preschool at home | handwriting


preK at home-8preK at home-13prek-at-home-10preK at home-12preK at home-4preK at home-20

Whew! I know it’s been pretty quiet in this space as of late. As I’ve mentioned before, this transition has been harder than we all anticipated. During the last two months, we’ve really focused on forming and finding the new rhythms for our combined household, and they are forming. We started our school routine in the beginning of August this year, and more recently, we began our school year with our local Classical Conversations group. Again, I’ve begun recording snippets of our days to share with you. Here’s another recent “preschool” learning time. Although Blythe (6) is beyond this level, she often wants to help teach the younger children–one of my favorite things about homeschooling. She remembers the handwriting songs and strokes from her early years and loves encouraging/helping Olive and Shepherd with theirs. I love watching each of my children mature in this way, learning to give and receive in various roles, at once student and teacher, leader and follower. It’s such a gift.



writing the letter “B”  (15 – 30 minutes)

{materials used}

+ sandpaper letters (or the HWT version)

+ roll-a-dough letters

+ slate chalkboard

+ chalk bits (or regular chalk broken into smaller pieces for smaller hands)

+ sponge cubes (or kitchen sponges cut into small cubes)

+ alphabet poster (not shown)


We sing the alphabet together, pointing to each letter on the alphabet poster as we go. We return to the letter “B” saying the name and sound together. I ask them to find something in the room that starts with the /b/ sound. Although they don’t always get this part, they always enjoy trying.

I then lay out a few of the sandpaper letters and have them find the letter B. When they pick it up, I ask them what strokes they see (HWT only has four strokes: big line, little line, big curve, little curve). They each have a turn to trace the sandpaper letter with their finger.

I ask them to pull out their fingers for sky writing and ask, “where do we start our letters (another HWT song)?” “At the top!” They squeal. We sky-write “big line down, frog jump to the top, little curve, little curve.” We repeat a few more times and then begin independent activities: the roll-a-dough letters for one and the chalkboard (with chalk and sponges) for the other. Blythe helps Olive roll the playdough to form each letter stroke for “B,” while I set Shepherd up for what HWT calls “wet-dry-try.” I write a capital B on the mini-chalkboard, speaking each of the strokes as I write them. He then will trace this same letter THREE times: once with a wet sponge, then with a dry sponge, and then finally with his own piece of chalk. Each child works through their activity a few times and then we switch.

Share this post:


  1. Love this. Looking ahead a bit to home preschooling my daughter. Did you buy a HWT teaching book? Or did you learn most of this from the songs? I have a little exposure to HWT, but not in how to present it.

    1. Author

      I did, but ended up not using it. It’s helpful if you’re managing a full-time classroom, as it’s necessary to fill the day with tons of planned activities, but in the home, keeping it simple and learning the strokes was all we needed. the kids did love the Matman song and the “Where do you start your letters?” song. I still sing the latter with my seven year old when she begins at the bottom. ;) There are many little videos on the HWT website. They’d be helpful for giving you some ideas that you can adapt at home.

  2. Thank you for your preschool posts. I’m about to begin homeschooling my own preschooler but I’m already so overwhelmed and intimidated by it all. I feel like pinterest is a blessing and a curse. I’m trying to teach my self that my own voice is important enough to be heard, especially when concerning my children. Your posts bring it back to the simplicity of it all and I’m able to catch my breath again! Thank you.

    1. Author

      What a beautiful and true sentiment, Natausha. Thirteen years into this parenting gig, I realize how often I can complicate it. It really does boil down to some very simple basics, and the same is true for homeschooling. I’m so glad to hear you’re encouraged here. x

  3. Bethany, I love your preschool posts. They make me think maybe I could actually do this one day :)

    1. I’m so happy to hear this, Kristen. I hope through these little snippets to clear a little of the mystery and intimidation surrounding home education. And don’t worry, when the time arrives for you guys to decide, I’m sure you’ll know right where your little guy’s suppose to be. Miss you! xo

    1. We’re adjusting and I’m trying to make room in my life again for this space. Thank you so much for your compliment and encouragement!

Leave a Comment

You May Also Like
Nine Favorite Read Aloud Books for Spring
Nine Favorite Read Aloud Books for Spring

Homeschooling in Pictures | February 2020

Homeschooling in Pictures | January
Homeschooling in Pictures | January