Developmentally Appropriate Practice Guidelines to successful Early Childhood Education programs
Who is the NAEYC? • The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) is dedicated to improving the well-being of all young children, with particular focus on the quality of educational and developmental services for all children from birth through age 8. NAEYC is committed to becoming an increasingly high performing and inclusive organization. • Founded in 1926, NAEYC is the world's largest organization working on behalf of young children with nearly 100,000 members, a national network of over 300 local, state, and regional Affiliates, and a growing global alliance of like-minded organizations. • Membership is open to all individuals who share a desire to serve and act on behalf of the needs and rights of all young children.
NAEYC’s commitment to children • appreciating childhood as a unique and valuable stage of the human life cycle [and valuing the quality of children’s lives in the present, not just as preparation for the future]; • basing our work with children on knowledge of child development [and learning]; • appreciating and supporting the close ties between the child and family; • recognizing that children are best understood in the context of family, culture, and society; • respecting the dignity, worth, and uniqueness of each individual (child, family member, and colleague); and • helping children and adults achieve their full potential in the context of relationships that are based on trust, respect, and positive regard.
What is DAP? • Developmentally appropriate practices result from the process of professionals making decisions about the well-being and education of children based on at least three important kinds of information or knowledge: • what is known about child development and learning • what is known about the strengths, interests, and needs of each individual child in the group • knowledge of the social and cultural contexts in which children live
Principles of Child Development • Domains of children’s development-physical, social, emotional and cognitive-are closely related. • Development occurs in a relatively orderly sequence with later abilities, skills and knowledge building on those already acquired. • Development proceeds at varying rates from child to child as well as unevenly within different areas of each child’s functioning. • Early experiences have both cumulative and delayed effects on individual children’s development.
Principles of Child Development continued… • Development proceeds in predictable directions towards greater complexity, organization and internalization. • Development and learning occur in and are influenced by multiple social and cultural contexts. • Children are active learners. • Development and learning result from interaction of biological maturation and the environment, which includes both the physical and social worlds that children live in.
Principles of Child Development continued… • Play is an important vehicle for children’s social, emotional, and cognitive development as well as a reflection of their development. • Development advances when children have the opportunity to practice newly acquired skills as well as challenging them just beyond the level of present mastery. • Children demonstrate different modes of knowing and learning, as well as representing what they know. • Children develop and learn best in the context of a community where they are safe and valued, their physical needs are met, and they feel psycholgically secure.
In order to successfully implement DAP • Create caring community of learners • Teach to enhance development and learning • Construct appropriate curriculum • Assess children’s learning and development • Establish reciprocal relationships with families
Barriers to Service • Lack of education for ECE teachers and caregivers • Lack of resources to implement successful teaching strategies • It’s a lot more work to do things differently, even if it is shown to be better
Hope for the Future • Organizations like the NAEYC are supporting and developing education for ECE teachers in order to maintain a successful program of learning for our children. • We can be advocates for the education of our children both as parents and teachers in order to ensure the highest probability for their success.
Works Cited • NAEYC website: http://www.naeyc.org/ • NAEYC Position Paper on DAP: http://www.naeyc.org/about/positions/pdf/PSDAP98.PDF