Topics in Early Childhood Education

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Early Childhood Standards

I am currently working on a committee for my state to see how closely our preschool standards are aligned in preparing children for the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for kindergarten. It is always delightful to work with a group that is in tune with what is developmentally appropriate for early childhood children. A number of times during our meetings we have come to the conclusion that it is most appropriate for a certain skill to begin in kindergarten, not preschool. It has also been a pleasant discovery to find that our state preschool standards are providing adequate preparation for most kindergarten skills that are in the CCSS.

While serving on this committee, I have expressed my desire that we provide a usable document that an early childhood teacher can use "at a glance" to prepare her lesson plans. Sometimes we create large documents that many teachers do not take the time to read completely or we use terminology that is not always easy to understand. While I think it is critical for us to create a solid complete document, I also think it is important to have a simpler road map for teachers to use on a daily basis. Unfortunately, teachers don't always have access to complete professional development to help them 'decipher the code' of a government document. Hence, my request that we make a document usable for the masses. We must do that if we want the standards taught regularly in the classroom.



At 7:23 AM, Blogger Jeanne said...

I think that kind of document would be very helpful to a new EC teacher finding her way in the classroom as well as a veteran teacher who wants to be sure he stays on track.

If you come up with this document, would you be willing to share it with us? Do you know of any similar documents available in other states?

At 9:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wyoming is currently working on early childhood standards again trying to also make them more user friendly and align them with the rest of the standards. However, in Wyoming, preschool is not a funded part of the public school system. I believe this is important work to establish these standards, I just worry about the top to bottom processes that are sometimes used and in the end standards are developed that are not appropriate in preschool curriculum. That is why it it so important to have early childhood professionals involved in this decision making process.
- Colleen

At 7:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that an "at a glance" is a fantastic idea. Even if the teacher has read the large document he/she will want to have something handy and easy to reference while making lesson plans.

I also think that it is very important to have preschool standards that are in line with what is expected in kindergarten.

At 11:06 AM, Blogger Ron said...

I teach preschool in Florida and would love to know what the Kindergarten standards are. (At-a-glance would be great.) I'm not sure we are all on the same page as far as preparing preschoolers for Kindergarten. I hear conflicting information.

Secondly, I think many parents would be surprised to hear there are "standards" for preschool. It is amazing to me the parents or population that think preschool and daycare are the same thing! "Don't they just play around at whatever they want? Actual learning starts in Kindergarten, right?" "It's the Kindergarten's job to start the educational ball rolling, right?" Maybe getting the word out to parents that there is intentional learning going on in preschool would help parents see the overall picture too.

At 7:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a preschool teacher and we use the IL Learning Standards as a guide to prepare our preschoolers for kindergarten. However, I do fee that we need one in depth document that we use across the board to teach our children.

At 3:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi I am Gloria J. In reference to Rob I think parents are amazed that preschoolers follow any type of standards. I teach in Alabama and I have seen that some parents think that preschool is a spin off from daycare but not as important as kindergarten. I wish there was some kind of way to reach these parents to inform them that preschool is a building block for their child and us teachers want them to have a strong foundation for the next step in their education

At 7:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi I 'm Cheri from illinois.We also use the Illinois Early Learnings Standards to guide our work.
I agree with Gloria, many parents don't have a clue how important preschool is for young children and the difference it makes in their social emotional development which impacts all other areas of development.
Just last week we had parent orientation and it was my goal to explain to parents the differences between our Head Start Program and the local day cares. I discussed curriculum goals and objectives, observation, assessment individualization and teacher's intentionality in their planning to meet the needs of their children in the classroom. Some parents received the information while others didn't seem to care. It's very sad.

At 1:29 PM, Anonymous Terri said...

For years I have felt there is a gap between the standards that are expected in Kindergarten and the EC standards. We all know that children learn best when they are doing and experiencing things hands on, but Kindergarten seem to jump them straight to tons of seat work. I find myself struggling at times to do what I know is right and preparing them for the shock they will more than likely have in Kindergarten.

At 1:00 AM, Anonymous Early Child Development - What are some of the best ways to to show the importance of early childhood education in our country? said...

The Philippines has way too much work to do. Great Read! May I share please?



Post a Comment

<< Home