Academic Readiness Skills for Pre-Kindergarten Students Melissa R. Smith
IntroductionO High quality early child care is a key factor in laying a solid foundation for school readiness for children from birth to 5 years of age.O “the learning experiences of the preschool years provide a foundation that guides children academically, socially, and emotionally” (Texas Prekindergarten Guidelines, 2008)
O Advance school-readinessO Provide solid foundation for later academic achievement success.
Background about the SchoolO Forever Growing O 1990 in Alvin, Texas by Denise West O Curriculum designed to teach academic, reading and social readiness skills to children ages 2-5. O Problem solving, phonological and phonemic awareness, and social dialogue
O Classrooms split according to age groups/milestones reached in the curriculumO Mission Statement O Provide small class sizes O Teacher as a guide O Attainment of knowledge was a continuous processO School’s symbol O Caterpillar and a Butterfly
Background about the ProblemO Forever Growing is struggling to keep up with the demands and expectations of public education! O There is increase enrollment (teachers need to be hired and trained) O Growing economic concerns O Training current teachers in cost-effective methods (current educational theories)
Specific (Functional) Area of Interest O “in a recent report on the portrait of American children entering kindergarten, increasingly large numbers of children enter school without the cognitive readiness skills needed to succeed” (Assel et al, 2007)
O Forever Growing is a dynamic step towards solving the Kindergarten crisis!O The school’s program trains its teachers to delineate the a literacy rich curriculum, up to date learning theories and specific teaching models.
The Specific ProblemO Forever growing is only funded through: O The director O Tuition of the studentsO Director tries to keep costs down to reach a wider range of students O School is located in a part of a poverty stricken areaO Biggest problem this year is the increase school costs and decreased amount of available funds
The School’s Current StrategyO Scholarship O Local businesses sponsor 1-2 studentsO Director has made every effort to raise funds in the communityO Director has cut costs in the facilityO Director has made every effort not to raise tuition considerably highO However, economy is having a negative effect on the school’s budget
School’s Future StrategyO Local Businesses O Help with school fundraising O Donation MatchingO Community O One time financial gifts or donations
O Teachers O Will forgo annual raise O Attend free professional development seminars at the local collegeO Tuition will be increased 6%O Director has updated the facilities equipment to become more energy efficientO Director has cut paper and printing costsO Director is currently researching ways the school may be able to receive federal, state and district funds
AlternativesO Tuition increase more than 6%O Annual Meeting to discuss tuition increases and alternative ideas/ways to cut costsO Community Outreach for help
ConclusionO Preschool years are an essential time in the student’s academic career. O Solid Foundation O Building BlocksO Learn essential academic and reading skills and social interactionO Private daycares and early childhood centers should be assisted financially by the federal or state governments.
ReferencesO Assel, M. A., Landry, S. H., Swank, P. R., & Gunnewig, S. (2007, July). An evaluation of curriculum, setting, and mentoring on the performance of children enrolled in pre- kindergarten. Reading and Writing, 20(5), 463-494. Retrieved from http://www.hwwilson.com/Documentation/WilsonWeb/howtocite/howtocite.htmO Early, D., Bryant, D., Pianta, R., Clifford, R., Burchinal, M., Ritchie, S., et al. (2006). Are teachers education, major, and credentials related to classroom quality and childrens academic gains in pre-kindergarten? Early Childhood Research Quarterly. 21(2), 174-195.O Early, D., Maxwell, K., Burchinal, M., Bender, R., Ebanks, C., Henry, G., et al. (2007). Teacher’s education, classroom quality, and young children’s academic skills; Results from seven studies of preschool programs. Child Development, 78(2), 558-580.O Neuman, S. B. (2005, October). Readiness for reading and writing: What does it mean? Scholastic Early Childhood Today, 20(2), 8. Retrieved from http://www.hwwilson.com/Documentation/WilsonWeb/howtocite/howtocite.htmO Smith, M (Producer). (2011). Forever growing: Interview with Denise West [video]. Alvin, Texas.O Welcome to the Texas prekindergarten guidelines. (2008, May). Revised Texas prekindergarten guidelines [TEA release]. Retrieved October 19, 2009, from University of Texas System and Texas Education Agency website: http://ritter.tea.state.tx.us/ed_init/pkguidelines/PKG_Final_100808.pdf
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