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Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards Estándares de Aprendizaje y Desarrollo Temprano de Florida

Professional Learning Modules

Welcome to the Preschool Director’s Toolkit for Professional Learning. The Toolkit provides professional learning for early educators on topics that are relevant in preschool classrooms. The content for each module is based on the Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards (2017) and uses developmentally appropriate research-based practices to support young children in reaching expected learning outcomes.

The modules are designed to support a variety of delivery methods for professional learning. Directors, early learning coaches and trainers can use the modules in a community of practice with their instructors or as a small group training experience. In addition, instructors are able to independently review and learn from each module based on interest and professional learning needs.

Developing a Reflective Practice through Quality Teaching and Learning

Emergent Writing in the Preschool Classroom

Integrating Learning Throughout the Preschool Day

Mathematical Thinking: Rethinking Calendar Time

Overview

Welcome to the Reflective Practice through Quality Teaching and Learning module. The preschool year is a foundational year for most children and sets the tone for academic success. Research supports that a quality preschool program can significantly influence academic and social development of young children. This module provides information and resources for directors and instructors to consider when setting goals for establishing a quality preschool program.

Welcome to the Emergent Writing for Early Learners module. Just as children grow in their ability to name and recognize alphabet letters, they also gain skills in using letter-like shapes, symbols, and letters to convey meaning. Writing is a key predictor of children’s later reading success. This module provides research, resources and explicit video demonstrations of instructional practices to support the implementation of emergent writing in the prekindergarten classroom.

Welcome to Integrating Learning Throughout the Preschool Day. Effective educators understand that children will benefit when skills and concepts are linked during formal and informal learning experiences. The increased exposure to concepts and skills through multiple opportunities to practice and reinforce skills will lead to better outcomes for children. The goal of this module is to support educators in understanding how to intentionally plan and integrate learning throughout the day.

Welcome to the Mathematical Thinking: Rethinking Calendar Time module. Calendar-time is a tradition in most preschool classrooms in which instructors believe they are addressing a variety of math skills. In fact, most of these skills like, what is today, yesterday and tomorrow? are concepts about time that preschool children are not developmentally ready to understand. Using the calendar for counting, seriation and patterning is often confusing for children. This module provides information about these math concepts and best practices for addressing them with children. Alternative ways to use the calendar and morning circle time are suggested.

This video provides an overview of the quality teaching and learning content found in this module. All videos were filmed in Florida classrooms with Voluntary Prekindergarten (VPK) instructors who were trained and coached on implementing reflective practice as part of quality teaching and learning in their VPK classrooms.

The opening video provides an overview of the emergent writing content with demonstrations of emergent writing routines and practices with prekindergarten children. All videos were filmed in Florida classrooms with Voluntary Prekindergarten (VPK) instructors who were trained and coached on implementing the emergent writing content.

The opening video provides examples of how instructors connect learning experiences during daily routines, transitions and instructional times. All videos were filmed in Florida classrooms with Voluntary Prekindergarten (VPK) instructors who were trained and coached on integrating learning.

The opening video provides an overview of the Rethinking Calendar Time content. All videos were filmed in Florida classrooms with Voluntary Prekindergarten (VPK) instructors who were trained and coached on implementing reflective practice as part of quality teaching and learning in their VPK classrooms.

Facilitators Guide

How to Use this Resource

This information suggests ways to use the content in this module as a professional learning opportunity (i.e. community of practice or in-service training) for directors, trainers, coaches and individual instructors.

Overview of Developing a Reflective Practice through Quality Teaching and Learning

Detailed information about the elements of quality teaching and learning and developing a reflective practice.

Knowledge Check

The purpose of the knowledge check is to help educators think about the preschool classroom and determine if the quality teaching and learning elements are currently in place.

Powerpoint Presentations

Elements of a Quality Preschool Program

The PowerPoint presentation demonstrates each element of a quality preschool program with photographs and videos.

PowerPoint Note Pages

The note pages provide detailed information to support each slide with guided questions and recommended activities.

Pacing Guide

The pacing guide includes key points for presenters for each slide and provides suggestions for extending the learning.

Quality Learning Instruction in the Preschool Classroom

The PowerPoint presentation includes information to demonstrate the quality teaching and learning elements discussed in the module.

PowerPoint Note Pages

The note pages provide detailed information to support each slide with guided questions and recommended activities.

Pacing Guide

The pacing guide includes key points for presenters for each slide and provides suggestions for extending the learning.

Videos

High-Quality Preschool Programs in Florida

The opening video for the Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards (2017) demonstrates the characteristics included in a high-quality preschool program.

Effective Educators

A critical component of a high-quality preschool program is the character of the teachers. The video presents the elements of effective educators.

Purposeful Planning

Purposeful planning requires teachers to think about specific skills before they teach them. In this video three preschool teachers talk about how they intentionally plan each day.

Child-Centered Classroom

An overview of the educator’s role in providing a well-planned, organized, and safe learning environment for children to learn and grow.

Small Group Instruction

There are multiple ways to plan for and implement small group instruction in a preschool daily schedule. This example demonstrates one way to provide small group instruction for children.

Content Integration

Children will benefit when learning experiences are integrated across content areas that link skills and concepts throughout the day.

Growing Your Practice through Reflection

A coach uses reflective questions with a teacher following her tree planting lesson.

Instructional Resources

Quality Learning Instruction in the Preschool Classroom

The resource provides the key instructional elements that support quality learning for young learners.

Balanced Schedule: Small Group Instruction

There are multiple ways to plan for and implement small group instruction in a preschool daily schedule. This example demonstrates one way to provide small group instruction for children.

Reflecting on My Practice: Approaches to Learning

Careful planning and arrangement of the learning environment is key in providing children opportunities to demonstrate eagerness for learning, persistence and creativity. This self-check helps teachers reflect on their practice and determine if these qualities are in place to support children’s learning.

Content Support Documents

Elements of a Quality Preschool Program

The quality of a preschool program can significantly influence academic and social development of young children. This resource provides the key elements included in a quality preschool program.

Integrated Classroom Curriculum

In many preschool programs, a curriculum is considered to be a purchased set of materials and guidebooks, however, an effective educator will include a variety of elements to support children’s interest and natural desire to explore, discover and act on the world around them.

Effective Educators

One-page summary of the qualities of an effective educator.

Growing Your Practice through Reflection

One-page review of the big ideas around reflective practice. Includes questions that were used in the Growing Your Practice through Reflection video.

Content Resources

Becoming a Reflective Teacher

Reflection allows teachers to make effective, meaningful decisions about how to respond to and plan for children.

The 10 NAEYC Program Standards

NAEYC has set 10 standards for early childhood programs that can help families make the right choice when they are looking for a child care center, preschool, or kindergarten.

National Institute of Early Education Research, High Quality Pre-school: Why We Need It and What It Looks Like

Research shows that 3- and 4-year-olds who attend a high-quality preschool are more successful in kindergarten and beyond.

The Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards (2017)

An Educator’s Guide to Understanding the Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards: 4 Years Old to Kindergarten

Facilitators Guide

How to Use this Resource

This information suggests ways to use the Emergent Writing for Early Learners module as a professional learning opportunity (i.e. community of practice or in-service training) for directors, trainers, coaches and individual instructors.

Overview of Emergent Writing

Background information and instructional practices for emergent writing is included. How writing can be integrated across content areas as well as instructional strategies for meeting the needs of all learners is discussed.

Knowledge Check

The purpose of the knowledge check is to help educators think about the preschool classroom and determine if emergent writing routines and practice are in place.

Powerpoint Presentations

Emergent Writing Part 1: Background Knowledge

The PowerPoint presentation includes picture slides that demonstrate the writing framework and stages of writing.

Emergent Writing Part 1 PowerPoint Note Pages

The note pages for Background Knowledge provides detailed information to support each slide with guided questions and recommended activities.

Emergent Writing Part 1 Pacing Guide

The pacing guide includes key points for presenters for each slide and suggested action for extending the learning.

Emergent Writing Part 2: Instructional Practices

The PowerPoint presentation includes pictures and videos to demonstrate writing routines and practices that can easily be implemented in the prekindergarten classroom.

Emergent Writing Part 2 PowerPoint Note Pages

The note pages for Instructional Practices provides detailed information to support each slide with guided questions and recommended activities.

Emergent Writing Part 2 Pacing Guide

The pacing guide includes key points for presenters for each slide and suggested action for extending the learning.

Videos

Emergent Writing Routines

Emergent writing routines such as name writing, creating management charts and writing in all learning areas are demonstrated throughout the prekindergarten day.

Emergent Writing Practices: Shared Writing

Shared writing is an instructional practice that teachers can use to show children different reasons and to model the writing process.

Emergent Writing Practices: Interactive Writing

Interactive writing is an instructional practice that teachers can use to connect the writing process to children’s developing emergent reading skills.

Emergent Writing Practices: Taking Dictation

Taking dictation is when teachers write as a child talks about their picture. This instructional practice models the writing process and supports language development.

Content Integration

Preschools teachers demonstrate how writing practices can be integrated across content areas.

Instructional Resources

Improve Kids Fine Motor Skills

This source provides a few ideas for planning fine motor experiences and a link to the website, Hands On as we Grow.

Fine Motor – Go to List

Easy reference to a variety of fine motor materials and experiences.

Setting Up a Writing Center

A well-stocked writing area with a variety of paper and writing implements will encourage children to explore and experience writing on their own.

Connecting Writing Materials to the Writing Framework

This resource helps the educator connect writing materials to each area of the writing framework to support children’s writing experiences.

Making Class Books to Motivate Writing

Class books support children in seeing their work “published” and gives the feeling of being authors. It also supports many early literacy skills.

Meeting the Needs of All Learners

Most classrooms include children with a variety of literacy exposure and skills as well as developmental mastery. Intentional teachers help all children become writers by modeling, observing and coaching children in both planned and unplanned instructional settings.

Content Support Documents

Response Journal

The response journal is available to use with the PowerPoint presentations. It serves as a note-taking sheet and a review of the Emergent Writing content.

Framework for Understanding Emergent Writing

One-page summary of the writing framework included in the Overview of Emergent Writing document and Background Knowledge PPT presentation.

How Early Writing Develops

A pictorial representation of how early writing develops. Includes a description of the developmental stages and connections to early literacy skills.

Writing Routines

Providing opportunities for children to write and to learn about print throughout the day will support children in becoming writers as well as readers.

Types of Writing Practices

A summary of the information presented in the Overview of Emergent Writing document and Instructional Practices PPT presentation.

Glossary of Terms

Terms relating to emergent writing presented in the content throughout the module.

Content Resources

Emerging Knowledge about Emergent Writing

This article reviews the research on young children’s emergent writing and discusses the implications of this research base for teaching preschool children today.

Promoting Preschoolers’ Emergent Writing.

This article shares a framework for understanding emergent writing and ties the framework to differentiating young children’s emergent writing experiences.

How Do I Write…? Scaffolding Preschoolers' Early Writing Skills.

Providing young children with rich writing experiences can lay a foundation for literacy learning. This article presents a framework for individualizing early writing instruction in the preschool classroom.

Emergent Literacy for VPK Instructors- DOE/OEL training

The Emergent Literacy for VPK Instructors online course provides early childhood education instructors with evidence-based research and practical information on teaching literacy skills to young children.

The Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards (2017)

Educator’s Guide to Understanding the Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards: 4 Years Old to Kindergarten

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Facilitators Guide

How to Use this Resource

The information suggests ways to use the Integrating Learning Throughout the Preschool Day module as a professional learning (i.e. community of practice or in-service training) opportunity for directors, trainers, coaches and individual instructors.

Overview of Integrating Learning Throughout the Preschool Day

The information provides an overview of the key elements included in a preschool classroom curriculum and the importance of an integrated approach to learning.

Knowledge Check

The purpose of the knowledge check is to help you think about ways to integrate your classroom curriculum throughout the preschool day.

Powerpoint Presentation

Integrating Learning Throughout the Preschool Day

The presentation includes picture slides and videos to demonstrate how learning can be integrated across content and throughout the daily schedule.

PowerPoint Note Pages

The note pages provide detailed information to support each slide with guided questions and recommended activities.

Pacing Guide

The pacing guide includes key points for presenters for each slide and suggested action for extending the learning.

Videos

Child-Centered Classroom

An overview of the educator’s role in providing a well-planned, organized, safe and learning environment for children to learn and grow.

Daily Routines and Transitions

Children will benefit when learning skills and concepts are integrated across daily routines and transitions.

How One Activity Builds on Another

After reading a story about pumpkins, the teacher demonstrates how one activity builds on another to support children’s learning in a comprehensive way.

Content Integration throughout the Day

The teacher demonstrates how a variety of activities based on a theme for learning are integrated throughout the day.

Instructional Resources

Integrating Alphabet Knowledge

This classroom scenario demonstrates how print knowledge can be integrated throughout daily routines and transitions.

Integrating Mathematical Thinking

This classroom scenario demonstrates how a story book can be used to teach math concepts with activities extended into small group and learning areas.

Integrating Vocabulary

This classroom scenario demonstrates how vocabulary can be practiced and reinforced throughout the day.

Integrating Phonological Awareness

This classroom scenario demonstrates how phonological awareness skills are reinforced during daily routines and transitions.

Content Support Documents

The Integrated Classroom Curriculum

In many preschool programs, a curriculum is considered to be a purchased set of materials and guidebooks, however, an effective educator will include a variety of elements to support children’s interest and natural desire to explore, discover and act on the world around them.

Content Resources

The Integrated Nature of Learning

This publication examines how play, learning, and curriculum work together in early education. It describes the relationship context for early learning and the role of the teacher in supporting children’s active engagement in learning.

The Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards (2017)

An Educator’s Guide to Understanding the Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards: 4 Years Old to Kindergarten

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Facilitators Guide

How to Use this Resource

The information suggests ways to use the Mathematical Thinking: Rethinking Calendar Time module as a professional learning opportunity (i.e. community of practice or in-service training) for directors, trainers, coaches and individual instructors.

Overview of Mathematical Thinking: Rethinking Calendar Time

A review of the math skills educators may think they are addressing during calendar and why some of these practices are not developmentally appropriate for 4-years to Kindergarten.

Knowledge Check

The purpose of the knowledge check is to help you think about best practices for Mathematical Thinking.

Powerpoint Presentation

Understanding the Math

This presentation includes pictures slides and videos to demonstrate key mathematical thinking skills: counting, patterns and seriation.

PowerPoint Note Pages

The note pages provide detailed information to support each slide with guided questions and recommended activities.

Pacing Guide

The pacing guide includes key points for presenters for each slide and suggested action for extending the learning.

Videos

Overview of the Mathematical Thinking Standards

The Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards are addressed in this video.

Patterns and Seriation: Learning from an Expert

Dr. Sharon Carver from Carnegie Mellon University Children’s School discusses the concepts and skills for patterns and seriation.

The Sequence of Learning Patterns

The video demonstrates how to recognize a pattern, duplicate a pattern and then create a pattern.

Counting: The Hopping Game

The video demonstrates a fun counting game that covers many of the number sense standards.

Instructional Resources

Rethinking Calendar Time

The information provides ideas for rethinking the math concepts used during calendar time with appropriate math activities.

Children’s Books: Choosing Books You Can Count On

Using storybooks contextualizes math concepts for children and helps them see number in many different contexts, formats and configurations.

10 Tips for Circle Time

Ten tips for making circle time more than just a routine experience but instead an engaging and interesting experience in the preschool classroom.

Teacher’s blog about Calendar Time

Why I said goodbye to Calendar Time and how you can be intentional using developmentally appropriate morning routines.

Content Support Documents

Big Ideas of Counting

The information goes deeper into understanding the concepts of counting including the principles of counting and the learning sequence.

Big Ideas of Patterns

The search for pattern underlies all learning and makes a particularly powerful contribution to our mathematical understanding. Patterns exists in many forms including time-based patterns. The information goes deeper into understanding the concepts and importance of learning about patterns.

Teach Children to View the World Mathematically

Mathematical thinking isn’t just a group of skills, math is all around and it helps children make sense of their world. The information provides steps teachers can take to help children view and describe the world mathematically.

Content Resources

Blog: My NCTM; Calendar Time Must Die, Amy Parks

After spending time in early childhood classrooms, Amy Parks concerns about calendar time are around how much prime, instructional time calendar time takes and the fact that the mathematics addressed rarely changes and is often out of sync with the needs of children.

Calendar Time for Young Children: Good Intentions Gone Awry

In this article the authors provide several evidence-based practices that would be more effective than calendar activities in presenting time concept to young children.

Big Ideas of Early Mathematics: What Teachers of Young Children Need to Know” Early Math Collaborative (2014)"

For teachers of children ages three through six, the book provides foundations for further mathematics learning and helps facilitate long-term mathematical understanding. It’s the perfect guide for those who want to focus their instruction on mathematics that is central, coherent, and rigorous.

Calendar Time in the Preschool and Primary Classrooms: Questioning the Curriculum.

The Early Childhood profession would benefit from a systematic inquiry into ‘‘calendar math’’. The authors offer an organized framework for this work. After a description of calendar math practices, the authors examine problematic aspects of its implementation, based on developmental theory.

“Mathematics Learning in Early Childhood: Paths Toward Excellence and Equity.” National Research Council (2009)

The National Academies Press.

The Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards (2017)

An Educator’s Guide to Understanding the Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards: 4 Years Old to Kindergarten

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