August 6, 2010

Online Preschool Give Away!

It's preschool corner day!!!  You may recall a few weeks back when we linked to a video from Cullen's ABC's in which Cullen and a puppet Gator tasted foods that began with a common letter.  My kids loved that video and we've used them again and again with our Muffin Tin Monday meals.  But a week or so ago, we got word that Cullen is now offering an on-line Preschool.  You know I love to give things to my readers, so I asked the kind folks on the Cullen's ABCs crew if we could give an on-line preschool pass to a reader and they jumped right on board!  So today, instead of a preschool wrap up, I'm  going to share the program we used for the week and let you have a chance to try it for yourself. 

I have to admit that my first thoughts when I heard the phrase online preschool weren't so great.  I envisioned a kid sitting in front of a computer all day, being under stimulated.  But they offered me a free peek at the program and I was wowed and instantly won over.  It's such a great, hands on program that helps parents actively engage their preschool aged children at home.  What I loved was that not only were the boys instantly enamored with it and excited about learning, but the prep videos have the potential to be real confidence builders for parents who are new to home schooling or who don't have the resources to send their child to a traditional preschool.  With Cullen's help, anyone can confidently supplement preschool learning at home.

Here's the rundown...For each activity, there are videos that teach the parents how to prepare and explain the importance of the skill being taught.  You just go to the site, log in, and click to start your day.  Once you've done this, Cullen says hello and gets you started on circle time.  This includes a little discussion about the weather, the calendar, and some songs.  With her soothing demeanor, your kids will be immediately engaged.  Mine were.  Really, my boys (3&4yo) pretty much never want to learn a song from me, but when Miss Cullen said they should learn Mr. Sun, they looked at me like, "Hey mom!  Let's sing this thing!"  Anyway, circle time with Miss Cullen looks just like circle time in a regular brick and mortar preschool.

Next there's some letter learning time that ties in with the theme of the day, followed by some Bible based worship activity, and finally arts and/or science time.  Each activity is clearly introduced by Cullen and the prep videos can be watched a night ahead so that you're not caught without something that you need for an activity.

Things I loved about it?  Well, I've been teaching and then homeschooling for a long time and I rarely find art or craft projects that I've never heard of or tried.  Cullen had a few art projects that were messy fun that I had never considered.  We did them and loved them!  Also, I tend to cringe at anything that feels too corporate for young kids and Cullen is purely lighthearted and down to earth.  There's never a feeling of pushing an agenda or a product.   Even when we sent our daughter to St. Thomas preschool way back in Oregon, she came home with books that were distributed by Huggies and other corporate sponsors.  The teachers thought, hey!  A books a book, right? But I really felt a little like she was being branded at an early age.  Anyway, with online preschool, there seems to be the potential for advertisers and products, but there is absolutely none of that.  Just plain old, good, clean fun and learning.  I am thoroughly impressed.  But of course I would be.  Cullen is an experienced teacher and director of a preschool in San Jose, California.  Her passion for children comes through loud and clear in her work!  

If all this sounds good to you, go over to Cullen's ABCs and register to check out the free sample day on weather.  If you love what you see- and I know you will -head over to the forums tab and you'll see a thread especially for Momma Skyla readers (you have to be logged in to see the forum thread).See how special you are?  You get your own thread on Cullen's site!  So go there and leave Cullen a note to be entered to win free access to the complete online preschool program.  The contest will be open until Monday.  I can't wait to see who wins!  And my boys can't wait to do some more learning with Miss Cullen!  Good luck and happy learning!

1 comment:

  1. Oh Skyla this write up about our online preschool and about me is so very touching, thoughtful and kind. Thank you for taking the time to write such wonderful thoughts about us and about myself. I am so looking forward to flipping through the pages of your blog. I love the way you write, so easy to read and truthful. I feel like I know you after reading this.
    Thanks so much,
    Cullen :)
    p.s. please tell your boys I say "hi there."


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