Ask a few seasoned homeschool preschool parents for a curriculum recommendation, and you will undoubtedly hear the name Blossom and Root.
So what exactly is the Blossom and Root Early Years program? Most importantly, is it the right fit for you and your preschooler?
In this Blossom and Root Early Years curriculum review, I’ll share key features along with my favorite and not-so-favorite aspects of using the lessons and activities with my 4-year-old son.
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- What is the Blossom and Root Early Years Curriculum?
- A Transparent Blossom and Root Early Years Curriculum Review
- What is an “open-and-go” homeschool learning program?
- Key Features
- Child Experience
- Parent/Teacher Experience
- What I like/dislike about Blossom & Root’s Early Years Curriculum
- How to get started with Blossom and Root Early Years
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Blossom and Root Early Years Homeschool Program
- FAQ #1: Is Blossom and Root a good curriculum?
- FAQ #2: Is Blossom and Root religious?
- FAQ #3: What type of curriculum is Blossom and Root?
- FAQ #4: Is Blossom and Root Montessori?
- The Last Thing You Need to Know About This Blossom and Root Early Years Curriculum Review
What is the Blossom and Root Early Years Curriculum?
The Blossom and Root Early Years curriculum is a secular (no religious affiliation), open-and-go 36-week homeschool preschool program designed for families with children ages 2 to 5.
Early Years, developed by Kristina Garner, former Kindergarten teacher and fellow homeschool parent, is based on the philosophy that children learn best through exploration, play, and hands-on activities.
Early Years provides strategic, easy-to-implement activities that build foundational academic skills while emphasizing nature and the arts.
With loads of adaptable lessons and activity options, the Blossom and Root Early Years curriculum provides parents with a comprehensive guide to help them create a unique learning experience.
In other words, Blossom and Root encourages parent educators to adapt the curriculum to meet their children’s needs and interests, thus fostering an early love for learning.
Note: The Early Years program is sold only as a downloadable PDF.
You will need to print the program yourself to obtain a hard copy. You will also need to borrow your own library books and potentially purchase additional supplies.
Additional supplies are fairly minimal and most items you likely already have or can create at home (I will highlight examples in the key features section of this post).
A Transparent Blossom and Root Early Years Curriculum Review
What is an “open-and-go” homeschool learning program?
Blossom and Root Early Years is a comprehensive homeschool preschool program with minimal daily preparation required.
I spent roughly 5 minutes each evening preparing materials for the next day’s activities.
I recommend looking ahead for 1-2 weeks to ensure you have all the materials you need for upcoming activities and to reserve Kristina’s suggested picture books from your local library.
I have outlined the most significant features of the Blossom and Root Early Years curriculum you will likely want to consider before you buy (read all the way through or use the list below to skip ahead to a specific section).
- Instant download PDF
- 36-week curriculum
- Requires mostly standard art and household supplies
- Comprehensive, diverse subject areas
- Adaptable daily/weekly lessons
- Flexible, “open-and-go” activities
- “Long-term” notebook activities
- Volume 1 and Volume 2 options
Instant download PDF
Blossom and Root currently sells homeschool curricula in PDF format only.
As a relatively new homeschooling parent trying to grow my resource library, this is a big plus for me! Downloadable curricula are generally much less expensive than traditional homeschool programs and (to me) feel like a lower-risk decision.
Blossom and Root Early Years is a 36-week curriculum (180 days) that sets you up with a flexible schedule of 4-5 daily activities 5 days per week.
If following the guide to a T (which you do not have to do!), you can expect to spend about an hour on activities per day.
The parent manual emphasizes “focused flexibility.” You will receive an optional weekly template that can easily be adapted and tweaked to meet your family’s needs and schedule.
Requires mostly standard art and household supplies
Early Years activities will mostly require standard household materials. Think basic coloring supplies, cookie sheets, cotton swabs, etc.
You can access a complete supply list by downloading a free curriculum sample from Blossom and Root.
Kristina also provides helpful tips for facilitating art exploration on a budget.
Examples of Extra Materials I Didn’t Have at Home
To give you an idea, here are some examples of materials from the Early Years Volume 2 supply list I didn’t have at home but enhanced our homeschool preschool experience:
Remember that every home is perfectly unique. This list may look different for you. (And if you wish, you can handmake many supplies, such as posters and flashcards!)
Generally, I opted to reserve the recommended picture books every 1-2 weeks from our local library; however, I feel it’s helpful to have a lengthier poetry book on hand for the weekly lessons.
While Mother Goose is listed as the primary poetry book suggestion, Kristina encourages parents to exercise freedom in swapping resources.
I personally find Mother Goose to be not-so-positive-parenting-friendly at times. I think this nature poetry book fits in beautifully with the curriculum!
Comprehensive, diverse subject areas
For me, this is the top-selling feature of Blossom and Root Early Years! You’ll delve far beyond basic preschool letters and numbers and can choose from activities across the following subjects:
Here, you’ll help your child build their letter recognition skills and phonemic awareness (letter sounds). For example, your child may use play dough to “form” the letter you are learning about.
Hands-On Math Exploration (Volume 1 only)
An engaging introduction to numbers, shapes, measurement, and more! Completing a numbers scavenger hunt, searching for shapes at the grocery store, or measuring household items are just a few examples of the fun your child will have exploring numbers.
Early Math Foundations (Volume 2 only)
Meet your child where they are, cater to their interests, and build upon 11 core math skills throughout the curriculum (e.g., numeral and quantity comprehension, shapes, patterns).
Each skill has roughly 3-7 adaptable activity choices. In other words, you can explore what your child loves without having to force or coerce!
Perhaps one of the most impactful activities you can do for your child’s education.
You’ll read engaging picture books and complete hands-on, related activities. Kristina’s book recommendations are merely a suggestion; however, I 100% recommend checking out her selections.
Her book choice for week 1 of volume 2 made me cry tears of joy that I found this curriculum!
Early Years will sneak the arts into your daily routine! You’ll listen to classical music while you play and read about different composers.
I had to laugh when my son pretended one of his toy figures was 19th-century German composer, Fanny Mendelssohn…all on his own!
My 4-year-old’s favorite part of the Early Years was picture study. Preschoolers can examine famous paintings, play fun memory games with the artwork, and watch optional videos about the diverse artists.
S.T.E.M. (Volume 2 only, Volume 1 has integrated science and math)
Here you will find short (and optional) “science, technology, engineering, and math” hands-on activities. These often look like an easy experiment with household items or building a simple machine together.
We loved completing the “sink or float” challenge with hand-crafted aluminum boats!
Kindness and Connectivity (Volume 1 only)
As a former school counselor, I wish both volumes included this essential topic. However, sadly you will be hard-pressed to find any specific social-emotional development activities in other homeschool preschool programs so I’ll take what I can get!
In Volume 1, you’ll empower your child to complete an act of weekly kindness, connection activity, or work on building a social-emotional skill together (e.g., verbalizing feelings through puppet play).
Nature is truly the heart of this curriculum! Get outside with your child, explore and make key observations in an ongoing nature notebook project.
The Early Years’ “Kitchen Classroom” activities are a great reminder that as homeschoolers, learning happens anywhere and everywhere. Create a favorite snack starting with the letter you’re working on while practicing measuring and counting skills.
Adaptable daily/weekly lessons
“Don’t you ever bump heads?” “How do you get him to do his work?”
These are just a few examples of the questions I (and many other homeschooling parents) often receive.
Of course, we are by no means immune to the inevitable ups and downs of the early childhood years. However, preschool learning should never look like a battleground.
Homeschool should not resemble a traditional classroom when you choose a program like Blossom and Root.
A child in the Blossom and Root curriculum will unlikely be able to tell you what is “school” and what is everyday exploration and play. This is the key to fostering an early love of learning.
If your child does not connect with a particular activity, you can adapt the lesson, try a different activity, or go play and revisit the lesson later.
There are loads of flexible activities and lesson options to choose from in Blossom and Root Early Years, making it easy to follow your child’s lead.
Sidenote: If you are experiencing daily power struggles or are interested in learning more about a positive, authoritative approach to parenting, I invite you to join my free 30-day challenge below:
Flexible, “open-and-go” activities
As a working homeschool parent herself, it is evident that Kristina appreciates the value of your time!
While you will need to reserve time up front to review the parent manual, learn the “rhythm” of the curriculum, and gather/purchase a few materials, you’ll do minimal preparation on a day-to-day basis.
If I prepped the evening before, it took me about five minutes to set up for the next day. This is except for when my son saw me and wanted to dive into the new activities right away!
“Long-term” notebook activities (nature notebook & optional writing notebook)
While the idea of a “long-term project” may sound intense for preschool, it’s super low-key and a great way to watch your child grow.
Bonus: It is a fun way for kids to showcase for grandparents or other loved ones what they have been up to in homeschooling this year!
There is also an optional writing notebook to use throughout the year. Again, writing is low-key in the Early Years.
Kristina, along with many early childhood experts, advocates for less “formal” writing during the preschool years due to children’s immature hand development and the need for play-based learning.
Volume 1 and Volume 2 options
Blossom and Root Early Years is a curriculum that can grow with your child throughout their preschool experience.
Early Years as a whole consists of two 36-week programs, sold both separately and together. Volume 1 targets preschool children ages 2-4 and will run you $22.*
Volume 2 is geared towards 4-5-year-old children in their pre-Kindergarten year and sells for $45.*
If you’re questioning which volume will work best for your child, you can download a free sample of each curriculum from Blossom and Root. I also highlight key differences in the subject areas section of this post.
Bundle and Save!
If your child is under age 4 or you have younger children coming down the pike, you can save $8* by purchasing both volumes 1 and 2 together.
If you’re into planning (and saving $20*), Blossom and Root also offers an Early Years Volume 1 and 2 bundle with their complete Kindergarten curriculum.
*Prices listed reflect costs set by Blossom and Root at the time of this post publication and are subject to change.
My 4-year-old takes play very seriously and is quick to resist activities that could stray him from that daily goal.
Fortunately, Blossom and Root fit in perfectly with his “ideal day of play” and he viewed the activities as fun and exciting.
In particular, the picture book selections, art study, and music study have opened his eyes to new people, characters, and experiences which he loves to incorporate into his imaginative play.
Although he’s a nature lover and loves digging in the dirt, he sometimes resists the transition from indoor to outdoor play. The nature study activities helped get us out more by giving him a “mission” to complete!
Full disclosure, I felt a little overwhelmed when I first looked at a digital copy of the Early Years curriculum! This could just be me, as I don’t do well with reading “digitally.”
Once I had the curriculum printed into a physical, coil-bound manual at FedEx, I felt so much better! I had them add tabs to the manual as well, such as “schedule,” “activity lists,” and “links.” This is all optional, but it’s what worked for me.
Once we got going, I wholeheartedly fell in love with Early Years! Kristina’s experience as a classroom teacher and a homeschool mom shines through. She’s earned my trust as far as my kids’ education, which I don’t take lightly.
Making simple handmade tools in the Volume 2 curriculum, such as a number line helped my son count to higher numbers with numerical comprehension.
Lastly, as a second-year homeschooler, Blossom and Root increased my confidence. Choosing and adapting the activities that worked best for us was a huge game changer.
What I like/dislike about Blossom & Root’s Early Years Curriculum
What I like
The diversity and depth of the subject matter make Blossom and Root a standout from other digital download homeschool preschool competitors.
Although your child will still learn them, you won’t find yourself running boring drills of letters and numbers all day. Kristina makes creative suggestions on incorporating learning into your child’s free play time.
A major plus for me is that Blossom and Root curricula extend through fifth grade. Their Kindergarten program is my short list of curricula for next year since we are already acquainted with the rhythm of the preschool program and have loved it so much!
What I dislike
As mentioned earlier, the manual layout took some getting used to for me. We were accustomed to using Busy Toddler’s Playing Preschool program, which is less comprehensive, but daily lessons print on a single page.
You will need to flip around to find sections such as the weekly schedule template, math activity lists, and optional video links.
If you struggle to read material online like I do, budget out your printing costs before purchasing. Printing everything out into a coil-bound book with tabs from FedEx ran me a little over $30.
For me, this extra cost was well worth it to feel organized and it still cost much less than a traditional curriculum.
How to get started with Blossom and Root Early Years
Whether you want to purchase a single-volume curriculum, bundle and save with both years, or download a free program sample, you can head on over to Blossom and Root to get started.
After checkout, you’ll receive a digital download of your curriculum and can get to learning as quickly as you’d like!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Blossom and Root Early Years Homeschool Program
FAQ #1: Is Blossom and Root a good curriculum?
Yes! As a former professional school counselor and homeschooling mom, I have reviewed many other homeschool preschool curricula and Blossom and Root is a front-runner for me.
Not only is Blossom and Root a high-quality program in terms of academic development, but the activities set your child up for a love of learning from day one.
Having worked very closely for many years with students who say they “hate school,” avoid schoolwork, and give up easily, I cannot express how essential this is in a preschool program.
FAQ #2: Is Blossom and Root religious?
Blossom and Root Early Years is a secular (non-religious) curriculum. The program’s flexibility will work seamlessly with any supplemental curricula (religious or otherwise) you may use.
FAQ #3: What type of curriculum is Blossom and Root?
Blossom and Root Early Years is an “open-and-go,” play-based homeschool preschool program sold only in digital download format.
FAQ #4: Is Blossom and Root Montessori?
Technically speaking, a Montessori learning experience cannot fully be captured in a pre-packaged homeschool program. Certified Montessori instructors undergo specific training, and the student experience is highly individualized and self-led.
However, you can easily incorporate Montessori principles into your Blossom and Root Early Years experience, such as giving your child choice within the vast program activities.
The Last Thing You Need to Know About This Blossom and Root Early Years Curriculum Review
If you feel overwhelmed trying to choose “the perfect” homeschool preschool curricula, you are not alone. I’ve been there as have most homeschool parents at some point in the journey.
The truth is early learning opportunities for your child are already all around you. A program like Blossom and Root will simply give you the tools to find them.
Blossom and Root Early Years will help ensure your child learns within those precious moments of early childhood play, imagination, and adventure.
Remember, they are only little for such a little while!