In every module of Stenberg’s Early Childhood Education program we always have at least one major assignment or project. So far we have created our ‘dream child care center’ and developed and executed activities that would benefit a child’s S.P.I.C.E. development, which were both group projects.
Our first major assignment was to create our ‘dream child care center’. We were given a list of what items and areas needed to be included in the center, a budget of $25,000 dollars and were told we could create any sort of model we wanted. Our groups were all selected at random which made it challenging, because everyone had their own individual ideas of what their ‘dream center’ would look like, but together we managed to collaborate on all of our ideas to create developmentally appropriate areas inside and outside of our center. Every group made sure to incorporate a variety of colors, textures and toys to create an environment that both children and staff would enjoy.
The second project we had was to create and execute activities that contributed to children’s’ S.P.I.C.E. development. In our field we use the acronym S.P.I.C.E. all of the time as it stands for the areas that contribute to the development of the whole child.
The areas included are Social, Physical, Intellectual, Creative and Emotional development, which are all of the areas we had to cover when coming up with our activities.
Some of the activities we created and participated in were ‘Simon says’, ‘Yoga for kids’, ‘Colour sorting’, ‘Create a monster’ and ‘Figuring out feelings’. We witnessed over twenty activity ideas that we can bring with us into the field while we are doing practicum as well as once we become teachers. All of us left activity day excited about all of the great things we had learned.
The project we are currently working on is our ‘Child Study’ book. Individually, we go out for a month and observe one child in a childcare center for fifty-plus hours. We take all the information that we’ve learned in class about the development of the whole child and apply it to our observations of the child.
So far my personal experience has been very interesting and I’ve enjoyed using all of the knowledge I’ve gained in my courses to assess the development of the child I’m observing.
The project so far has been eye-opening to just how much a child learns in the first three years of life and I can’t wait to continue to learn about the child I’m observing as well as other children when I go out in the field.