Learning and Curriculum

learning and curriculum    



Step Up To Quality | CurriculumCLASS Scores | School Readiness Goals 2015-16 


Step Up To Quality (SUTQ)

KCHS’ commitment to high quality programming is recognized by participation in the State of Ohio Step Up To Quality (SUTQ) rating system, which acknowledges child care centers that exceed licensing standards in teacher qualifications and professional development, and support children’s learning with a developmentally appropriate curriculum. KCHS holds the highest star ratings at six centers within the County. KCHS centers were the FIRST in Knox County to be recognized with five stars!


Curriculum and Assessment

Evidence-Based   Knox County Head Start is an evidence-based practice, one that has been rigorously evaluated in experimental evaluations–like randomized controlled trials–and shown to make a positive, statistically significant difference in important outcomes. A program that has stood the test of rigorous experimental evaluations:

  • Has shown that it is supported by data, not just based on theory,
  • Has been repeatedly tested and is more effective than standard care or an alternative practice, and
  • Can be reproduced in other settings.

Curriculum   KCHS is mandated to implement a written plan, known as curriculum, that is “consistent with the Head Start Program Performance Standards and based on sound child development principles about how children grow and learn.”     KCHS, with support and approval from its Policy Council, uses The Creative Curriculum for the infant, toddler, and preschool classrooms. The infant/toddler curriculum focuses on daily routines and experiences while individualizing the curriculum planning for each child. The preschool curriculum is a framework addressing academic content as well as focusing on the child’s interests and creativity in the classroom.     KCHS classrooms implement techniques from Conscious Discipline® in our classrooms. Conscious Discipline is a comprehensive classroom management program and a social-emotional curriculum. It is based on current brain research, child development information, and developmentally appropriate practices. Conscious Discipline encourages adults to examine and begin to change their own attitudes and behaviors, recognizing that we cannot teach skills that we do not have ourselves! The adults, in turn, change the lives of children. Conscious Discipline is a way of organizing schools and classrooms around the concept of a School Family. each member of the family–both adult and child–learns the skills needed to successfully manage life tasks such as learning, forming relationships, communicating effectively, being sensitive to others’ needs and getting along with others.     To enhance curriculum, preschool classroom teachers may implement Conscious Discipline® Feeling Buddies. This program teaches children to self-regulate and illustrates how to manage behaviors at any age. Feeling Buddies are a comprehensive and innovative tool based on a unique strategy in which the adult teaches the child to self-regulate and the child teaches the Buddy to self-regulate, both learning the five-step process together. The curriculum, Safe Place, and daily classroom life work cooperatively to maximize learning and give the new skill set permanence. It can transform tantrums, backtalk, and outbursts into healthy emotional expression and cooperation.     At the Gambier Child Care Center, school-aged children will participate in a program that provides both structured and unstructured time, with a variety of activities to spark and expand children’s interests. At the request of parents, staff and volunteers will provide assistance with homework or specific activities to support the child’s school curriculum.    



CLASS (Classroom Assessment Scoring System for Preschool) Observation Tool

Research suggests that interactions between adults and students are the primary mechanism of student development and learning. Teachers are assessed using the CLASS tool twice a year and mentoring takes place between assessment cycles to support and improve teacher performance. Teacher performance domains include the ability to create a positive emotional climate, to provide intentional classroom organization, and to target language based instructional support.     Emotional Support: Children’s social/emotional functioning in the classroom are indicators for school readiness. Dimensions within this domain include positive climate, teacher sensitivity, and regard for student perspectives.     Classroom Organization: Classrooms that function best and teachers who provide the most opportunities for learning will support a foundation for children who are well behaved, who have challenging and interesting activities to do, and who will grow in a hands-on environment.     Instructional Support: Children’s cognitive and language development is supported when teachers use instructional discussions and activities to promote higher order thinking skills and improved language skills by both teacher and student.        



School Readiness Goals for 2018-19

Teachers will consider your child’s individual needs and abilities in order to best support his/her progress toward these goals, always with respect to your child’s home language.  

Early Head Start: By 36 months

Approaches to Learning Domain

  1. Manage actions and behavior with the support of familiar adults

~Your child will participate in and follow everyday routines with the support of a familiar adult. She/he will communicate verbally or non-verbally about basic needs and learn some basic rules for managing action and behavior in familiar settings.


Social and Emotional Development Domain

  1. Develop expectations of consistent, positive interactions through secure relationships

~Your child will show emotional connection and attachment with familiar adults, looking to them for protection, comfort and having needs met.


Language and Communication Domain

  1. Use increasingly complex language in conversations with others

~Your child will use sentences of three or more words in conversation with others. He/she will ask and answer simple questions.


Cognition Domain

  1. Develop a sense of number and quantity

~Your child will count a small number of objects (2-3) but may count the same object twice. She/he will use some number words such as more, less, a lot or a little.


Perceptual, Motor and Physical Development Domain

  1. Adjusts reach and grasp to use tools

~Your child will adjust grasp with ease to new tools or materials. He/she will use thumbs and fingers to manipulate small objects or handle tools.

Head Start: by Kindergarten entry

Approaches to Learning Domain

  1. Persists in tasks

~Your child will complete tasks that are challenging or less preferred despite frustration either by persisting independently or seeking help from an adult or another child.


Social and Emotional Development Domain

  1. Engages in prosocial behavior with adults

~Your child will use respectful language or greetings, will attend to an adult when asked. He/she will follow guidelines and expectations for appropriate behavior.


 Language and Communication Domain

  1. Understand and respond to increasingly complex communication and language from others

~Your child will be able to follow multiple step directions and demonstrate an understanding of different question types, such as “Yes/No?” or “Who/What/Where/When” or “How/Why?” She/he will understand talk relating to the past or future.


 Literacy Domain

  1. Identifies letters of the alphabet and produces sounds associated with the

~Your child will name 18 upper and 15 lower case letters and know the sounds associated with several letters.


  1. Writes for a variety of purposes using increasingly sophisticated

~Your child will show an interest in copying simple words and attempt to independently write words. He/she will write his/her first name correctly or close to correctly.


 Mathematics Development Domain

  1. Understands the relationship between number and quantity.

~Your child will count at least to 10, counting each object only once. She/he will understand that the last number said represents the number of objects in a set.


 Scientific Reasoning Domain

  1. Compares and categorizes observable

~Your child will sort items by multiple attributes, such as  appearance, weight, function, texture, sound, etc. He/she will use measurement tools, such as a ruler, scale, unit blocks, or measuring cup to observe similarities and differences.


Perceptual, Motor and Physical Development Domain

  1. Demonstrates increasing control, strength and coordination of small muscles.

~Your child will coordinate eye and hand movements to carry out tasks, such as stringing beads together. She/he will use coordinated movements to complete complex tasks such as cutting along a line or pouring milk.