How Do Leaders Influence
a Child’s Ability to Learn?
At Day Early Learning, our school leaders are dedicated to shaping your child’s early educational journey. At the heart of our Theory of Teaching & Learning lies the understanding that children learn and develop through various stages of development. Our School Leaders foster an environment that seamlessly blends academic growth with social-emotional development, ensuring children thrive.
What Makes an Early Learning
Leaders in our schools cultivate a learning environment that supports age-appropriate learning for children and empowers teachers to meet the needs of the children and families we serve. There are six key elements to optimize learning in the classroom:
- Relationships: Responsive and caring relationships establish the secure base from which children can explore the world.
- Understanding Context: Each child must be understood within the context of their individual family, community and experiences.
- Positivity: Each child’s positive attributes are identified and recognized.
- Play: Play is crucial to children’s physical, intellectual and social development.
- Access to Resources: Each child has access to the educational resources they need to thrive.
- Predictable Context: Each child thrives in the context of predictable relationships, routines and actions.
School Leaders Should:
Cultivate a learning culture for the school
- Remain sensitive, aware and responsive to the needs of the school community
- Be present daily in classrooms and shared spaces
- Routinely solicit feedback from families, staff and community; incorporate feedback when reasonable and possible
- Seek and select quality teaching candidates
- Model self-reflective practices and engage in continual professional learning
Recognize and support teacher knowledge and decision making as vital to educational effectiveness
- Foster trust and autonomy by recognizing strengths and encouraging continued professional growth
- Conduct regular classroom walk-throughs and formal observations to understand how educators are supporting children
- Actively support partnerships between teachers and families
Establish instructional leadership
- Make instructional quality the top priority of the school
- Model and set high expectations for performance and provide the support needed to achieve
- Construct systems for peer mentoring and coaching
- Confer and collaborate regularly with teams, staff members and partners to ensure developmentally appropriate teaching practices are in place, evaluate effectiveness and set goals around child outcomes
Intentionally design the school and processes to enrich learning
- Optimize and leverage resources and materials so that teachers may address the learning needs of the children
- Build regular, predictable communication routines into the school schedule
- Establish school structures that support for cross-planning and communities of practice
- Ensure the flow of the physical structure and daily schedule support children and their families as well as maximize learning opportunities
Provide tools and resources so that teachers can reduce the impact of stress and adversity
- Design staffing structures and policies that promote continuity of care
- Establish partnerships with field experts to facilitate rapid interventions
- Model and raise awareness of self-care habits and wellness
Empower teachers to experiment and explore a range of solutions and approaches to meet the developmental and learning needs of children
- Foster conversation and brainstorm solutions concerning individual children and classrooms
- Create an environment that allows for risk-taking; recognize failures as learning opportunities
- Recognize when a true need for external resources exists; facilitate access
Prioritize the educational needs of children and teachers in the sustainability of the program
- Identify and regularly review the needs of teachers, children and families
- Evaluate the effectiveness of financial and human resources on student outcomes