My Top 10 Resources for Curriculum Planning

Looking for ideas when writing curriculum for your early childhood classroom? Check out 10 of my favorite “go-to” resources. This is not an all-inclusive list, but these are books I use often and recommend frequently.

Process Based Experiences

Why are process-based experiences important? Watch and discover how open-ended experiences such as process-based art can help enhance skills and get children ready for kindergarten.

A Childhood is Not Complete without Play

I love this video. I share it a lot. I mean A LOT! If you haven’t seen it yet, take time and watch as Dr. Peter Gray so eloquently explains how the decline of play increases anxiety, depression, and narcissism in children and adolescents.

I get asked frequently by parents of young children how can they help their child get ahead? My answer is play.  Just let them play. Encourage play. Allow for good, old fashioned, screen-free play. Unfortunately, it is not the answer everyone is looking for. It seems too simple to be true. As a result, children are not getting the opportunities they need and deserve to play and because of that, they are actually lagging behind.  Don’t believe me? Watch the video!

 

Keep Calm and Play

Yes – that is right – keep calm and play.  No matter how you “slice and dice” it, play is the way young children learn best.  It is inherent, it is natural, and it is the design of optimal learning.

With early childhood education and preschool being such a hot, trending topic right now, everyone is putting his/ her hand in the pot giving his/ her two cents on what we should do to improve effectiveness and achievement.  It gets overwhelming – test scores, research, assessments, common core, funding, teacher performance – being spewed from people of all walks of life – politicians, reformers, business professionals, policy makers, and yes – even educators.  Being a specialist in education and development of children birth to eight, I just want to stand up and yell, “KEEP CALM AND PLAY!”  Take a deep breath, relax, and just play.  It is amazing what children learn in those unstructured environments – you would be surprised!

Am I saying just place children in an empty room and expect them to develop and learn?  No – but when an environment is strategically planned with intentionality and purpose to promote play by a teacher knowledgeable in all domains of child development for children birth to five, it is compelling how effectively and rapidly the children learn.  And what does that environment look like?  More about that later ….  Until then, “Keep calm and play”.