I just told Molly and Logan that we’ll be beginning Circle Time next week. They’re thrilled. We used to have preschool and toddler circle time when they were a little younger, but have moved twice and had a new baby in the last year, and that was one thing that just had to go for awhile.

Obviously it was one thing they missed.

Why? What makes preschool {or Kindergarten} and toddler circle time so special to kids? And why should we bother to add one more thing into our homeschool day?

 

Circle Time - A Great Start to Your Day via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

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What is Circle Time?

Put simply, Kindergarten, Preschool, and Toddler Circle Time is a time where you and your child(ren) gather together to start your day or work on things together.

When I taught third grade, we had “morning meeting” in my class. Basically, we gathered to welcome everyone, go over our schedule for the day, play a game, and share something with each other.

Circle Time at home is no different. We all come together and sit on the floor near our calendar in the morning. Trevor sometimes joins us, but if he’d rather get started on his independent work, he is allowed to make that choice.

 

Circle Time - A Great Start to Your Day via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

 

What are some Circle Time Activities?

In our Circle Time this year, we’ll be using some suggestions from Kendra Fletcher’s book, Circle Time: Plan the Best Part of Your Day. We’ll also use some of my ideas and things that evolve naturally from the things we are studying. We’ll:

  • go over the calendar, keeping {and adding to} a pattern.
  • learn the days of the week and months of the year through songs.
  • memorize Scripture.
  • play music {CD & play instruments} and dance.
  • read stories and use the felt board.
  • pray.

 

Circle Time - A Great Start to Your Day via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

 

What are the benefits of Circle Time?

Circle Time gives you a chance to connect with your little ones and have some fun while learning. I know that I get caught up often in all the things that need done around the house. There are lessons to teach, meals to prepare, diapers to change, laundry that needs completed, and it’s easy to forget the fun. Singing songs, reading stories, and joining together for prayer and Scripture memorization is as important as it is enjoyable. Circle time is a great way to connect with your 3-6 year olds – or your family as a whole.

 

Circle Time - A Great Start to Your Day via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

 

What are some resources available for planning Circle Time?

There are lots of great books about Circle Time available on Amazon.com, and, although most of them are written with a classroom full of kids in mind, you can get some good information and ideas from them. Like I said, though, we’re using Kendra’s book this year. Kendra is an experienced homschooling mom of eight – so she’s had lots of experience with homeschool Circle Time!

We’ll be keeping track of the calendar, weather, as well as some simple math in our Circle Time. During our meetings, the girls and I will read some fun fairy tales and nursery rhymes. We’ll act things out on the felt board we have, and we’ll play some preschool and Kindergarten games. I’ve linked some of the materials we’ll be using in the carousel below so you can check them out and get some of your own ideas:

 

Amazon.com Widgets

 

I’m starting to get as excited as the girls are for our school year – and Circle Time – to officially start. With Molly combining Kindergarten and first grade this year, Logan doing preschool, Trevor {my big fifth grader} jumping in from time to time, and little Isaac crawling, then toddling, around, we should have a chaotically fun school day…every day!

Do you have any fabulous ideas for incorporating Circle Time or other types of meetings into your homeschool day? I’d love to hear them. Leave a comment and start a conversation below.

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Colleen Kessler

Colleen is an explorer, tinkerer, educator, writer, creator, and a passionate advocate for the needs of gifted and twice-exceptional children. She has a B.S. in elementary education, a M.Ed. in gifted studies, is a sought-after national speaker and educational consultant, and is the founder of the popular blog and podcast Raising Lifelong Learners, as well as Raising Poppies, a community of support for parents of gifted children. She lives in northeast Ohio with her four bright and quirky kiddos, patient husband, and ever-changing collection of small reptiles, mammals, and insects.