Early Childhood Education
Early childhood education is critical to a child's development, laying a strong foundation for their future success. If you are passionate about teaching children and equipping them with the building blocks they need to grow and thrive, then a degree in early childhood education may be the right fit for you. Our program will not only prepare you to pursue a career as a preschool teacher, childcare worker, or teaching assistant, but will also equip you with the skills needed to make a difference in the lives of others.
What You Will Learn
Our curriculum prepares you to work with children from infancy through middle childhood in diverse learning environments. You will combine theory with practice, working with young children in real learning environments under the supervision of qualified teachers. Courses will focus on child growth and development, physical/nutritional needs of children, and communicating with families, equipping you with the knowledge to fully understand the cognitive/language, physical/motor, social/emotional, and creative development of young children. Upon completion, you will be prepared to:
- create healthy, respectful, supportive, and challenging environments (physical, temporal, interpersonal) in order to promote development and learning in every child
- demonstrate effective strategies designed to involve all families in their child's development and to create reciprocal relationships between families, early childhood professionals, and the community
- assess children's development using an array of strategies in order to support families and children
- build and reflect on positive relationships and supportive interactions with children, utilizing a broad repertoire of developmentally appropriate teaching and learning approaches
- use knowledge, appropriate for early learning standards, and other resources to design, implement, and evaluate developmentally meaningful and challenging curriculum experiences inclusive of all children
- adhere to early childhood professional and ethical guidelines, take part in professional activities, advocate for children and families, and identify career options within the early childhood profession
- complete field experiences (observation and practice) with two different age groups (0—3, 3—5, 5—8) and in two settings (child care centers/family child care homes, Head Start programs, early grade school)
- plan and implement developmentally appropriate programs in early childhood settings, such as child development and child care programs, preschools, public and private schools, Head Start programs, and school-age programs
- earn the North Carolina Early Childhood Credential (NCECC), the North Carolina Early Childhood Administration Credential (NCECAC), and the North Carolina School-Age Child Care Credential
Why Choose Central Piedmont
We're proud to be one of the first programs in the state to be nationally accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). We have a strong relationship with our community partners, including UNC Charlotte, Exceptional Children's Assistance Center, Kids R Kids, Providence Preparatory School, Charlotte Bilingual Preschool, the Nest at Charlotte Latin, the NC Licensing Division, the Bethlehem Center, and Catawba College, Meck Pre-K, NC Pre-K, The Vine at Kilgo/Children’s Cottage, Joyland, Avondale, Park Road Baptist, Open Door School, and Smart Start of Mecklenburg County. We are also honored to receive an annual grant from Smart Start that allows us to support our students and raise the quality of childcare in Charlotte-Mecklenburg.
You will also have the opportunity to participate in the Early Childhood Education Club.
Real World Education
At Central Piedmont, your education goes beyond what you learn in class. We offer numerous opportunities for you to enhance your learning — and to make friends, network, and pursue your passions — through clubs and organizations, sports, events and activities, leadership opportunities, job experience, volunteer experiences, visual and performing arts, and even international experiences.