This curriculum is a little different than others I seen for this age group. I must admit, when I first heard that this was a messy curriculum, I was a bit concerned. My preschoolers don’t have a problem making messes on their own, and while I enjoy a good messy project, I didn’t want to commit to a ton of them while trying to wrap up the school year with the other kids.
The good news? MessyLearning doesn’t mean messy. It’s an acronym describing the curriculum. Here’s what it means:
- Mixed subjects & activities for integrative learning
- Engaging activities that challenge minds
- Simple 1-2-3 steps: READ, LEARN, CREATE
- Smart designs for creative learning
- Yeah, a new way to learn!
I received digital access to three different courses from PandaParents. Each of these courses is a multi-sensory unit designed to take about a month to get through.
The courses were:
- Mommy’s Baby
- Scotty Skunk Hears a Scary Sound
- A Jolly Jingling Journey
There were three components to each course, a video, a storybook, and a workbook.
Most of the learning is done offline, which I appreciate. And…the videos were stored on Vimeo and they gave me options to download different sized files, which was a huge blessing with our metered internet!
We started with A Jolly Jingling Journey, because I thought it’d be fun to do some Christmas studies in the spring!
Unfortunately, it was very heavily based on Santa Claus, something that we don’t really do. The premise of the story is that a young boy dreams that he’s going to the North Pole to meet Santa.
But, I jumped around throughout the curriculum and found some fun learning activities. This course spent a lot of time on the letter J. There were pages of fun activities to practice the letter J. My four-year-old really enjoyed having his own school to do! And J is fun to learn about because his brother and sister start with that “number.” 😀
One thing I liked is that this curriculum didn’t focus solely on learning letters. Throughout the workbook you find plenty of different subjects, all integrated around the theme of the unit.
Biology was the science focus for this course. It was very simply introduced, in age-appropriate language. Here’s a sample page:
This one just asked the student to find the one that didn’t belong in each set of pictures. One clue was not a dog. Another was am a living thing. The final one was I do not live in the North Pole because it is too cold.
While these are very simple questions, they are the perfect introduction to animal classification and needs for a young learner.
After picking and choosing some of the activities from A Jolly Jingling Journey, we spent the rest of the review period exploring the Mommy’s Baby course.
The video was engaging, and my preschoolers both enjoyed watching it. It’s about a child who isn’t sleepy and the mom comes in to read a story. It’s fairly repetitive in nature “Are you mommy’s little pillow?” “I am your little pillow!” “Are you mommy’s little bunny?” “I am mommy’s little bunny!”
But, they really enjoyed it and were “reading” along after they figured out the pattern. Unfortunately, it switched part way through so they kept trying to say the wrong thing. But, it was fun to see them try to interact.
There were some words taught in this book, such as joey for a baby kangaroo and gosling for a baby goose. The kids liked learning new words for baby animals.
The workbook for this course introduced students to more letters. Since I call capital letters mommy and lowercase letters baby, it went right along with the theme.
There were nature science pages, math pages, and plenty of fun activities. Students had to match shadows to shapes, cut out shapes to glue together and make a panda, and more.
Skunk Hears a Scary Sound
We didn’t get a chance to use this course yet, but I did take a few moments to flip through it. The seasons are a big focus in this one, as the skunk is looking for a home through different seasons and living conditions. It shares what a skunk does when it’s scared.
Since we have skunks living in the barn, my kids are very familiar with this concept and I think they’ll enjoy this unit.
The letter S is focused on, which my Simon will love!
There were some great learning activities in these three units. They will be available as printed books in the fall, which will be a much better solution than the digital ones.
My printer is black and white, and every page in these books were full color. I had to be selective over which ones I printed, just so I didn’t run completely out of ink!
There were also sticker pages at the front, and many pages in the workbook called for the use of stickers. But, my younger kids didn’t have the fine motor control to cut the tiny stickers out and glue them on, and I didn’t take the time. Real stickers would be an amazing addition!
My young kids enjoyed these studies, and thought their school was fun. If you’re looking for a unit study for preschoolers that covers all the core subjects plus some extras, definitely check out the material from PandaParents.
To see what other families thought of this MESSY LEARNING program, please click on the banner below.