How to Plan Your Montessori Homeschool Preschool

We’ve been officially homeschooling for over a year now, and the top question I get on Instagram is probably “How do you plan your preschool units and lessons?”  Want to know some of my secrets???

First, I ask the girls what they want to learn about and then plan a themed unit based on what they say. In the past, we have done a 10 month long Continent Studies Unit, as well as a 4 month unit on the Human Body, and now we are in the middle of a 4 month Botany Unit.  I really don’t know how some people do just a single week per unit — how do you fit everything in?  We like to start with big concepts and then work our way in to the tiniest details — as most Montessori learning goes — so we do BIG units.  How do I plan a months-long unit study?

The same way you’re doing now:  I search the internet!  These are the blogs that I search first for free materials to match our unit studies:

Living Montessori Now

Every Star is Different

Pinay Homeschooler

Welcome to Mommyhood

The Helpful Garden

Trillium Montessori

If I still can’t find everything I need, I make my own materials or search through Etsy and Teachers Pay Teachers for more specialized printables.  I also look for children’s books on those topics from the local library, as we don’t have an unlimited book budget over here [as much as I wish we did!].

Once I have all of my topics and materials gathered, I try to put them in order in a way that makes sense. For example, for our Botany study, we are starting with plants in general.  Then we are moving further in to study trees (with a special emphasis on leaves, as requested by L), flowers (with a side study of pollinators like bees), and plants that we eat.  Within each of those categories, we will study typical Montessori things like “parts of a ____”, sorting by types, using 3-part cards to learn nomenclature, etc.

These materials will all be on our science shelf, and I will first introduce each of them during Circle Time as a group lesson.

Once I have planned out the unit, I write it all down with each topic assigned to a different day in my planner.  I was originally just using a regular weekly planner, but I was so excited to hear about the new Ultimate Montessori Planner because it actually has everything I need [and more!] already in it — and since it’s an undated printable, I can use it forever!

I use the Unit Theme Planner page to plan out our units months in advance so I have a general idea of what’s coming up and can start slowly gathering materials for it all year long, rather than in a mad rush the night before we begin.  We don’t take a break for the summer, but we do take a week off here and there between unit studies.

Then I plan each month’s Circle Time activities on the monthly pages — noting the general topic, materials we’ll be using for that day, and any books we might read to go along with the topic.  I also use that page to write down which works I have out in each of the classroom sections.

The Ultimate Montessori Planner also has a page to write down your Favorite Online Resources along with the passwords to access subscriber-only freebies.  I used that page to keep track of where I found each of the materials we’ll be using for our Botany Studies.

Since I have two kids, I then have a section for each child where I plan their lessons and keep track of observations.

The Preschool Lesson Planner pages are especially helpful because they have a spot for each of the sections in the Montessori preschool classroom — this way I can make sure that I have a lesson planned in each subject area for the week, and there’s plenty of space for me to make notes on how the lesson goes!  This is my individual lesson plan for L for one week.  Older children can use this to plan their own lessons using the Elementary Lesson Planner pages.

The Ultimate Montessori Planner also has pages to keep track of goals for each of the sections of the classroom — something I never put on paper before, but I can see how this will help in future lesson planning!  Here are some of N’s language goals for the next few months.

The planner also helps make Weekly Observations possible and organized — this is an area I definitely want to get use out of, so I printed out plenty of copies of this page so I have no excuse not to make time for observations!

The Three Period Lesson Notes will be especially helpful for N’s language lessons — and this is definitely something you wouldn’t find in a regular planner from the store!

I love that the Ultimate Montessori Planner is tailored specifically to the things Montessori teachers and homeschoolers need to keep track of, and that it covers the preschool years AND the elementary years.  It even includes resources for children with special needs, so this planner really has it all.  This is seriously a game changer and is going to help our Montessori homeschool preschool planning and record-keeping so much!

You can get your Ultimate Montessori Planner HERE!!!

 


 

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