Growth and Development: Preschool Years
Early Childhood Education
Applied Community Studies
Flexible delivery ranging over 1 to 15 weeks
Max Class Size
Method Of Instruction
Methods Of Instruction
- Observations of children
- Modification of play based learning environments
This course explores theories related to the development of preschool-aged children in the context of a family centred approach which emphasizes individual and cultural diversity. A “whole child” approach will be taken to the study of young children in group settings.
The following global ideas guide the design and delivery of this course:
- There are observable behaviours and predictable patterns typical of preschool development.
- Although theorists often discuss development in discrete domains, behaviour must be viewed holistically given the interrelated nature of these domains.
- Preschool development including the development of language and literacy should be examined within the context of the child’s heredity and environment.
- Preschool behaviour is often socially mediated.
- Learning often leads development.
- Play based learning environments for young children provide the opportunity to integrate emerging skills and actively engage with materials and other children.
- Play based learning environments can be modified by adults to draw out a variety of experiences for young children.
- Within the population of preschool children, unique individual differences will alter both the onset and mastery of developmental milestones.
- For a small percentage of preschool children atypical individual differences will be present from birth. This necessitates individual program planning and the provision of support to the child and family.
- Gender is both biologically and culturally mediated.
Upon successful completion of this course the student will be able to:
- Familiarize students with theories and models used to explain preschool child development
- Discuss the interrelated aspects of a child’s physical, language, social/emotional and cognitive development
- Examine children’s literacy development within the context of his or her family and culture
- Introduce and discuss the concept of motivation and learning in preschool aged children
- Explore the role of play in the development of the “whole child”
- >Discuss the implication of play-based learning environments in program planning
- Understand individual differences in maturation and growth among preschool aged children
- Understand how individual differences, including special needs relate to the development of the preschool aged child and impact on the family
- Examine the reciprocal relationship between the preschool aged child’s growth and development and the family and culture in which he or she is raised
- Discuss issues of gender and cultural diversity as they relate to preschool development
- Apply and evaluate observation techniques
- Understand positive child centred methods of supervision and guidance
Means of Assessment
- Participation and Attendance