Creative Curriculum

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by Heartlover, May 30, 2009.

  1. Heartlover

    Heartlover New Member

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    May 30, 2009

    Does anyone use the Creative Curriculum in their classroom? We are going to be starting it next year for my 3 year old class and I would appreciate any ideas or help you could give me. Thank you! :)
     
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  3. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    May 30, 2009

    There have been several threads re: CC. My best advice is to have all the resouces and use them. I will find the web site and send it to you later. Here are the major points of CC.

    1. No worksheets.
    2. All hands on.
    3. Daily lessons are emergent.
    4. No worksheets.
    5. Developmentally appropriate.

    And, did I mention, no worksheets?
     
  4. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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  5. teacher36

    teacher36 Comrade

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    Process over product. Everything should be child made. Definitely agree with the no worksheets!! Also, big emphasis on environment. Everything should be labeled and the classroom should be set up so that there are definitive centers. Good luck, it's a pretty good curriculum.
     
  6. Heartlover

    Heartlover New Member

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    May 30, 2009

    Thank you! I am currently working on how I will set up the environment and what I need to make each interest area work.
     
  7. GlendaLL

    GlendaLL Aficionado

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    Observations of the children will guide you as to what their interests are - and what topics you will investigate.
     
  8. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    May 31, 2009

    I have observed many people attempt to use CC without any training. When you gather all the resources and begin to tie everything together it works. I also observe that it takes some practice to pull it together. Keep using the resources, and you will do fine.
     
  9. punchinello

    punchinello Comrade

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    May 31, 2009

    How are other curriculums different from CC? It just seems like common sense to me. I read parts of the book, but it's so boring and obvious. It's what my school uses, I have the book in my classroom. But I haven't opened it more than a couple of times this year.

    Old teacher, your post was good, listing the main points of CC. Do other curriculums say different?
     
  10. Hummingbrd

    Hummingbrd Rookie

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    May 31, 2009

    CC

    We use Creative Curriculum and I really like it. It's a very hands-on and play based curriculum.
     
  11. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    May 31, 2009

    Yes, I have read other curriculums that are taking about children quietly working on teacher directed tasks, worksheets and coloring. Timers tell children when to rotate, and limit free play exploration.

    Creative Curriculum may seem so obvious because you actually have "invented" it in your own practice w/o looking at the book. Perhaps in the book are More Ideas!!! Who knows.:thumb:
     
  12. vbubbles1874

    vbubbles1874 Companion

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    May 31, 2009

    We use creative curriculum at my center, but I put my own spin on it. I am not overly fond of the themes that they give us so I use my own. I like the hands on activities and the open ended art, but I don't agree with the "no worksheets". I teach PREK and I know what is expected of them in kindergarten. Where I live is very homework/worksheet oriented. I do give my class worksheets, but i don' push them or demand that they do them.
     
  13. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    May 31, 2009

    vbubbles, if you are using worksheets, you are not using CC. I am passionate about no worksheets. If you will study Piaget, you will discover that children learn best at the PK age by hands on.

    And, to use CC correctly, it is best to have a mentor. CC is complicated. You teach to the outcomes and the emergent needs of the children. Themes are not important, as you teach concepts based upon the research of CC.

    And, yes, it seems obvious. CC is not a new idea, but just a remake of good theories from the previous generation.
     
  14. punchinello

    punchinello Comrade

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    Old teacher, can you give an example of teaching to the outcomes and the emergent needs of the children? Emergent needs is simple enough, I think. But maybe I'm missing something.
    Thanks!
     
  15. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    punichello, we are also working on becoming more emergent. Could you tell me how you find your success in running an emergent class?

    I would love the tips.
     
  16. Whitchel

    Whitchel Rookie

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    We use creative curriculum this year, it was our first year. I like being able to create my own curriculum to match the objectives. My only problem, or maybe not a problem, but how do you take your antecdotal notes? I have tried several ways this year and I just want to know how others do it. How do you set up your lesson plans? We used the lesson plan form that came with cc but I found I do alot more in a day, then room for on the form. These are probably crazy questions, but I want to know from others who have mastered this curriculum.

    Thanks
     
  17. Alesia

    Alesia Companion

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    For anecdotal notes I use sticky notes and a few times a week I enter them into cc.net. For my lesson plan every week I sit down with my assistants and put together a list of activities. At the end of everyday I transfer everything that we did with the children onto the lesson plan form.
     
  18. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    I will be happy to give a mini lesson in CC. I don't have a copy of the lesson plan form--so could someone remind me or send me a copy of theirs. My stuff is stored in the attic until I find a job, and it is so stuffy tonight, that I don't want to search the attic.
     
  19. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Your anecdotal notes are separated into 4 areas. I can't remember what they are, but I know there are four. Get a piece of paper and quarter it. Label with each of the four areas. Notes should be based upon what you see: Johnny counted to 3 using the blocks. Jane found her name on the list of classroom names. Date and time each one.

    Make sure you have enough of each type of observation in each child. That may mean that you have observe 4 children every day in every area, or all of them on one area. Don't let it go until later--or you won't have enough. Ask for a copy of the evaluation form. That can give you a clue as to what to look for in your documentation. Thoses forms are pretty closely guarded, so I don't have any.
     
  20. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Okay, I have re-designed the lesson plan form, but can not attach it. If you will PM with your e-mail address, I will send you a form for CC. Most of the forms I see do not have enough information to make sense for beginners.
     
  21. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    oh, please PM me! I have seen those beginner forms---and I have to say that is some of the reasons that when I see a CC thread I tune in!
     
  22. Miss J. Pre-K

    Miss J. Pre-K Comrade

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    Jun 3, 2009

    I used CC this year in Head Start. I liked that it was play-based, but we didn't really use anything from it except assessments. I had a CC book, but it was basically all about how the environment was laid out, which I already knew from child development classes. I'll be honest--I really hated the assessments. 50 items to assess for 18 children 3 times a year? You've got to be kidding me. All I did was assess, and I still had to "make up" examples for where I thought the children were at. I thought a much shorter, more concise assessment would give me a better picture of learning, and let me interact sometimes without my constant sticky notes.

    I'd love to hear from people who use the assessment to plan their curriculum--I could not figure that out. Then again, I did not have a mentor or anybody who knew about this curriculum to help me.
     
  23. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Miss J. That is the problem with CC, you really need a mentor to help you. The purpose of those observations and post notes is to assist you with the evaluations and emergent curriculum. To make good use of CC, it is imperative to know how to use all pieces of the puzzles to make any of the work worthwhile.
     
  24. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    I want to tell all of you who have PM me, that the forms I have sent you are "just my opinion" of how to better use the CC, and do not relect anything CC taught me. Please tweak them to suit your needs.
     
  25. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    The assesments are the basis for your lessons. When you say that you are going to sort shapes, it should relate to an observation on Johnny regarding his ability to sort shapes. Also remember that you need to have the following reference items in front of you when you plan a lesson:

    1. Observations
    2. CC book
    3. Domains and outcomes
    4. Lesson plan form

    Most HS and other programs that use CC design their own lesson plan form.
     
  26. Miss J. Pre-K

    Miss J. Pre-K Comrade

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    Huh, I never even knew CC was supposed to be emergent. I had come from a center that did project-based learning, and I loved it! But because at HS I had to have my lessons planned a month in advance (don't get me started on how inappropriate that was!) if I wanted to do anything emergent, it was at my own risk. (If my supervisors came in and I was not doing what was on my plans for the day, I was in trouble.) We were pretty much told we had to do themes. I tried to keep them relevant to the children's interests, but I was heavily encouraged to do a "holiday-based curriculum"--doing pumpkins and spiders in October, turkeys in November, etc. I would love to hear more on how you taught with CC, Old teacher.
     
  27. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Miss J, Project based is perfect for CC. I am surprised that you were encouraged to have themes of any kind. CC is not theme based, but teaches to the domains and outcomes. As hard as it is, planning a month ahead can be done. But, you need to conquer CC in small steps. Too many HS hire supervisors based upon educational level, not experience level. HS can be a tough arena, as the feds come and audit everything, including your lesson plans.
     
  28. Whitchel

    Whitchel Rookie

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    I also teach with headstart, and I thought I was the only one who thought these thoughts. We have to have our lesson plans two weeks ahead of time, but the form we are to use,there is not enough room for everything that I am going to do in that day. Thanks, Old Teacher for the form, I don't know if I can use any other one, but I'm holding on to it for possible usage. I have been out of school for 4 days and I'm already planning for next year. I having been planning my first few days, I think if I have my objectives in front of me when I do the small group activities I can accomplish more quality assessments, but I'm not sure.
     
  29. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Whitchel, you don't need to use the form I sent you for the "official" form. Just let my form guide your thoughts. I think CC left out a basic step in explaining how to construct a lesson plan. And, the form I sent you is similar to the one used in a HS I know about. I have tweaked the form to suit my needs. It can easily be changed to suit various needs. When I worked in a church program, I simply added religion to each catagory. Good luck, and let me know if you need some help. Sorry that Ky is sooooo far from Ore.
     
  30. vbubbles1874

    vbubbles1874 Companion

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    Ok, so no worksheets. But what happens to those kids whene they get into Kindergarten and they don't have a clue what the teacher is passing out. I don the Creative Curriculum because I have to. I don't particularly like it and I don't necessarily agree with it. I have altered it to fit my needs and the wants of my parents. I have 25 students that just graduated last week and they can all add and subtract single digit numbers and I have 6 readers. Is that Creative Curriculum?
     
  31. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    No, it is not CC. That doen't mean what you are doing is wrong, it just does not fit into the CC philolophy. You are using an academic approach, while CC uses a hands on approach. If you are clear in your expectations and your learning goals, you are doing fine. You sound like a square peg in a round hole, as you are being told to use CC. It might be a good idea to research curriculums and find one that fits your approach. When you and the curriuclum are in sync, magic happens.

    Now, when CC kids get into Kindergarden, they will have mastered self control, gained self confidence, be able to follow directions, and function well. Each type of curriuclum emphsizes componets of learning that will enhance the kindergarden experience. I happen to believe in CC, and like it's approach to learning. You like a more academic approach. That is why there are choices of programs. What I would hope is that you can identify your philosophy and find a program that makes you happy.
     
  32. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    I must say I have spent a lot of time explaining the disconnect between what OSPI wants in a Kinder child and what a CC/ECE room wants in a Kinder child.

    My program and my school district have reached an understanding. It can be done. I am not saying I am the end all be all of CC classes, but I have to say the emergent (with lesson planning) is the perfect fit for me and my group. I love it.

    I didn't get the lesson plan though. I will resend my address.
     
  33. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    WaProvider, I am very behind in responding to the requests. I use my laptop for chatting, and have to turn on the "old" computer to do the rest.

    For those of you waiting, I will get to you.

    And, my form is nothing fabulous, it just makes the though process easier, and may be similar to what some of you are already using.
     
  34. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    I understand that you are just offering on idea. I am not implying that your form is a one stop shop for CC. However, as you have stated, CC w/o a mentor is difficult. I, don't have a mentor. Hence, my interest.
     
  35. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    I think I have replied to all of you who PM'd me for copies of my forms. If I missed you, please contact me again.
     
  36. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    I think of CC as more of a philosophy of education/teaching, not what many people think of when they think of "curriculum." And, if you have the freedom and support to do it well, it can be wonderful. I've used it in a 3-year-old setting, and I did like it, once I got used to it.
    Kim
     
  37. punchinello

    punchinello Comrade

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    Kim, what part was the hardest to get used to?
     
  38. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    Letting the kids lead. Honestly, as teachers I think we are so trained to be in charge, to make all of the classroom decisions, etc. The units' themes were supposed to come out of child interest and last as long as that interest holds - so different than the old thematic units we used to use - a week on shapes, another week on colors, followed by a week on pumpkins. I'm pretty good at "kid-watching" and at noticing the interest level of the class, so deciding what themes to teach wasn't hard...just allowing the kids to lead those choices was very hard for me.
    Kim
     
  39. MimiBee

    MimiBee Companion

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    We have used CC for several years and I really don't have anything to add that no one else has said. I just wanted to chime in and say I think it's a good curriculum.
     

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