CCSD Head Start participates annually in the Arkansas Child Care Approval System. The Arkansas Child Care Approval System(http://www.state.ar.us/childcare/approval.html) was created during the 1993 legislative session. A bill was passed which will provide an opportunity for your child care facility to receive the Approval certification from the state of Arkansas for providing a higher quality program.
The Arkansas Child Care Approval System, through the Division of Child Care and Early Childhood Education, (the Division), has been created to offer an assessment process which verifies that your facility offers the following to its children:
- A program that views parents as an important part of the early education of their children,
- A physical environment that is supportive of the physical and mental development of each child in your care,
- An educational program that prepares children for success in school,
- Trained professional staff who know how to work effectively with children and who continue to pursue educational and training opportunities.
Child Outcome Data
Head Start Child Outcomes Framework, released in 2000, assists Head Start Programs in assessing and planning activities for children. Child Outcomes are skills that research indicates are important for preschool children to obtain prior to entering kindergarten.
The domains within Outcome Frameworks are:
- Language Development
- Creative Arts
- Social and Emotional Development
- Approaches to Learning
- Physical Health and Development
Children will be taught many different skills from these eight subject areas in the Head Start Performance Standards. NWAHSHS staff will monitor children’s progress in all areas and will administer assessments at the beginning, the middle of the year, and again at the end of the year. The teacher will also monitor children’s progress throughout the year with samples of their work and observing their classroom behavior.
For more information on child outcomes please visit:
The most important goal of our early childhood curriculum is to help children become enthusiastic learners. This means encouraging children to be active and creative explorers who are not afraid to try out their ideas and to think their own thoughts. Our goal is to help children become independent, self-confident, inquisitive learners. We’re teaching them how to learn, not just in preschool, but all through their lives. We’re allowing them to learn at their own pace and in the ways that are best for them. We’re giving them good habits and attitudes, particularly a positive sense of themselves, which will make a difference throughout their lives. Our curriculum also requires that parents are an integrate part of their child’s school success, in and away from the home.
Our curriculum identifies goals in all areas of development:
- Social: to help children feel comfortable in school, trust their new environment, make friends, and feel they are a part of the group.
- Emotional: to help children experience pride and self-confidence, develop independence and self-control, and have a positive attitude toward life.
- Creative/Aesthetic Learning: to help children value their contributions and creativity. To experience the beauty of the many forms of art through their own eyes. Enhancing self-expression through awareness and sensitivity to the arts.
- Cognitive: to help children become confident learners by letting them try out their own ideas and experience success, and by helping them acquire learning skills such as the ability to solve problems, ask questions, and use words to describe their ideas, observation, and feelings.
- Physical: to help children increase their large and small muscle skills and feel confident about what their bodies can do.
- Language: to help children develop the skills needed to become a life-long learner and to be able to experience life to the fullest. To promote expressive and receptive language skills through every day events and conversations.
The activities we plan for children, the way we organize the environment, select toys and materials, plan the daily schedule, and talk with children are all designed to accomplish the goals of our curriculum and give your child a successful start in school.
CCSD implements Creative Curriculum (http://www.teachingstrategies.com/page/preschool.cfm) which consistent with the Head Start Program Performance Standards including ACYF-IM-HS-00-18 (08/10/00) and is based on sound child development principles about how children grow and learn.
The objectives of the curriculum are to:
- Provide children with a learning environment and the varied experiences that help them develop socially, intellectually, physically, and emotionally in a manner appropriate to their age and stage of development toward the overall goal of social competence.
- Integrate the educational aspects of the various Head Start components in the daily program of experiences.
- Involve parents in educational activities of the program to enhance their role as the principle influence on the child’s education and development.
- Assist parents to increase knowledge, understanding, skills and experience in child growth and development.
- Identify and reinforce experiences that occur in the home that parents can utilize as educational activities for their children.
- Provide services that are multicultural and meet the special needs of all children.
Weekly Education Schedule
The Weekly Education Schedule is designed to help teachers provide an environment where children’s natural curiosity can develop into a practical and on-going knowledge base. It’s a method of organizing learning materials and activities to meet the needs and interests of Head Start children. Each unit is outlined to include concepts, objectives, vocabulary, open-ended questions, learning and mental health activities. Each week, teachers develop a lesson plan that teaches particular thematic concepts.
The philosophy behind our curriculum is that young children learn best by doing. Learning isn’t just repeating what someone else says; it requires active thinking and experimenting to find out how things work and to learn first-hand about the world we live in.
In their early years, children explore the world around them by using all their senses (touching, tasting, listening, smelling, and looking). In using real materials such as blocks and trying out their ideas, children learn about size, shapes, and colors, and they notice relationships between things. In time, they learn to use one object to stand for another. This is the beginning of symbolic thinking. For example, they might pretend a stick is an airplane or a block is a hamburger. These early symbols-the stick and the block- are similar in shape to the objects they represent. Gradually children become more and more able to use abstract symbols like words to describe their thoughts and feelings. They learn to ‘.read” pictures which are symbols of real people, places, and things. This exciting development is symbolic thinking which takes place during the preschool years as children play.
Play provides the foundation for academic or “school” learning. It is the preparation children need before they learn highly abstract symbols such as letters (which are symbols for sounds) and numbers. Play enables us to achieve the key goals of our early childhood curriculum. Play is the work of young children.