Foster Early Childhood Development
Focus on the unique characteristics and developmental tasks of young children, including the cultural, social, affective, biological and cognitive factors that affect learning in early childhood.
The Early Childhood Education degree curriculum offers two options for students. The 42-credit initial licensure program includes 12 courses plus a 16-week student teaching seminar. Students are required to complete four MEd in Early Childhood Education degree courses (EDU 521, EDU 533, EDU 543 and SPED 501) prior to applying for Teacher Certification Program acceptance (TCP).
A customized 39-credit track that includes a certification internship is available for certified teachers seeking an additional endorsement. Please speak with an admission counselor for more details.
Early Childhood Education (MEd) Required Courses
DEV-560: Family and Culture
This course considers how family and culture influence child development including family structures, sibling relationships, parenting behaviors, children's special needs, family violence, diversity in educational settings and the relations between family and community. Students explore their own and other's cultural influences through the lens of diverse cultural perspectives. The challenges faced by children and families from a variety of cultures and socio-economic backgrounds including communication, interaction, education, and societal norms will be examined from the role of the practitioner. Research informs student projects in which a particular aspect of culture is studied in depth. Ten hours of field experience is included.
This course provides students with an understanding of the critical role play has in a child's life. Play is the primary means for learning and development, an important method of assessment and a tool for intervention. Students learn how to assess play between a child and parent/adult, a child within a group, and a child's solitary play.
EDU-503: Methods of Teaching Elementary Math
This course focuses on the concepts of mathematics that are taught in grades K-6 and the current methods of teaching that content, including experience with manipulative materials. TCP acceptance is required.
Must be enrolled in the Teacher Certification program
EDU-521: Exploring the Principles of Education
This course offers practice in identifying and developing basic beliefs and values while assessing contemporary philosophies. It includes a study of the history and current issues of education in America.
EDU-533: Learning through Technology
In this course, students will develop the knowledge and skills to use technology to enhance student learning and achievement. This course also introduces students to learning targets (standards/outcomes) and a general model of curriculum development, implementation and assessment.
EDU-535: Early Childhood Health and Science
This course applies developmental theory to the teaching of science literacy in the early grades. Students will focus on preparing developmentally appropriate experiences that promote investigation, problem solving, and exploration. Methods of instruction and assessment are practiced. Attention will be given to designing constructivist lesson and unit plans that align with science literacy standards.
EDU-537: Social Studies/Arts for Young Children
This course will explore the concepts, methods, techniques, and material necessary to effectively teach social studies and fine arts in early childhood. Using national and state standards and frameworks, students will develop learning experiences that meet curriculum objectives in both social studies and the fine arts. Strategies for integrating social studies and fine arts across all curriculum areas will be addressed.
EDU-543: Learning Theories and Instruction
This course studies the role of contemporary learning theories and their application to educational practice, including issues of readiness, motivation, problem solving, and the social context of learning. Students will understand how to apply scientifically based instructional strategies to promote learning.
EDU-552: Assessment for and of Learning
This course is an introduction to assessment for teaching and learning content in grades K-12. Topics include the types, benefits, and uses of formal and informal assessment. Ethical issues of assessment and grading will be discussed. Students will create assessments aligned with standards-based content.
RDG-503: Emerging and Early Literacy Development K-4
This course will examine several major theoretical perspectives on literacy development from Kindergarten through 4th grade. Students will explore literacy environments that encourage the development of reading, writing, listening and speaking in the early elementary classroom. Students will also learn a variety of effective strategies for the instruction and assessment of reading and writing in the early elementary classroom. Differentiating instruction to meet the needs of students from diverse backgrounds will be integrated into the course content.
RDG-531: Literature for Children Pre-K-8
This course will include an in-depth study of literary genre and categories found in children's literature, preschool through intermediate levels. Students will read and analyze literature according to a set of established criteria; explore the work of noteworthy authors, poets and illustrators; and be introduced to a variety of strategies for integrating literature into the curriculum and for encouraging students to become lifelong readers.
SPED-501: Students with Exceptionalities
Students will be introduced to the issues related to children with disabilities and the educational implications for participation within the general education classroom will be examined. The course includes the history of Special Education, as well as current trends and research. Federal and state legislation will be reviewed as well as the NH State Standards for Children with Disabilities. Students will review the Individuals with Disabilities Act as it relates to the Elementary Secondary Education Act (ESEA) reauthorized as No Child Left Behind (NCLB), the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) including title II of the ADA and section 504 and The Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1973, as amended.
Select One of the Following:
EDU-571: Student Teaching and Seminar
All teacher education majors seeking certification will participate in 16 weeks of full-time practice teaching at nearby schools. During the 16 weeks, the student teacher receives close and continuous supervision and guidance from teaching personnel at the school and by a member of the Southern New Hampshire University faculty. This course also includes a weekly seminar at the University.
Must be enrolled in the Teacher Certification program
EDU-770: Certification Internship
This is the capstone course for certified teachers seeking an additional certification. Students complete a full-time, competency-based internship at a site appropriate to the area of certification being sought. During this internship, the student is mentored by like-credentialed site personnel as well as by a member of the Southern New Hampshire University faculty. This course also includes a weekly seminar held on campus.
This program is approved by the New Hampshire State Department of Education for Teacher Certification as leading to an initial teacher’s license or endorsement in New Hampshire. Southern New Hampshire University cannot guarantee licensure, certification, endorsement, or salary benefits. View disclosure information.
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