprised of pieces from 140 countries including 8,000+ artifacts (fashion, musical instruments, dolls, toys and other objects) as well as 7,000+ pieces of international children’s art. Art and artifacts are featured in the Museum’s hands-on learning space go! where children discover the world. These items are also used in educational programs and loaned to other Museums, businesses and institutions for display.
Ross Park Zoo
Ross Park Zoo sits tucked into the northern face of Binghamton's South Mountain. Highlights include Cat Country Complex, the Spectacled Bear exhibit, and Our Changing World and Penguin Exhibit.
National Toy Hall of Fame
The National Toy Hall of Fame® at The Strong, established in 1998, recognizes toys that have inspired creative play and enjoyed popularity over a sustained period. Each year, the prestigious hall inducts new honorees and showcases both new and historic versions of classic toys beloved by generations. The classic toys of the National Toy Hall of Fame sit alongside, and complement, The Strong museum collection, the world's largest and most comprehensive assemblage of toys, dolls, board games, video games, other electronic games, books, photographs, documents, and other historical materials related to play. To date, 59 toys have been inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame. The most recent honorees are puppet, Twister, and Super Soaker.
Mid-Hudson Children's Museum
MHCM is the ONLY children’s museum in the Hudson River Valley between the larger New York City and Albany markets. In February 2016 MHCM opened The Science Center @ MHCM to advance early STEM education. The museum is located in the heart of the historic waterfront in Poughkeepsie, just steps away from the Poughkeepsie Metro-North train station, the Walkway Over the Hudson’s Elevator, fabulous restaurants, and a new city park. MHCM has three areas of programmatic focus that direct its work in exhibits and educational programs: school readiness, health and wellness, and community-building. The museum is dedicated to engaging and serving a diverse audience of families from all socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds and of all abilities and needs through special admission and membership programs.
Utica Children's Museum
The Utica Children's Museum offers an environment that supports every child's natural curiosity to learn through hands-on, play-based exploration.
Brooklyn Children's Museum
The mission of Brooklyn Children’s Museum is to engage children in educational and entertaining experiences through innovation and excellence in exhibitions, programs, and use of its collection. The Museum encourages children from infancy through high school to develop an understanding of and respect for themselves, others and the world around them.
New York State Living Museum
Located in Watertown, the New York State Living Museum is committed to zoological excellence and passion for New York's wild things and wild places while instilling new depths of curiosity and knowledge for visitors and the community.
Staten Island Children's Museum
The mission of the Staten Island Children’s Museum is to nurture the creativity and curiosity natural to all children, to recognize and celebrate different learning styles, and to demonstrate vividly that learning can be exciting and fun. The Museum is committed to achieving these goals through programming that emphasizes direct and authentic hands-on experiences conducted in a welcoming and pleasing environment. The Museum encourages participation by visitors of all abilities and endeavors to reach beyond its walls to serve as an educational resource for the members of our diverse community, especially families and schools. Founded in 1974 and located in a historical setting on the grounds of Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Gardens, the Staten Island Children’s Museum offers 40,000 square feet of interactive exhibits as well as a 4-acre East Meadow, and a picnic and performance pavilion.
Queens Zoo
The Queens Zoo features exhibits of wild habitats, from the Great Plains to the rocky California coast to a Northeast forest. At home in these naturalistic settings are American species of American bison, mountain lions, California sea lions, American bald eagles, Roosevelt elk, and more. South America is represented as well and the Queens Zoo is also the only New York home to spectacled bears, endangered natives of the Andes Mountains. The aviary is a geodesic dome, designed by Buckminster Fuller and used in the 1964 World's Fair in Queens. And the zoo's animal residents include "Otis," the famous coyote rescued in Manhattan's Central Park in 1999.
Explore & More Children's Museum
Over two decades ago, Explore & More opened in a 500-square foot room in a school basement. The idea of having high-quality play-based learning for children from all over Western New York had been cultivated in the minds of a small group of dedicated parents, educators and toy designers. The museum with its all-volunteer staff saw 1,000 visitors that first year. Flash forward 21 years later, to Explore & More today, currently housed in a space 14 times that size, serving over 60,000 children and their family members each year. Several national and international studies since have continued to confirm the idea on which the Museum began—that play is essential to healthy brain development in children. With nationally recognized and award-winning programs and exhibits, the most generous free admission policy in the area, and a mission to provide critically important informal learning experiences for all, Explore & More has become an important asset to the well-being of children and families in Western New York.
MOST Milton J. Rubenstein Museum of Science & Technology
The Milton J. Rubenstein Museum of Science & Technology is a hands-on science and technology museum for people of all ages and includes the Silverman Planetarium and the only domed IMAX® theater in New York State. Discover, learn & play!
Seneca Park Zoo
Located in Rochester, the Seneca Park Zoo offers animal exhibits, educational programs, and special exhibits. Highlights include the Genesse Trail and Discovery Center and the Rocky Coasts exhibit.
Links and Items
Happy Phonics
Happy Phonics uses games to teach early reading skills. Simple yet entertaining and educational, these phonics games are printed on colorful, sturdy cardstock ready to cut out. Included is a mother-friendly guidebook which contains details on how to teach phonics and reading, how to pronounce and teach the phonics sounds, how to make your own simple beginning readers, and step-by-step teaching information for each phonics sound. Happy Phonics covers beginning to advanced phonics.
Bob Books
Bob Books are organized into sets that progress in level as your child learns. They have cute stories and darling illustrations. These books are perfect for children ages 4 to 8.
Pattern Blocks and Boards
This set of 10 simply designed colorful wooden blocks and pattern boards includes 100 blocks in six different shapes and colors. They help develop shape recognition and spatial relationship skills. The contents store neatly in a durable wooden case. This games was awarded the Scholastic Parent & Child's 2004 "Top 22 Toys that Make Kids Think" award.
Explode The Code
Explode The Code provides a sequential, systematic approach to phonics in which students blend sounds to build vocabulary and read words, phrases, sentences, and stories. Frequent review of previously learned concepts helps increase retention. Each workbook in this series contains exercises that incorporate reading, writing, matching and copying. The consistent format of the books helps facilitate independent work. This series includes primers—Get Ready for The Code, Get Set for The Code, and Go for The Code—which introduce initial consonant sounds. In addition, Beyond The Code provides a comprehension component introducing basic comprehension skills with phonetically controlled stories. You'll find product information here.
Bead Sequencing Set
Stack the durable, brightly colored wooden beads on 5 hardwood dowels in sequence to match the design on one of the pattern cards. Builds complex reasoning skills as well as sorting and coordination. Includes over 45 brilliantly colored beads, 5 dowels, and 10 patterns that increase in difficulty.
Preschool/Early Learning Games and Activities
8 Hands-On Number Activities for Kids
Teaching math beyond basic counting at home can seem daunting. But these simple activities show that it can be easy and fun. These hands-on ways to introduce counting and other basic math skills are great.
JumpStart Math Activities
When it comes to math, a good foundation is essential. With these fun math activities for kids, numbers become friends and the basic foundation for the subject is established at an early age. Different math activities for kids of different age groups can be effective in teaching them basic but essential math concepts. Here are some interesting grade-based math activities that parents and teachers can use to make math a whole lot of fun!
Place Value with Beads
Learn the concept of 10s with these simple bead and pipe cleaner manipulatives.
Preschool Math Idea
The best way for preschoolers to learn math is through lots of fun and creative games that let them explore and discover new concepts about the world of numbers.
Activity Ideas for Preschoolers
If you have ever tried to teach your older kids and deal with a toddler too, you know that life can get pretty complicated and noisy. While one child is asking for your help with algebra, another needs guidance with diagramming sentences, and the three year old is wanting to "do school too. Don't panic! Other homeschoolers have been through this too. This list of activities can help you calm the storm.
Free Printable Ten Frame Cards
Learn 10s with these free printable cards that offer a fun way to practice. Read about different ways to use the cards for enjoyable math games to teach this concept.
Lego Challenge Math Activity-Free Printable
Practicing math skills like spatial awareness and geometry can be fun, especially when the math activity involves Legos! Here’s a free printable math challenge for kids using Lego or Duplo bricks!
Preschool Worksheets and Printables
Free Printable Ten Frame Cards
Learn 10s with these free printable cards that offer a fun way to practice. Read about different ways to use the cards for enjoyable math games to teach this concept.
Making Learning Fun Math Ideas
Fun and free printables that are great for preschoolers. These activities make learning fun!
Lego Challenge Math Activity-Free Printable
Practicing math skills like spatial awareness and geometry can be fun, especially when the math activity involves Legos! Here’s a free printable math challenge for kids using Lego or Duplo bricks!
Support for Parents of Preschoolers
Homeschoolers Teaching Kindergarten
This discussion list is for homeschoolers teaching preschool and kindergarten. Topics include curriculum selection (whether necessary or not), teaching tips, creative learning ideas, time management, unit studies, homeschooling books, neat craft ideas, cooking tips for all occasions, support those who have homeschool burn out, or those who are just starting to homeschool.
Field Trips 101
Field trips can inspire your child to study a topic, give him further insights into his current studies, or provide closure to a completed unit. Is there somewhere you’d like to take your children to reinforce a topic this year? Or just want to visit because it would enrich their lives? If you let your support group (or even just a few other families) know that you are planning to go and they are welcome to tag along (think: group rate)—voila! You’re planning a field trip!
CM4primaryyears
To discuss the Charlotte Mason method of homeschooling elementary age children, and to share the joys and concerns of everyday life.
Homeschooling Preschool Teaching Tips & Ideas
Readiness
This article takes a look at one mother's coming to terms with her daughter's readiness, or lack thereof, to learn to read.
Preschool Math--Counting by Tens/Odds and Evens
This youtube video demonstrates some great strategies to help preschoolers learn counting by tens and odd and even numbers.
Why Preschool Shouldn't Be Like School
houldn't very young children be allowed to explore, inquire, play, and discover? Perhaps direct instruction can help children learn specific facts and skills, but what about curiosity and creativity—abilities that are even more important for learning in the long run? hile learning from a teacher may help children get to a specific answer more quickly, it also makes them less likely to discover new information about a problem and to create a new and unexpected solution.
Homeschooling Kindergarten Math
Teaching math to young learners at home can be successful if you respond to your child. Children learn best when they aren't forced to learn. Introduce them to ideas, books, educational television, and most importantly, show them how this stuff is used in everyday life. they will catch on and learn it at their own pace.
Mathematics Teaching Strategies
As a teacher, you can foster the development of early mathematical skills by providing environments rich in language, where thinking is encouraged, uniqueness is valued, and exploration is supported. Teachers support young children's diligence and mathematical development when they direct attention to the math children use in their play, challenge them to solve problems and encourage their persistence.
The Discovery Center of the Southern Tier
The mission of The Discovery Center of the Southern Tier is to develop the intellectual, physical and emotional well-being of the children of the Southern Tier through participatory exhibits and programs. These exhibits engage the senses, challenge the mind and offer a diverse framework for discovery in the arts, sciences and humanities.
Developmental Milestones for Preschool Mathematics
Children’s ability to understand mathematics takes a big leap forward in the preschool years. Their strengthening ability to represent using manipulatives, symbols, and signs opens up many new possibilities. Children also make strides in algebra and patterning. They can sequence events in time by age three. By age four, they can re-create patterns or make their own repeating pattern. During the preschool years, the child’s ability to problem solve takes on a new zeal. Children’s ability to classify objects is more developed; they can sort and organize objects into different categories and tell which pile has more. This chart details the skills that children can exhibit at different ages.
Field Trips 101
Field trips can inspire your child to study a topic, give him further insights into his current studies, or provide closure to a completed unit. Is there somewhere you’d like to take your children to reinforce a topic this year? Or just want to visit because it would enrich their lives? If you let your support group (or even just a few other families) know that you are planning to go and they are welcome to tag along (think: group rate)—voila! You’re planning a field trip!
Featured Resources

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Learn and Do Unit Studies
Hands on unit studies on a variety of subjects, including science, life skills, arts and crafts, and animals and insects. Also offers free mini units available for download.
Dr. Montessori's Own Handbook
A short, illustrated guide to the use of Montessori classroom materials. Describes how to set up a "children's house" - an environment for learning where children can be their own masters.
America's National Parks for Dummies, Second Edition
What makes a trip to a national park so wonderful? For starters, America's national park system is more diverse than any park system in the world. You can stroll the seashore at Olympic National Park in Washington or Cape Cod National Seashore in Massachusetts, climb craggy mountains in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming, or go underground into the world's largest cave system at Mammoth Cave National Park in Kentucky. You can marvel at the largest canyon on Earth (Grand Canyon National Park), ...
Designing Your Own Classical Curriculum: A Guide to Catholic Home Education
In this book, Laura Berquist offers a curriculum based on the philosophy of the classical Trivium: grammar, logic, and rhetoric. This valuable tools helps home educators craft a liberal arts curriculum that is good for both the soul and the intellect. The material in the book covers grades K-12 and has detailed and practical advice. There is also a section for a high school curriculum and a list of resources. 
Pattern Blocks and Boards
This set of 10 simply designed colorful wooden blocks and pattern boards includes 100 blocks in six different shapes and colors. They help develop shape recognition and spatial relationship skills. The contents store neatly in a durable wooden case. This games was awarded the Scholastic Parent & Child's 2004 "Top 22 Toys that Make Kids Think" award.