Learn Every Day™: The Preschool Curriculum consists of 36 thematic units and more than 1,300 learning activities. The curriculum incorporates literacy, math, science, social studies, and creative arts into each unit.
Summary of Curriculum Review
- Provides activities in all developmental domains, but research-based teaching practices are most evident in the domains of Literacy and Mathematics
- Provides specific strategies and resources to support parent and family engagement
- Includes specific prompts to extend children's learning throughout activities
- Provides specific guidance on how to establish the daily schedule, routines, and well-organized, engaging indoor and outdoor environments
- Offers specific adaptations for children with disabilities, suspected delays, or other special needs
- Moderately aligned with the Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework (ELOF), but lacks comprehensive guidance in the following sub-domains: Cognitive Self-Regulation, Relationships with Adults, Relationships with Other Children, Emotional Functioning, Communicating and Speaking, Print and Alphabet Knowledge, and Health, Safety, and Nutrition
- Lacks a sequence of learning experiences based on children's developmental progressions
- Lacks comprehensive guidance on ongoing child assessment
- Lacks standardized initial training and comprehensive ongoing professional development
- Lacks ample opportunities for child-initiated play, activities based on children's interests, and activities that promote open-ended exploration
- Lacks guidance on culturally responsive interactions, learning experiences, and materials
- Lacks specific guidance to scaffold the development and learning of children who are dual language learners (DLLs)
- Lacks guidance on individualizing learning experiences based on children's strengths and needs
Cost of Curriculum
Learn Every Day™: The Preschool Curriculum—Foundations for Learning, Volume 1, and Volume 2: $149.95 per classroom
Cost of Professional Development
Costs for on-site and online professional development are not publicly available on the publisher's website.
Contact the publisher for the most updated information on costs of the curriculum and current professional development offerings.
Availability in Other Languages
The curriculum is only available in English.
Center-based preschool programs for children 3–5 years old
Curriculum Materials Reviewed by Raters
All materials from Learn Every Day™ were purchased and reviewed in 2018. These materials included:
- Learn Every Day™: The Preschool Curriculum—Foundations for Learning
- Learn Every Day™: The Preschool Curriculum, Volume 1
- Learn Every Day™: The Preschool Curriculum, Volume 2
- Learn Every Day™: The Preschool Curriculum CD
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 Learn Every Day™: The Preschool Curriculum (Learn Every Day™). Research investigating the curriculum is needed in order to establish evidence 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: The curriculum promotes a few research-based teaching practices to support children's approaches to learning, such as guidance on classroom organization (e.g., sample half- and full-day schedules, a chapter on transitions) and classroom management (e.g., remind, redirect, and remove; enact logical consequences; create classroom rules with children). Learn Every Day™: The Preschool Curriculum—Foundations for Learning (Foundations for Learning) describes the importance of sensitive, responsive caring but lacks guidance on how to build relationships with children. In addition, most lessons, including those for learning centers, are highly structured and leave little room for open-ended exploration, which research shows is important for nurturing persistence, curiosity, and creativity.
Social and Emotional Development: Learn Every Day™ promotes a few research-based strategies in this domain. The suggested daily schedule and routines provide formal and informal opportunities for children to interact with peers and practice social skills (e.g., during Center Time, small group experiences, and learning center activities). Foundations for Learning describes the importance of early interactions and relationships. It suggests that teachers help children learn to identify how they feel and teach them basic problem-solving skills. The Volumes offer few activities to help children understand and express their emotions (e.g., invite children to think of ways they can make their bodies show feelings such as happy, excited, proud, and angry; read a book about feelings and talk about how we feel when we are happy, sad, and so on). However, the curriculum provides limited guidance on how to establish an emotionally supportive environment, build secure, trusting relationships with children, and support children's emotion regulation. Additionally, the curriculum lacks guidance on how to resolve conflicts during daily routines.
Language and Communication: The curriculum promotes a few research-based teaching practices in this domain, such as supporting vocabulary development. The Volumes offer suggested vocabulary for each unit and guidance on how to introduce and integrate new vocabulary. Guidance for Small Group and Literacy Center includes some learning experiences that use the sounds of language to develop phonological awareness (e.g., identify rhyming words in a story, invite children to make up rhymes). Lessons offer scripts with mostly known-answer questions that limit opportunities for communication rich with oral language and for teachers' use, modeling, and scaffolding of complex language. Additionally, Learn Every Day™ lacks guidance on how to facilitate language experiences that build on children's existing knowledge, skills, and interests.
Literacy: The curriculum promotes some research-based teaching practices in this domain. It provides multiple meaningful opportunities for children to discuss, use, and create print materials (e.g., Literacy Center, Small Group, daily sign-in). Guidance for daily read-alouds includes some questions and prompts that promote critical literacy skills, such as concepts about print, text comprehension, and enjoyment of books (e.g., while reading a story, introduce the author, illustrator, and title page; ask children to share what happened at the beginning, middle, and end of the story). Learning centers (e.g., Literacy, Fine Motor, Sand and Water) offer meaningful contexts to support children's alphabet knowledge. For example, in the Fine Motor Center, children use a variety of items to spell out or trace the letters of their names. Though emergent writing and "writing center necessities" are described in Foundations for Learning, the thematic units lack guidance on providing varied, meaningful opportunities to develop children's emergent writing skills (e.g., in most writing experiences, children are encouraged to trace their name, letters, or words). In addition, the curriculum includes little evidence for planning literacy experiences based on rich and engaging content or children's interests.
Mathematics Development: Learn Every Day™ promotes some research-based teaching practices to support children's development of mathematical concepts and skills. Intentionally planned experiences with math are integrated into Large Group, Small Group, Math Center, as well as other learning center activities. For example, at the Sand and Water Center, teachers encourage children to guess, count, and compare how many cups of rice it will take to fill different size bowls. Learning experiences provide many opportunities to introduce children to the language of mathematics, practice math skills, and apply math purposefully in meaningful contexts (e.g., after reading a story, children compare the school in the story to their own school; collect natural treasures and sort them by attributes, such as color and texture; search for patterns in the classroom). However, the learning experiences do not appear to be sequenced based on children's developmental progressions. Additionally, math learning experiences are highly structured, offering few opportunities for children to engage in inquiry and creative invention.
Scientific Reasoning: The curriculum promotes a few research-based teaching practices in this domain, such as embedding science into daily activities and guiding teachers to support the development of important inquiry skills. For example, learning centers such as Discovery Science and Sand and Water offer daily opportunities for children to engage in hands-on exploration. Foundations for Learning provides principles that explain how children learn about science through everyday activities. The Volumes include prompts for teachers to encourage children to use language and other forms of communication to describe and document their work (e.g., as children smell various scent jars, encourage them to use descriptive and comparative words to describe what they smell). Though the majority of science learning experiences engage children in hands-on exploration, they have specific instructions for children to follow, leaving little room for open-ended exploration. Additional limitations are that science learning experiences do not build on children's natural abilities, prior knowledge, experiences, and interests. The curriculum also lacks multiple, varied conceptually related learning experiences that allow children to explore science concepts in depth.
Perceptual, Motor, and Physical Development: The curriculum promotes a few research-based practices to support children's perceptual, motor, and physical development. The curriculum's learning experiences support the development of fine motor skills. For example, the Fine Motor Center and other learning center activities (e.g., Art, Math, and Discovery Science Centers) offer opportunities to cut, paint, write, and draw. This allows children to manipulate small objects as part of learning experiences (e.g., stringing beads to create a pattern, arranging leaves by size). However, while some lessons provide direction for the Outdoor Activities Center, the curriculum lacks a variety of opportunities for children to practice gross motor skills. The Learn Every Day About Safety Unit uses multiple strategies to introduce children to a wide range of personal safety topics (e.g., traffic safety, water safety, first aid), but the curriculum includes little to no guidance on handwashing, self-care skills, and how to create indoor and outdoor environments that encourage active physical exploration.
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: Learn Every Day™ clearly identifies nine developmental domains: Arts and Creativity, Cognitive Skills, Communication, Literacy, Mathematics, Personal Health and Development, Science Constructs, Social and Emotional Skills, and Social Studies. The Volumes provide planned learning activities to support children's development in these domains. However, some domains (e.g., Arts and Creativity, Social and Emotional Skills) are only partially addressed, as there are few learning experiences that foster related concepts and skills.
Sequence: Foundations for Learning advises teachers to introduce the units in order, stating that the units get more challenging and complex. The concepts in Volume 1 are more directly related to children's lives and their immediate environment (e.g., Me, My Family, My Five Senses). The topics in Volume 2 become more abstract and focus on how the world works in relation to social studies and life and earth sciences (e.g., Friends Around the World, Ocean, Rocks, and Minerals). Within some units, skills in lessons appear to build upon each other (e.g., counting comes before graphing, sets and classifying come before comparing). However, with regard to specific skills and concepts in the developmental domains (e.g., Print and Alphabet Knowledge, Counting, Sorting), the sequences of learning experiences in the curriculum are not based on children's developmental progressions.
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 indicates that Learn Every Day™ is moderately aligned with the seven ELOF preschool domains. The learning experiences described in the Volumes provide opportunities for children to build skills in each of the sub-domains. However, the following sub-domains are only partially addressed: Cognitive Self-Regulation, Relationships with Adults, Relationships with Other Children, Emotional Functioning, Communicating and Speaking, Print and Alphabet Knowledge, and Health, Safety, and Nutrition.
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: The Volumes identify developmentally appropriate "objectives" by learning domain at the beginning of each unit. Some of the objectives are stated as measurable learning goals (e.g., identify name in print, classify by color), but many are not measurable (e.g., recognize the value of transportation in society, be exposed to children's literature and cultures from around the world). Objectives are not consistently addressed within the units. While most learning activities described in the Volumes would support children in making progress toward the objectives listed, some objectives are not addressed within the unit's lesson plans. In addition, the curriculum lacks guidance on how to use the learning goals to individualize learning experiences for all children.
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: Learn Every Day™ provides some general guidance about how teachers can observe children's development and learning. For example, Foundations for Learning suggests using informal assessment (e.g., anecdotal records, individual child portfolios, small group observation) to record specific events that indicate growth and development, record a child's development over time, and demonstrate progress toward meeting state standards and outcomes. However, related guidance is not specific, nor is it embedded throughout curriculum materials. While Foundations for Learning states that ongoing observation allows teachers to introduce appropriate activities to support acquired and emerging skills, the curriculum lacks further details on how to use assessment information to plan instruction.
Standardized and Structured Assessment Instruments: Foundations for Learning defines different types of assessment, including formal assessment. It explains that programs can purchase a criterion-referenced (structured) assessment instrument (Learning Accomplishment Profile, 3rd Edition) from the publisher. However, the curriculum does not describe the importance of using standardized or structured assessments, nor does it address the importance of selecting instruments that are valid and reliable or individually, culturally, and linguistically appropriate for the children who are to be assessed.
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: "Stepping Stones to Family Involvement," in Foundations for Learning, describes the importance of communicating with families. It suggests that teachers learn from families about what a child does well, his likes and dislikes, and what he finds challenging. The curriculum recommends scheduling conferences and parent meetings in advance and using communication notebooks for two-way communication. In addition, the curriculum's website includes parent letters (in English) that describe what the children are doing in the classroom during each unit. Even so, most communication is unidirectional, and the curriculum lacks guidance on how to interact with diverse families.
Engaging Families: Learn Every Day™ provides specific guidance on how to engage families and parents in their children's learning. For example, the "Home Stretch" section of each lesson suggests ways families can extend children's learning at home (e.g., encourage children to look outside for four things that are colorful; ask parents to show their children their favorite exercise); parent letters repeat these suggestions. However, there is limited consideration for how to engage parents from diverse cultures, parents who speak languages other than English or Spanish, and 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: The curriculum's website identifies a team of national trainers who offer customized implementation trainings for an additional fee. The publisher also provides a three-hour online course for an additional cost, which includes topics such as brain development, social and emotional development, and learning environments. While other professional development can be obtained through the publisher, it is not curriculum-specific. Overall, initial training is not standardized, and professional development opportunities are limited in scope.
Curriculum Materials to Support Implementation: Learn Every Day™ provides materials to support implementation. Foundations for Learning includes an overview of curriculum materials, sample daily schedules, chapters on specific topics (e.g., learning centers, teaching children who are DLLs and children with special needs). The Volumes offer lesson plans that describe learning experiences (e.g., large group, small group, learning centers) for the curriculum's 36 units. "Resources for Teachers" repeats some information from Foundations for Learning as well as other materials, such as samples of a classroom layout, a daily lesson planner, and parent letters. Though Foundations for Learning mentions the Learn Every Day™ website, it does not identify the curriculum resources available online. Hence, supports for implementation are not organized or presented systematically.
- Fidelity Tool: Learn Every Day™ does not include a fidelity tool.
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: Foundations for Learning describes the importance of hands-on exploration for children's learning (e.g., Children learn best in an active environment where they can design, choose, implement, and influence their activities). The Volumes describe a variety of learning centers (e.g., Blocks, Math, Art, Sand and Water) with open-ended materials that promote hands-on exploration. A limitation of the learning centers and experiences described in the Volumes is they do not provide children with ample opportunities to engage in open-ended exploration. The learning centers and other learning experiences are structured and provide specific directions about what children are to do with the materials. For example, in the Home Living Center, teachers are guided to ask children to find shapes among the materials available in the center. During Child Choice, children may revisit a learning center; however, it is unclear whether children must follow the directions provided or if they may engage with materials in open-ended ways and create and experiment with materials.
Interactions That Extend Learning: The Volumes provide guidance on how to use teacher-child interactions to extend children's learning. Most activities within the lesson plans include specific questions for teachers to ask to promote communication and thinking (e.g., How are the bears alike? What's bigger than this watermelon?). Though the prompts encourage children to think and communicate, there is less support for extending children's exploration of materials.
Individualization: Learn Every Day™ provides specific guidance embedded throughout the curriculum materials on how to ensure learning experiences are relevant for children with disabilities, suspected delays, or other special needs. "Children with Special Needs: Blending All Learnings in a Preschool Setting," a chapter in Foundations for Learning, includes general guidelines as well as specific adaptations. In addition, each unit lists "Special Needs Adaptations" that address specific ways to make learning experiences accessible for children with visual and hearing impairments, cognitive, motor, speech and language delays, and emotional and behavioral issues. The "Teaching Dual and English Language Learners" chapter in Foundations for Learning and one "DLL Tip" per thematic unit offer general guidance on how to support children who are DLLs (e.g., extend learning by maintaining themes for days at a time, use keyword lists for each theme, conduct home-language surveys). However, the curriculum lacks specific guidance on how to authentically incorporate children's languages and cultures throughout learning activities and learning centers.
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: Various chapters of Foundations for Learning (e.g., "Learning Centers," "Emergent Writing," and "Science and Math") provide general guidance for classroom organization and how to set up the physical environment to promote flexible learning opportunities. In addition, the website offers a sample classroom layout. Outdoor Activities Learning Center provides some direction on how to set up the outdoor environment. The "Special Needs Adaptations" in the Volumes offer limited guidance on ensuring the physical environment is accessible for children with specific disabilities or special needs. Though the chapter "Teaching Dual and English Language Learners" in Foundations for Learning briefly mentions that there "be models of each child's home language and culture in each area of the classroom," the curriculum lacks guidance on how to include children's home languages and cultures in the physical environment.
Learning Materials: Learn Every Day™ provides guidance for selecting developmentally appropriate learning materials. For example, each lesson plan lists "featured" children's literature as well as required learning materials for large group, small group, and learning centers. Foundations for Learning includes some specific guidance for ensuring learning materials meet the unique needs of children with disabilities or other special needs (e.g., for children who cannot turn book pages independently, attach clothespins to pages; use a single-button switch on electronic devices; use line drawings with minimal clutter for children with low vision). The curriculum suggests enlisting the help of families to select learning materials that authentically represent the cultures, ethnicities, and home languages of children in the program.
Schedule and Routines: The curriculum provides guidance on how to establish a daily schedule and developmentally appropriate routines. Foundations for Learning includes sample daily schedules for full- and part-day programs, and various chapters include specific guidance for Center Time, Transitions, Large Group, Small Group, and Closing Circle. Foundations for Learning explains that the units and lessons are flexible (e.g., teachers may take however long they need to finish a unit, or change their plans as needed). Even so, the curriculum lacks discussion 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 describes the importance of culturally responsive interactions with children. For example, Foundations for Learning suggests that teachers talk with parents and families to learn about the children's cultures, as culturally diverse children have vastly different experiences and teaching them effectively depends on respecting those differences. However, the curriculum lacks guidance or strategies on how to engage in culturally responsive interactions with diverse children and families.
Learning Experiences: Learn Every Day™ suggests that teachers use authentic props and real items to connect with each child's prior learning. However, the curriculum does not address how to modify or plan learning experiences that authentically build on children's cultures.
Learning Environment: The curriculum provides some general guidance for creating culturally responsive learning environments. Foundations for Learning explains that having a few dolls of different skin tones does not make a multicultural classroom, and that there should be models of children's cultures in each area of the classroom. It provides some guidance on how to authentically represent the children and families in the program. For example, the curriculum suggests that teachers ask families to share a favorite musical selection that reflects their culture or something the children like to do at home. However, there is a limited amount of guidance on cultural responsiveness, and it is not embedded throughout the curriculum materials.
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 "Teaching Dual and English Language Learners" chapter of Foundations for Learning provides general guidance on how to scaffold the development and learning of children who are DLLs. For example, the curriculum suggests teachers extend learning by maintaining themes for days at a time, using key word lists for each theme, and using visual aids, body language, gestures, and facial expressions as part of communication. Each unit in the Volumes includes one "DLL Tip;" some tips are scaffolds, such as "use non-verbal demonstrations to engage DLLs in early explorations of the five senses." Even so, this guidance is not specific, nor is it embedded throughout the curriculum.
Home and Tribal Languages: Learn Every Day™ provides general guidance on how to incorporate children's home languages into the learning environment. For example, Foundations for Learning advises teachers to have models of each child's home language in each area of the classroom and to invite adults who know a child's home language to engage in rich, interesting conversations with the child. In addition, a limited number of suggestions are provided in the Volumes (e.g., ask family members to send books from their home countries to class, look for non-fiction books in the languages of the children). Even so, the Volumes lack additional specific guidance on how to 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: The curriculum provides specific guidance integrated throughout the curriculum materials on how to embed intentional teaching practices and other interventions to support the development of children with disabilities, suspected delays, or other special needs. Foundations for Learning includes general guidance to support children with specific needs (e.g., offer children with special needs additional opportunities to practice print awareness in a variety of settings, repeat and expand on group lessons on print awareness). In addition, for each unit, the Volumes list "Special Needs Adaptations" that offer specific assistance for children with visual and hearing impairments; cognitive, motor, speech and language delays; and emotional and behavioral issues. For example, the curriculum suggests that teachers adapt an "I Spy" game for a child with visual impairments by placing five items in a tray and asking the child to examine them; or for a child with speech delays, teachers are encouraged to show the child three pictures and ask him to point to the one he enjoys.
Learning Environment: Learn Every Day™ includes specific guidance on how to ensure learning materials are accessible for children with disabilities, suspected delays, or other special needs, but it lacks guidance on how to ensure that the environment is accessible. "Special Needs Adaptations" for each unit include suggestions for adapting materials (e.g., attach clothespins to items to make them easier to pick up if a child has difficulty grasping; for children with motor delays, use tongs instead of chopsticks). While the curriculum offers a few suggestions for ensuring the physical environment is accessible for children with specific disabilities, it lacks overall guidance on how to ensure the physical environment is accessible to all children (e.g., universal design principles).
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: Foundations for Learning states that the teacher's role is to set out a wide variety of materials in different learning centers throughout the day, setting the stage for children to discover, choose, and carry out activities that hold the greatest interest to them. However, Learn Every Day™ lacks guidance on how to plan learning experiences that build on the individual interests of children.
Individualization Based on Strengths and Needs: The curriculum describes the importance of offering learning experiences that are responsive to children's strengths and needs. For example, Foundations for Learning explains that children have different ability levels, interests, learning styles, and backgrounds that impact how they learn, and children need a lot of activity choices with varying degrees of difficulty. In addition, the curriculum suggests that small group activities are opportunities to individualize instruction. Even so, the curriculum lacks specific guidance on how to make learning experiences responsive to individual strengths and needs.