What Makes a Great Early Childhood Program

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What Makes a Great Early Childhood Program
By Juetta E. Potter

A great Early Childhood program for infants, toddlers, preschoolers and school age children would be a program that participates in Kentucky’s STARS for KIDS NOW initiative. This is a one to four star rating system that recognizes centers that go “above and beyond” what licensing and regulations require.

This outstanding Early Childhood program would employ only individuals who follow the NAEYC standards for Early Childhood Professionals, which are: 1.Promoting child development and learning;
2.Building family and community relationships;
3.Observing, documenting and assessing to support young children and families; 4.Using developmentally effective approaches to connect with children; 5.Using content knowledge to build meaningful curriculum;

6.And promoting high personal standards; continually expanding his or his/her skills and knowledge to successfully teach all children. Every child and parent would be welcome in this program that would use developmentally and culturally responsive practices, taking into account all children’s cultural and ethnic backgrounds and needs. Antibias curriculum would be used to help teach children about the problems of prejudice and provides them with the knowledge, attitude and skills to fight prejudice. Every child and every parent who walked through the door of this program would feel important and know that their thoughts, feelings and ideas really mattered! Parents would leave their child with the comfort of knowing that health, safety, nutrition and developmentally appropriate practice was top priority of everyone who worked at the center. This program would be a child-centered program, with room arrangement to support child-centered learning. Child materials and supplies would be easily accessible to children and labeled with pictures and words to promote early literacy. Children would have ample opportunities to move around and engage in...
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