Environments for Teaching and Learning 
Explores the history of early learning with an eye towards early learning models and practices. Examines current understandings of the importance of environment to support learning at school and in the home. Introduces program delivery models. Concentrates on developing skills in presentation methods. (Required for ECE majors)
Child Growth and Development 
Explores basic principles of child development, with special attention to the infant, preschool, and elementary school age child. Includes sequential stages of human development, factors influencing growth and learning, gender diversity, the role of play in development, and the implications of spiritual nurture in the growth of the child.
Developing Attentiveness: Using Observation 
Provides supervised, practical experience in a preschool setting. Observe, participate, and teach in a classroom. Weekly seminars will link the classroom experience to ECE methods, developmental and theoretical aspects of preschool education, and the integration of faith. Requires a portfolio of experiences, observations, evaluations, and lesson plans with evidence of skills development.
Children and Nature 
Explores the importance of natural settings for the physical, cognitive, behavioral, emotional, and spiritual well being of early learners today. Theories of Lev Vygotsky, Erik Erikson, and Richard Louv will be highlighted.
Children’s Literature, Language and Literacy 
Explores historical and contemporary works of literature for children ages toddler – 12. Explores the history of children’s literature, its impact on child development, and the cultural and social diversity in books. Reviews the process of emergent language and the impact of caregivers on children’s literacy. A literacy practicum includes lesson planning and delivery in an early learning program.
Administration and Management of Early Learning Programs 
Explores guidelines for developing and managing an early learning facility. Includes budget writing, school board development, community needs assessment, facility management, staffing guidelines, enrollment management, and other skills necessary to manage a quality early childhood education program.
Diversity in Learning and Behavior 
Explores appropriate practices for the diversity of needs found in any classroom, including observation and experiences with multi-cultural, urban, and special needs populations, the understanding of groups, and the needs of exceptional learners. Explores classroom management and child guidance methods and techniques.
Curriculum and Content Areas 
Explores the relationship between traditional content areas, play, and effective learning. Considers the use of natural spaces and activities for cognitive, physical, spiritual, behavioral, and social/emotional learning. Integrates spiritual content with traditional content areas. Explores the concept of “emergent curriculum” and “school readiness.”
Applied Early Learning 
Includes discussion of personal philosophy, organizational, and career issues, presentation of research to the ECE department, and mentoring of current undergraduate students. Compilation of a formal assessment portfolio and resume will culminate in a “mock” interview.
Field Experience 
Offers opportunity for full-time practical experience in a preschool, home day care, or agency, working with an experienced on-site supervisor in the field of early learning.