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Introduction to Early Childhood Education and Curriculum Planning
CE 101 Introduction to Early Childhood Education and Curriculum Planning Unit 4 Seminar
Unit 4 Overview This unit focuses on learning environments that encourage the students to become actively engaged in activities that are similar to their everyday experiences. These experiences encourage the students to be creative and to use their imagination. When students are involved in the learning process and they are able to express their interests, the outcome is a positive one. You also will learn classroom management strategies that will help develop a positive learning environment.
Objectives After completing this unit, you will be able to:
Describe a quality early childhood environment Explain the importance of quality environments
Seminar Question #1 When a child enters the classroom they should see an attractive space. Use your 5 senses to describe it. Jump in!
Is the space warm and homelike? Share examples… Please share!
Seminar Question #2 Is the space warm and homelike? Share examples… Please share!
Questions to Evaluate an Early Childhood Center
What kind of training and education do the teachers have? Are the teachers and kids engaged in conversations? Can teachers tell you not only what they are doing, but why? Does the program use a curriculum to guide learning? Does the program welcome and involve families? Does the space have separate learning centers (reading, art, dramatic play, writing, etc.) and a well-equipped playground?
Qualities of High Quality Teachers
Well-trained and have received specialized training in early childhood education; Participate in professional development; Respect the cultural and linguistic diversity of the children and their families; Take time to observe and assess children’s progress; Develop activities that are developmentally appropriate and that address the developmental domains Physical Social emotional Cognitive
Physical Development Fine motor skills (small muscles)
Gross motor skills (large muscles) Balance Movement control
Fine Motor Skills: Grasping
Grasping reflex Reflex present at birth resulting in infants grasping any object placed in their palm Ulnar grasp Clumsy grasp with fingers folder over the object Pincer grasp Using the forefinger and thumb in opposition to grasp small objects (Martin & Fabes, 2009) 9
Handedness 92% of children are right-handed
Influenced more by genetics than environment Stable preferences emerge at around 3-4 years Relates to brain organization Right-handed children Tend to have stronger lateralization of the brain Show superior language skills (Martin & Fabes, 2009) 10
Gross Motor Skills Lifting the Head and Sitting
Crawling, Creeping and Standing Variations in Crawling Walking Running Jumping Throwing Catching (Martin & Fabes, 2009) 11
Gross Motor Skills Key factors
Continuing development of visual systems Improved communication between hemispheres Balance Practice and imitating others (Martin & Fabes, 2009) 12
Getting along with others Understanding Regulating Expressing feelings Developing moral and ethical beliefs (Martin & Fabes, 2009)
Early Emotional Development
Developing a Sense of Trust Smiling Laughter Social Referencing Crying Anger Temper Tantrums Self-Conscious Emotions Play (Martin & Fabes, 2009) 14
Attachment Theory Infants use caregivers as a secure base
When they feel threatened, they approach the caregivers When they feel safe, they explore the environment (Martin & Fabes, 2009) 15
Thought process Language Intellectual skills Creativity
Are there learning centers? Name a few… Any thoughts?
Question # 3 Are there learning centers? Name a few… Any thoughts?
Learning Centers Small areas within the classroom that are designated for child centered learning Children are encouraged to reinforce their prior learning with concrete items, explore the learning through hands on activities, socially engage with other children Teachers are supportive and encouraging but not directing play
Types of Learning Centers
Block Center: provides practice with social skills as gross and fine motor skills are developed. Mathematical concepts such as shape, size, balance, and counting can be explored. Visual discrimination skills are reinforced. Opportunities for creative dramatic play can enhance communication skills and vocabulary. Sand/Water Center: develops sensory awareness and fine motor skills, augments concepts involving space, measurement and volume. Housekeeping/Dramatic Play Center: provides opportunities to role-play home experiences in order to increase social development and communication skills.
Types of Learning Centers
Cooking Center: provides activities to enhance fine motor skill development, augment nutritional information and experiences, and add to health and safety awareness. Math Center: offers children the opportunity to work with manipulatives and develop counting skills, understanding of numbers and number relationships, math vocabulary, fine motor skills, sorting and classification skills. Art Center: provides students with the opportunity to develop creativity and imagination, fine motor skills, pre-writing skills, vocabulary and color concepts. Writing Center: develops fine motor skills, develops left-to-right patterns, oral to written language expression.
Types of Learning Centers
Listening Center: increases vocabulary growth, develops listening skills and oral language skills, augments reading readiness skills (visual discrimination, letter recognition and rhyming words) Music Center: develops an appreciation for different types of music, enhances a sense of rhythm, strengthens auditory discrimination, develops small and large muscle coordination, provides opportunities for creative expression through movement. Puzzles and Games Center: provides social involvement while developing eye-hand coordination.
Question # 4 List a few additional key ingredients for establishing a successful learning environment? Please share!
The teacher should view the child as a whole person (holistically) Observations should be performed of the child as an individual and as part of a group Learning Theories should be considered in the plan Teaching is from the heart (Follari, 2007, p. 6).
Learning experiences should be designed to enhance development Development is usually in predictable, sequential patterns. Teachers should take into account that each individual does progress differently Some skills may be categorized within one domain The majority of skills can be addressed on an integrated level (Follari, 2007, p.5).
Unit 6 Project Create a Parent Involvement Plan in response to the following scenario: Imagine you are working with one and two year olds in a child care center. The majority of the children’s parents work two jobs and have a difficult time participating in the center's activities. Whenever the center plans an event, your parental involvement is lower than desired. The center has tried to increase parental involvement – through such methods as calling to remind parents and sending home notices – but is not having any luck.
Unit 6 Project The assignment requires a plan to be created.
Step 1: Identify the issue. Step 2: Discuss your beliefs about the situation. Step 3: Formulate conclusions and offer suggestions to the director of the child care center. Step 4: Create a Parent Involvement Plan for the teachers to use and refer to often. This plan should include various activities to involve parents. It should discuss how to communicate and advertise the events and who will be involved in preparing the event and making sure it runs smoothly.
Considerations for Projects
Provide a title page and references page Use APA Quick Reference Guide under Course Home Menu of course Use your textbook Use the rubric in the syllabus for a guideline
In-text Citation For example:
Meeting the developmental domains is a role of the early childhood professional (Follari, 2011). According to Follari (2011), meeting the developmental domains is a role of the early childhood professional. Follari (2011) stated, “meeting the developmental domains is a role of the early childhood professional” (p. 233).
Weekly Reminders Complete Readings Browse Web Resource
Respond to Discussion Questions Interact with Classmates Attend Seminar or complete Seminar option Complete Learning Activities Complete Graded Review questions, concerns, etc.
The teacher is one who made two ideas grow where only one grew before.
Closing thought! The teacher is one who made two ideas grow where only one grew before. - Unknown
Thank you! Thank you for joining me! It has been a pleasure share with you again this evening! If you ever need anything… me!
References Follari, L. (2010). Foundations and best practices in early childhood education: History, theories, and approaches to learning. Boston: Pearson. Jupiter Images Corporation, (2010). Clipart.com. Retrieved May 10, 2010 from
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