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Pre-K Curriculum and Instruction


Instruction--Under the theory of constructivism, ... continual and reciprocal relation among teachers, ... The International Reggio Exchange, ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Pre-K Curriculum and Instruction

Pre-K Curriculum and Instruction
  • Patricia H. Ging, EdD
  • Associate Professor of Education
  • Tennessee Wesleyan College
  • 423.746.5237

  • "The stronger the start, the better the finish."
  • Those words, Secretary of Education Richard Riley
    says, should be our motto for early childhood
  • http//
  • Education World 8/10/2000

Curriculum and Instruction
  • Covers a wide range of areas
  • General Instruction and Specific Subjects

Curriculum and Instruction
  • Teachers of young children must know
  • What to teach
  • When to teach
  • How to teach

Curriculum and Instruction
  • Education should interconnect concepts across the

Curriculum and Instruction
  • Learning involves knowledge of the subject as
    well as understanding the process
  • The teacher should have a strong understanding of
    detailed material as well as the processes of
    child development

General Instruction
  • The curriculum process
  • Structuring a curriculum
  • Implementing a curriculum
  • Revising or modifying a curriculum
  • No Common Core Standards
  • Aligning a curriculum to reflect state standards
  • http//

Teacher Evaluation
  • I Can Statements
  • Who can count to ten?
  • I can count to ten!

General Instruction
  • How routines and transitions reflect a young
    childs needs
  • Balance
  • Order
  • Depth
  • Variety
  • Structure
  • Challenge
  • Physical Activity

General Instruction
  • Instructional strategies
  • Play
  • Small groups
  • Cooperative learning
  • Inquiry
  • Discovery learning
  • Learning centers
  • Teacher-directed learning
  • Theme
  • Directed reading

General Instruction
  • Major theories and models of programmed
  • Constructivism
  • Montessori
  • Project approach
  • High/Scope
  • Reggio Emilia

General Information
  • What is meant by constructivism? The term refers
    to the idea that learners construct knowledge for
    themselves---each learner individually (and
    socially) constructs meaning---as he or she
    learns. Constructing meaning is learning there
    is no other kind. The dramatic consequences of
    this view are twofold
  • 1) we have to focus on the learner in thinking
    about learning (not on the subject/lesson to be
  • 2) There is no knowledge independent of the
    meaning attributed to experience (constructed) by
    the learner, or community of learners.
  • Dewey, Piaget and Vigotsky

General Instruction
  • Montessori classroom
  • It is necessary for the teacher to guide the
    child without letting him feel her presence too
    much, so that she may always be ready to supply
    the desired help, but may never be the obstacle
    between the child and his experience.
  • Dr. Maria Montessori

General Information
  • What is a Project? A project is an in-depth
    investigation of a topic undertaken by a class, a
    group of children, or an individual child in an
    early childhood classroom or at home.

General Information
  • High/Scope uses an active learning approach to
    educating children, imparting skills that will
    support their development through school and into
    young adulthood. It uses an open educational
    framework that provides teachers and caregivers
    with a blueprint for daily routine, classroom and
    playground organization, teacher-child
    interaction, and teacher-child assessment that
    encourages independent thinking, initiative, and

  • In 1962, the High/Scope Perry Preschool Program
    was initiated in Ypsilanti, MI, as a small,
    carefully designed research and curriculum
    development project to help low-income, at-risk
    children in the community gain a positive start
    at education and life through a high-quality
    preschool program. The High/Scope approach blends
    the knowledge of Jean Piaget, a Swiss
    psychologist who studied learning and development
    patterns of infants and children, with practical
    teaching experience in the classroom and other
    educational settings. Long-term studies show the
    High/Scope approach promotes the healthy
    development of children and provides long-lasting
    benefits throughout adulthood.

General Instruction
  • The following information is extracted from
    Carnegie Mellon Cyert Center for Early
  • "The curriculum is not child centered or teacher
    directed. The curriculum is child originated and
    teacher framed...We have given great care in
    selecting the term 'negotiated curriculum'
    instead of emergent or child centered curriculum.
    We propose that 'negotiated curriculum' better
    captures the constructive, continual and
    reciprocal relation among teachers, children and
    parents and better captures the negotiations
    among subject matter representational media and
    the children's current knowledge."  Innovations
    in Early Education The International Reggio
    Exchange, vol. 3, no.

The following overview of the Reggio Emilia
Approach was taken from a packet of information
available at The Hundred Languages of Children
traveling exhibit
  • Hailed as an exemplary model of early childhood
    education (Newsweek, 1991), the Reggio Emilia
    approach to education is committed to the
    creation of conditions for learning that will
    enhance and facilitate children's construction of
    "his or her own powers of thinking through the
    synthesis of all the expressive, communicative
    and cognitive languages" (Edwards and Forman,
    1993). The Reggio Emilia approach to early
    childhood education is a city-run and sponsored
    system designed for all children from birth
    through six years of age. The Reggio Emilia
    approach can be viewed as a resource and
    inspiration to help educators, parents, and
    children as they work together to further develop
    their own educational programs.

General Instruction
  • Curriculum integration as it relates to
  • Cognitive tasks demanded from a lesson, teaching
    practice, or questioning technique

General Instruction
  • How to elicit and encourage in-depth responses
    and metacognitive thinking from children at
    age-appropriate levels
  • Techniques for creating effective bridges between
    curriculum goals and students previous
    experiences (or lack of previous experiences)

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Design a series of literacy lessons for early
    childhood education and indicate the state
    standards for which the lessons have been
  • Develop activities that involve a variety of
    instructional strategies and focus on one
    learning concept (e.g., how play, inquiry, and
    learning centers could be used to teach number
    concepts to 4-year-old children).

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Design a learning activity that incorporates
    science, mathematics, and literacy. Indicate
    which areas of the curriculum will be integrated
    into the lesson.
  • What would be some appropriate questions that
    would elicit in-depth responses and encourage
    children to focus on their thinking strategies?
    What would be inappropriate questions for young

Mathematics and Numeracy
  • Developmentally appropriate practices in lessons
    based on mathematical concepts
  • Design
  • Implementation
  • Evaluation

Mathematics and Numeracy
  • Mathematical concepts
  • Estimation
  • Geometry
  • Number sense and numeration
  • Whole-number operations

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Design a lesson for 5-year-old children that will
    introduce basic geometrical concepts. What
    instructional strategies would you use? How would
    you evaluate the effectiveness of your lesson?
  • Identify a state standard for each of the
    following mathematical concepts estimation,
    geometry, number sense and numeration, and
    whole-number operations.

  • Developmentally appropriate practice in lessons
    that promote oral language expression and
    literacy in children
  • Design
  • Implementation
  • Evaluation

  • Importance of providing children with a
    literacy-rich environment
  • Printed material
  • As source of information
  • For pleasure or recreation
  • As a means of recording or communicating

  • Availability of reading, writing, and listening
    materials, computers, printers, and audiovisual

  • Specific literacy concepts
  • Writing process
  • Phonemic awareness
  • Sentence decoding
  • Word families
  • Root words
  • Phonics

  • Characteristics of quality childrens books
  • Balanced collections that reflect a wide variety
    of genres and reflect the makeup of the community
  • Books that have strong story lines,
    age-appropriate themes, illustrations, and/or
    read-aloud possibilities

  • Specific literacy teaching strategies
  • Grapheme-phoneme correspondence
  • Journal writing
  • Shared reading
  • Cueing systems
  • Rubrics
  • Reflective logs

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Describe a literacy-rich environment for young
    children. Explain how the components of the
    environment will foster literacy concepts.
  • Identify each of the following literacy teaching
    strategies and how each strategy could be used to
    help a student for whom English is a second
    language grapheme-phoneme correspondence,
    journal writing, shared reading, cueing system,
    rubrics, and reflective logs.

Sample Praxis Questions
  • How do phonemic awareness, sentence decoding,
    word families, root words, and phonics support
    literacy development? Identify each of these
    specific literacy concepts and the role each
    plays in literacy development.
  • Design a unit that incorporates the writing
    process into daily activities. Specify each stage
    of the writing process within the unit.

  • Developmentally appropriate practice in lessons
    that develop each childs innate curiosity about
    the world and broaden each childs procedural and
    thinking skills for investigating the world,
    solving problems, and making decisions
  • Design
  • Implementation
  • evaluation

  • General principles of scientific inquiry
  • Cause and effect
  • Systems
  • Scale
  • Models
  • Change
  • Variations
  • Structure and function

Pre-K Standards
  • http//Pre-K Standards

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Choose a grade level and design an Earth science
    unit that identifies goals, state standards,
    activities, and evaluation.
  • Think about ways in which the principles of
    scientific inquiry can be employed for developing
    a childs innate curiosity about the world, for
    broadening a childs procedural and thinking
    skills for investigating the world, solving
    problems, and making decisions.

Social Studies and Character Inquiry
  • Developmentally appropriate practice in learning
    experiences that promote cultural and character
  • Design
  • Implementation
  • Evaluation

Social Studies and Character Inquiry
  • Ability to design, implement, and evaluate
    lessons that develop the social studies
  • History
  • Geography
  • Economics

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Design an activity that promotes cultural and
    character education. Include extension activities
    and evaluation procedures.
  • Develop an activity that would involve multiple
    social studies disciplines (e.g., history,
    geography, and economics).

Creative Arts and Aesthetics
  • Developmentally appropriate practice in visual
    and performing arts lessons that engage and
    broaden each childs experiences and skills
  • Design
  • Implementation
  • Evaluation
  • Video

Creative Arts and Aesthetics
  • Ability to integrate the arts into content area
  • Appropriate responses
  • to childrens work

Creative Arts and Aesthetics
  • Incorporating Art into Daily Routines
  • In the classroom
  • Potted plants - Various leaf colors, shapes, and
    blooming schedules
  • Some children may notice and remark about the
    diversity in the beauty
  • Others will likely do so with some teacher

Creative Arts and Aesthetics
  • A Unique and Wonderful Area
  • Use a low table and an attractive tablecloth for
    displaying interesting objects
  • Shell collections, cut flowers in vases, rocks in
    various sizes and textures
  • Change regularly to increase the childrens
  • Children can be encouraged to bring in wonderful
    objects for the showcase

Creative Arts and Aesthetics
  • Creative Experiences
  • After a storm, the children can collect branches
    or other items from the playground
  • Use these items in art projects or in the
    Wonderful Showcase Area

Creative Arts and Aesthetics
  • White Board
  • Children can be assigned to decorate a portion of
    the white board. This could be a designated daily

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Design a learning activity for visual and
    performing arts that would be appropriate for a
    5-year-old child. Identify the learning goal for
    this activity and the means for evaluating the
    success of this goal.
  • How can creative arts and aesthetics be used to
    enhance learning in other content areas?

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Develop a unit that integrates the arts into
    content area studies. Include activities that
    integrate the arts with mathematics, literacy,
    science, and social studies.
  • What is the value of creative arts and aesthetics
    in education?

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Should creative arts and aesthetics be integrated
    with content area studies? Identify several ways
    in which creative arts and aesthetics enhance
    learning. Are there times when creative arts and
    aesthetics might hinder learning?

Physical Education and Health
  • Developmentally appropriate practice in the
    content discipline designed to strengthen gross
    and fine motor skills and foster a healthy
  • Safety procedure and
  • precautions.
  • Video

Physical Education and Health
  • Impact of medical conditions and procedures to
    handle such conditions
  • Epilepsy
  • Diabetes
  • Use of injectable medications to prevent allergic
  • Handling of blood

Sample Praxis Questions
  • What are some activities that could be conducted
    in physical education sessions to strengthen a
    5-year-old students fine motor skills
  • What is the relationship between gross and fine
    motor skill development?
  • What safety information should be conveyed to

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Design a unit on gross motor skills for
    6-year-old students. What safety procedures and
    precautions should be considered in developing
    this unit?
  • What safety information should be shared with
    students to ensure their safety and understanding
    of medical conditions?

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Outline the important points that would need to
    be discussed during an in-service workshop on the
    impact of medical conditions and the procedures
    for handling such conditions. Include information
    concerning epilepsy, diabetes, use of an EpiPen
    for severe allergies, and handling of blood.

  • Appropriate use of technology in the early
    childhood classroom
  • How to adapt technology for use with students
    with special needs
  • Ability to evaluate
  • effective use of
  • technology in the
  • early childhood classroom

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Describe an early childhood classroom that
    provides students with a variety of opportunities
    to interact with technology. Include one activity
    for each form of technology specifically
    indicating the form of technology and how
    technology will enhance learning for the student.

Sample Praxis Questions
  • How can technology be adapted for use with
    students with special needs? Indicate adaptations
    for physical, emotional, and educational needs

Sample Praxis Questions
  • Develop a unit that will incorporate technology
    with literacy. Indicate specific activities that
    will enhance literacy learning. Develop
    assessment tools that will evaluate the effective
    use of technology to attain the specified goals.

  • Discussion
  • Questions

  • http//
  • Education World 8/10/2000 (Study Guide for the
    Praxis Education of Young Children Tests)