No, I don't get to do kindergarten over. Not my own or my kids'. But right now all the homeschooling moms are talking about curriculum; I love reading their lists and plans. In particular, the moms with little ones. They are just starting and they are excited!
When I was just starting out, I was so excited too. I had so many plans. Too many. I learned, quickly, that I was trying to do too much with my little ones. I ended up worrying too much, getting too frustrated, and not enjoying my kids enough.
So if I could do kindergarten over with my kids, I would (in no particular order)...
- play more music, and dance more.
- play more games with numbers and letters and fun.
- collect more magazines that we could cut up for collages.
- be more diligent with learning and memorization of Bible and Catechism, with books like Leading Little Ones to God (which we used, but not enough).
- not buy a full math curriculum that cost a lot of money. I'd buy a cheap little workbook and more manipulatives. More beads, more things to count and sort and mess with. Maybe I'd even skip the workbook.
- get into Five in a Row, a wonderful literature-based curriculum, sooner. We used it for too short a time.
- rely on the library more and not buy quite so many books that were not truly keepers. Oh, we would still buy books. But I would be more selective and not buy so many cheap paperbacks that we read only a few times.
- not try to teach grammar, except by speaking properly myself and reading aloud.
- have more playdates.
- not spend any less time reading than we did. I don't regret a minute I spent snuggled up with my kids and books.
- have more treasure hunts in the house, yard, or sandbox.
- spend more time outside puttering around.
- plant more flowers.
- not worry, or fret, or wonder "am I doing enough?"
Enjoy those kindergarten years, Mommies! Have fun with your kids and let them be little.
It's easy to say now that I'm well past those years. If anyone had said these things to me back then, would I have listened?