CHLD 116: Introduction to Curriculum

Citrus College Course Outline of Record

Citrus College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Fall 2021
Credits: 3
Total Contact Hours: 54
Lecture Hours : 54
Lab Hours: 0
Hours Arranged: 0
Outside of Class Hours: 108
Transferable to CSU: Yes
Transferable to UC: No
Grading Method: Standard Letter

Catalog Course Description

Developmentally appropriate curriculum and environments for young children. Explores teaching strategies and curriculum development based on theoretical frameworks, observation, and assessment. Emphasizes the teacher’s role in supporting development and learning across the curriculum, including the content areas of language and literacy, math, science, social studies, and creative experiences. 54 lecture hours.

Course Objectives

  • Describe and apply developmentally appropriate principles and teaching strategies used in early childhood education settings.
  • Compare various models and approaches to early childhood curriculum
  • Examine ways curriculum is integrated across all developmental domains and content areas.
  • Observe and evaluate teaching strategies and environmental design.
  • Document observations of children’s developmental stages in various early childhood settings for planning curriculum and environments.
  • Design appropriate experiences in multiple content areas to support children's learning.
  • Develop plans for environments that are appropriate for children’s individual ages, stages, and needs.
  • Demonstrate understanding of assessment, curriculum planning, implementation, documentation cycle and use it to plan, implement and evaluate sample ECE activities.

Major Course Content

  1. Program Models and Approaches- Contexts for Development Appropriate Practice                                                                                                                                                           
  2. State and National Accreditation of Early Childhood Program
  3. Theoretical Frameworks for Planning Curriculum and Environments
  4. Environments
    1. Learning centers
    2. Effect of environment on behavior
    3. Routines and schedules
    4. Indicators of quality
    5. Integration of content
  5. Ongoing Curriculum Cycle
    1. Observation
    2. Assessment
    3. Planning
    4. Documentation
  6. The Role of the Early Childhood Teacher
    1. Best practices in teaching
    2. Current research
    3. Planning and evaluating curriculum and environments
    4. Interactions 
    5. Family involvement 
  7. Development During Early Childhood
    1. Physical
    2. Cognitive
    3. Social
    4. Emotional
  8. Content areas
    1. Math
    2. Science
    3. English language development
    4. Language and literacy
    5. Social science
    6. Social emotional development
    7. Creative Arts and Experiences (visual/performing)

Suggested Reading Other Than Required Textbook

Developmentally Appropriate Practice in Early Childhood Education Programs, Bredekamp & Copple, current edition, NAEYC publications
California State Preschool Learning Foundations, Available at:
California State Infant/Toddler Learning & Development Program Guidelines, Available at:

Examples of Required Writing Assignments

Example #1: Students will create a resource binder that demonstrates knowledge of developmentally appropriate practice, including age-appropriate curriculum activity lesson plans for use in the professional field of early childhood education.
Example #2: Students will be engaged to create developmentally appropriate theme-based curriculum lesson plans in language/literacy, math, science, and/or creative experiences. Students will also need to identify the physical, intellectual, social and/or emotional domains of a child's development that are nurtured and supported through active engagement in the curriculum activities planned. Each separate written lesson plan is approximately 1-2 pages in length (typed).

Examples of Outside Assignments

Example: Students will be engaged to evaluate developmentally appropriate curriculum activities used by teachers of young children in the areas of language/literacy, math, science and/or creative experiences. Students will describe and evaluate the activity in writing, provide a sample when possible and share this information with the class.

Instruction Type(s)

Lecture, Online Education Lecture