Learn how to create a meaningful preschool homework plan for your students using a homework calendar. Be sure to check out the rest of my free preschool printables next!
Below I’ll share how to incorporate a preschool homework calendar into your plans. These homework activities are perfect for preschool, pre-k, and kindergarten students.
Be sure to note that this isn’t a “traditional” homework plan. Not by a longshot! Instead, it’s focused on hands-on, age-appropriate activities (rather than inappropriate worksheets and such).
“Miss Mary Catherine, what about homework? Her brothers have homework most nights, and I could really use some help in that department.”
Questions like this one aren’t unusual at preschool and kindergarten Back-to-School Nights or Meet the Teacher gatherings. At least not for me.
Parents want the best when it comes to their children’s education, and it’s often assumed homework is an integral part of that.
But early childhood educators want to do what’s developmentally appropriate and best for their students – and research has shown that traditional homework doesn’t fit into that. So how to do we merge each of these viewpoints?
Do We Really Need Preschool Homework?
As I mentioned above, I’ve noticed that many parents ask about homework. I think some people assume school and homework go hand-in-hand. I’m referring here to the traditional view of homework, with kids sitting down at the kitchen table to fill out pages and pages of worksheets.
I’m inclined to disagree with that, especially when it comes to early childhood students. Young kids need hands-on learning experiences, both at home and at school, to grasp important early learning concepts. I most definitely don’t think the traditional worksheet homework is appropriate for young kids.
Listening to books read by their parents, free play time at home, and maybe some additional hands-on learning activities are more along the lines of the kind of homework I recommend.
The BEST Way to Handle Kindergarten and Preschool Homework
So we’ve established that sit down, pencil to paper homework isn’t that great for preschool and kindergarten. How, then, should homework be handled?
My suggestion: create a preschool homework plan centered around monthly activity calendars.
Explain the research to the parents, and have a quick chat about developmentally appropriate practice. Stress the importance of down time after school, and encourage daily reading snuggled up with the kids.
At this point, parents might still want something more. That’s where the homework calendars come in.
Kindergarten and Preschool Homework Calendars
The printable homework calendars I’ve sent home are definitely not preschool worksheets. They include a variety of tasks that kids can do – sometimes with their families, and sometimes on their own. My goal is for my students, and their parents, to see how learning can take place in a wide variety of ways. Additionally, kiddos with older siblings love having their own “homework” to complete like their big brother or sister.
To put together homework calendars for your students, brainstorm ideas that cover topics such as:
- Fine motor skills
- Gross motor skills
- Helping others
- Self-help skills
Try to keep the daily activities simple, with some ideas the kids can do on their own and some they can try with their parents or siblings. Some of the calendar ideas can relate to your preschool themes, seasons or holidays, or everyday helping tasks.
These homework calendars can go home in their personalized folders at the beginning of the month, with the kids returning them at the end of the month. They can also just be used as suggestions when parents ask about homework for preschool kiddos.
Preschool Homework Ideas
As I mentioned earlier, using monthly calendars for preschool homework is NOT like traditional paper-and-pencil homework. The calendars are meant to be filled with developmentally-appropriate activities kids can do at home.
If you need some ideas to add to the calendars, here you go:
- Go for a walk outside and count the trees.
- Tell your family about what you did on the playground today.
- Listen to a family member read a book.
- Try to do 5 jumping jacks.
- Draw a picture of your favorite animal.
- Sing a song to your family.
As you can see, these are simple and very appropriate activities for young children. And none of them are focused on tracing the number 1 twenty times.
I’d love to hear your thoughts now! How do you handle preschool homework (or kindergarten homework)?
A Year’s Worth of Preschool Homework Calendars
I’m so excited to share with you how you can get a hold of the rest of the calendars now! I’ve received a lot of wonderful emails asking for an entire year’s worth of calendars. Thanks so much for reaching out – I love hearing from you!
So here it is – a full year’s worth of editable homework calendars. It’s a set that includes homework calendars for every month of the year. Each calendar is an editable printable, and there are three versions:
- One has seasonal clip art,
- One has non-seasonal clip art, and
- One doesn’t have any clip art. Each month has a version that’s already full of activity ideas, along with a blank version (but you’re able to edit every single version).
Click on the image below to get your own set of preschool or kindergarten homework calendars from Preschool Teacher101:
Be sure to join The Pack from Preschool Teacher 101’s waiting list. Members get access to all we have to offer – fully-developed lesson plans, digital games, dramatic play packs, circle time song activities, STEM challenges, and so much more!
Free Printable Preschool Homework Calendar
I’m happy to share one of my homework calendars with you. It’s even editable! That way, teachers (and parents!) can put their own spin on the homework.
How to Use the Activity Calendar
Grab the September homework calendar PDF and open it up. Click on any of the editable areas and make your own changes. You can change:
- The directions at the top of the calendar
- The date (just the number)
- Each of the homework tasks within the squares
Then print out the calendar and share with your students’ parents. You’re welcome to leave everything the way I’ve written it too. That’s what I am loving about editable PDFs – the flexibility of customizing documents.
Take a look at the homework calendars in action in the video below:
Get the Free Printable
This free printable preschool homework calendar is available to members of Fun-A-Day’s free email community. If you’re a member, fill out the form below and the download links will be sent to your inbox. If you’re not a member, you can join us by entering your information in the form. Then you’ll receive the printable as a welcome gift!
You can also access the form in a new tab if you’d prefer.
Supplies to Keep at Home
Our homework calendars have some great examples of short learning prompts to give to challenge your children with. On top of those prompts, I think it’s really important to spend quality time playing with your children each day as well.
But it can be difficult to bring out our-inner child to play with our actual child. That’s why I’ve created this list of some things to play with your kids. Check it out below!
I may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.
- Build with blocks
- Play with toy vehicles
- Pretend play with various play sets
- Play dress up with costumes and masks
- Work a puzzle
- Play age-appropriate games with the whole family
- Bounce, throw, and kick playground balls back and forth
- Play tag
- Color in coloring books or draw pictures
- Read stories
- Draw with sidewalk chalk
- Create crafts
- Let your child decide!
Just follow your child’s lead and the two of you are sure to have a blast! Remember – your child will cherish any time you spend with them. They’ll cherish that quality time even more when you’re investing in them and doing something they love. So don’t worry about embarrassing yourself or looking silly. In my book, the sillier – the better!
Originally published August 8, 2016