ChildCare Education Institute March Newsletter
Art in the Preschool Curriculum 
In This Issue...
Art and Individuality
Art in Early Childhood: Curriculum Connections
Benefits of Arts Education for Children
New 'Spatial Intelligence' Child Care Training Promotes Development of Multiple Intelligences
CCEI Supports "Let's Move! Child Care" Campaign Focused on Reducing Early Childhood Obesity
CCEI Promotes Early Art Education for "Youth Art Month"
Alumni Profile: Kristi Kates
Annual Professional Development Subscriptions - Individual + Center-Based Options
CDA Coursework, Director's Certificates, Early Childhood Credential & more
Volume 7, Issue 3 
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Art and Individuality 


A well-planned art curriculum promotes skills and growth across all developmental domains, including cognitive, social, emotional, and physical domains. Early childhood professionals need to have a full understanding of the potential benefits of art in order to design and implement an appropriate, strong early art curriculum. Even if you think you know how art affects childhood development, you might be surprised by the broad range of benefits identified by researchers.


One of the first things teachers need to understand is that each individual child should be encouraged to approach art activities according to his or her own needs and interests (which tend to evolve rapidly during the early years). In the early childhood environment, emphasis should always be placed on the process, not the final product. Furthermore, while some children may zip through an art activity and consider their product "finished," others may choose to spend a large block of time on a project, so teachers need to plan accordingly.


Teachers should also be careful not to overwhelm children by offering too many choices. While there are potential benefits to experimenting with lots of materials simultaneously, many of the greatest benefits of artistic expression come when a child has to "make do" with the materials at hand. So, there are times when having only three or four colors may do more to spur creativity than having that big box of 64 (or more) colors.


When it comes to art, keep an open mind and be sure to choose activities that expand rather than limit children's opportunities! For more on how to bring more art into your classroom, enroll in CCEI690: Rainbows and Rembrandts: Enhancing Art in the Preschool Curriculum and CCEI760: Rainbows and Rembrandts: Including Fine Art in Young Children's Programs.


Art in Early Childhood: Curriculum Connections 
By Jill Englebright Fox, Ph.D., and Stacey Berry, M.Ed.


Art has traditionally been an important part of early childhood programs. Friedrich Froebel, the father of kindergarten, believed that young children should be involved in both making their own art and enjoying the art of others. To Froebel, art activities were important, not because they allowed teachers to recognize children with unusual abilities, but because they encouraged each child's "full and all-sided development" (Froebel, 1826). More than a century later, early childhood teachers are still concerned with the "all-sided" development of each child. As Froebel recognized, making art and enjoying the art of other people and cultures are very important to the development of the whole child. The purpose of this article is to discuss the importance of art in young children's learning and development and to describe elements of an art program within a developmentally appropriate early childhood curriculum.


Read Article

Resource Courtesy of Earlychildhood News

About the Benefits of Arts Education for Children
By: Americans for the Arts


Founded in 1960, Americans for the Arts, a leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education, provides the following "Fact Sheet About the Benefits of Arts Education for Children."

Art stimulates and develops the imagination and critical thinking, and refines cognitive and creative skills. Art has a tremendous impact on the developmental growth of every child and has proven to help level the "learning field" across socio-economic boundaries.   


Read Fact Sheet

Resource Courtesy of Americans for the Arts


New Online 'Spatial Intelligence' Child Care Training Promotes Development of Multiple Intelligences 


ChildCare Education Institute is proud to announce the addition of Exploring Visual/Spatial Intelligence to the online child care training course catalog. This intermediate-level course examines strategies for promoting children's spatial intelligence, one of the nine intelligences identified by developmental psychologist Howard Gardner in his influential Theory of Multiple Intelligences. Spatial skills, or "picture smarts," are used by painters, sculptors, photographers, architects, fashion designers, graphic artists, interior designers, movie directors, pilots, navigators, military strategists, engineers, and city planners. 

CCEI Supports "Let's Move! Child Care" Campaign Focused on Reducing Early Childhood Obesity


ChildCare Education Institute provides HLTH100: Early Childhood Obesity to early care educators in efforts to combat the rise of obesity in the preschool environment. Two years after the "Let's Move!" campaign began, First Lady Michelle Obama has now introduced the "Let's Move! Child Care" campaign focused on obesity in children two through five years of age. According to a White House Task Force, more than half of obese children are overweight by age two, and roughly one out of five children are overweight by age six. "There are numerous reasons why we have to address the obesity epidemic in young children, and our Early Childhood Obesity course is tailored specifically for the preschool age group," says Maria C. Taylor, President and CEO of CCEI. "The information within this course gives educators strategies to help children develop healthy habits that will improve their long-term quality of life." This course grants 0.1 IACET CEU upon course completion.  

CCEI Promotes Early Art Education for "Youth Art Month"  


CCEI offers new users the trial course CCEI690: Rainbows and Rembrandts: Enhancing Art in the Preschool Classroom at no cost in March in recognition of Youth Art Month. Art programs continue to be reduced or eliminated in school-age curricula despite the research-proven benefits that art education provides young minds. Art education promotes spatial intelligence, creativity, inventiveness, critical thinking, fine motor skills, and more. Rainbows and Rembrandts introduces preschool teachers to the basic concepts of developing and managing art projects within child care settings. Objectives for children's learning in the art center, appropriate methods of observation, parent involvement, and assessment are also discussed. CCEI690 is available at no cost to first time trial users and account holders with an active, annual individual or center-based subscription. Without a subscription, this course may be purchased individually through online enrollment.


Kristi Kates

Fort Myers, Florida


Congratulations to Kristi Kates for successfully completing CCEI's Florida Child Care Professional Credential (FCCPC)!


Kristi started her career in early childhood education as a stay-at-home mom, which led to her starting a home-based child care business. She very much enjoys teaching the children about art and science, and she has created a science center with varied tools and objects to explain to children how the world works and to continue to develop their curiosity. While she works with children in a variety of settings and group sizes, working in small groups is her favorite. Kristi is motivated to work with children by watching them acquire new knowledge, teaching them to love learning, and knowing she's making a difference.


When she's not working, Kristi loves to play instruments and be outdoors, especially at the beach. She continues to take many courses through CCEI and is also working on completing her Masters in Early Childhood Education and Administration. One day, Kristi plans to open her own child care facility, but she would like to keep it small in order to provide each child with dedicated attention. She recommends CCEI to other early childhood professionals and says, "CCEI will always have a place in my heart, and has helped me achieve so much in my career. I will continue to use CCEI for all of my childcare training and renewal needs for years to come."


Congratulations, Kristi! CCEI is proud to call you an alumnus!

Individual Professional Development Subscriptions for only $99 per year!
CCEI offers over 100 IACET CEU-awarded child care training online courses courses that meet continuing education requirements. CCEI has professional development offerings in English and Spanish, and courses are accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year from any computer with Internet access.

Center-Based Subscriptions
Center-Based Subscriptions are a great way for directors to manage and administer continuing education for staff members. CCEI's Center-Based Subscriptions, available for small and large centers, allow directors to provide training for as little as $20 per teacher for the entire year!

Online CDA Coursework
CCEI's Online CDA Certificate programs of study meet the clock-hour training requirement of The Council for Professional Recognition, which is needed in order to apply for the Child Development Associate (CDA) credential. CCEI's CDA Certificate programs focus on the six CDA Competency Goals established by The Council and contain the required hours in each of the eight specified content areas.

Online Director Programs
CCEI offers several online programs for directors including the CCEI Director's Certificate, the Online National Administrator Credential (NAC) Certificate approved by the National Child Care Association (NCCA), and the Texas Director's Certificate. These programs provide the professional development required for early childhood professionals seeking to further their skills and knowledge in the management of a child care center. Each student receives support from an Education Coach (EC).

CCEI Early Childhood Credential

The CCEI Early Childhood Credential is designed to give a basic framework of early childhood theory and application through online content-based coursework, reading assignments, practical application exercises, essays, parent interviews, classroom observation and oral and written exams. The instructional units and the 180 hours of coursework cover major topics in early childhood education including the Principles of Child Growth and Development; Safe, Healthy Environments; Social and Emotional Development; Motor, Language, and Cognitive Development; Principles of Child Assessment; Program Management, Families, and Professionalism. The credential awards 18 IACET CEUs, and is recognized by NAEYC to meet a part of the Alternative Pathways for directors to achieve educational qualifications. The ECC is a clear pathway toward higher education and raising the knowledge and skills of the early education workforce.


CCEI coursework is eligible for college credit through articulation with one of CCEI's articulation partners, and has received college credit recommendations by the National College Credit Recommendation Service (National CCRS), which has more than 1,500 schools willing to consider credit. Contact Admissions at 1.800.499.9907, or visit the ChildCare Education Institute website for more information or to enroll online.

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