Frog Street Pre-K offers learning experiences and materials that integrate instruction across developmental domains. The curriculum is organized around nine themes that include daily lesson plans for whole-group activities, small-group activities, and learning centers.
Summary of Curriculum Review
- Promotes some research-based teaching practices in all Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework (ELOF) domains, especially in the domains of Social and Emotional Development, Language and Communication, and Literacy
- Specifies developmentally appropriate learning goals throughout all curriculum activities
- Provides a range of strategies and resources to support family engagement
- Offers comprehensive standardized training and materials to support implementation
- Provides specific prompts to extend children's learning throughout activities
- Gives specific guidance to scaffold the development and learning of children who are dual language learners (DLLs)
- Includes specific adaptations for children with disabilities, suspected delays, or other special needs
- Promotes individualization based on children's strengths and needs
- Moderately aligns with the ELOF, but lacks comprehensive guidance in the ELOF sub-domains of Initiative and Curiosity and Creativity
- Provides some sequences of learning experiences that introduce advanced skills or concepts before building foundational knowledge and skills
- Lacks comprehensive guidance on ongoing child assessment
- Lacks ample opportunities for child-initiated play, activities based on children's interests, and activities that promote open-ended exploration
- Provides limited guidance on how to fully integrate children's and families' cultures and home languages into interactions, the learning environment, and learning experiences
Cost of Curriculum
Frog Street Pre-K (National) English Curriculum: $3,199.99
Cost of Professional Development
Webinar Introductory Pricing: $750 per site for two-hour webinar; $500 per site for one-hour webinar
Contact the publisher for the most updated information on costs of the curriculum and current professional development offerings.
Availability in Other Languages
Frog Street Pre-K Spanish: $3,199.99
Frog Street Pre-K Bilingual Curriculum (English and Spanish): $3,799.99
Center-based preschool programs for children 48–60 months
Curriculum Materials Reviewed by Raters
All materials from Frog Street Pre-K (National) English Curriculum were purchased and reviewed in 2017. These materials included:
- Welcome to Frog Street
- Nine Thematic Teaching Guides
- Adaptations for Young Learners
- Nine Resource Guides
- Literature Library
- Math Library and Manipulatives
- Science Library and Exploration Tools
- Additional Classroom Resources (e.g., posters, vocabulary cards)
Evidence Base for Child Outcomes
Evidence from research demonstrates that the curriculum has been associated with children's positive learning outcomes. The curriculum has been implemented and directly studied in early childhood programs, and the research showed significant, positive effects on children's developmental outcomes. Evidence of effectiveness has been obtained in rigorous research studies, such as randomized controlled trials or regression discontinuity designs. Research studies on the curriculum have optimally included multiple, diverse groups of children and teachers.
At the time of this review, there are no available published research studies on Frog Street Pre-K. The publisher highlights pre- and post-data from various school districts that suggest children in Frog Street Pre-K classrooms make gains in language, literacy, and math outcomes. More rigorous research published in peer-reviewed journals is needed in order to establish evidence for positive effects of Frog Street Pre-K on children's learning outcomes.
The curriculum provides research-based content and teaching practices to support children's development and learning. A research-based curriculum is consistent with research on how children develop and learn. Specifically, it provides rich content, teaching practices, and learning experiences that research has shown to be effective in supporting children's development and learning. A research-based curriculum focuses on domain-specific, developmentally appropriate content and skills that contribute to children's long-range development in each domain.
Approaches to Learning: Frog Street Pre-K promotes some research-based teaching practices to support children's approaches to learning, such as providing guidance on classroom organization (e.g., predictable daily schedule, games and songs to support transitions) and classroom management (e.g., giving children choices). However, the curriculum lacks opportunities for child-initiated play, activities based on children's interests, and activities that promote open-ended exploration, which research shows are important for supporting children's attention, persistence, curiosity, and creativity.
Social and Emotional Development: Frog Street Pre-K promotes research-based teaching practices in this domain, such as guidance on establishing an emotionally supportive environment. For example, the curriculum's "Conscious Discipline" daily routines (e.g., Greeting Circle) and aspects of the physical space (e.g., We Care Center) help children feel welcome each day and provide spaces for children to express their emotions and ideas. Within the daily routines and activities described in the Teacher Guides, children are offered many formal and informal opportunities to practice social interaction and relationship skills with their teachers and other children (e.g., partner activities, large- and small-group activities).
Language and Communication: Frog Street Pre-K consistently promotes research-based teaching practices to support children's language and communication, such as offering rich oral language opportunities. For example, the daily routines and activities described in the Teacher Guides provide children with a variety of formal and informal opportunities to engage in language and communication with adults and peers. Additionally, the Teacher Guides and Strategies for Intentional Instruction cards offer research-based strategies to engage children during read-alouds, support vocabulary development, and foster phonological awareness.
Literacy: The Teacher Guides and Strategies for Intentional Instruction Cards offer research-based teaching practices to support literacy skills during daily read-alouds, such as asking various types of questions, connecting the story to children's lives, and retelling to aid comprehension. The Morning Message integrates additional research-based teaching practices, such as modeling writing, examining concepts about print, and building alphabet knowledge.
Mathematics Development: Frog Street Pre-K includes intentionally planned daily math learning activities. The curriculum provides detailed guidance on how to introduce children to key mathematical concepts and promote the acquisition of math language and vocabulary. The whole-group math lessons demonstrate specific mathematical concepts or skills using manipulatives and hands-on activities. The practice activities that follow the lesson provide opportunities for individual hands-on practice of math skills, but learning activities provide limited opportunities to explore math through inquiry and creative invention. The mathematical concepts and skills are presented in a developmental progression across the Teacher Guides, with concepts from previous learning integrated with new knowledge and skills. However, at times, the order of the activities does not follow children's developmental progressions, with advanced skills or concepts appearing before foundational skills. Additionally, the weekly math activities do not provide multiple, related opportunities to explore and practice a new mathematical concept or skill.
Scientific Reasoning: Frog Street Pre-K provides ample hands-on science experiences that facilitate the development of inquiry skills, such as making observations, asking questions, and gathering information. Science is well integrated with math, language, literacy, and even social and emotional activities (e.g., compassion for all living things). The science activities are prescribed and teacher directed, leaving little room to build on children's previous experiences and interests or facilitate open-ended investigation. In addition, many of the activities do not focus on developmentally appropriate content that would allow children to engage in meaningful hands-on exploration (e.g., learning how the earth rotates on an axis or around the sun).
Perceptual, Motor, and Physical Development: Frog Street Pre-K promotes some research-based teaching practices to support children's perceptual, motor, and physical development, such as providing many opportunities to practice new physical skills and intentionally scaffolding their development. The Teacher Guides include daily "Moving and Learning" activities, "Outdoor Learning" activities, and several learning centers that promote children's perceptual, fine motor, and gross motor development. Other research-based teaching practices in the areas of developing self-care skills, nutrition, and healthy food consumption are limited.
Scope and Sequence
The curriculum includes an organized developmental scope and sequence to support children's development and learning. A scope and sequence outlines what the curriculum focuses on and how the plans and materials support children at different levels of development. The scope refers to the areas of development addressed by the curriculum; the sequence includes plans and materials for learning experiences that progressively build from less to more complex, with the goal of supporting children as they move through the developmental progressions. A content-rich curriculum ensures that sequences of learning experiences include multiple, related opportunities for children to explore a concept or skill with increasing depth. Sequences of learning experiences should be flexible to respond to individual children's interests, strengths, and needs.
Scope: Frog Street Pre-K clearly identifies 10 developmental domains: Social and Emotional Development, Language and Communication, Emergent Literacy Reading, Emergent Literacy Writing, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, Fine Arts, Physical Development, and Technology Applications. Each Teacher Guide provides detailed guidance for daily lesson plans and learning activities to support children's development in these domains.
Sequence: Frog Street Pre-K provides a sequence of learning experiences that progressively builds children's knowledge and skills as they move through the developmental progressions in the following domains: Approaches to Learning; Social and Emotional Development; Literacy; and Perceptual, Motor, and Physical Development. However, in some aspects of Language and Communication, Mathematics Development, and Scientific Reasoning, the curriculum occasionally introduces advanced skills or concepts early in the sequence before building foundational knowledge and skills. It also lacks a variety of experiences that provide children with ample opportunities to progressively build a skill in a particular area.
Alignment with the Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework (ELOF)
The curriculum is aligned with the ELOF. Aligning a curriculum with the ELOF identifies the extent to which ELOF domains and sub-domains are addressed in the curriculum. Curricula that are fully aligned with the ELOF are comprehensive and cover all areas of children's learning and development described in the ELOF.
Alignment with the ELOF: A thorough review of all the curriculum materials in relation to the Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework (ELOF) domains and sub-domains indicates that Frog Street Pre-K is mostly aligned with the ELOF. The learning experiences described in the Teacher Guides support children across the majority of ELOF sub-domains, and the learning centers (e.g., Writer's Corner, Math Center, and Creativity Station) also provide opportunities for children to practice domain-specific skills. The curriculum partially addresses the following ELOF sub-domains: Initiative and Curiosity; and Creativity.
Learning Goals for Children
The curriculum specifies learning goals for children. The curriculum's learning goals are objectives for children's development and learning across domains. Learning goals should be measurable and developmentally appropriate. Measurable learning goals focus on skills, behaviors, and knowledge that are observable; developmentally appropriate learning goals are consistent with well-established developmental progressions. Teachers should be able to use a curriculum's learning goals to individualize learning experiences for all children, such as children from diverse cultures, children who are dual language learners (DLLs), children who are tribal language learners, and children with disabilities or other special needs.
Learning Goals: Welcome to Frog Street provides "Prekindergarten Guidelines," which are the curriculum's measurable, developmentally appropriate learning goals. All learning activities in the Teacher Guides specify learning goals, both from the "Prekindergarten Guidelines" as well as from the ELOF. Overall, the learning activities support children in making progress toward these learning goals. The curriculum provides modified activities to help younger learners or children with disabilities make progress toward the learning goals. It also provides specific learning goals and teaching practices embedded throughout the Teacher Guides to support children who are DLLs.
Ongoing Child Assessment
The curriculum provides guidance on ongoing child assessment. Ongoing child assessment is a process of gathering information to understand and support children's development over time. Information gathered through observation and documentation helps inform curriculum planning, teaching, and individualizing for all children. Ongoing child assessment can also be used to periodically complete standardized and structured assessment instruments to evaluate children's developmental progress.
Ongoing Observation and Documentation: Assessment: A Portfolio Approach describes how teachers can develop a portfolio of work samples, photographs, voice-recorded interviews, checklists, and anecdotal records to document children's developmental progress over time. To support this process, this resource guide and the Assessment CD offer several specific suggestions, examples, and tools (e.g., weekly assessment checklists). However, there are minimal supports for teachers to use these strategies and tools embedded throughout the Teacher Guides and no guidance on how to use information from ongoing assessment to inform curriculum planning.
Standardized and Structured Assessment Instruments: Frog Street Pre-K describes and provides a structured assessment tool, Prekindergarten Skills Assessment Summary, that aligns with the curriculum's learning goals. The curriculum encourages programs to use their portfolios to complete this assessment tool four times per year, but there is no evidence that establishes the validity and reliability of the tool.
Parent and Family Engagement
The curriculum promotes parent and family engagement. Parent and family engagement is a collaborative and strengths-based process through which early childhood teachers, families, and children build positive and goal-oriented relationships. It is a shared responsibility of families and staff that is built on mutual respect for the roles and strengths each has to offer. The curriculum provides culturally and linguistically responsive strategies to communicate with families and to engage families in children's learning.
Communicating with Families: The resource guide, Family Connections Building a Sense of Community, and online resources, Family Connections, provide a range of materials and strategies for sharing information with families, such as letters about the curriculum's learning experiences. In addition, "From the Experts: Family Connections" describes some ways to learn from families about children's development (e.g., survey families about child's interests and activities at home as well as parents' visions for child's education). While the materials for families are translated into Spanish, there is limited further guidance on how to communicate with families in culturally and linguistically responsive ways.
Engaging Families: The curriculum provides multiple resources to support parent and family engagement in their children's learning and development. For example, the Parents Are Teachers Too (PATT) mats are hands-on, open-ended activities for families to do at home with their children, available in both English and Spanish. The curriculum also provides Take-Home Storybooks for families to read with their children and suggests offering a lending library with books in families' home languages. However, there is no further discussion on how to engage families from diverse cultures, families who speak languages other than English, or parents with disabilities or other special needs.
Professional Development and Materials to Support Implementation
The curriculum offers professional development and materials to support implementation and continuous improvement. Professional development includes gaining the knowledge and skills required for effective implementation of a curriculum. Standardized training procedures include initial and ongoing training to support education staff as they learn to implement a curriculum with fidelity. Standardized training procedures provide consistent content and delivery methods across training sessions. Curriculum materials to support implementation include resources that come with a curriculum to help education staff understand how to use it. The materials may also include resources to help education managers and coaches support education staff to implement the curriculum effectively.
Professional Development: Frog Street Pre-K offers two full-day, in-person courses for standardized initial training at an additional cost. Training topics include implementing the curriculum with fidelity, the content areas, and teaching practices. Ongoing professional development opportunities feature several courses that cover a wide range of content, including half- and full-day courses offered in person for an additional fee. The curriculum also offers professional learning webinars that can be customized to meet the needs of programs using a pre-webinar questionnaire to identify challenges and share successes.
Curriculum Materials to Support Implementation: Frog Street Pre-K includes a comprehensive set of materials to support implementation. The Welcome to Frog Street Pre-K introductory guide provides an overview of the curriculum materials, such as the Teacher Guides, resource guides, CDs, manipulatives, and books for children. It includes information on setting up the learning environment and designing learning centers. The Teacher Guides provide daily lesson plans for each theme that describe the content and strategies for implementation (e.g., goals for the activities, questions to ask, and scaffolding strategies).
- Fidelity Tool: Frog Street Pre-K offers the Administrator Classroom Observation Tool, which can be used to monitor quality or assess fidelity of implementation. This tool guides observation in different areas, such as the teacher's sensitivity to social and emotional needs, teaching practices in small and large groups, the classroom environment, lesson plans, and learning centers.
Learning Experiences and Interactions
The curriculum promotes rich learning experiences and interactions to support development across domains. Rich learning experiences support and extend children's knowledge, understanding of concepts, and skills across domains. As children actively explore their learning environment by manipulating objects and investigating concepts, teachers interact with them to extend their exploration, thinking, and communication. The curriculum offers children ample opportunities to engage in hands-on exploration and provides teachers with guidance on how to extend children's exploration, thinking, and communication. Rich learning experiences should be culturally and linguistically responsive and inclusive of children with disabilities, suspected delays, or other special needs.
Active Exploration: Assessment: A Portfolio Approach describes the importance of hands-on exploration for children's learning (e.g., how children problem-solve and develop math skills as they explore blocks in the "Construction Center"). The Teacher Guides provide some opportunities for preschoolers to actively engage in hands-on exploration in the learning centers and practice activities (e.g., explore paints and play dough of different textures). However, many activities are structured, teacher directed, and leave children little room to engage with materials in open-ended ways or create and experiment with materials (e.g., teacher demonstrates how to make ropes from play dough and invites children to make ropes).
Interactions That Extend Children's Learning: Many of the curriculum's resources provide guidance on and examples of how teachers can engage in interactions that extend children's learning. For example, the Strategies for Intentional Instruction cards provide examples of different types of questions to extend children's thinking and communication (e.g., factual, opinion, inferential, prediction questions). Furthermore, many learning activities and learning centers provide prompts to extend children's exploration, thinking, and communication (e.g., math and science activities include prompts for children to predict, hypothesize, test, and reason; closing circle activities ask children to reflect on the day).
Individualization: The curriculum provides specific guidance on how to individualize learning experiences for all children. Many of the learning activities provide suggestions for including children with disabilities or other special needs and scaffolding strategies to support children who are DLLs. Each thematic unit begins with a short section, "From the Experts: Cultural Sensitivity," which provides some ideas on how to approach diversity with children. However, it does not address how to incorporate children's cultures throughout learning activities or learning centers. The Teacher Guides offer minimal guidance for incorporating children's cultures, such as including restaurants in the Pretend and Learn Center that reflect the different cultures of children and the community.
Learning Environments and Routines
The curriculum provides guidance on how to set up rich learning environments and developmentally appropriate routines. Rich learning environments are nurturing spaces that support the development of all young children. The curriculum provides guidance on how to design developmentally appropriate schedules, routines, and indoor and outdoor opportunities for choice, play, exploration, and experimentation. Learning environments include age-appropriate equipment, materials, and supplies. They also reflect home cultures and are flexible to support the changing ages, interests, and characteristics of a group of children over time.
Environment: Welcome to Frog Street provides a general overview of setting up the physical space and learning centers, including tips for classroom management and safety. Assessment: A Portfolio Approach describes the importance of setting up the physical environment and materials to promote open-ended exploration. While the curriculum describes activities for the "Outdoor Learning Center" each week, it lacks adequate guidance on how to set up the outdoor environment. Guidelines and Strategies for Children with Special Needs provides some information on ensuring the physical environment is accessible for children with specific disabilities or special needs, but is not comprehensive. The curriculum lacks guidance on how to include children's home languages and cultures in the physical environment.
Learning Materials: Frog Street Pre-K includes developmentally appropriate learning materials, such as books, music CDs, magnetic letters, sequence cards, and manipulatives. The Teacher Guides give suggestions for learning materials to use in specific activities and learning centers. The curriculum offers some guidance for ensuring that the learning materials meet the unique needs of children with disabilities or other special needs. It also provides some materials in Spanish (e.g., books), and the Oral Language Cards are available in Arabic, Urdu, Mandarin, Vietnamese, and French. Finally, the curriculum lists a few specific examples of selecting learning materials that authentically represent the cultures and ethnicities of children in the program (e.g., make a number line using numerals associated with child's native culture, include photos of food from children's cultures).
Schedule and Routines: Welcome to Frog Street describes the various parts of a typical day: greeting circle, morning message, moving and learning, literacy lesson and centers, math and science lesson and centers, outdoor learning, and daily routines (e.g., restroom, rest time, lunch). It also offers suggested half- and full-day schedules to help teachers create their own daily schedules. The organization of the Teacher Guides reiterates the suggested schedules. The curriculum lacks guidance on how to adjust schedules and routines based on children's needs and backgrounds.
The curriculum supports cultural responsiveness. Cultural responsiveness is a strengths-based approach to teaching and caregiving rooted in respect and appreciation for the role of culture in children's learning and development. A culturally responsive curriculum prompts teachers to learn about each child's strengths, abilities, experiences, and interests as developed within the child's family and culture. The curriculum provides guidance on how to modify and enhance curriculum plans and materials to build on these strengths, abilities, experiences, and interests with the goal of incorporating each child's culture into the classroom.
Interactions: The curriculum provides some general guidance on cultural responsiveness. Each Teacher Guide begins with "From the Experts: Family Connections" and "From the Experts: Cultural Sensitivity," and these brief sections address understanding diversity (e.g., making explicit the cultural assumptions of "show and tell," discussing "ethnocentrism"). In addition, the curriculum includes a few specific examples of how to engage in culturally responsive interactions with diverse children and families (e.g., research appropriate greetings for children from different cultures; be sensitive to cultural differences related to eye contact).
Learning Experiences: The "From the Experts: Cultural Sensitivity" sections briefly remind teachers to consider culture or mention possible learning activities related to culture. For example, they suggest exposing children to variety of songs from diverse backgrounds and discussing the foods, music, dance, and dress for special celebrations in their families. However, the activities and learning centers in the Teaching Guides provide limited specific guidance on how to modify or plan learning experiences that authentically build on children's cultures (e.g., the curriculum mentions, "Yoga is an important daily routine in some cultures. Invite children with prior experience in yoga to demonstrate their favorite position.").
Learning Environment: The curriculum provides some learning materials that reflect diverse children and families (e.g., pictures in books). In addition, the curriculum provides limited specific guidance on how to select and use learning materials that authentically represent the cultures and ethnicities of children and families in the program (e.g., an activity suggests making placemats that include photos of food from children's cultures).
The curriculum supports linguistic responsiveness. Linguistic responsiveness refers to teaching practices that support the learning, development, and engagement of children from diverse linguistic backgrounds. It includes supports for continued development of children's home or tribal languages by authentically incorporating children's languages into the learning environment. Furthermore, linguistically responsive practices can facilitate English acquisition. The curriculum provides scaffolding strategies to support children at any level of English knowledge to fully participate in the curriculum's learning experiences.
Scaffolding Strategies: The curriculum provides specific guidance to scaffold the development and learning of children who are DLLs. The resource guide, Strategies for English Language Learners, summarizes research on second-language acquisition and provides a range of teaching practices to support children who are DLLs. Furthermore, specific scaffolding strategies for children who are DLLs are embedded throughout the learning activities in the Teacher Guides.
Home and Tribal Languages: Frog Street Pre-K provides many classroom materials translated into Spanish, such as posters, vocabulary cards, and books. However, the curriculum lacks guidance on how to authentically incorporate children's home languages into learning experiences. Tribal languages are not addressed.
Individualization for Children with Disabilities, Suspected Delays, or Other Special Needs
The curriculum provides guidance on how to individualize for children with disabilities, suspected delays, or other special needs. Individualization for children with disabilities, suspected delays, or other special needs includes providing more specialized supports for children to access and participate in learning, social experiences, and activities. The curriculum's guidance for specialized supports includes specific teaching practices and ways of interacting with children, as well as adaptations to daily schedules, learning activities, and the learning environment. Individualizing for children with disabilities, suspected delays, or other special needs enables all children to access, participate, and thrive in early learning settings.
Teaching Practices and Interventions: Guidelines and Strategies for Children with Special Needs provides general guidance for working with children with special needs (e.g., using peer buddies) as well as descriptions and adaptations to support children with specific disabilities or special needs (e.g., allowing children with visual impairments to explore things through touch and sound). The Teacher Guides provide specific modifications to ensure that daily routines and activities are inclusive of children with disabilities or other special needs (e.g., using gestures while speaking, suggesting alternative materials for children with sensory integration issues).
Learning Environment: The curriculum provides some guidance on how to ensure the physical environment and learning materials are accessible to children with disabilities or other special needs. For example, Guidelines and Strategies for Children with Special Needs provides some strategies to ensure the physical environment and learning materials are accessible to children with specific disabilities (e.g., adjusting the lighting, hanging sign language alphabet on the wall, providing braille books). Similarly, the Teacher Guides occasionally offer suggestions for additional learning materials to support children with disabilities or other special needs (e.g., posting a number line in the Math Center, providing a paintbrush for children with tactile sensitivity). However, the curriculum lacked overall guidance on how to ensure the physical environment is accessible to all children (e.g., universal design principles). The curriculum could include more specific examples of how to adapt learning materials embedded throughout the many curriculum activities and learning centers.
Individualization Based on Interests, Strengths, and Needs
The curriculum offers guidance on how to individualize based on children's interests, strengths, and needs. Individualization is a process of planning and implementing learning experiences that are responsive to each child's interests, strengths, and needs. Teachers reflect on their observations of each child and then plan the most effective ways to support each child's learning and development. When learning experiences are tailored to children's interests, they are more engaging and meaningful to children. Because children may vary in their developmental progressions, it is also important that the curriculum supports teachers in planning learning experiences that are responsive to individual children's strengths and needs.
Individualization Based on Interests: Frog Street Pre-K does not offer guidance on how to plan learning experiences that build on individual children's interests. Learning experiences are pre-planned, and there is no guidance on how to modify them based on individual children's interests.
Individualization Based on Strengths and Needs: The curriculum provides a variety of strategies to make learning experiences responsive to individual children's strengths and needs. For example, Adaptations for Young Learners is designed for children who may need additional support before being introduced to the lessons in the Teacher Guides, such as younger children or children with disabilities or other special needs. This resource is arranged in the same thematic order as the core programs so the lessons may be used as scaffolds. Additionally, the set of Resource Guides (e.g., Continuum of Physical Development, Multiple Intelligences in the Early Childhood Classroom) provides guidance on how to modify learning experiences based on children's strengths and needs. Finally, the Teacher Guides offer specific suggestions for modifying learning experiences for children with disabilities or other special needs and children who are DLLs.