Pre-K/Pre-Kindergarten homeschool curriculum ideas for 3’s and 4’s: Best online resources for FREE that you can use in your homeschool today!
Pre-K Homeschool Curriculum: Free Resources for Ages 3-4
Preschool is a fun age to start homeschooling. The coloring, tracing, cutting and pasting, crafts and fun snacks, and trips to the playground or local park, the library – it all sounds grand and exciting. And, truly, it is! There’s no better time than to start now!
It’s not hard either. You may think that you don’t have what it takes to preschool, but I’m here to tell you that you do! It’s not all about learning ABC’s, numbers, and colors – it’s also about the social and emotional development of your child. There’s no better place to learn ALL these things than in the home, with you! You got this, mama!
How to Homeschool Pre-K
So, you’re thinking about homeschooling your preschooler, and don’t know where to start? I’m here to help you! This is the ultimate beginner guide to homeschooling preschool. Also read this article if you’re wondering: What are the Necessary Skills Before Kindergarten?
- First, Take an Inventory: What do you already have in your home at your disposal that you could use to teach your child the basics? You don’t have to go out and buy anything! There are lots of things at home you can use to teach your preschooler. You probably already have puzzles, pretend-play toys, crayons and coloring books, pencils and paper, glue and scissors, stickers, and books. Look around and realize all that you already have, and begin to consciously use them throughout your day to introduce your child to letters, numbers, shapes, colors, etc. Allow your child the opportunity to practice writing, coloring, cutting, and pasting. Give him/her some stickers to help with fine motor development. Let them help you while you make snacks, talking to them about the social and emotional traits you want to encourage. Go on walks and observe and explore your neighborhood. And, yes – let them play an educational app or two or watch Leapfrog videos!
- Set your Priorities: What goals do you have for your home, your child, your homeschool? Write them down. Place them in a prominent place, and with every decision you make, refer to them so you can stay on track. Having a vision for the outcome you desire is the most effective way to reach your goals, including your homeschooling!
- Don’t Compare: Please don’t compare yourself to other homeschool moms. Everyone homeschools for their own reasons and no two families are the same. It’s a beautiful thing about the homeschooling community – we all love homeschooling, but we all do it a little differently than the next mom. And that’s ok! If you want your child to read before age 4, then go for it! If you don’t want to pressure them, that’s ok too. Make your own decisions and have confidence that you know what is best for your own child(ren).
- Find a Mentor: If you know another mom who has been homeschooling a while, I’m sure she wouldn’t mind if you asked her some questions. Remember that she may not have the same goals and methods as you’d prefer, but she can be a wonderful resource. Pick her brain to find things that you can implement in your own homeschool. Seek her out when you need a resource or a support system.
- Keep it Reasonable: Preschool curriculum can cost “an arm and a leg!” Most people will tell you that you can get many affordable preschool workbooks, coloring books, and printables online, or even at your local dollar store! I’m a big proponent of free play, natural learning opportunities with everyday objects, and free printables during the preschool years. If you can afford a full curriculum set from a publisher, by all means – buy it. But I don’t really believe it’s all that necessary!
Beginning homeschool preschool moms, don’t dismay! You’ve chosen the easiest time in your child’s life to begin homeschooling. Take some time to figure out why and how you are going to do it, and then just enjoy these years. They go so fast.
Free Homeschool Preschool Curriculum
The following is a HUGE list of options for online freebies, DIY ideas, downloads, online games, and other curriculum choices! Mostly free, all are frugal! Search my Pinterest boards for curated, FREE HOMESCHOOL PRINTABLES to supplement these resources as well.
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DIY Preschool at Home with Everyday Items
Simple household items can be a lifesaver in the daily routine of a homeschooling mom. In the throes of homeschooling older children, homeschool parents need to entertain and also educate the little ones. One of the simplest things you can do is to repurpose what you already have on hand and to be creative. Try these simple ideas:
- Finger painting with shaving cream. This project will set you back a crisp dollar if you don’t have an old can of Barbasol lying around. You can pick up a can at most any dollar store the next time you are out, the cheaper the better, and no gel version shave cream. Let them use their fingers or any tool to “paint” shapes or letters in the soft foam. No worries, shaving cream is really just soap, so it washes off easily. A large cookie sheet is also a fantastic canvas to contain the mess.
- A bowl and a bag of beans. Seriously, this one can entertain for quite some time by just the sheer kinetic play aspect. What child doesn’t enjoy sifting, sorting, and running their fingers through small items? A very large mixing bowl with a cookie sheet underneath works well for this one, or better yet, an old storage tub and set your preschooler up with it on the floor (warning, you will likely have to sweep afterward). Using the bag of dried beans, you can teach counting, comparisons, and even sorting if you care to add black beans and Pintos to the mix.
- A bag of flour and a cup of cooking oil. This is mostly fun and sensory, but isn’t learning at the preschool age supposed to be? When mixed together, the oil and flour create a homemade version of moon sand. Keep it contained in a plastic storage tub for less mess. It serves as a great explorative playtime that even younger siblings can join in.
As homeschooling parents, we often overlook the simplest things. Learning is supposed to be fun, for young and old alike. When we create a learning environment that is fun, and educational at the same time, we cultivate a desire to learn. This desire easily translates into a lifelong love of learning. Don’t overthink the process, and don’t discount what you already have on hand. You may be amazed by what creativity can help you come up with!
Even MORE Pre-K Homeschool Curriculum for FREE:
- The Frugal Homeschooling Mom’s Gigantic List of Free Homeschool Planning Resources which is updated periodically.
- Free A Beka K4 Lesson Plans: A Preschool Homeschooling Outline
- Teaching Mama– A handy weekly planner for organizing your preschool class.
- Passport Academy-Offers some nice homeschool planning pages for preschool and elementary.
- Messy Little Monster- Acute daily planner for the youngest students.
- Pre-K Pages- A colorful, cute set of planning pages for the preschool teacher.
- Lovely Commotion Preschool Resources- Find a free preschool lesson plan template here.
- Wildflower Ramblings- Free preschool schedule for homeschoolers.
- Teach Beside Me- Here is a simple daily homeschool schedule for young kids.
- The Deliberate Mom- Find a whole year of free monthly lesson planning calendars for Pre-K and Kindergarten.
Fine Motor Skills
- The Imagination Tree- Here is a simple weaving craft that is great for kids to practice their eye-hand coordination and that produces a sweet heart to display.
- PreKinders- Fine motor skills activities with “found” materials.
- No Time for Flashcards- This is a list of 10 everyday fine motor activities to do with preschoolers.
- Mess for Less- This cheap (buy materials at the dollar store) activity idea has kids pushing toothpicks into salt shakers.
- Learning4Kids- This is a simple sorting activity for young kids.
- Understood for All- 6 fine motor skills activites for young kids.
- Fantastic Fun and Learning- A list of engaging acitivites to develop fine motor skills.
- Pre-K Pages- Spring themed fine motor activities.
- PickleBums- Here are some ideas for using threading to build fine motor skills.
- LittleSteps- This site has 5 fun outdoor activities using fine motor skills.
- Childhood 101- Find 5 “funtastic” fine motor activities for preschoolers.
- Play to Learn Preschool- Kids will love using Band-Aids for this activity!
Arts and Crafts
- Coloring Book Fun – Find over 10,000 fun pages for kids of all ages to color – even preschoolers!
- Coloring Pages 24 – This is an online coloring book for kids
- Everything Preschool – Get the recipes for goop, gunk and other sensory playthings!
- Crystal & Co.– This page has letter of the week crafts for preschoolers.
- No Time for Flashcards- Make a monster painting with just a few supplies.
- Red Ted Art- Kids will love these coffee filter butterflies and will be able to explore color theory as well.
- Preschool Play and Learn- Free printable letter crafts for Pre-K.
- Fun Learning for Kids- Fun and colorful bubble painting!
- Busy Toddler- Keep your little one busy and learning their name by doing this sticker name activity.
- Lessons Learnt Journal- Try this D.I.Y Moon Sand recipe.
- Alpha Mom- D.I.Y. holiday hat crafts for every occasion.
- iheartcraftythings.com- Here is a cute paper plate giraffe to make! And look around at this site for other ideas!
Bible and Christian Character Education
- Preschool Bible Curriculum from The Frugal Homeschooling Mom – a growing bundle of resources to help you teach Bible lessons alongside preschool character education and basic developmental skills and kindergarten preparation activities.
- ABC Jesus Loves Me– Online Bible curriculum for babies and up. The family edition is free.
- Joyful Heart– Curriculum to teach Biblical character traits with lessons and activity ideas.
- Mater Amabilis – A curriculum based on the Charlotte Mason style for Catholics.
- Confessions of a Homeschooler- Free Bible printables for kids, as well as character studies.
- Christian Preschool Printables– Nice, free resources to use for your young students.
- DLTK-Bible- Lots of free resources for Bible lessons for preschoolers here.
- Kids of Integrity (Focus on the Family)– Lessons on various character traits each full of activities, stories and ideas to teach that trait.
- Sunday School Center- Free preschool Bible lessons.
- Kids Sunday School- Free lessons that are written for a group setting, but can be adapted for families.
- Homeschool 4 Life– Free printable 12 month Bible curriculum.
- Walking by the Way- This is a Letter of the Week preschool program.
- Brightly Beaming Resources – Their famous “Letter of the Week” program has expanded and now they have a curriculum for age 0 through Kindergarten.
- BookBub – Receive email notifications of free eBooks for your Kindle, or other devices, based on your preferences. I love this service!
- Progressive Phonics – Check out this all-in-one Reading program.
- ABC Fast Phonics – A phonics tutorial with sound and cartoons for all ages
- Our Preschool Homeschool – Find 26 weekly lesson plans for homeschoolers here.
- This Reading Mama- A free 31 week reading curriculum for preschoolers.
- GreatSchools!- Find 125 free printable preschool reading worksheets here.
- Education.com- A bunch of preschool reading worksheets and printables.
- Reading Rockets- This site has some simple activity ideas for supporting beginner readers.
- Kidzsparkz- A large collection of free printables and more.
- Nick Jr.– Preschool learning games from different popular t.v. shows
- PBS Kids- This site has lots of games that preschoolers will enjoy, although they aren’t all strictly educational.
- Starfall – This site has tons of games to play: from learning phonics and early reading skills, all the way to higher-level reading games for more advanced readers. Check out the printable alphabet practice sheets, too.
- Seussville– These games are based on Dr. Seuss books.
- Kneebouncers– These are simple games for the youngest learners.
- Sesame Street– This site has fun games for working on letters and numbers
- Sheppard Software Preschool- Games for preschoolers that cover subjects like colors, animals and the alphabet.
- Universal Kids games– Fun games for young kids.
- Up to Ten – This site has some games that are geared for older kids, but some are great for preschoolers!
- Education.com: Preschool Games – Lots of fun free games for a preschooler to play on a range of topics.
- ABCYA- A great resource of games for preschoolers to play.
- FunBrainJr.- Fun learning games for kids to play by themselves or with parents.
- Scholastic Lists- Find a bunch of book recommendation lists for ages 3-5 here.
- MagicBlox Online- This site has lots of bright books for young children that you can read together.
- Storyline Online- This is a great site with lots of children’s books read by famous actors!
- Monkey Pen- Download free books to read your little ones!
- StoryJumper- Find a bunch of cute books that are read aloud to kids as they “flip” through the pages of the book.
- Free Kids Books- Books to read online or download, divided by level.
- Sesame Street- Each week a few free books are posted to be read online.
- DoozyMoo- Find free cute children’s book in video read aloud, PDF eBook or audiobook format here.
- Daniel Tiger (PBS Kids)- Listen to Daniel Tiger read stories about he and his friends. Little ones will love it!
- YouTube- Of course, you can always search children’s books read aloud and find a ton of titles available!
- Where the Wild Things Are – This classic book is a Caldecott Medal winner and a favorite among kids.
- Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?- This simple book is a great one to work on colors and kids love it.
- Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus- This is a Caldecott Honor Award book and is a fun one.
- The Very Hungry Caterpillar- Always a favorite book for teaching the life cycle of a butterfly, sequencing and days of the week.
- Chicka Chicka Boom Boom- A great book for working on the alphabet with your preschooler.
- The Kissing Hand- A New York Bestseller, this book is great for preparing kids for being away from their parents and how they still love them.
- Leapfrog Videos (on Netflix or Amazon Prime)- Fun letter recognition videos for beginning learners.
- Toddler Fun Learning- Cute little videos for toddlers and preschoolers.
- Khan Academy Kids- A long playlist of circle times for kids to watch.
- PBSKids- Watch educational shows with your favorite characters for free!
- Kids Academy- Although a subscription site, it does offer some short free videos for preschoolers.
- Play To Learn- 8 weeks of free virtual preschool videos.
- PBS Learning Media- Educational short videos for young kids
- Education.com- They have some cute educational song videos for young learners.
- Sesame Street- Watch some clips from this classic show.
- National Geographic Kids- Find some short videos the kids will enjoy here.
Charities and Nonprofits Helping Homeschoolers
- Homeschool Curriculum Free for Shipping – They send used homeschool books to families in need.
- Homeschool Foundation – This is the charitable arm of HSLDA: get help or give help.
- Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library – Free paperback books sent in the mail for your kids.
- SPED Homeschool– A nonprofit helping those parents teaching special education at home.
- Rainbow Resource Center– Find lots of homeschool material at cheap prices.
- We Have Kids- Ideas on how to find mini-grants to help pay for homeschooling costs.
- The Homeschool Mom- This site contains a list of homeschool organizations by state.
Group Buys, Co-ops, All-Subject Shops, General Freebies, and Support Groups
- Teachers Pay Teachers – Over 3 million original teaching resources, and tons of FREE ones – just type “free” in the search box along with the topic you need to find! Most resources are very reasonably priced, too – especially if you can reuse them with multiple children.
- Productive Homeschooling – Notebooking pages, free resource center, monthly freebies, and free product sampler. The paid products are reasonably priced, considering the fact that most things can be used among all grade levels, making it easy to homeschool everyone at the same table.
- ABCMouse – A great site that I’ve used with all three of my kiddos through the years.
- Easy Peasy: All in One Homeschool – Complete, all-free curriculum
- Homeschool Curriculum Free for Shipping – Nonprofit Facebook group of over 18,000 members sharing their curriculum for free or for just the price of shipping.
- Ed Helper – some free stuff, but most items require membership. The price isn’t too steep if you use the site often.
- Homeschool Buyers’ Co-op – get almost any curriculum for a discounted price through group buys, and there are some freebies too!
- Mama’s Learning Corner – Preschool and Early K printables.
- CurrClick – Curriculum, and classes in a click.
- Teach with Me – Thousands of free pages: projects, patterns, tips and lessons.
- Rakuten – Buying educational toys and books? Clothes? Household items? Why not get money back for your purchases?
- Homeschool Creations – Resources, free printables, and encouragement.
- Enchanted Learning – Tons of ideas for lessons and activities here.
- Easy Peasy All in One Homeschool – Of course, no list is complete without this one.
- Homeschool Classifieds – Buy used!
Do you know of a resource not listed here? What things have you used to create a fun learning experience for your preschooler lately? Please share more ideas in the comments below! Or, feel free to email me or message me on Facebook!