I received a text the other day asking this question: “Do you have any resources or a list of things kindergartners should know before 1st grade?”

This text came from a young couple who has just started homeschooling their first child. I appreciate this question because it means they are taking seriously their responsibility to educate their children. It also reminds me how easy it is for parents to focus too much on content and to struggle with the difference between homeschooling and public or private school. I responded to his text: 

“Great question! Different curricula will have slightly different expectations. They are learning their letters and beginning to read. They are learning numbers and some simple math. However, it is really important to realize that children have different abilities and will work at very different speeds on these subjects. As long as you are reading to them a lot and working on these things, then don’t worry too much about where they are in the process. They will get it!”

As parents of young children (ages birth through 7 or 8), we want to give our children the best possible start in life. There is pressure to get started early with academics because we are told that this is the best way to give them this best start, but what do the studies show about the best way to teach young children?

If you have questions about what and how your young homeschool student should be learning, then you’ll want to join us for the next NCHE webinar, Laying a Good Foundation: Homeschooling Little Ones (September 29 @ 2pm). Debbie Mason (NCHE Events Director) and Amanda Wares (NCHE Helps Director) will share their experience and what they have learned. They will then interview Durenda Wilson on this critical topic. Go here to register for free!