Early Childhood Education Course Descriptions

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Number sequencing next to course name means the following: first digit designates the number of lecture hours for the course; the second digit designates the number of lab, clinic or practicum hours; and the third digit designates the credit hours for the course.

EC 100 Growth and Development of the Young Child Extended Part I 2-0-2
This course enables interested students to begin their studies in the field of early childhood education by integrating the first third of the course content of EC 101 with the development of the organizational and academic skills necessary for successful participation in NHTI's Early Childhood Education associate degree program.

EC 101 Growth and Development of the Young Child 3-0-3
Major theories and research findings in the physical, cognitive, language and social/emotional domains of development of young children from conception through age 8 will be the focus of this course. The work of Piaget (constructivism), Erikson (psychosocial theory), and Maslow (hierarchy of needs) will be emphasized. Students will use various tools to observe and record the development of young children in early care settings as they explore domains and theories. Emphasis will be placed on understanding children's development in the moment and the power of observations.

EC 101X Growth and Development of the Young Child Extended Part II 2-0-2
A continuation of EC 100 that presents the final two-thirds of the course content of EC 101 Students must receive a grade of “C” or higher to continue further in the ECE program. (Prerequisite: EC 100 with a grade of “C” or higher)

EC 141 Curriculum and Environments 1 3-0-3
With emergent curriculum as the overarching approach to curriculum development, students will experience designing, implementing, and evaluating appropriate activities and environments for children birth through age six with a focus on music, movement, art, manipulatives and dramatic play supported by emergent literacy and anti-bias curriculum. Emphasis will be on concrete, practical application of various philosophies, theories, and current research in early childhood education. Methods of observing children's behavior and progress, and developing and using suitable instructional and play materials from these observations in all aspects of the daily routine will be emphasized. Participants will experience and broaden their own creativity and imagination through exploring learning activities that can be applied to actual early childhood settings. Students will learn how to plan stimulating, age-appropriate classroom and outdoor learning environments that encourage child-initiated discovery and act as a tool in behavior management. These environments will be child and family friendly, barrier free, inclusionary, and meet state regulatory requirements.

EC 142 Curriculum and Environments 2 (SRV) 3-0-3
Continuing to use emergent curriculum as the overarching approach to curriculum development, this course will focus on designing, implementing, and evaluating appropriate activities and environments for children through age six with a focus on blocks, math, science, woodworking, and technology with literacy concepts integrated into each area. Emphasis will be on the concrete, practical application of different philosophies, theories, and current research that is manifested in various curriculum models in early childhood education. Students will dialogue and reflect together as they explore the cycle of inquiry and project work for developing, implementing and assessing curriculum. Emphasis will be on planning stimulating, age-appropriate classroom and outdoor learning environments that encourage child-initiated discovery and act as a tool in behavior management. These environments will be child and family friendly, barrier free, inclusionary, and meet state regulatory requirements. Students will learn about and apply successful attributes of documentation panels that make children's learning visible. Service Learning is a component of this course. (Prerequisite: EC 141)

EC 155 Using Children's Literature to Support Young Children's Language and Literacy Development (SRV) 3-0-3
High quality children's books will be used as a vehicle for supporting and applying current research on the acquisition of language and reading. This course will provide an overview of exemplary authors and illustrators of children's literature from birth to age 8. Students will become familiar with Caldecott Award-winning books and the artistic techniques used to create these books. Big books will be introduced as a way of distinguishing features of print. Poetry, multicultural books, and bibliotherapy as applied to early childhood education will be studied. Students will learn how to use children's literature to highlight the literacy elements of characterization, plot, setting, and theme. They will learn how to teach domains of language (phonology, semantics, syntax, morphology, and pragmatics) through shared storybook reading. Additionally, students will explore the teacher's role in promoting family literacy and participate in service learning on this topic. Service Learning is a component of this course.

EC 167 Positive Behavior Guidance and Supporting Young Children with Challenging Behaviors 4-0-4
Through exploring various theories of behavior management and functions of behavior, the role of positive behavioral supports in preparing young children to become competent and cooperative individuals with a strong social and emotional foundation will be emphasized. Developmentally appropriate methods of guiding individual and group needs will be shared as approaches to preventing disruptive behaviors in the classroom. Techniques for dealing with more challenging and explosive behaviors using functional assessment, identifying replacement skills, and creating and implementing behavior intervention plans will be utilized. Partnering with families in developing these plans will be emphasized. Students will also learn about triggers of and interventions for the cycle of tantrums, meltdowns, and rage often experienced by children with autism spectrum disorder. Students will leave the course with tools for primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention of challenging behaviors. They will understand when and how to reach out for support in the community in dealing with issues beyond their expertise. Students will be able to use the class as a model for developing parent education programs for the families that they serve. (Prerequisite: EC 101 or permission of the Department Head of Child and Family Studies)

EC 188 Health, Safety and Nutrition in Early Childhood Education (SRV) 3-0-3
This course offers an introduction to major issues affecting the health and safety of young children in early childhood settings. Nutrition and policy considerations about pediatric medications, infectious disease control, sick child care, universal precautions and liability, and health record keeping will be discussed. Childhood stress and education for the prevention of child sexual abuse will be highlighted. Students will learn how to integrate curriculum for young children related to health, safety, and nutrition into the overall program. Service Learning is a component of this course.

EC 215 Infant/Toddler Development and Programming 4-0-4
This course will be a study of important influences on infant and toddler development supported by research on brain development during the first three years of life. Emphasis will be put on the role and responsibilities of families, child care teachers, and specialists in creating high quality supportive environments. Sensitivity to attachment and the importance of observation and communication skills to nurture positive family, caregiver, and child relationships through the roles of primary caregiving, transitions, and continuity of care will be highlighted as students learn to design responsive programs for infants and toddlers and their families. Field work in an infant or toddler classroom is required as part of this class. (Prerequisite: EC 101 or permission of the Department Head of Child and Family Studies)

EC 225 Autism Spectrum Disorder 4-0-4
This course will examine the neurological underpinnings and behavioral characteristics of children from birth through age 8 with autism spectrum disorders. It will focus on an overview of the strengths and challenges of child-centered, developmental, research-based interventions to be used in natural environments. The centrality of the family will be emphasized. Students will shadow an interventionist working with a young child with autism for a minimum of 10 hours over the course of the semester. (Prerequisite: EC 101 or permission of the Department Head of Child and Family Studies)

EC 242 Child, Family and Community (SRV) 3-0-3
The course will provide an overview of families and family systems (including Bronfenbrenner's Bioecological Theory) with emphasis on developing effective models of teacher/program/family partnerships. Students will identify their own biases as a precursor to exploring issues of power and privilege in society. Cultural dilemmas and their impact on early care and education will be identified as students begin to evaluate their own cultural competence. Students will learn how to identify and strengthen protective factors that empower families and reduce the risk of child abuse. Students will research various crises encountered by families and identify an action plan to positively address the crisis. Community resources will be identified and involved. Service Learning is a component of this course. (Prerequisite: EC 101)

EC 261 Family Child Care Business Management 3-0-3
This course will review the fundamentals of sound business practices as they relate to the running of a successful Family Child Care business. Emphasis will be on designing of business plans, budgeting, insurance, effective business policies, contracts, pricing, marketing, customer relations, purchasing, financial, legal and licensing regulations and reports, small business management and related record keeping.

EC 262 Organization and Management for the Practicing Professional 4-0-4
A survey of organization and management of early childhood programs and/or child care centers for the practicing professional. Emphasis will be on learning how to plan, organize, manage and evaluate programs and facilities for children. Specific skills addressed are licensing procedures, hiring, motivating and evaluating staff and parent involvement. Financial record keeping to inform program management decisions will be based on an understanding of Excel computer program use. Leadership and visioning skills will also be taught and evidence of implementation will be required. Students will be required to spend fifteen hours outside of class on a final project to be implemented in their professional work. This course will meet the requirements for Director Certification from the State of New Hampshire. It will also meet the criteria for accreditation by the National Association for the Education of Young Children. (Prerequisite: permission of Department Head of Child and Family Studies)

EC 270 Teaching Young Children with Special Needs (SRV) 3-0-3
This course will broaden students' awareness of the theoretical and legal foundations for programs serving young children (infancy through age eight) with a wide range of special educational needs. Students will examine the causes, symptoms, social consequences and behavior characteristics of children with special needs. Students will learn how to develop curriculum modification/accommodation strategies in all domains of development in an inclusive classroom setting. Emphasis will be on education for children and their families. Students will work with and observe a child and family to develop an understanding of their needs and develop a resource file of state, local and national supports. Service Learning is a component of this course. (Prerequisite: EC 101)

EC 272 Teaching Children with Low-incidence Disabilities 3-0-3
This course will examine the causes, symptoms, social consequences, and behavior characteristics of children with low-incidence disabilities. Children with low-incidence disabilities include but are not limited to children with emotional disabilities, autism, multiple disabilities, traumatic or acquired brain injury, deafness, deaf-blindness, and blindness. The course will examine the specific characteristics of each disability and the influence of each disability on development, learning, behavior, and family systems. Through observation students will learn how to assess the skills of individual children to develop curriculum modifications which lead to educational interventions in natural environments. Students will increase their knowledge and skills related to assistive technology (AT) for low incidence disabilities. Strategies for using high and low tech AT devices will be included. Local, state, and national supports will be explored. Service Learning is a component of this course. (Prerequisite: EC 101)

EC 275 Practicum 1 - Observation, Interpretation, Assessment and Portfolio Documentation 2-5-3
Students will work in NHTI-approved Early Childhood Education (ECE) settings for children in infant/toddler care, preschool, or kindergarten under the supervision of early childhood Cooperating Teachers. Students will conduct an in-depth child study over the course of the 75 hours that they will spend at their practicum site during the semester. They will become "students of childhood" as they learn how to interpret and assess their observations of children in the seminar class. Students will create and manage a portfolio for a child. They will use portfolio information to generate invitations to learning and implement child-centered curriculum. They will make children's learning visible through learning story documentations and incorporate their own wonderings as teachers. Their observations will be summarized in narratives outlining the children's growth in the various developmental domains. All of this will be used to plan and carry out two parent conferences. Video-capturing of practicum students in the action of teaching will be required. NHTI ECE faculty schedule site visits to review and evaluate student progress during the practicum experience. Students must earn a grade of "C" or higher in Practicum 1 to move on to Practicum 2. (Prerequisites: all 100-level EC courses; a 2.5 minimum GPA in major field courses; permission of the ECE Practicum Coordinator; and submission of all required documents. EC 192 and EC 242 may be taken concurrently with Practicum 1.)

EC 276 Practicum 2 - Exploring Teaching: Implementing Responsive Emergent Curriculum (SRV) 2-10-5
Students will work in NHTI-approved Early Childhood Education (ECE) settings for children in infant/toddler care, preschool, or kindergarten under the supervision of early childhood Cooperating Teachers. Weekly seminars conducted by NHTI faculty offer support for students as they explore the characteristics of responsive child-centered emergent curriculum projects. Students will document and reflect on their experiences with children, families, and professional partners through projects as they develop a project history book connecting theory to practice. Students will also be encouraged to develop and embrace the dispositions of wonder, disequilibrium, and reflective practice as they experience the role of "teacher as researcher" through the process of action research. The 150 hours they spend at their sites over the course of the semester will include lead teaching responsibilities and will require flexibility in scheduling to allow for two full days at the site. Video-captures of the practicum students in the action of teaching will be required. NHTI ECE faculty schedule site visits to review and evaluate student progress during their practicum experience. Students must earn a grade of "C" or higher in Practicum 2 in order to graduate from the Early Childhood Education program. Service Learning is a component of this course. (Prerequisites: all 100 level EC courses, EC 242, and EC 275; a 2.5 GPA in major field courses, permission of the ECE Practicum Coordinator and submission of all required documents.)

EC 282 Preschool Special Education Practicum 2-7-4
Students will work in NHTI approved community based settings with preschool children with special needs under the supervision of Cooperating Teachers. Students will become "students of childhood" as they conduct in-depth observations of preschoolers with special needs using a variety of tools during the 105 hours they spend at their practicum site this semester. Students will create and manage portfolios for children and use this information to write progress notes and narrative summaries. They will participate in IEP meetings and suggest and implement appropriate activity based interventions that are part of a child's IEP. NHTI program faculty schedule site visits to review and evaluate student progress during the practicum experience. Students must earn a grade of “C” or higher in this practicum to graduate from the degree program. (Prerequisites: all first year courses, 2.5 GPA in major field courses, permission of the practicum coordinator, and submission of all required documents.)

EC 283 Early Intervention Practicum 2-7-4
This 105-hour field based experience provides students with a supervised opportunity to develop skills and demonstrate competencies necessary in early intervention in natural settings (child care, homes, public schools). Students will learn how to best support families and caregivers. Supervisors will provide guidance and support needed to enhance students' development as early intervention paraeducators. Students will use appropriate assistive technologies and learn how to create a supportive environment for children learning to use these technologies. Through participation in an IFSP or IEP team, students will learn how to partner with families in the education of their children. (Prerequisites: All other courses in either the Autism Early Intervention Support Certificate or first year courses in the Early Care and Education for Young Children with Disabilities Degree with a GPA of 2.5 or higher in major field courses; students must pass EC 283 with a grade of “C” or higher to graduate from the corresponding program.)

EC 288 The Early Childhood Professional (SRV) 3-0-3
This course explores the role of the early childhood professional in the workplace. Topics to be discussed include leadership, working in a team, and professional ethics. Additionally, students will learn about the legislative process in NH and explore their role in advocating for public policy to support children, families, and early care and education programs. Students will develop a resume and create a Professional Portfolio that can be used for interview purposes, a NAEYC Standards Portfolio, and an e-folio. The Standards Portfolio will include competency statements with supportive artifacts using the NAEYC Standards for Early Childhood Professional Preparation for Associate Degree Programs. Emphasis will be placed on the role of ongoing professional development activities, and students will participate in an advocacy project. In lieu of textbook fees, students should plan on paying for, traveling to and attending the state AEYC conference on a Saturday in the spring. Service Learning is a component of this course. (Prerequisites: all 100 level EC courses, EC 242, EC 275; may be taken concurrently with EC 276 and EC 270.)

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