Try A Homeschool Box
Toddlers are busy people. The way that I homeschool with a toddler is by using a homeschool box. The concept of a homeschool box is simple; a suitable container, filled with engaging things for a toddler to do, that is only available at homeschool time.
A child between the ages of 1 and 3 can be kept productively busy for a relatively long period of time. A homeschool box filled with activities, snacks, and toys that are specific to your toddler can help to keep them engaged and stimulated while you homeschool other children. Or it can be a great way to begin homeschool routines and learning together. With a homeschool box you don’t have to worry about stimulation neglect, unfed curiosity that turns into a mess, or cranky boredom that reigns supreme!
What container should I use for my Toddler’s Homeschool Box?
I call it a homeschool “box” but that doesn’t mean you a have to use an actual box. When selecting a suitable container consider the following….
What do I have already lying around my house that I could use?
What would be easy for my toddler to recognize and reach in to?
How much room do I have to store it when not in use?
Do I want it to have a lid or an open top?
Do I want something with handles?
We have moved 10 times and counting. Naturally I always seem to have a cardboard box on hand. Therefore most of the containers that I have used for my homeschool “box” have been actual boxes. The name quickly became a title in our house instead of a description. Even when I have used a different container, like a basket, or a big shopping bag, my kids and I still refer to it as a “homeschool box”.
If it’s easy for your toddler to use, and it is a good container for your contents, than you have found yourself a homeschool box. Your options could be as simple as a drawer or designated shelf space. Whatever fits your needs and your budget.
What should I put in my Toddler’s Homeschool Box?
The contents of your homeschool box will be dictated by the age, ability, and needs of your toddler.
Include the following…
Toys your toddler likes to play with
Educational toys or tools that support what you want your toddler to learn
Stuff your toddler constantly gets into that is safe to play with during homeschool time
Maybe you have a toddler that loves your car keys. Their homeschool box is a great place to put a non-important set of keys for them to play with. Some other common adult things toddlers love to play with are; pots with lids, muffin pans with small toys to put inside, spatulas, old flip phones, etc..
Some toys naturally spark your child’s imagination more than others. These are the kind of toys that are a good addition to a homeschool box. For example, my daughter Lailah loved ponies when she was a toddler. Having ponies in her homeschool box made her excited about homeschool time everyday. My son Levi loved cars and would drive them all over the room during homeschool time.There are also endless activities you can put inside your toddlers homeschool box. Activities that will engage their mind and develop their motor skills. Maybe you want them to learn about colors, shapes, and letters. Or maybe you want them to learn how to put puzzles together.
Whatever development your feel your child is ready for, or needs, can be put into their homeschool box. The possibilities are endless. Remember to adjust the content as they grow. Rotate new with old every so often. Above all keep them excited about discovering what’s inside.
In a nutshell the idea of a homeschool box is the embodiment of this quote that I once read in a pamphlet from a Children’s Museum,
“Children learn, grow and thrive through play. Children learn about themselves, others and the world through play. Play celebrates your child’s individual sparks and invites exploration.”
To read my method on how to homeschool with multiple kids ages 4-8 click here.
What the Trent Kids say…
Brigham says...his favorite thing to do from his Homeschool Box is “to play”.