Winter Wonderland: Week One - Snowfall


It may seem a little bit silly to talk about "curriculum" with just an almost-three-year-old at home. The Waldorf-inspired bits of our life especially bristle at such a notion; children at this age should be spending their time in free play and working alongside their caregivers in meaningful work. And this is what we do, of course, but I can't help but feel that Silas is trying to tell me that he needs a bit more structure.

We work very hard to maintain a sense of rhythm in our home. We have pockets of well-developed rhythm; mealtimes and sleep times are anchor points in our day and we hold them as sacred. The in-between times, though, often feel quite muddled. We do tasks as they arise and don't think too much about tomorrow. In general, this is how I like things to run. I've never been the type to keep a detailed planner or to have a dance card that is completely full. But this go-with-the-flow-ness is starting to cause some disconnection, I feel. Both Silas and I need for there to be regular time carved out in our days for us to connect and learn together. Something that we can count on. This, I suppose, is what I really mean by "curriculum."

I've been sifting through a whole host of incredibly helpful resources, both online and in print, and I've cobbled together a very simple learning rhythm to add to our days. Just a short Circle Time in the morning, one storybook and one non-fiction book that we'll read every day of each week, yoga after nap, and some planned baking and process-oriented art to go along with our theme of the week. It's two parts Waldorf, one part unit studies, one part project-based learning, and all low-key and fun.

I know myself very well and I know that if I don't declare my intentions publicly, they have a way of sliding to the back burner and never quite coming to fruition. So here it is. Today was the first day in our Winter Wonderland curriculum for two and three-year-olds. Our theme this week is "snowfall." 

Each day begins with our Good Morning song, getting ready for the day and breakfast. Then we have Circle Time:

Week One: Snowfall & The Beginning of Winter

* Circle Time Opening Song:
Circle Time
Circle Time
It's Time for Circle Time
Come on down
Settle in
For rhythm and for rhyme
* Song: Sky Bears
* Verse: 
Snowflakes falling soft & light,
Snowflakes falling in the night,
Soft & light, pure & white,
When the sun shines out so bright,
All the earth is dressed in white,
All the earth is dressed in white.
* Storybook: Snowballs by Ehlert
* Lesson Book: The Shortest Day by Pfeffer
* Song: King Winter
* Movement: 
Let's go walking in the snow.
Walking, walking on tiptoe.
Lift one foot way up high.
Then the other to keep it dry.
All around the yard we skip.
Watch your step, or you might slip!
* Circle Time Closing Song:
Circle Time
Circle Time
Circle Time is done
Now it's time
To fill our day
With laughter and with fun
The entirety of Circle Time takes between 15-20 minutes. Then it's time for work around the house and then either outside to play for as long as we can stand the cold, or out to do whatever errand we need to do that morning.

Yoga follows lunch and nap. We're starting the Angel Bear Yoga curriculum, doing one pose a day and repeating that same pose for the entire week. Then we read a storybook that illustrates that week's character trait. This week it's "abundance" and we're reading The Whole Green World by Johnston.

Is it silly to tell you that this whole thing made me really nervous? Silas is only two, but I feel a lot of pressure to not screw it up. What if I can't remember the songs? What if I look ridiculous? Well, first of all, of course I'm going to look ridiculous. That's part of the fun. And it's just me and the kiddo here, no other "witnesses" to make me feel embarrassed. Deep breath. Let go. Dive in.

And it went really well. Silas requested to do the Movement verse over and over and over again. Then, late-morning, in the car on the way home from running errands he thoughtfully said, "I like Circle Time." The yoga will take a bit to get used to; it feels rather clunky and a bit forced right now. But, it is only the first day, after all.

Week Two & Three: Snowflakes
Week Four: Animals in Winter
Week Five and Six: Tracks in the Snow
Week Seven: Groundhog Day
Week Eight: Hibernation
Week Nine: Valentine's Day
Week Ten: Night Animals

*****

I drew inspiration for the curriculum posted here from Wee Folk Art's Homeschool Guide, Naturally Three, and Winter, as well as several online resources. Silas is 2.75 years old. 

3 comments:

  1. Your day looks a lot like ours right now. We are anchored with meal times and bed time too, and I never play around with those. Reece loves our circle time, and you will soon get over feeling silly, trust me, I know :) When I started working in a Waldorf rhythm a few years ago it felt strange, but now, it feels natural and Reece knows the rhythm and is quick to remind me if I have gone off track :)

    Have fun!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for the encouragement, Kim! I'm glad to know that the silly little self-critic in my brain will eventually go away. ;)

      Delete
  2. I think it is wonderful that you have put so much loving thought into the routine you want to create for your son. And the fact that he said he likes it means that you must be doing something right! Ever since my daughter was born, I have been singing two wake-up songs to her and also the days of the week song. I know that one day she'll join in!

    ReplyDelete