Little Dixie Head Start program uses the Creative Curriculum for Preschool and the Frog Street curricula as a framework for their curriculum. This allows the classrooms to have some semblance of uniformity, but also allows for individualization to meet the unique needs of each community, family and child.
The goals of Little Dixie Head Start are to provide a developmentally appropriate environment that is conducive to the development of social, emotional, cognitive, physical, and speech/language skills, and is individualized to meet each child’s unique needs. Objectives include developing strong nurturing relationships with their teacher, ability to develop relationships with peers, forming a sense of trust and security and the ability to express thoughts and feelings. The children will also gain the ability to identify and solve problems, increase self-confidence and develop critical thinking skills. Additional goals for the children include the ability to respect the rights and feelings of others, and the ability to use creativity and their imagination. The children will work toward the goal of working independently as well as working cooperatively with others. Little Dixie Head Start will work to help the children form a foundation for Kindergarten readiness; children will work toward the goals of developing literacy, numeracy, reasoning, problem solving and decision making skills. These goals include but are not limited to all domains and domain elements of the Child Outcome Framework.
The parent’s role is to actively participate in the ongoing educational program by volunteering in the center, attending parent meetings, providing input into the curriculum and serving on the policy council committee. The teacher’s role is to develop individual activities and experiences to foster each child’s growth and development. The teaching staff will gather data by making observations, writing those observations in the form of anecdotes, screening and assessments, and portfolio material. This information will be used to determine child goals and will be shared with the parents. The on-going assessment will allow staff and parents to monitor and make modifications to the curricula as needed for each child’s development. Parents and teaching staff work together on planned, organized, intentional curriculum that support child development.
Experiences are planned and intentionally presented to children. Teaching staff create environments to foster growth and development toward a specific goal and to support the hands on learning experiences that children need to gain understanding. Individualized activities are provided daily and based on each child’s needs, developmental strengths, interest, cultural background, temperament and learning style. Classrooms are set up into the following learning centers: Math, Science, Library, Listening, Writing, Dramatic Play, Block, and ABC center. There is also an area for the children to participate in art activities, music and movement.
Staff considers each child’s developmental level and skills when selecting appropriate and challenging materials to foster growth and positive outcomes. Materials are rotated often to meet the individual goals of the children as well as to provide interest and discovery.
Many of the materials necessary for the implementation of the program’s curriculum are listed in the Creative Curriculum for Preschool and Frog Street teacher’s guide. Additional materials supplied to all teachers to supplement letter recognition, numeracy and science skills include:
Mudpies to Magnets, Mathematical Experiences for Young Children Using Manipulatives, Frog Street Sing & Read Nursery Rhyme Big Books and reproducible little books, Frog Street Sing & Read Color Big Books and reproducible little books, Frog Street Sing & Read Alphabet Big Books and reproducible little books,Frog Street Number Big Books, Frog Street Math, Math, & More Math, Frog Street Best Ideas from A to, Frog Street Success with Stations, Frog Street Puppets with a Purpose, Frog Street Cooking Up Something Good with Frog Street Friends, Mailbox Quick & easy Science Fun, and Mailbox Songs, Poems, and Fingerplays . Other materials supplied to supplement the Frog Street curriculum include various computer software, resource books and many materials and supplies for various learning centers.
This curriculum meets Head Start Performance Standards of 1998 as teachers use additional resources to meet the needs of individualized children and enhance the Curriculum for Preschool and Frog Street curricula through teacher’s freedom to modify the curriculum.