National Associaton for the Education of Young Children Associate Degree Standards

 

The NAEYC Commission on Early Childhood Associate Degree Accreditation awards accreditation to associate degree programs that demonstrate evidence of meeting the Professional Preparation Standards. Accreditation provides a framework for self study, external evaluation and improvement in the quality of teacher preparation programs.

NAEYC Standard 1. Promoting Child Development and Learning

Early childhood professionals are grounded in a child development knowledge base. They use their understanding of young children’s characteristics and needs and of the multiple interacting influences on children’s development and learning to create environments that are healthy, respectful, supportive, and challenging for each child.

Key elements of Standard 1

  1. Knowing and understanding young children’s characteristics and needs

  2. Knowing and understanding the multiple influences on development and learning

  3. Using developmental knowledge to create healthy, respectful, supportive, and challenging learning environments

NAEYC Standard 2. Building Family and Community Relationships

Professionals prepared in early childhood degree programs understand that successful early childhood education depends upon partnerships with children’s families and communities. They know about, understand, and value the importance and complex characteristics of children’s families and communities. They use this understanding to create respectful, reciprocal relationships that support and empower families and to involve all families in their children’s development and learning.

Key elements of Standard 2

  1. Knowing about and understanding diverse family and community characteristics

  2. Supporting and engaging families and communities through respectful, reciprocal relationships

  3. Involving families and communities in their children’s development and learning

NAEYC Standard 3. Observing, Documenting, and Assessing to Support Young Children and Families

Professionals prepared in early childhood degree programs understand that child observation, documentation, and other forms of assessment are central to the practice of all early childhood professionals. They know about and understand the goals, benefits, and uses of assessment. They know about and use systematic observations, documentation, and other effective assessment strategies in a responsible way, in partnership with families and other professionals, to positively influence the development of every child.

Key elements of Standard 3

  1. Understanding the goals, benefits, and uses of assessment

  2. Knowing about and using observation, documentation, and other appropriate assessment tools and approaches

  3. Understanding and practicing responsible assessment to promote positive outcomes for each child

  4. Knowing about assessment partnerships with families and with professional colleagues

NAEYC Standard 4. Using Developmentally Effective Approaches to Connect with Children and Families

Professionals prepared in early childhood degree programs understand that teaching and learning with young children is a complex enterprise, and its details vary depending on children’s ages, characteristics, and the settings within which teaching and learning occur. They understand and use positive relationships and supportive interactions as the foundation for their work with young children and families. Early childhood professionals know, understand, and use a wide array of developmentally appropriate approaches, instructional strategies, and tools to connect with children and families and positively influence each child’s development and learning.

Key elements of Standard 4

  1. Understanding positive relationships and supportive interactions as the foundation of their work with children

  2. Knowing and understanding effective strategies and tools for early education

  3. Using a broad repertoire of developmentally appropriate teaching/learning approaches

  4. Reflecting on their own practice to promote positive outcomes for each child

NAEYC Standard 5. Using Content Knowledge to Build Meaningful Curriculum

Professionals prepared in early childhood degree programs use their knowledge of academic disciplines to design, implement, and evaluate experiences that promote positive development and learning for each and every young child. They understand the importance of developmental domains and academic (or content) disciplines in an early childhood curriculum. They know the essential concepts, inquiry tools, and structure of content areas, including academic subjects, and can identify resources to deepen their understanding. Early childhood professionals use their own knowledge and other resources to design, implement, and evaluate meaningful, challenging curricula that promote comprehensive developmental and learning outcomes for every young child.

Key elements of Standard 5

  1. Understanding content knowledge and resources in academic disciplines

  2. Knowing and using the central concepts, inquiry tools, and structures of content areas or academic disciplines

  3. Using their own knowledge, appropriate early learning standards, and other resources to design, implement, and evaluate meaningful, challenging curricula for each child.

NAEYC Standard 6. Becoming a Professional

Professionals prepared in early childhood degree programs identify and conduct themselves as members of the early childhood profession. They know and use ethical guidelines and other professional standards related to early childhood practice. They are continuous, collaborative learners who demonstrate knowledgeable, reflective, and critical perspectives on their work, making informed decisions that integrate knowledge from a variety of sources. They are informed advocates for sound educational practices and policies.

Key elements of Standard 6

  1. Identifying and involving oneself with the early childhood field

  2. Knowing about and upholding ethical standards and other professional guidelines

  3. Engaging in continuous, collaborative learning to inform practice

  4. Integrating knowledgeable, reflective, and critical perspectives on early education

  5. Engaging in informed advocacy for children and the profession