The Early Childhood Education curriculum prepares individuals to work with children from infancy through middle childhood in diverse learning environments. Students will combine learned theories with practice in actual settings with young children under the supervision of qualified teachers.
Course work includes child growth and development; physical/nutritional needs of children; care and guidance of children; and communication skills with parents and children. Students will foster the cognitive/ language, physical/motor, social/emotional and creative development of young children.
Graduates are prepared to plan and implement developmentally appropriate programs in early childhood settings. Employment opportunities include child development and child care programs, preschools, public and private schools, recreational centers, Head Start Programs, and school age programs.
Program Learning Outcomes:
Gaston College graduates receiving an associate of applied science degree in Early Childhood will be able to:
Standard 1: Promote Child Development and Learning
1a. Know and understand young children’s characteristics and needs
1b. Know and understand the multiple influences on development and learning.
1c. Use developmental knowledge to create healthy, respectful, supportive, and challenging learning environments.
Standard 2: Build Family and Community Relationships
2a. Knowing about and understanding family and community characteristics.
Standard 3: Observe, Document, and Assess to Support Young Children and Families
3a. Knowing about assessment partnerships with families and other professionals.
3b. Knowing about and using observation, documentation, and other appropriate assessment tools and approaches. 3c. Understanding and practicing responsible assessment to promote positive outcomes for each child.
Standard 4: Teach and Learn
4a. Understanding positive relationships and supportive interactions as the foundation of working with children.
4b. Knowing and understanding effective strategies and tools for early education.
4c. Using a broad repertoire of developmentally appropriate teaching/learning approaches.
4d. Reflecting on one's own practice to promote positive outcomes for each child.
Standard 5: Become a Professional
5a. Understanding content knowledge and resources in academic disciplines.
5b. Knowing and using the central concepts, inquiry tools, and structures of content areas or academic disciplines.
5c. Using one's knowledge, appropriate learning standards, and other resources to design, implement, and evaluate meaningful, challenging curriculum.