Child-focused learning: following their lead to new adventures

As an early educator, you know young children are naturally curious about the world around them. As early educators, we can foster that curiosity and nurture a lifelong love for learning. Child-focused learning is all about noticing and following children’s interests in learning experiences. By noticing and following their interests, we can take advantage of

showing painting

Books and Beyond

Books and Beyond: Infusing Creativity into Reading Experiences A blanket, a snack and a good book. Is there any better way to enjoy a nice day at the park? For Arielle Deloney and the families in her program, it’s not just a great way to spend the day. It’s an intentional literacy practice. Deloney is

decoding minds

Decoding Little Minds

Decoding Little Minds: An Early Educators Guide to Understanding Children’s Behaviors If you have been in early education for any length of time, you’ve navigated behaviors. Behaviors—sometimes called “challenging behaviors,” are when children display a range of difficult actions, emotions or reactions. These behaviors can significantly impact the learning environment. Diverting the teacher’s focus, hindering

playing with children

Quality in Action

Quality in Action At Quality First, we talk about quality early learning every day.  But what does quality look like in action? Check out the clips below to see a few ways that Quality First teachers turn everyday moments into learning moments. Color Sorting Hints and Help Quality in action looks like: Rolling the mat


I is for implementing action steps. Five tips to help you on your goals.

In Quality First, we use the VISION model to guide the quality improvement journey. This is the fourth in a series about the six stages of the VISION model. If you haven’t already, check out our blogs on vision casting, investigating your current practices, and setting goals. Once you’ve identified your big-picture vision, reviewed your


S is for Setting Goals: Creating an Effective Quality Improvement Plan

In Quality First, we use the VISION model to guide the quality improvement journey, and every journey needs a roadmap. In this third stage, you’ll focus on setting goals and creating action steps for quality improvement. This quality improvement plan is your roadmap. It outlines your goal (your destination), and the action steps you’ll take

girl planting

Earth-Friendly Early Learning

Now more than ever, we are becoming aware of how our choices affect the environment, our health, and the health of our communities. As early childhood professionals, we are leaders who can make a difference in the health of our environment. Through earth-friendly actions, we can improve health, teach respect for nature, and save money,

kids peeling potato

A hands-on approach to learning

When a child learns a new concept by doing, touching, exploring or experiencing something, rather than just being told about it—that child is creating pathways in the brain for further knowledge. For early childhood educators looking for ways to improve children’s learning—hands-on experiences are critical to success. So, how can you maximize children’s learning through


Supporting learning from a distance

Due to the onset of COVID-19, many early childhood education programs have shifted away from offering in-person activities to facilitating children’s learning from a distance, in the home setting. This change in services has created a multitude of difficulties and opportunities. Here are some ideas from two child care providers serving families in tribal and