Being prepared with materials to share with the preschoolers keeps them engaged.
Running a group for preschoolers is a better option than having the preschoolers run all over you in a group setting. Being prepared with materials, planning interesting, hands-on activities and adding time for exploration are key components of accomplishing an objective while still having fun with an inquisitive group of preschoolers.
1Decide on the objective for the group of preschoolers. Decide what one or two age-appropriate items the preschoolers should learn from the group. Overloading the youngsters with too much information will put them on overload, which is not a happy place. Teaching the preschoolers about the properties of a pumpkin by showing different sizes of pumpkins is a crowd pleaser. Teaching them the stages of the life cycle of the pumpkin, on top of the property discussion, could lead to chaos. Keep it short and simple.
2Find materials to hand out to the preschoolers. For every lesson bring something to pass around and touch. Finding something for each student to have in his hands is the best situation. A discussion about bird's nests may be over before it is started without a discussion about how to handle such a delicate structure. Lay down the boundaries before handing out the materials. Give the students time to explore and make observations.
3Make the group small enough so everyone can see all that is happening. If the group is too big to see the action, someone is not going to be happy. Preschoolers want to be where the action is. Keeping the group small enough helps them be a part of the lesson. Everyone wants to see the caterpillar crawl up the arm of their friend -- even if they have to push and shove to see it. Make it work from the beginning by choosing small enough groups.
4Complete an art project to go along with the lesson taught. Have all of the materials ready for the correct number of students with a sample of the finished product.
5Read a story to the group to extend the learning. Picture books offer a way for the preschoolers to revisit the concepts introduced. The students absorb the pictures and words as each page is turned.
- Be excited about the learning, and the students will be excited.
Things You'll Need
- Hands-on materials
- Art materials