Developmental Appropriate Practice

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Developmental appropriate practice is a term that had been used in the educational field for many years. The basic concept is to work with the family’s to teach children in a way that builds on what the children already know at the time they are ready to learn it. Having learning experiences for children that are challenging but not overwhelming for them is key. In this paper I will be focusing on the five major guidelines for developmentally appropriate practice in the early childhood education field and how they meet NAEYC’s (National Associations for the Education of Young Children) excellence and equity. I will also be giving two examples of how developmental appropriate practice is used in a preschool classroom. Creating a caring community of learners: We learn how to relate to others at an early age. Copple & Bredekamp (2009) say “how children expect to be treated and how they treat others is significantly shaped in the early childhood setting” (p.16). We, as early childhood educators, need to foster a caring community of learners in our classroom to help children build the relationship skills they will need for their future. To do this we need to make sure each member is valued for their similarities and differences. Each member is treated equally regardless of race, ability, disability, nationality, or income level. We need to work together as a team, learning from and supporting each other in our learning. All members of our team are respected and shown respect. Having a safe and healthy environment will make our team members feel secure and allow leaning to take place. Fostering a community of equals and building confidence not only meets the NAEYC’s excellence and equity but also gives the community members a “solid foundation in life” (Orientation Professional 03 DAP) Teaching to enhance development and learning: Children have a built-in

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