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We welcome you to the St. Cloud State University (SCSU) Lindgren Child Care Center, and to the partnership we will share during these early school years.
The need for quality child care is great, and the SCSU Lindgren Child Care Center was established to meet this need by providing quality, convenient and nurturing care to the children of SCSU students, staff and faculty.
Early childhood programs accredited by the National Academy of Early Childhood Programs have voluntarily undergone a comprehensive process of internal self-study, invited external professional review to verify compliance with the Academy's Criteria for High Quality, and been found to be in substantial compliance. The SCSU Lindgren Child Care Center is currently in the Self-Assessment phase of re-accreditation.
Goals for Children
Our overall goal is to provide children with loving care in a safe environment with an educational experience. Specifically, our goals are to give the children the opportunity to:
- Develop a healthy self-concept;
- Develop both socially and emotionally;
- Develop enjoyment of the creative experience;
- Develop trust in adults and peers;
- Develop independence and responsibility for self;
- Develop security and a feeling of success;
- Develop skills in the physical, cognitive and language areas.
The Lindgren Child Care Center classrooms utilize the following curriculum and theoretical approaches that fall under the Constructivist umbrella. The constructivist approach encourages self-directed discovery, hands-on, and experiential learning derived from previous experiences. Depending on the individual children that are enrolled within the different classrooms, the below theorists and approaches are used eclectically to implement the infant curriculum:
Vygotsky- Vygotsky believed that cognitive development was a journey children explored with others. With the assistance of expert partners and guided participation, children are able to connect new experiences with what they already know.
Piaget- Piaget provided support for the idea that children think differently than adults and his research identified several important milestones in the mental development of children. He believed that children went through four stages of cognitive development which helped them understand the world around them, just like a scientists.
Reggio: A constructivist approach that embraces the importance of the natural environment, children’s own thinking and development. It is self-guided through active engagement with people, materials and the environment.
Pedagogical Approach: Hands on approach using the different learning styles such as listening, discovering, discussion and doing.
Project Approach: It is a child-centered philosophy that allows children to become active learners as they work, learn and grow within the environment.
The above theories and approaches are integrated throughout the day, weeks and months to support the children’s learning. They also support the developmental domains contained within the Early Childhood Indicators of Progress (Minnesota Early Learning Guidelines for Birth to 3), along with the environment and the daily routines.
(2 months to 15 months)
Children in the infant area follow individualized schedules which are planned cooperatively by the parents and lead teacher. Each schedule is modified as the child's development and parents' desires dictate. The staff's primary goal is to help infants develop a sense of trust and pleasure in relationships with their care givers, and in their new environment.
Philosophy of the Infant Program
- Infants develop trust when their needs are met quickly and sensitively.
- Infants are competent; they tell us what they need through body language, crying, and gestures. It is our job to read what they are telling us and be responsive to them.
- We respect the babies’ interests, moods, and tempos.
- It is important to provide age-appropriate opportunities for learning in the 4 developmental domains: social-emotional, physical, cognitive, and language development.
- Decisions about curricula and care of the babies are based upon knowledge of child development and developmentally appropriate practice.
- Parent partnership and communication are vital to developing trust and ensuring a smooth transition between home and the program.
The framework of the infant curriculum is guided by the Early Childhood Indicators of Progress (Minnesota Early Learning Guidelines for Birth to 3), as it provides indicators and caregiver strategies for the each of the developmental domains. The Indicators provide a framework for understanding and communicating a common set of developmentally appropriate expectations for the infants in our care, presented within a context of shared responsibility and accountability for helping our youngest learners meet these expectations. The indicators are divided into four domains which reflect the full range of child development.
Domain I: Social and Emotional Development
Domain II: Language Development and Communication
Domain III: Cognitive Development
Domain IV: Physical and Motor Development
(16 months to 32 months)
A structured day is planned indoors and outdoors for these toddler children, dependent on their particular schedules. Appropriate activities foster the growth of each toddler's self-help skills, language development, social awareness, and positive, non-aggressive problem solving. Nap time is scheduled in the afternoon.
The Philosophy of the Toddler Program is to help toddlers feel safe and respected along with encouraging the toddler to develop in all areas (cognitive, social/emotional, language, physical and self-help) according to their individual ability using developmentally age appropriate practice. Relationship with the child and the child’s family is also an important piece of the program. It is important to have parent involvement and create partnership with the parents so that the teacher and parent can work together on their child’s development. (Theorist: Brazelton and Greenspan)
Early Childhood Indicators of Progress: Minnesota’s Early Learning Guidelines for Birth to 3 is the framework for the Toddler Curriculum. The primary purpose of these indicators is to provide an understanding and communicate a common set of developmentally appropriate expectations for young children within a context of shared responsibility and accountability for helping children meet these expectations. The Indicators of Progress are; Research–based, Clearly written, Measurable, Comprehensive, Manageable and Applicable.
Here is the organization of The Early Childhood Indicators of Progress
- Domains-Areas of major development These include: Social and Emotional Development
Language and Communication
Physical and Motor Development
- Components-A component is a subpart of each of the domains.
- Indicators- Indicators define expectations for a specific, observable outcome for the child.
(33 months to 5 years)
Activities of social, motor, language, cognitive, and sensory experiences are planned for the preschool children. They include large and small group activities for the day, music experiences with songs or dance, story telling and role playing, creative movement activities, finger plays, arts and crafts, woodworking, outdoor play and special field trips around campus.
The Philosophy of the Preschool Program is to provide children with endless opportunities to explore and investigate the world in which they live. The children's interests are paired with educational experiences (in all developmental domains) that are relevant, engaging, and meaningful. We believe that children who become active participants in their learning will continue this trait through their educational careers. To assist the children in becoming active learners, we have adopted an emergent (project based) curriculum.
It is only as children search for answers to their own questions via discussion, investigation, and experimentation that they begin to grasp and understand complex concepts that are foundational to later learning. Rather than use teacher directed thematic units, teachers integrate curriculum goals carefully within open-ended projects of inquiry chosen by the children (Katz & Chard, 1989).
The framework is provided by the Early Childhood Indicators of Progress: Minnesota's Early Learning Standards. The primary purpose of these Indicators are to provide a framework for understanding and communicating a common set of developmentally appropriate expectations for young children within a context of shared responsibility and accountability for helping children meet these expectations. These early learning standards are broken down into six main domains, each of which are described in further detail using the links below. The framework provided by the Early Childhood Indicators of Progress is enhanced by the use of The Creative Curriculum® for Preschoolers Assessment tool. This a comprehensive national tool used to in all types of early childhood settings, including inclusive and early intervention programs. To learn more about The Creative Curriculum® for Preschoolers Assessment tool please follow this link: www.teachingstrategies.com
To view the complete Early Childhood Indicators of Progress please follow this link: http://cfl.state.mn.us/mdeprod/groups/EarlyLearning/documents/Publication/009530.pdf