Monday, 24 December 2018

10 Effective DAP Teaching Strategies

Developmentally appropriate practices (DAP) ensure that early childhood education offers opportunities for kids to learn  age - appropriate development skills.After all, it is senseless to expect a four -year old to learn in the same manner as a fourteen-year-old!

A successful teacher knows how to choose a strategy that fits correctly a given child in a given situation. Before setting learning goals, it is extremely important to have a clear idea of what the little ones have already acquired in terms of skills and knowledge. Close observation and flexible practice help teachers determine which approach would be effective for a group of kids.

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Ten successful DAP teaching techniques

1. Acknowledge: Let the little ones know that you observe them with full attention. They will be happy when you sit nearby, notice their actions and make positive comments.

2. Encourage: You should always encourage effort and persistence instead of merely evaluating and praising what the little ones have done.

3.Give constructive feedback: Instead of making general comments, offer activity-specific feedback in a constructive manner. (“The ball did not reach the boundary, James! You could hit it harder.”

4.Be a model: You should be for them a model of positive attitude to emulate. Show them by doing instead of giving instructions after instructions. (“Well, that did not work and I should think about the reason why. Try again.” “I apologize, Ben, I honestly missed what you said. Can you please tell me again?”)

5.Demonstrate the right way of doing: Kids learn fast when you demonstrate the right way of doing things. This normally involves a process of completion of things in steps in a particular way (for example writing the letter M).

6.Create challenges: Challenges ensure that the tasks given go beyond what students can normally accomplish. For instance, lay down on a table a number of sticks and ask the children to count them along with you. Then remove some from the table, and ask a few of them to tell you the number of sticks left. This is a great strategy to help children learn how to count; they will do a simple subtraction as well to give the right answer.

7.Ask questions to provoke thinking: It is necessary that kids develop critical thinking from an early age. Asking provoking questions will be useful in this respect. (For instance, “If you are not allowed to speak with your partners, in what other ways could you communicate with them?”)

8.Offer helpful hints: Drop a hint or two to help the little learners go beyond their current level of competence. (“Is there any word you can think of that can rhyme with your name, Bratt? How about mat? What else do you think can rhyme with Bratt and mat?”)

9.Give facts: Give correct information and facts directly to children, providing verbal labels. For instance, “This thing that appears to be a mouse with a small tail is actually known as a vole.”

10.Give proper directions: It is best to give them proper directions for right behavior or action. (“Touch every block just once while counting them.”)

DAP teachers should know closely their students to identify what strategies would work best for them. However, for a successful implementation of these strategies and best learning outcomes, it is very important to create (i) a caring environment, (ii) a well-planned curriculum and (iii) a strong relationship with the children’s families.

Friday, 23 November 2018

Master's Programs in Early Childhood Education

If you are thinking of advancing your career in early childhood education by doing a Master’s program, the wide range of options available will probably leave you confused. You are possibly speculating about the subjects you should take, the alternatives you should consider, and so on.

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Depending on the kind of program you choose, you may be looking at courses and subjects like influence over children of early childhood learning environment, strategies for bridging learning gaps and evaluation of learning environments that cause problems. Here are the core specialization courses in early childhood education:

The core specialization courses

  1. Classroom management strategies: This course is designed to help students understand and appreciate the advantages of utilizing pre-tested practices and strategies. They can demonstrate their effectiveness relative to the proper management of their instruction classes.
  2. Educational leadership foundation: This course introduces the students to all the significant historical, sociological and philosophical foundations of education. In addition, by the time students complete this course, they are able to identify themselves the problem areas and primary gaps in the schooling system of their country.
  3. Children with special needs: This course highlights all the main aspects of and the significance of reviewing every important detail of work with students with special needs. Areas like legal requirements, accommodations, adaptations, typical development, atypical development, and techniques of inclusion are a few of the main aspects studied.
  4. Instruction, assessment and standards-based curriculum: Such courses deal with an imaginative development of curriculum, instructions and assessment plans based on country standards. Areas like the Comprehensive Assessment Systems (CAS), and the role they play in a teacher’s life are some of the crucial aspects under focus here.
Specialized courses

  1. Learning environment during early childhood: This course examines best practices for development of young children in the age group of three to eight.  Concepts such as materials, space, activities or schedules need to be used and learned through practice.
  2. Instruction in relation to literacy and reading during early childhood: Students pursuing this course will learn the best practical and theoretical aspects of teaching reading and writing. They study word identification, vocabulary, phonics and phonemic skills. They learn how to spot problems in reading or writing accurately and the best ways of coping with these difficulties in young children. They will be able to assess in particular the relation between reading, writing and literacy development.
  3. Early childhood education and practicum: Students will have to put in several hours of practical work in this course under the guidance of an instructor. They learn the best application of all concepts and theories they studied while pursuing their program. This is where they will learn what it means to be a teacher in an actual classroom.
Earning a master’s degree in early childhood education can open up several career opportunities. Furthermore, there is enormous scope for acquiring diverse skill sets and knowledge that can help one become a more rounded teacher.

Friday, 26 October 2018

Towards a Career in Early Childhood Education

The need for childcare educators and professionals is on the increase as ever: hundreds of teachers retire every year, and school enrolments keep rising. There is no denying that a solid foundation during early childhood is directly linked to a child's future and overall growth.

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Importance of aptitude

Before embarking on a career in the field of early childhood education, it is important for you to ask questions about your own aptitude: since you will be shaping the future of scores of kids every year, it is imperative that you take your job seriously. Your everyday routine may include a lot of fun and play, but there is at the same time a sense of responsibility of molding young minds.

In case you are planning to work for a degree in early childhood education, you must have enormous patience to deal with children, and be ready to impart loving care all the time. Apart from this, you have to be creative and imaginative enough with good communication skills for engaging kids.

Age group of kids

Professionals working in the early childhood education sector have to handle children of the age group ‘infancy–8 years’. Your role as an educator will be to enhance their emotional, physical, and intellectual skill sets in different ways.
There has to be creativity in designing hands-on activities including artwork, games, story time, role-play and music. The focus should always be on learning how to learn, making room for imagination of the child.

Contents of education and training

Obtaining a degree in early childhood education can be a wise decision that can in turn lead to a much greater scope in the education field. Usually, an ECE degree program is very extensive in content and structure that prepares you for a wide spectrum of career opportunities and advancement.

You need one to two years to complete the program. The degree offers all the required training you are expected to have to teach young kids of the age group specified. It entails practical knowledge as well as in-depth understanding of early childhood education.
Carefully designed courses of the holistic curriculum cover early childhood development, child centre administration, safety and health, and the like. General knowledge of social science, science, language and crafts is also a part of the curriculum.

After graduation, you can become a pre-school teacher, elementary school teacher, special education teacher of children with special needs and counselor; you can even get a position in the administration like a director or program supervisor. You can become a childcare provider too.

Irrespective of the nature of the career you choose, you will gain rich experience in the implementation of new methods and activities. At one stage, you are likely to feel your job is not simply a job: it is a fulfilling mission!

With a qualification of the right early childhood education degree from a reputed online college, you can invest your time and skills in the shaping of several future generations of the country. You'll find the entire process extremely rewarding!

Monday, 24 September 2018

Techniques for Early Childhood Stimulation

Many people believe there is nothing significant that happens during early childhood, which makes a difference later in life. This is not true as many studies have findings, which suggest otherwise.

Professionals define early childhood as the stage between years one to five – from toddlers to pre-school children. Early childhood development happens very fast and it is recognized widely as important in constructing the base for future education and learning: it addresses the optimal development of cognitive, social, and motor skills required for managing the demands of kindergarten and pre-school education.

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Numerous practical techniques can help in early childhood stimulation, promoting development of intellectual and physical skills in children. Practically all methods of intellectual or sensory maturation make use of some kind of stimulation, based upon the perception our five senses.

A very effective technique involves stimulating visual senses in different ways. Hearing or audio stimulation is also an extremely powerful method, utilized during early childhood that can help attain significant results.

The five senses

Among all the theories that are predominant when it comes to intellectual learning and development, the one pertaining to multiple intelligences has extensive application. Teachers who wish to promote or accelerate sensory and mental development can depend on using play and games. For instance, the use of touch for giving children experience with a range of temperatures or textures is a safe and simple way of stimulating the sensory experiences of a child.

Techniques for audio stimulation

Professionals who teach young children can utilize noisemakers for activating the audio senses. Recordings of sounds of nature or environment are effective for stimulation when played. Another technique used frequently for neural stimulation involves playing specific music selections.

This is done when the little one is busy with other things, or even during naptime. Select classics of Brahms, Beethoven, and Mozart in particular are often used for this purpose. Music helps relaxation, and at the same time, it activates several areas within the child’s brain.

Surprisingly, smooth vocals are outstanding auditory stimulants for children in numerous situations.

Sensory stimulation

All the aforementioned techniques can easily be used for effective early childhood development through stimulation in pre-school children. Exposure to such stimulation helps the child’s brain to develop properly and much faster in comparison to children who have had no stimulation. This form of early childhood stimulation can offer the child an advantage over kids of the same level or age.

Early-developed kids ultimately perform better academically in school, and network well with siblings, peers, and parents. They are happier too, and more adjusted as per studies. Teachers at the primary and pre-school levels have observed as well greater levels of educational and social integration among those who have had certain kind of stimulation of early childhood development.

Teachers should be sharp and resourceful enough to promote the best development during the formative years of early childhood. They need to choose wisely suitable activities, as mentioned above, to ensure that children’s minds are always exposed to stimulation through age-appropriate challenges.

Thursday, 23 August 2018

5 Educational Careers: Take your Pick

If there is any career you can count on as fulfilling, it is taking up a job in the education field. Although every industry is vulnerable to financial blues, education has been a stable one for career longevity, stability, and growth. However, are there options available within this industry? Numerous options are available of course that can fit different personalities. Five such possibilities are listed below.

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Early childhood education teacher

If you are good at handling very young kids, the career of an early childhood education (ECE) teacher is the right option for you.

There are so many parents who start early with their children's education; that means there are amazing opportunities for ECE teachers. In fact, there is an expected growth of 19% this year in this particular career. The job implies not only a steady income, but also an opportunity to assist in developing and shaping the education of young kids.

School counselor

If you love helping people, the job of a school counselor is a good career option for you.

Most teachers are busy always with children in the classroom, or grading papers, or developing lesson plans. A school counselor is someone students can turn to if they have problems with peers, in school, or at their home. School counselors play an active role in developing the right programming, evaluating students’ progress, and guiding students when the right things are not happening in school or at home.

School administrator

You are best suited to become a school administrator, if you prefer a leadership role.

There is a lot more to schools than simply preparing ABC's and report cards. A special team of people called school administrators runs the entire show – from hiring teachers to development of educational policies to ensuring security and safety of school. If you have a passion for promoting school education by handling administrative jobs, this is the right career for you.

Special education teacher

If you are inclined towards helping children with special needs, you can become a special education teacher.

Medical breakthroughs and advancements have enabled educators and doctors to diagnose learning disabilities a lot earlier now than during the past. This ensures that students have the help they require from the very early stages. It drives progressively the requirement for teachers dealing in special education. Special education teachers help students who have developmental, mental, emotional and physical challenges with normal learning and doing well in school.

Vocational teacher

If your area of interest is professional skills, you can become a vocational education teacher.

Vocational teachers handle a range of different subjects relating to professional skills – from marketing and business to health and personal finance. They give students the tools and the skills they require for jobs or to start their new business, run health services, seek positions in the corporate sector, etc.

Preparing for a career in education is not such a difficult proposition for anyone. Whether you require an Associate's degree or wish to build a resume by taking up a Master's degree, you can easily pursue online everything you want. A major plus factor is the control over and flexibility of your customized schedule that ensures a degree you want.

Monday, 23 July 2018

Building a Career with a Degree in Early Childhood Education

The higher your education, the greater will be your career opportunities. There are several reasons why you should acquire a postgraduate degree in early childhood education. Above all, it helps you understand the intricacies of how young children learn to learn in comparison to other age groups.  The major benefits of a Master’s degree are listed below.

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Greater educational level

It is obvious that a Master's program is higher than a bachelor's. The more crucial aspect is the comprehensiveness of the curriculum of the program; it focuses sharply and deeply on family engagement, child psychology, and other vital related areas.

Working for a Master's degree in early childhood education will expose you to more effective teaching methodologies. You will thus be able to deal with career-specific situations at every stage.

Better career prospects

Most supervisory jobs require a Master’s degree. Such a degree in early childhood education opens many doors to enhance your educational career prospects much further. You may even get opportunities in areas that are outside the field of education, including social work.

Another career choice is government work, such as being part of making educational policies, and the like. Bachelor’s degrees and associate’s degrees are a great step forward and are certainly an excellent starting point. However, Master's is a ‘must’ if you want to scale higher in your career.

Larger variety of options

A degree in early childhood education not only expands your career opportunities, but also makes a big difference in what you do with these prospects. For many educators, it may mean branching out to other areas, such as home schooling children, special education or working within the administration.

Moreover, in a highly competitive scenario, having a master’s degree can offer you a larger variety of options, in comparison to those of your colleagues who do not have one.

Higher range of salary

As per the data available, those who have a bachelor’s or an associate’s degree can earn approximately USD 23,000 to 40,000 annually. In contrast, those with a Master's degree can expect to earn an annual salary of more than USD 60,000.

Since early childhood education is a specialty, it offers several incentives as well. You may not get incentives if you are working for a private school. However, the public education sector has a salary ladder, which states specifically that a graduate degree can enhance your annual salary.

Wider transmission of knowledge

One of the most frequently cited advantages of getting a Master's in early childhood education is the breadth and depth of the knowledge of education that goes with the degree. An educator with a Master’s has a very fulfilling opportunity of transmission to the pupils of the benefits of this in-depth knowledge of education in numerous areas. The strategies, techniques and classroom activities based on the insights of the program will mean a lot to the young kids in shaping their lives.

Many reputed online colleges do offer degrees in early childhood education. It would be best to get in touch with such a college for further details you may need.

Friday, 22 June 2018

The Difference a Teacher can make in Early Childhood Education

Research studies have shown that children draw immense benefit from quality early childhood education; also, their immediate loved ones in particular, and the society at large benefit a lot. Early childhood education can help the little ones in learning vital skills that will make them happy, strong, and successful throughout their life.

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What a child learns through ECE

ECE helps a child in the following:
  1. Making new friends and forming bonds
  2. Playing and exploring
  3. Asking questions and having a say
  4. Learning to relate to other children
  5. Thinking and solving problems
  6. Taking turns, sharing and negotiating
  7. Being sympathetic towards others
  8. Learning how to manage disagreements
  9. Learning about numbers, words, and how things can work
  10. Having conversations
  11. Understanding the complexities of the world
  12. Dancing, painting, creating music, playing roles, and dressing up in order to develop imagination and creativity
  13. Understanding concepts of maths through number play, puzzles, and counting games
  14. Learning science concepts through preparing simple food, caring for animals and plants
Children exposed to quality ECE are more likely to remain curious, confident and creative and develop a positive attitude towards people and the world around them; this will assist them in doing better when they reach school and later when they become adults.

A teacher’s crucial role in early childhood education

Preschool kids belong to an age group that is highly excited about everything around. They are exposed to a world of new experiences hitherto unknown and pristine. They have imaginative playtime, dance, music and lots of socialization with teachers and kids. They have many more opportunities to develop their potentials in different spheres. A conscientious teacher who gives quality time to preschool kids becomes soon a role model and an object of veneration.

Learning takes place at all times and places: the affectionate bond of children with everyone can fire the teacher to lay for them a strong and inquisitive learning foundation. Inspirational early childhood education teachers and educators assist the children tirelessly to relax and feel comfortable in a group and

1) undergo any experience with spontaneity and openness

2) develop the spirit of learning through adventure and discovery

3) establish priorities

4) make connections across place and time

5) develop various types of relationships

6) understand various points of view.

ECE teachers interact regularly with parents about their children’s abilities, interests and progresses made, and get them involved in making the right decisions about their children.

Here are a few more things ECE professionals can do to get the parents involved: 

  1. Share news about the things that happened in the class.
  2. Send parents letters of appreciation of children’s achievements.
  3. Give children tasks to be completed at home with the help of parents.
  4. Share photographs of children’s special people on display boards to make them feel more involved.
Teacher activities such as the ones listed above go a long way in shaping the future of kids. They remain etched permanently in their memory and keep them going strong; that is what is so special about preschool education.