Teaching Model

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Teaching Model

The mission of Young Learners School is to provide a quality education for Pre-Kindergarten students enrolled in Head Start programs and licensed early childhood centers.  The learning experiences of the preschool years provide a foundation that guides children academically, socially, and emotionally. These experiences can influence the rest of a child’s life. Children’s learning and intellectual growth are affected by the specific experiences they have in a preschool classroom.  Young Learners School implements the Texas Prekindergarten Guidelines.

Young Learners teachers work in more than 37 early childhood centers located throughout the Houston area.  Collaborative partners include, AVANCE Head Start, Gulf Coast Community Services Association Head Start, Harris County Department of Education Head Start and privately owned licensed early childhood centers.

Young Learners School teachers and collaborative partners’ teachers work together using a co-teaching model.  Three instructional coaches provide support and assist the Young Learners School teachers daily.

Young Learners
School

 

Head Start &
Child Care Centers

 

School Districts

 

Provides degreed teachers

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Lower the pupil teacher ratio

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Early Entrance
(Grow your own)

Coordinates the special education
referral process between Head Start, Early Childhood
Centers and the School District

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Provide students the services needed
to support their educational achievement

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Benefit from early identification and
services to special needs students

Provides bilingual instruction

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Gain a bilingual program for
identified students

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Meet state policy mandate to provide
dual language instruction to LEP students

Coordinates the transition of students
from Head Start & Early Childhood Centers to the School
District

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Provide families easier access to the
School District and/or school of choice

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Enhance the successful enrollment
transition to the assigned district school

Increases average daily attendance

(Compulsory attendance required)

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Increase daily attendance and student
learning potential

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Generate greater Average Daily
Attendance funding

Provides curriculum alignment

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Enrich their Whole Child Approach with
increased academic development

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Align the state pre-kindergarten
program with the Texas Essential

Knowledge of Skills

 

Texas Prekindergarten Guidelines

The learning experiences of the preschool years provide a foundation that guides children academically, socially, and emotionally. These experiences can influence the rest of a child’s life. Children’s learning and intellectual growth are affected by the specific experiences (e.g., instruction, guidance) they have in a preschool classroom.

Informed efforts by families and teachers to build on children’s motivation to learn play a critically important role in providing children with the proper foundations for school success. The Texas Prekindergarten Guidelines offer detailed descriptions of expected behaviors across multiple skill domains that should be observed in 4‐ to 5‐year‐old children by the end of their prekindergarten experience. The guidelines are developed to be useful to a broad audience including school districts, Head Start programs, and child care and most importantly by children’s families. The guidelines also offer suggestions on ways to deliver developmentally appropriate experiences for the learning needs of all children to help ensure an effective, efficient prekindergarten year. The guidelines also provide information on responsive teaching practices, the physical arrangement of a prekindergarten classroom, professional development as the key to high‐quality preschool programs, the involvement of families for better readiness of children for school, and methods of monitoring children’s progress. Specific attention is given to a discussion of the importance of adopting a developmental approach in order to effectively promote school readiness for 3‐ and 4‐year‐old children. The guidelines can and should be used to support learning in a broad range of skills for children who are English language learners (ELL), including those children receiving instruction in their home language. A discussion of how this can be done successfully and instructional strategies to consider are included. When planning for the education of children with special needs, use of the guidelines is described in relation to the many considerations that need to be taken into account for special needs children’s successful inclusion in the classroom. Together these discussions should provide a comprehensive framework for effective use of the Texas Prekindergarten Guidelines.

Research confirms the value of early education for young children. Prekindergarten programs that support effective teaching practices and opportunities for child discovery through play have been shown to lead to significant growth in children’s intellectual and social development, both of which are critical to their future academic success. Quality programs provide challenging but achievable curriculum which actively engage children in thinking, reasoning, and communicating with others. With teacher direction and guidance, children respond to the challenge and acquire important skills and concepts.

The purpose of this document is to help educators make informed decisions about curriculum content for prekindergarten children. The guidelines are based on current knowledge of theory and scientific research about how children develop and learn; they reflect the growing consensus among early childhood professional organizations that a greater emphasis be placed on young children’s conceptual learning, acquisition of basic skills, and participation in meaningful, relevant learning experiences. The guidelines delineate the behaviors and skills that children are to exhibit and achieve, as well as instructional strategies for the teachers. Finally, the guidelines provide a means to align prekindergarten programs with the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS).

The guidelines describe specific outcomes for prekindergarten children in each domain skill area. The intent of this organizational design is to ensure that all 4‐year‐old children have the opportunity to strive toward these outcomes. Due to age differences and previous experiences, however, children will have a great range of prior knowledge. Some children, regardless of their age level, will be at the beginning of the learning continuum, while others will be further along. Children with disabilities may need accommodations and modifications of the guidelines in order to benefit from them.

In addition, the Frog Street Press Pre-K curriculum has been chosen as the theme-based program of delivery of the Texas Prekindergarten Guidelines.  Teacher and child-friendly lessons simplify the school day and help teachers meet students’ learning goals with intentional and purposeful instruction.

The Frog Street Press Pre-K Curriculum:

  • Embraces the joy of learning
  • Provides comprehensive, integrated instruction in all domains
  • Balances intentional instruction with child-centered learning
  • Provides equity-English and Spanish- of materials and instruction
  • Offers a strong daily routine that develops key social skills and emotional controls
  • Values individual differences
  • Empowers children with choices in self-directed activities
  • Honors the power of a strong teacher-child interaction to develop rich oral language and a robust vocabulary
  • Provides a systematic and sequential continuum for building skills and concepts
  • Uses research-based principles of learning as the cornerstone of instruction.