Course Descriptions -- M.Ed. in Early Childhood Education

ECE 7511 Inquiry: Educational Research and Prospectus I

Through the exploration of quantitative and qualitative educational research, candidates develop strategies to make informed decisions for intervention, as well as appropriate assessment for diverse student populations. A thorough study of literature related to candidate’s chosen research topic as well as completion of the Collaborative Training Initiative (CITI) helps gird candidates in the development of research skills appropriate to the graduate level.

ECE 7514 Inquiry: Essentials of Technology Strategies and Skills and Introduction of the Eportfolio

Through the exploration of both traditional and advanced educational technologies, candidates develop technological skills and strategies of implementation to build an integrated plan of utilizing technology for improving classroom teaching and student learning.

ECE 7525 Teaching Number, Operations, and Algebraic Thinking (P-5)

This course will explore the mathematical content and processes, research on learning, and relevant pedagogy of number, operations, and algebraic thinking in Pre-Kindergarten through Fifth Grade. Candidates will implement standards-based curriculum and research-based pedagogy in these content areas and assess the impact on student learning.

ECE 7531 Research and Implementation in the Classroom II

Candidates will implement integrated models of instruction into action research and classroom teaching. Candidates focus on completion of their prospectus integrating their learning from other courses in their program with their research design. This prospectus completion includes securing IRB and school district approval to conduct research.

ECE 7543 Research III

This course further develops a sound foundation for master level students to complete the required action research project. Using work completed in the previous research courses, students implement their prospectus in their classrooms or placements, analyze data using quantitative, qualitative, or mixed method methodologies, and synthesize what they’ve learned to improve their teaching practice.

ECE 7530 Integrated Models of Instruction I – Language Arts and Social Studies

Candidates explore and investigate a detailed curriculum design and assess its impact on student achievement. This course includes the integration of content areas of language arts, compostion, social studies, and detailed approaches to globalization.

ECE 7706 Trends and Issues in Science for Early Childhood Education

An examination of contemporary trends and issues in science education in the P-5 setting. Focus includes historical, pedagogical and research-based information as well as age/grade appropriate content. Topics are inclusive of but not limited to professional growth activities, including action research, content appropriate for early childhood science education, scientific process, inquiry, curriculum and interdisciplinary issues and technology.

ECE 7513 Diversity and Global Education

The purpose of this course is to prepare teachers for globally impacted classrooms filled with students from domestic, intercultural, and multicultural backgrounds. Teachers that have knowledge, skills, and attitudes to understand world cultures and events; analyze global systems; appreciate cultural differences; and apply this knowledge and appreciation to their lives are master teachers and world citizens.

ECE 7560 Capstone Course for the Eportfolio and Conference

Candidates will complete a portfolio based on work throughout the program. This portfolio will include evidence that supports a subject matter expert, a facilitator of learners, and a collaborative professional.

By collaborating with other cohort members, candidates plan and implement a conference. Each candidate presents a project from their portfolio highlighting their plan and focusing on reflection and changes made to improve student achievement in their classroom. 

Montessori Concentration:

ECE 7700 Scientific Foundations of Early Childhood Education

Students develop an understanding of the research-based Conceptual Framework of a proven Scientific System of Education designed to serve children from 2.5 to 6 years of age. Students also learn the importance of the Montessori Prepared Environment which serves as the essential third element for effective learning. Students also discover that the Sensitve Periods provide the most powerful times for learning. In addition, they develop new insights into the nature of child development and learn that respect for the child’s inner teacher serves as the integrating principle for the effective education of young children. This course includes an extensive field experience. Verification of professional liability insurance is required prior to placement in the field.

ECE 7710 - Physical Development and Enhanced Control of Movement

Students will learn how essential movement is to the physical, emotional and cognitive development of children. They will learn to present children with motives of activity in which action and interest combine to provide irresistible activities which children love to repeat spontaneously. Students will discover that work with developmentally appropriate materials provides children with many opportunities to develop independence and to acheive concentration and self-realization. Students will learn to implement teaching strategies which enhance the child’s physical, cognitive, emotional, and social development. This course includes an extensive field experience. Verification of professional liability insurance is required prior to placement in the field.

ECE 7720 - Sensorial Foundations of Intellectual Life

Sensorial experiences provide the foundations for all cognitive growth. Sensorial development can be richly enhanced through the use of scientifically designed, developmentally appropriate materials which address a child’s need to refine skills related to each of the senses. Work with these materials promotes the sensorial development required for the successful mastery of writing, reading and mathematics skills. In addition, students learn to help children develop listening, sight singing, and musical notation skills with the Kodaly music education strategies and the Montessori bells and boards. Students learn to present materials related to Geometry, Botany, Geography and the Peace Curriculum. This course includes an extensive field experience. Verification of professional liability insurance is required prior to placement in the field.

ECE 7730 - Development of Language and Literacy

The structured sequence of language activities offered in this course will prepare students to help children achieve maximum development of language and literacy skills. Students will learn to proved children with vocabulary related to the child’s life experiences at home, in school, and in the community. The classified nomenclature of Geography, Zoology, History, Science, and the Arts will also expand the child’s vocabulary and world view. Students will use research-based keywords and other materials to help children develop phonemic awareness and to achieve sound-symbol association. Students will learn to present writing activities which facilitate the development of skills in reading. This course includes an extensive field experience. Verification of professional liability insurance is required prior to placement in the field.

ECE 7731 Competence in the Preparation and Presentation of Language Materials

Students prepare and practice presenting the many materials designed by language specialists for use in offering developmentally appropriate language arts presentations and activities to young children. These materials are not available from Montessori suppliers, so each teacher prepares them for his/her own classroom. Students practice with the materials to develop and refine the skills they need to give language presentations to young children effectively. Students create a portfolio of selected examples of more than 70 language materials that can be duplicated for use in the classrooms where they will be employed.

ECE 7740 - The Early Preparation of the Mathematical Mind

Students study the conceptual framework for the presentation of numeration and mathematical activities to young children. The use of Montessori materials that provide children with multiple opportunities to develop numeration skills, to understand the decimal system, and to practice the four operations with up to four digits is presented and practiced. In addition, students learn how to present commutative and squaring operations in ways that allow children to discover their unique characteristics. Finally, students learn to present numerous math activities and exercises with a wide variety of different, scientifically designed manipulable materials as well as present special memorization materials with which children can review and enhance their ability to recall all of the number facts they have assimilated from the previous activities. This course is aligned with the standards of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM). This course includes an extensive field experience. Verification of professional liability insurance is required prior to placement in the field.