The child "educaring" philosophy at CCCC supports a "whole-child" concept of development by meeting his/her emotional, social, intellectual, physical and emerging cultural needs. Our child development program is based on the assumption that a child's growth is a sequential process and that children pass through predictable stages of development in all areas and within age ranges.
A fundamental belief at CCCC is that the children have the right to be cared for in a safe, healthy, nurturing, fun, and respectful environment by adults who are well trained in child development principles and that the children learn best through play and playful interactions within this kind of environment. Since a positive parent-teacher partnership is ideal for a successful and harmonious child-rearing/child-caring experience, we strive to promote and demonstrate respectful interactions in the teacher-parent, teacher-child, child-child, and teacher-teacher relationships. This helps to establish an atmosphere of acceptance and well-being for all who participate in the CCCC program.
A team teaching approach is practiced in each age group's educare room. Together the professional staff plans overall program goals and objectives and curriculum units intended to meet the children's individual
development needs, as well as the needs of the group. Some characteristics we believe to be important for teachers to help children acquire within a group setting are:
- Self-esteem; a sense of identity, self-respect, and confidence.
- Competence in body and mind; a sense of mastery.
- Problem solving and conflict resolution ability; a sense of reasoning and responsibility.
- Personal and interpersonal strengths; ability to communicate with and be sensitive to others, to get along with others.
- Appreciation of diversity; a sense of understanding and respect for difference.
- Creativity and innovation; a sense of confidence and growth, a desire to learn.
- Openness; a sense of trust and honesty.
- Awareness of change; a sense of inner strength, self-control, and coping skills.
- Recognition of emotions; ability to understand and express feelings in appropriate ways.
Community Child Care Center has an anti-bias philosophy. This philosophy demonstrates the center's ongoing commitment to integrate an anti-bias philosophy into every aspect of its program. Because children live in a diverse and complex world, they interact daily with people different from themselves.
Anti-bias curriculum is a process to help children develop and strengthen their self and group identities, while interacting respectfully with others in a multicultural environment. Anti-bias curriculum is a proactive approach to reduce prejudice and promote inclusiveness. The teaching staff guides children to think critically about unfairness and stand up for themselves and others in the face of bias. The anti-bias approach is a teaching strategy that values diversity and challenges bias, rather than ignoring and therefore reinforcing
children's misunderstandings of differences. The anti-bias philosophy at CCCC is a commitment to address societal bias and practice our value for diversity in developmentally appropriate ways. CCCC strives to balance its unique institutional culture with the individual cultural interests of each family served. Respect for CCCC's diverse community is reflected in the curriculum, classroom environments, parent/teacher/child interactions, staff development, hiring plans, and program goals.
The center does (and does not do) many things in order to ensure that we are creating this anti-bias and inclusive environment. Some examples of these things are: not celebrating any particular culture's holidays or birthdays; representing many different kinds of families within our curriculum and books found in the classrooms; providing opportunities for children to experience different cultural activities and ask questions; and creating classroom environments where the children and families can find themselves in pictures on
the walls, books, toys, and activities. All of these strategies implement the anti-bias philosophy to our center's program, while creating a welcoming, safe, and inclusive environment for all children and families. CCCC is committed to anti-bias education. This means we share a commitment to human rights, dignity of the individual, and social justice. We strive to create a program that truly reflects the lives of our children, families, staff, and communities.
At CCCC we define violence as any verbal, physical or emotional behavior that indicates a desire to hurt another person or material. In the absence of this apparent desire to harm, such behaviors are identified as hurtful behaviors rather than violent behaviors. CCCC has a well-articulated Hurtful Behaviors Policy that is generic in theory, and age-specific in practice. We believe that most hurtful behaviors are a young child's inexperienced attempts to meet his or her immediate needs. Our adult role is to create environments and support interactions, which empower our young children to peacefully satisfy their needs and desires.
Specific to the realm of violence and non-violence, we understand that, beginning as early as age two, children are fascinated with the concepts of good and bad, and act out roles that depict these concepts. In our experience, these play activities are not intended to harm another person, or to meet a personal need, but rather indicate an attempt to experiment with power and the behaviors associated with power figures. While we do not interpret these activities as desiring to hurt, we understand that the behaviors can be frightening to other children, or accidentally hurtful. We believe that all families have a right to enjoy a safe and protected environment. For these reasons, we actively prohibit the bringing of certain items to the Center such
as weapon facsimiles, or other toys that suggest or promote these activities. We actively seek out alternate ways for children to experience being powerful.
Learning Through Play Philosophy
Part of the educare philosophy is that children learn through play. When given the environment to make choices and explore different activities and experiences children learn a great deal. When children are playing on climbing equipment they are learning: to be self-confident as they develop new skills; physical strength, coordination, and balance; to use their imagination; to solve problems; and to cooperate with others while involved in some type of dramatic play. When children are looking at books and hearing stories they are
learning: that reading is important and enjoyable; letters on pages represent words; to exercise their own imagination; to interpret pictures to represent ideas; to handle books with care; to make up their own stories; to recognize certain words when they see them in print; and to follow the development of thoughts and ideas in the plot of a story. When children are riding on toys they are learning: strength, balance, coordination of large muscles of legs, torso, and arms; to use their energy in a constructive way; concepts of speed, direction, and location; to negotiate and take turns with others; to solve problems; and self confidence as they master skills. When children scribble and draw they are learning to: hold a pencil, pen, etc. and to control the pressure; eye-hand coordination; that their ideas have value; concepts of color, shape, and location; and sometimes how to express themselves with words to describe their drawing. When children finger paint they are learning: imagination and creativity; about color and how to form new colors; eye-hand coordination; and how to share ideas with others. And last when children are playing with sand they are learning: to develop their imagination and creativity; concepts of size and shape; how to use tools; how to solve problems; concepts of warm/cool, heavy/light, and wet/dry; how to play socially with others; and to observe change. All of these skills that children learn and gain through play help children develop socially, emotionally, physically, and intellectually.