Preschoolers usually develop their vital skills for learning before the age of eight years in early childhood. A curriculum for preschoolers should foster skills that are developmentally appropriate for gaining academic advantages for later years. Failure to learn such skills among preschoolers can have severe consequences in later academic performance.
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The role of the administrator in the program and curriculum planning is different from that of the teacher
National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) notes that administrator’s roles are mainly planning, implementing, and evaluating an early care and education program (National Association for the Education of Young Children, 2005). These roles entail both leadership and management activities.
The administrator offers the staff a general idea of the curriculum for preschoolers. This is mainly in the curriculum mapping for preschoolers. The administrator organizes the publication of record for all classes for enhancing collaboration and support among teachers.
The administrator’s roles become analogous in relation to the role of the teacher. In other words, the administrator clarifies the preferred performance and ensures that there are necessary conditions for achieving such performances. This may be necessary for setting a school continuum for successive years.
In some cases, the administrator may work together with teachers in order to develop a suitable activity for learners as a way of facilitating the achievement of the desired goals. This also includes the provision of the necessary resources and discussion of the curriculum map with teachers.
Administrators also provide guidance to teachers with regard to assessment of preschool learners’ performance. This maintains the relationship between school practices and the national, state, and local standards for a preschool curriculum.
The administrator may also work with curriculum developers in order to enhance a diverse approach to curriculum development and planning. This may include the decision on the scope and sequence of the curriculum content. In this context, the administrator must ensure that curriculum developers update contents as learners become dynamic. In this regard, teachers must also note that teaching is dynamic and needs continual improvement to allow preschoolers to acquire the necessary skills.
The administrator must also focus on the development of staff for learners. The administrator must ensure that teachers have adequate time and resources for staff development and training to plan for curricula implementation. In addition, he must encourage collaboration among teachers.
Finally, the administrator must also engage parents in education of their children. This may require parents to contribute positively toward learning of their children.
Learning and developmental needs of preschoolers
Preschoolers are in the process of development, and they show interests in the surrounding environment. Preschoolers use all their senses to explore the world around them, which reflect their eagerness to learn through experiences and play. Such activities help them to develop skills in various areas of learning.
Preschoolers experience physical development, social and emotional development with peers and intellectual development that allows them to express themselves.
A developmentally appropriate program (DAP) for preschoolers must address three significant areas that cover developments in children. First, DAP must have skills that preschoolers need at their age based on research findings. The program must also account for diverse needs and backgrounds of every learner.
Finally, DAP should also reflect cultural and social backgrounds of learners. It is important for the administrator or the teacher to inquire about the “learner’s developmental history and family background” (Gadzikowski, 2013) during enrolement in the school. This assists teachers in understanding the child’s physical, social, emotional, and intellectual needs.
Addressing cognitive, social, emotional, and physical development of preschoolers as well as classroom management and the daily schedule
A balanced DAP should address physical, emotional, social, and cognitive needs of preschoolers. Curriculum developers must note that all these aspects are interrelated, and teachers must implement them simultaneously for preschoolers.
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The DAP must address physical and interactive needs of preschoolers because these are the major activities they do. Such activities may look like play to any observer, but a well-designed classroom encourages preschoolers to engage in social learning concerning themselves and their peers.
Preschoolers’ programs should have songs and games together with cognitive developmental contents, which can develop literacy skills. Preschoolers can engage in the following activities:
- Walking along straight and curved lines and learn about balancing
- Sorting objects
- Mixing colors
- Engaging in stories
- Songs and dance
- Make objects
Classroom management should consist of having a leader to manage some tasks like paper passer, line leader, and snack leader among others. They can change roles on a weekly basis.
The teacher should manage transition among preschoolers. The teacher can manage transition by helping preschoolers to finish their tasks as scheduled and proceed to the next activity. First, the teacher must have a set of daily activities. Setting a structure shall help preschoolers to follow routines for a smooth transition.
Second, the teacher should use a timer to control time management. He can signal learners and count for the last few left minutes to the end. Finally, the teacher can change the location of learners during different tasks. Such changes help learners to know specific locations for various activities. Teachers must plan their classroom management in advance for effective outcomes.
The daily schedule helps the teacher to manage the classroom and daily activities. The teacher must assist preschoolers to manage their time for a smooth transition from one activity to another.
The Daily Schedule
|8:30AM||Arrival||Teacher meets learners and take attendance record|
|8:30 – 9:30||Play||Preschoolers play freely in the classroom|
|9:30 -10:00||Breakfast||Preschoolers are likely to be hungry at this time|
|10:00 – 10:15||Socialization||Learners exchange ideas, activities, objects, sing, dance|
|10:15 – 10:45||Content-related activity||Learners engage in learning curriculum contents that reinforce skills e.g., arts, songs, painting|
|10:45 – 11:15||Math activity||Preschoolers engage in number works|
|11:15 – 11:45||Theme-related activity||Teacher selects specific activities for learners|
|11:45 – 12:15||Science, P.E, music||Teacher must choose a specific day for these activities|
|12:15 – 12:30||Clean up||Preschoolers tidy up classroom, wash hands, and prepare for lunch|
|12:30 – 1:30||Lunch break|
|1:30 -2:00||Outdoor activities||Preschoolers may play outside the classroom|
|2:00 – 3:00||Independent reading |
|Teacher reads for the student after play |
At age four, children can recognize letters
Teacher assesses the progress of learners on different skills
|3:00 – 3:45||Art activities||Activities may be related to themes as in the curriculum |
Creative expression among learners
|3:45 – 4:15||Independent play||Preschoolers can play on their own|
|4:15 – 4:30||Snack||Healthy snack for the kids|
|4:30||Going home and goodbye||Teacher reminds learners of the day’s activities|
Explain how your program aligns with the philosophy, vision, and mission statements you created in Week One
Preschoolers learn best by playing and interacting with others. The DAP aims to create relaxed environments for learners that enhance their interaction, play, and retention of concepts through theme-related contents, reading, language, mathematics, songs and independent play among others.
How the program aligns with NAEYC’s indicators of an effective curriculum
This DAP is for preschoolers. Before the age of eight years, preschoolers need to develop their skills in physical, cognitive, social, emotional aspects of development.
The NAEYC’s indicators for an effective curriculum emphasizes that a good DAP should be “thoughtfully planned, challenging, engaging, developmentally appropriate, culturally and linguistically responsive, comprehensive, and likely to promote positive outcomes for all young children” (National Association for the Education of Young Children, 2009).
This DAP has included several activities to ensure that preschoolers are actively engaged in all learning process. There are clear aims based on evidence from effective methods of developing a curriculum for preschoolers. DAP also accounts for values in teaching as learners explore environments and play on their own.
This is a comprehensive approach to preschoolers’ learning activities, which also focus on theme-related contents from the national curriculum and align them with the local and state standards. It is likely to benefit preschoolers.
The administrator ensures training and support for teachers with the required resources. DAP gives learners roles in the classroom as leaders, promotes the use of physical learning, effective program management, and healthy habits among learners. In addition, it recognizes the role of teachers in assessing learners’ progress.
Overall, the program relies on “developmentally, culturally, and linguistically appropriate and effective teaching approaches that enhance each child’s learning and development in the context of the program’s curriculum goals” (National Association for the Education of Young Children, 2008). It is also consistent with the philosophy of preschoolers’ curriculum contents.
Gadzikowski, A. (2013). Administration of early childhood education programs. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc.
National Association for the Education of Young Children. (2005). Program Administrator Definition and Competencies. Web.
National Association for the Education of Young Children. (2008). Overview of the NAEYC: Early Childhood Program Standards. Web.
National Association for the Education of Young Children. (2009). Where We Stand on Curriculum, Assessment, and Program Evaluation. Web.