The word “program” in early childhood education refers to “the planning of the curriculum, which also includes the instructional practices, the daily schedule, the routines for caring for children, and the recreational activities, such as outdoor play” (Gadikowski, 2013, Section 4.1). Educational administrators are the instructional leaders of their schools and centers primarily in the planning of curriculum. For this assignment, you will choose a particular age group (infants, toddlers, or preschoolers), and design (outline) a program that is developmentally appropriate.
In your paper,
1. Describe the role of the early childhood administrator as an instructional leader implementing high-quality program models, theory, and curriculum into your early childhood program.
2. Briefly describe the learning and developmental needs of your chosen age group.
3. Analyze how your program will address the cognitive, social, emotional, and physical development of children in this age group (give specific curricular ideas for each area of development), as well as classroom management, individual assessment, and the daily schedule.
4. Explain how your program aligns with the philosophy, vision, and mission statements you created in Week
5. Discuss how your program aligns with the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) indicators of effective curriculum, as outlined in Chapter 4, and found in the position statement Where We Stand on Curriculum, Assessment, and Program Evaluation (Links to an external site.).
6. Discuss a plan of professional development to train staff on how to implement high-quality program models, theory, and curriculum into their specific environments.
The Program Planning as a Leader paper
1. Must be three to four double-spaced pages in length (not including title and references and formatted
2. Must include a separate title page with the following:
Title of paper
Course name and number
3. Must utilize academic voice.
4. Must include an introduction and conclusion paragraph. Your introduction paragraph needs to end with a clear thesis statement that indicates the purpose of your paper.
5. Must use at least two credible sources in addition to the course text and the NAEYC position statement.
6. Must document any information used from sources in APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center’s Citing Within Your Paper
7. Must include a separate references page that is formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.
Development Program for Preschoolers
Surviving in a fraught world with numerous challenges requires human beings to earn critical knowledge and skills that can enhance their ability to surmount common challenges and formulate strategies and methods vital for proper living. This, therefore, makes learning a continuous process. In particular, the information and skills obtained at the formative stages play an integral role in determining one’s ability to interact with the environment and other people and ultimately enhances one’s survival abilities. For example, the skills earned at the preschool level are necessary since they enhance a child’s development and prepare them to face the realities of the school environment. Therefore, it is necessary to design a preschool curriculum that can adequately address a child’s social and language skills and executive function skills and emotional self-regulation skills that are essential at the school entry level.
Proposed Development Program
Generally, the school environment requires the learners to possess different skills that can enhance their ability to learn and make it easier for them to interact and socialize with other people, including fellow learners and teachers. Accordingly, a development program for pre-schoolers should focus not only on cognitive skills but also on social skills to enhance their ability to learn once they start school. Essential skills in this context include language skills, self-regulation, executive functioning skills and socialization skills.
The nature of the school environment requires the learners to possess adequate social skills necessary for interaction not only with the teachers but also with other learners. Besides, active learning requires interaction between students and teachers, necessitating adequate social skills on the learner’s part. Besides enhancing interaction, social skills enable learners to empathize with others in their social group, thus eliminating the possibility of conflicts and other negative aspects that impede learning (Bierman & Motamedi, 2015, 6). As such, a development program for pre-schoolers should enhance the development of social skills in order to enhance the learner’s ability to interact with peers and teachers.
Developing adequate language skills is necessary for proper learning, especially at the formative stages. In particular, proper language skills enhance learners’ ability to express themselves, therefore augmenting the teacher-student interaction (Banu & Çağdaş, 2017, 34). Also, practical communication skills facilitate a child’s cognitive, educational and social development, which are essential for proper learning (Banu & Çağdaş, 2017, 35). Accordingly, a preschool development program should comprise language development strategies in order to ensure children can communicate adequately before joining the school.
Executive Function Skills.
Developing executive function skills is necessary for preschool children. Ordinarily, kids at this level can utilize their memory and deploy individual skills to accomplish specific tasks, even though with help from other parties. This trait indicates that children have developed critical aspects such as self-regulation and cooperation (van Lier & Deater-Deckard, 2016, 3). Although children might exhibit such characteristics at this stage, such characteristics are not fully developed, thus necessitating the need to reinforce such attributes before joining the school (van Lier & Deater-Deckard, 2016, 3). As such, a preschool development plan should ensure children can solve problems be creative and regulate their behaviour.
The Role of The Early Childhood Administrator
Implementation of an early childhood development program requires careful planning regarding the development of areas of student learning, curriculum standards, and testing of student performance. This makes the role of early childhood administrators critically important. Ordinarily, even though an administrator might not be a specialist in all the subjects relating to early childhood development, their job is essential since they provide general guidelines necessary for the formulation of effective programs and policies. For example, an administrator is responsible for setting the quality standards concerning pedagogy and skill testing (Sun, Rao, & Pearson, 2015, 11). In general, the early childhood administrator provides the general guidelines and develops quality standards necessary for effective instructional practice.
Alignment with Philosophy, Mission and Vision
The proposed development program has significant similarities with the philosophy and mission and vision we agreed upon on early childhood education. Specifically, the program’s core objective is to provide a safe and stimulating educational experience that guarantees holistic development for pre-schoolers. Besides, the program will play an integral role in the social, physical, intellectual, and emotional development of pre-schoolers, thereby enabling them to cope with the school environment’s realities.
Alignment with NAEYC Indicators of Effective Curriculum
The proposed development program aligns with the national association’s recommendation for the education of young children on effective curriculum development. In particular, NAEYC recommends that the core objective of a development program is to benefit children (“Where we stand on curriculum assessment and program evaluation”, n.d.). Accordingly, such a program should ensure that children are actively engaged in the learning process. Besides, the program should focus on intentional/objective teaching (“Where we stand on curriculum assessment and program evaluation”, n.d.). In connection to this, the proposed program intends to develop children’s social, language and executive function skills in order to ensure they can actively participate in the learning process.
Professional Development Plan.
Staff education and training are among the essential elements in the formulation and implementation of an early childhood development program. In particular, training staff on the right instructional skills and other aspects necessary for early childhood educators improves the learning experience and general development (Cumming, Sumsion, & Wong, 2015, 8). A staff training program should thus focus on enhancing the educators’ continuum of knowledge in order to improve their ability to respond adequately to the needs of learners at different levels. On the whole, a staff training program should enhance their knowledge and skills in order to improve the learners’ safety and experience.
Life is fraught with different challenges, therefore necessitating information, skills and knowledge that can enhance one’s ability to respond to and surmount such problems. As such, in order to enhance children’s survival, there is a need to impart them with critical skills, especially during their formative stages. For example, teaching youngsters social, language, and executive function skills enhance their ability to interact with teachers and peers, making the learning experience easy and enjoyable. The elements of the proposed curriculum, especially the need for social, language and self-regulation skills, are in tandem with NAEYC’s recommendations on curriculum development. In order to ensure proper implementation, there will be a need to train staff to improve their ability to respond to the learners’ needs.
Bierman, K. L., & Motamedi, M. (2015). Social and emotional learning programs for preschool children. Handbook of social and emotional learning: Research and practice, 135-151.
Banu, U. S. L. U., & Çağdaş, A. (2017). A study on the development of a life-focused foreign language acquisition scale for preschool children: English sample. International Journal of Academic Research in Education, 3(1), 33-53.
Cumming, T., Sumsion, J., & Wong, S. (2015). Rethinking early childhood workforce sustainability in the context of Australia’s early childhood education and care reforms. International Journal of Child Care and Education Policy, 9(1), 2.
Sun, J., Rao, N., & Pearson, E. (2015). Policies and strategies to enhance the quality of early childhood educators. Background paper for EFA Global Monitoring Report.
van Lier, P. A., & Deater-Deckard, K. (2016). Children’s elementary school social experience and executive functions development: Introduction to a special section. Journal of abnormal child psychology, 44(1), 1-6.
Where we stand on curriculum assessment and program evaluation (n.d.) NAEYC n.d. Retrieved from www.naeyc.org/sites/default/files/globally-shared/downloads/PDFs/resources/position-statements/StandCurrAss.pdf