EduCare Preschool and Child Care
EduCare Preschool & Child Care's Philosophy
EduCare believes it is vital to provide developmentally and individually appropriate activities as part of a diverse and culturally sensitive curriculum. Recent brain research supports this belief. We see each child as an individual but also as part of a whole family where parents are experts on their children. We involve the whole family unit at our center through activities in and out of the classroom. We support families through our parent library and parent workshops. We also make them aware of available local resources such as the Local Resource and Referral Agency, Family Connections. You can reach Family Connections at (406) 761-6010 or at https://familyconnectionsmt.org.
EduCare Preschool & Child Care's Curriculum
In the infant and toddler classrooms, we implement Creative Curriculum for Infants, Toddlers, & Twos. This researched based curriculum focuses on routines and experiences while engaging children hands on learning. This curriculum has 38 objectives organized into nine areas of development and learning. Areas of development and learning: social-emotional, physical, language, cognitive, literacy, mathematics, science and technology, social studies, and the arts. The different objectives identify skills, behaviors, and knowledge proven to promote school readiness. Not only are these objectives well defined, but they also align with the Montana Early Learning Standards (MELS).
Our goal is to provide positive stimulation for the children attending EduCare creating an atmosphere conducive to learning. Teachers take every opportunity to enhance children's learning through creative expression and activities, self-exploration and child directed learning. We believe in a play-based approach that is a mix of hands on, teacher led and student led activities. We believe the teachers are responsible for providing infants, toddlers, and preschoolers with developmentally appropriate learning experiences. We believe in open-ended art. We believe the child’s parent/guardian understands and knows their child best, and we will seek information from them on a daily basis. We believe parent and teacher communication is extremely important. Part of our commitment to a well rounded curriculum involves introducing children to diversity and other cultures through books, pictures, music, classroom materials, experiences, and art. We also introduce the children to math, science, and art concepts. We help them develop the necessary social skills that encourage them to "partner" with each other while learning. Spending time outdoors including; field trips, nature walks, as well as exercising on the playground and parks, enhances children's learning and is a part of the "whole child" education. We believe in a hands-on approach in all the domains whether social-emotional, physical or cognitive. With language being part of every day learning, many of our children have started to read and write, as well as be more confident socially when they leave us to attend elementary school.
Harsh discipline is never administered. We use positive re-enforcement to help children make appropriate choices. If inappropriate behavior continues, teachers will use observation techniques to observe and document the child's behavior. We will then ask the parent/guardian to join us in a conference to address and ultimately solve the problem. We always welcome parent involvement in our program.
EduCare provides safe developmentally appropriate toys, equipment and activities. We believe the child’s classroom is the third teacher and should be enriching and stimulating. We believe materials in the classroom should be at child’s level and readily available for each child to use. Our learning centers are set up to encourage each child to experience success and personal satisfaction as well as develop self-confidence and a feeling of self-worth that will enable children to grow into confident, curious and tolerant adults who will welcome challenges as part of personal development and learning about the world around them.
Our teachers are educated in Early Childhood Education. We have devised a training and mentoring plan to help new employees quickly become qualified educators through practical experience using the Montana Registered Apprenticeship program (http://apprenticeship.mt.gov) and formal education. We encourage and support our teachers to seek on-going education and to stay informed of new developments. EduCare is not just a preschool or just a child care center but the best combinations of both. We have developed a preschool program which includes a fun, exciting, motivating learning environment and have integrated it into a very safe, clean, friendly, state of the art child care center. We have based both preschool and child care on the formal education and the practical experiences of each teacher at the center. With all of that, we feel we have the best of all worlds for all the children who attend EduCare.
We believe that if we invest in children today, it will reap rewards for our future.
In the preschool classrooms, we utilize a framework called Understanding by Design. See this YouTube to learn more about Understanding by Design - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d8F1SnWaIfE. This framework allows teachers to consider what learning goals they would like their children to accomplish. Once the teacher has decided on the learning goals (either whole group or individual), the teacher then decides on the type of assessment to utilize to ensure the learning goals have been met. We believe a backwards design approach is a more intentional way of teaching to ensure that each child is meeting the learning goals that have been chosen.
EduCare Preschool & Child Care's Social-Emotional Curriculum
Throughout the center, we implement the Pyramid Model Framework. The Pyramid Model promotes social and emotional competence in young children. This framework is based on evidence based practices that teach children healthy social and emotional strategies. This framework also provides support for teaching children appropriate behaviors, while preventing challenging behaviors. When a challenging behavior arises, children are then taught healthy ways to address and change their behavior. We believe implementing this framework reduces the use of inappropriate disciplines techniques.