A linear calendar for preschoolers helps children understand how time passes and how to plan ahead. It also gives kids an opportunity to practice math skills, such as counting forward and backward in time. This approach is particularly effective for preschoolers, who are just beginning to develop a sense of time and the days of the week.
In this blog post, we will discuss how you can adapt a linear calendar in your preschool classroom to replace a regular calendar. We will also explore the benefits of using a linear calendar over a traditional calendar in the preschool setting.
Why use a linear calendar?
Traditional calendars can be overwhelming for preschoolers, who are still developing their cognitive skills. A traditional calendar typically consists of a large grid with numbers, months, and days of the week, which can be confusing for young children. A linear calendar, on the other hand, is much simpler, and easier for children to understand.
A linear calendar is a visual representation of the passage of time that allows children to see the progression of days in a more tangible way. This approach is particularly useful for preschoolers, who are still developing their spatial awareness and understanding of time.
A linear calendar for preschoolers helps them have a better understanding of time by showing what will happen next on their calendar. It is easier for younger children to see the numbers in a straight line. This type of calendar has a long row with the numbers 1-31 to represent the date in a line, a space below to mark school and home days, and a row at the top to mark special days like birthdays and holidays.
Having a linear calendar in the classroom makes it easier for children to know what to expect. They can see how many more days they have at school and how long they will be home for the weekend. They can understand that they have to wait a certain number of days for their birthday or a special holiday. A linear calendar is a great addition to a preschool classroom and is a good starting point for understanding how a real calendar works.
How to create a linear calendar.
If you would like to make your own linear calendar to use in your classroom here is a link to my Teachers Pay Teachers Store. I have a free black-and-white copy available to you or you can pick out one of my many themes:
To make the linear calendar:
- print, laminate, and cut out the pieces.
- Be sure to leave the numbers connected to the top and bottom rows.
- Cut out all of your home and school pieces and cut out all of the holidays that you need for your class and laminate for durability year after year.
- I use clear packing tape to attach the sides to make the line.
- You can attach it to a bulletin board or dry erase board or even to a wall. I use the Velcro dots to hang the school/home/holiday cards, and I use sticky tack on the back of the days of the week strip so that it can easily be moved to any spot. You could also use magnets if you are hanging your linear calendar on a dry-erase board.
How to teach preschoolers about time.
Once you have completed making the calendar, find a space at eye level to hang it. I have mine at the bottom of my bulletin board. Encourage your children to mark each day with an activity. I like to cover up my numbers with mini sticky notes to keep them hidden until we reach that date. So, I uncover the number 15 on the fifteenth day of the month. I can write notes on the sticky notes, like what letter we are learning, or I will choose a child to draw a picture for our day or the weather we are having. You can move the sticky note to the top or bottom row when you pass that date.
Tips for using it with preschoolers.
If you use a linear calendar with your preschooler, make sure they understand that every day has 24 hours. You should also explain that there are parts to each day: morning, afternoon, evening, and night. In addition, you can teach them that some days have special events such as birthdays, holidays, and vacations.
In conclusion, a linear calendar is an excellent tool for introducing preschoolers to the concept of time. By using a linear calendar in your preschool classroom, you can provide your students with a more age-appropriate and engaging way to understand time. Not only does it promote the development of key skills such as numeracy, language, and independence, but it also sets them up for success in the future as they continue to grow and learn. I hope that you will now consider adding a linear calendar for preschoolers in your classroom.
You may also enjoy reading a blog post about ABC Bible lessons for preschoolers, check it out here.