When it comes to teaching preschoolers, theme-based units are not only fun, they’re also great for integrating learning across several subject areas. Language, literature, math, science, history, geography, music, art, and Bible topics are easily included within a topical unit study which enhances early childhood education in a child’s area of interest.
Using these three steps and the helpful A-Z list of ideas below will help you create an effective elementary thematic unit program for your child.
1 – Identify Your Theme
Integrated learning units usually center around a specific theme or topic, such as safety, belonging, animals, or food. Very often, a piece of children’s literature or a particular Bible passage will serve as the core of a unit. Questions you should ask yourself when planning your theme include
–What do I want my child to learn as a result of participating in this unit?
–Is my child naturally curious about this topic?
–Does my child have some previous background knowledge about this theme?
2 – Create Theme-related Activities
Thinking of ideas for specific activities within the theme requires brainstorming. If you’re having trouble coming up with ideas, brainstorm together with a friend and consider these questions:
–What learning activities or play fit naturally into this unit?
–Are the learning activities developmentally appropriate, not too hard or too easy?
–Are the activities purposeful and worthwhile? (Just because an activity is cute or crafty doesn’t mean it’s a good reason to include it in your preschool lessons.)
3 – Implement the Theme
You’re now ready to implement the creative unit study you’ve designed for your preschooler’s early childhood education. To make learning more fun, ask yourself the following:
–What’s an intriguing way to introduce the unit?
–What books, manipulatives, curriculum, and other learning resources do I need?
–How will I end our theme-based unit study, evaluate its success, and assess my child’s development according to its standards?
Suggested theme topics for your preschooler’s early childhood education curriculum: