EDC340 Language & Literacy Development in Early Childhood

for FA 2010

Printer Friendly

Mission Statement: The mission of Park University, an entrepreneurial institution of learning, is to provide access to academic excellence, which will prepare learners to think critically, communicate effectively and engage in lifelong learning while serving a global community.

School For Education Mission Statement
The School for Education at Park University, an institution committed to diversity and best practice, prepares educators to be effective school professionals, reflective change agents, and advocates for equity and excellence for all learners.

Vision Statement: Park University will be a renowned international leader in providing innovative educational opportunities for learners within the global society.

School For Education Vision Statement
The School for Education at Park University is to be known as a leader in the preparation of educators who will address the needs, challenges, and possibilities of the 21st century.

Park University School for Education  Conceptual Framework


EDC 340 Language & Literacy Development in Early Childhood


FA 2010 HO


Winkler, Kathi A.


Adjunct Faculty


M.A.T. Education with Early Childhood emphasis
B.A. Elementary Education w/Missouri Lifetime Certification Elementary Education
Missouri Early Childhood Certification, PAT certification Pre-K

Office Location

Freda Markley Early Childhood Center/Hickman Mills Schools

Office Hours

8 a.m.-4 p.m. by appointment

Daytime Phone


Other Phone

(home) (913)599-6376     (cell)  913-205-4900





Semester Dates

August 19-December 9, 2010

Class Days


Class Time

6:00 - 8:30 PM


Admission to the School for Education

Credit Hours



Vukelich, C., Christie, J., & Enz, B. (2008).  Helping young children learn language and literacy: Birth through kindergarten  Second Edition.  Pearson/Allyn & Bacon.  Required text.
Owocki, G.  (1999).  Literacy through play.  Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann  Required text.


Tabors, P. O. (1997).  One child, two languages: A guide for preschool educators of children learning English as a second language.  Baltimore, Brookes.  Required text.

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:

Professional Journals (additional resources may change during the course session according to instructor notification):

Laster, B., & Conte, B. (1999).  Emerging literacy: Message boards in preschool.  Reading Teacher, 52, 417-419.

Labbo, L. D. (2005).  From morning message to digital morning message: Moving from the tried and true to the new.  Reading Teacher,58, 782-785.

Lefever-Davis, S., & Pearman, C. (2005).  Early readers and electronic texts: CD-ROM storybook features that influence reading behaviors.  Reading Teacher, 58, 446-454.

Meier, T. (2003). “Why can’t she remember that?” The importance of storybook reading in multilingual, multicultural classrooms.   Reading Teacher, 57, 242-252.

Moore, L. M. (1998).  Learning language and some initial literacy skills through social interactions.  Young Children, 53, 72-75

Morningstar, J. (1999).  Home response journals: Parents as informed contributors in the understanding of their child’s literacy development.  Reading Teacher, 52, 690-697.

Moustafa, M., &  Maldonado-Colon, E. (1999).  Whole-to-part phonics instruction: Building on what children know to help them know more.  Reading Teacher, 52, 448-458.

Moutry, C. (2003).  Three Teachers' Quest: Providing Daily Writing Activities for Kindergartners.  Young Children, 58, 24-28. 

Roskos, K.A., J.F. Christie, & D.J. Richgels. 2003. The essentials of early literacy instruction. Young Children 58, 52-60.

Wuori, D. 1999. Beyond letter of the week: Authentic literacy comes to kindergarten. Young Children 54, 24-25.

Xu, S. & Rutledge, A. (2003).  Chicken Starts with Ch! Kindergartners Learn through Environmental Print.  Young Children, 58, 44-51

McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.
Career Counseling - The Career Development Center (CDC) provides services for all stages of career development.  The mission of the CDC is to provide the career planning tools to ensure a lifetime of career success.
Park Helpdesk - If you have forgotten your OPEN ID or Password, or need assistance with your PirateMail account, please email helpdesk@park.edu or call 800-927-3024
Resources for Current Students - A great place to look for all kinds of information http://www.park.edu/Current/.

Course Description:
EDC340 Language and Literacy Development in Early Childhood: A study of language and literacy development in young children. Emphasis will be placed on the roles of teachers and families in facilitating reading, writing, speaking and listening in young children, from birth through 5. Students will observe and interact with children for (5) five hours in each of the following early childhood settings: Infancy/Toddler, Pre-K-Kindergarten, and Primary K-3. 3:0:3

Educational Philosophy:

Developing as a teacher is a complex process that occurs most effectively in learning communities that provide rich opportunities for inquiry and reflection, and that cultivate a sense of curiosity, integrity, social justice, and professionalism.
Learning at every level requires an interactive process of constructing understanding through study, reflection, and communication.

  Instructor Learning Outcomes

  1. Examine the influence of families and communities on children's language development (MoSTEP 1.2.3 EC 5.1 NAEYC 4b)
  2. Examine language strategies used by children who are English Language Learners. (MoSTEP 1.2.7 EC 5.1 NAEYC 4b)
  3. Plan, implement and evaluate teaching strategies that help children develop the language skills and vocabulary necessary to read, write, and converse about their world. (MoSTEP 1.2.7, EC 5.1NAEYC 4b)
  4. Plan, implement, and evaluate teaching strategies that help children create meaning from print. (MoSTEP 1.2.7, EC 5.2NAEYC 4b)
  5. Plan, implement, and evaluate teaching strategies that help children develop beginning skills in using graphic representation and print to communicate meaning to others. (MoSTEP 1.2.7, EC 5.2NAEYC 4b)
  6. Demonstrate and evaluate interactive techniques, including coaching, scaffolding, co-constructing, and questioning to support and extend children's language and literacy development. (MoSTEP 1.2.7 EC 5.1 5.2, NAEYC 4b).
  7. Plan meaningful assessments of children's language and literacy capabilities. (MoSTEP 1.2.8, EC 4.1 NAEYC 3a)
  8. Analyze teaching strategies that involve each family in their child's literacy development. (MoSTEP 1.2.10 EC 3.4 NAEYC 2c)
Class Assessment:
Creating a Professional Community/Weekly Journal Entries:
Each week, you will be asked to identify two important ideas from the readings to share with a teaching partner or colleague. Please record these points to be turned in as a weekly journal reflection to the instructor and be prepared to share from your notes. Briefly explain the ideas and the major points or questions you would share with a colleague. Then, consider the values underlying the ideas, for example, the importance of honoring the child's home language and culture. Be sure to use the Park University Early Childhood Department goals for graduates as a resource in your thinking.  
During the semester, the journal entry may be changed to an in-class collaborative project.  Please review the syllabus carefully each week to determine the type of professional community activity that is required for the week.
The purpose of this weekly assignment is to prepare you to be a teacher who reads and shares ideas with colleagues, and who considers the values underlying teaching decisions. Your work must be completed each week and handed in at the end of class.  This assignment is designed for discussion purposes and provides points for your participation in each week's class.   Therefore late work will not be accepted for credit and the weekly participation points cannot be made up. (10 pts. each, for a total of 160 pts).  (Park University Literacies: Analytical and Critical Thinking, Ethics and Values.)  

Application Assignments: 

These assignments invite you to apply and extend your knowledge through a variety of questions. The application assignments require that you observe and interact with children for a minimum of 15 hours in three different early childhood settings:  five hours observing a parent/infant-toddler setting, 5 hours in a pre-k educational setting, and 5 hours in a kindergarten/primary educational setting.. 

Each assignment has a rubric designed to reflect the content of the assignment. (375 pts. total.) (Park University Literacies: Analytical and Critical Thinking, Ethics and Values.)


Your final for EDC 340 will be a culminating activity in which you must write a communication to families that includes an overview of the class learning. Your final can be written in the form of a Family Language and Literacy handbook or it may be in the form of a newsletter to families. This communication must be at least one page in length and no more than three pages.

Please review the Rubric for the Final Exam to assure that you include all required components of this document. 

The following information must be included in your communication to families in order to receive the full credit of 60 points for the class final.

1.                  A clear and brief description of how children acquire language and literacy. Include a description of how your classroom environment provides a blended approach to development. How will you, as the child’s teacher, provide an environment that balances an emergent view of literacy with intentional instruction?

2.                  A statement of the importance of the role of families in the successful development of language, reading and writing. 

3.                  A list of one specific indicator of a skill for each of the areas of language development, reading, and writing that you will focus on with the students (one indicator for each of the three areas). What will you do in the classroom to facilitate a child’s development towards reaching this milestone?

4.                  A suggestion of a family activity for each of the three indicators that is described clearly and thoroughly so that families may easily implement it at home.

5.                  Information about a family workshop for families to engage in activities that connect language and literacy development activities in the classroom with activities at home.



GRADING PLAN: Rating scales (assignment rubrics) for each assignment are attached to the syllabus. Attendance and participation in daily activities is expected.  Absences will be considered in the final course evaluation.
A = 536-595 pts.  Exceptional work that demonstrates strong understandings and critical thinking.
B =  476-535 pts.
C =  417-475 pts.
D = 357-416
F = 356 and less

Participation:  Dispositions for Becoming an Effective Teacher” will be used as the criteria for participation in class discussion and expectations for assignments.   To earn the grade of an “A” for the course your participation and coursework must clearly demonstrate each of the dispositions at the level of “3” or “4”.  This includes work being turned in on the date due and attendance.

Late Submission of Course Materials:

Teaching in early childhood requires great flexibility.  My goal is to always work fairly with each student and to understand that unforseen circumstances can arise in anyone's life.  However, generally speaking, I do not accept assignments after the publicized due date.

For example, if I do not receive a journal submission for each week at the end of class or an application assignment on the date it is listed as due on the syllabus and have not heard from you prior to the due date, then I assume that you have made the decision to dismiss your opportunity to receive credit.
Computers make writing and revising much easier and more productive but printers run out of ink and hard drive crash.  You are responsible for planning ahead and meeting deadlines.  Be sure to save copies of your work to disk, hard drive, and print out paper copies for backup purposes. When turning in an assignment, be sure to provide the instructor with a paper copy rather than a disk or an e-mail attachment.  

There will be times when one or more of you will have to deal with scheduled and unscheduled absences.  Please do not keep me guessing. If you are going to be absent, and you know in advance, prepare early and let me know about it by private Email. If you have an emergency - deal with the emergency! Then, when all is well, let me know about it and we'll work together to get you caught up. You should know that if I do not hear from a student for two weeks, I am obligated (I have no choice) to report the absence to main campus who then has to consider academic withdrawal from the course."

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

·         Arrive promptly for class.

·         Turn off cell phone.

·         Actively participate in class learning experiences.

·         Attend all class meetings (excused absences for emergencies only).
     Each student will be an important part of the community of learners.  The learnings created through discussion and group work will be essential to developing understandings of the course content.  If you should have an emergency and are unable to attend, please be sure to call the instructor before the class meeting.  Attendance will be considered in determining the final course grade.   
A portion of your grade for the class is earned through the weekly participation points given for attendance, class discussion, active participation in all activities, and the submission of your weekly journal at the end of class.  These points may be earned only when attending class.  Please refer to the class assessment section above which describes the weekly professional journal/reflection.
If you have more than two absences for the semester, your final evaluation may be lowered by one grade, for example, a “B” will become a “C.”  Three late arrivals or early departures = one missed class.

·         Complete all reading assignments before the class for which they are assigned.

·         Complete all assignments on the date indicated in the syllabus. 

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

Weekly Schedule and Assignments
Week 1-August 19
1. Reading: Vukelich, Christie, & Enz Chapter 1

2. Weekly Journal Entry Due at end of class.  See Class Assessments above.  This is a weekly assignment based on readings and weekly learning experiences.  Journal entries are always due on the class date and since they are designed for professional interactions in class discussion, will not be accepted for late submissions or make up work for missed classes.
Week 2-August 26
The Child's Spoken Language Development in the Context of Family and Community
1. Reading: Vukelich, Christie, & Enz Chapter 2

2. Weekly Journal Entry Due at end of class.  

3. Begin application Assignment #1. Due on September 16

Observe a child (birth to two-years-old) and an adult in a home setting for a minimum of five hours. This should take place over at least 2-5 visits in order to provide optimal observation experiences.
Take a rich collection of anecdotal and running records. 
Based upon the strategies described in Vukelich, Christie, & Enz (p. 34-36), analyze the different opportunities and ways in which oral language (speaking and listening) is encouraged and extended in a home setting, including materials, experience, and interactions. Be sure to include descriptive examples.  Discuss the importance of social interaction in oral language development.
  1. How is the child becoming a member of the language community?
  2. How do the adults (or older children) seek to understand and extend the child's ideas, thinking process, theories, feelings, and goals?
  3. How is the child using language for different purposes?
  4. How would each of the proposed theories of language acquisition from the text explain your observation?

Be sure to use your readings to support and expand your thinking in your analysis. Reflect on your observations and reflections from the assignment as you write your paper.

  1. What are you noticing that seems important for your teaching?
  2. How are these observations helping you develop a vision of the teacher you want to be?
  3. What readings are helping you understand the issues?
  4. Why might your observations and reflections be important for the year children will spend in your company?
  5. How are your observations and reflections helping you envision children as capable and competent?
  6. How are you coming to appreciate the values that underlie teaching decisions?

(Your observational notes and your reflective analysis of your experience are an important part of the assignment and should be a minimum of 3-5 typed pages).125 pts.

(Due Thursday, Sept. 16)
Week 3-September 2
Supporting and Extending the Child’s Spoken Language Development in Early Childhood Settings
1. Reading: Vukelich, Christie, & Enz Chapter 3
2. Weekly Journal Entry Due at end of class. 

Week 4-September 9
Sharing Good Books with Young Children  
1. Reading: Vukelich, Christie, & Enz Chapter 4
2. Weekly Journal Entry Due at end of class. 
3.  Bring a favorite children's book to class to share.  Be prepared to discuss specific intructional goals and strategies that you would implement in an early childhood classroom using the book that you choose.

Week 5-September 16
Emerging Reading and Writing

1. Reading:  Vukelich, Christie, & Enz Chapters 5

2. Weekly Journal Entry Due at end of class. 
3.  Read one of the articles to be shared with colleagues during a round robin discussions group. Articles will be assigned during Sept 9 class and used in discussion today. 
Laster, B., & Conte, B. (1999). Emerging literacy: Message boards in preschool. Reading Teacher, 52, 417-419.

Moore, L. M. (1998). Learning language and some initial literacy skills through social interactions. Young Children, 53, 72-75.

Roskos, K.A., J.F. Christie, & D.J. Richgels. 2003. The essentials of early literacy instruction. Young Children 58, 52-60.

Article selections may be modified by the instructor.
4.  Application Assignment #1 due today.  Five-Hour Parent-Child Observation.  125 points. (refer to Week 2 for assignment information)

Week 6-September 23
Young Children as Readers: Emergent Literacy Views and Strategies
1. Reading: Vukelich, Christie, & Enz Chapters 6
2. Weekly Journal Entry Due at end of class.
4. Begin Application Assignment #2. Arrange to work in a classroom at Northland Head Start or another approved early childhood center for five one-hour visits over the next five weeks or two 2-1/2 hour visits. 
During that time you will be asked to interact with the children practicing different strategies for supporting their speaking, listening, reading, and writing, including fingerplays, songs, interactive readings (picture walks, dialogic reading, think-alouds), list-making, language experience approach, drawing to learn, etc.) 
Keep a weekly record of observations and your reflections about your time in the classroom describing the strategies you are practicing and the things you are learning. 
Each journal entry should include observation setting information, participants, date, time and contact information for the classroom observed.
Your observation and reflection paper should be a minimum of 3-5 typed pages for a total of 125 points. 

Due October 21.  


Week 7-September 30 
Young Children as Readers: Scientifically Based Reading Research Strategies
1. Reading: Vukelich, Christie, & Enz Chapters 7
2. Weekly Journal Entry Due at end of class.

Week 8-October 7
Young Children as Writers:  Strategies for Teaching Writing
1. Reading: Vukelich, Christie, & Enz Chapters 8
2. Weekly Journal Entry Due at end of class.



FALL BREAK-October 14

Week 9-October 21
Young Children as Writers:  Strategies for Teaching Writing 
1. Continued study of Vukelich, Christie, & Enz Chapters 8.
2. Read assigned articles on Effective Writing Strategies/Writing Workshop.  Articles will be provided during the October 7 class period.

3. Weekly Journal Entry Due at end of class.

4.  Application Assignment #2 due today.  Five-Hour Early Childhood Classroom Observation.  125 points. (refer to Week 6 for assignment information)


Week 10-October 28
Young Children as Writers:  Strategies for Teaching Writing
1. Reading: Select readings from Schickendanz, J.A., & Casgergque, R. M. (2004). Writing in preschool. International Reading Association optional professional source on early writing development.  Each class member will provide a brief overview of his/her reading during a short presentation.  Reading materials will be provided during week 9. 
2. Weekly Journal Entry Due at end of class.

3.  Begin Application Assignment:#3. Observe and interact with students for a minimum of five of hours (at least two different days) in a kindergarten or primary level classroom.  Plan to work with the classroom teacher to implement at least one strategy for reading or writing instruction.   Take a rich collection of anecdotal and running records.   

Analyze the classroom and teaching strategies based upon the practices explored in the readings for the semester with specific focus placed on the ways the teacher:

  1. Views children as capable and competent members of the literacy community,
  2. Provides explicit models of what good readers and writers do,
  3. Brings literature to life in the classroom,
  4. Connects literacy to children's lives outside the classroom, and
  5. Integrates literacy across the curriculum.  

Be sure to document with specific examples from your anecdotal records. 

Reflect on your observations and reflections from the assignment.  

  1. What are you noticing that seems important for your teaching?
  2. How are these observations and reflections helping you develop a vision of the teacher you want to be?
  3. What readings are helping you understand the issues?
  4. Why might your observations and reflections be important for the year children will spend in your company?
  5. How are your observations and reflections helping you envision children as capable and competent?
  6. How are you coming to appreciate the values that underlie teaching decisions?

This is an important part of the assignment and should be at least 3-5 typed pages.  125 pts.

Due Thursday, Dec. 2.   




Week 11-November 4
Ongoing Assessment and Adapting Instruction to Meet the Needs of Diverse Children
1. Reading: Vukelich, Christie, and Enz Chapter 9
2. Weekly Journal Entry Due at end of class.
3.  Begin Assessment Project for class presentation and peer review on November 11. 
Review the Head Start Child outcomes, Missouri Pre-K Literacy Standards, and the Project Construct Standards during class session. 
Select one set of standards and describe how you might assess each of the language and literacy outcomes in your Pre-K classroom in an authentic manner that captures the child at her highest level of capability. 
After completing your readings, develop a plan for an instructional strategy and assessment for one indicator from one goal/standard from the Missouri Pre-K Standards. Grade Level Expectations for Language/Literacy, or the Head Start Outcomes. You will find a link for the Missouri Pre-K standards for language/literacy and for Head Start Outcomes on doc share.
You may submit your plan using any format you choose. Each plan should include each of the following components.

1.      List the Developmental Domain (language or literacy).

2.      List the Process Standard or Outcome.

3.      State the Indicator or Developmental Milestone in the form of an objective (e.g. The child will be able to identify at least 10 letters of the alphabet when presented in random order on a minimum of 2 out of 3 trials).

4.      Provide a clear description of the teaching activity developed to facilitate the development of children towards the acquisition of the indicator or developmental milestone chosen for your plan.

5.      Provide a complete list of the materials and book(s) needed to implement the teaching strategy.

6.      Describe how you will collect data regarding the children’s progress towards this goal. Provide a model of any form that will be used to collect data.

7.      Describe the assessment criteria you will use to determine whether a child has reached the specific indicator or milestone towards the acquisition of the goal or standard.

8.      Provide a summary statement about how this data will be used. Was the data collection for the purpose of communicating progress to families? Will it be used to determine the next steps for instruction?

Your plan will be shared in a 5-10 minute presentation during next week's class.  Following your presentation, each person will provide a review for your plan using the Rubric for Peer Review included with the assignment rubrics.  

Total 20 points for paper and presentation.  No professional journal will be due on the night of presentations/peer reviews.

Due November 11.


Week 12-November 11
Readers and Writers in Kindergarten Classrooms: Multilingual and Multicultural Classrooms
1. Readings: Meier, T. (2003). “Why can’t she remember that?” The importance of storybook reading in multilingual, multicultural classrooms. Reading Teacher, 57, 242-252.
2. Complete your reading of Tabors, P.O. (1997) One child, two languages: A guide for preschool educators of children learning English as a second language. Baltimore, Brookes. 

3.  Assessment Paper and Presentation due today for peer review.  No weekly journal due today.


Week 13-November 18
Organizing the Curriculum and the Environment/  Devloping Literacy through Play.
1. Readings: Vukelich, Christie, & Enz Chapter 10
2.  Readings;  Owocki, G. (1999).  Literacy through play.  Portsmouth, NY:  Heinemann.
3. Classroom Management Plan in-class collaborative project.

 Working in small groups during class and based on your classroom observations and your readings, create a detailed diagram of your intended classroom.   Label all areas of the classroom and important materials. It is important to note specific materials and activities in the environment that are included to facilitate literacy development. 

Develop a daily schedule for a half-day or full day program. This should reflect a typical day that includes time for children to participate in a variety of language and literacy activities reflected through large group, small group, and individual activities.    Due at the end of class. This is a collaborative assignment.  Participation is required for credit.  10 Points.
No journal entry is due today.   


Week 14-November 25
The Implementation of Technology in Literacy Development
1.  On line threaded discussion regarding technology as a tool to support literacy development in young children.
2.  Continue observation and interactions in a kindergarten setting.

Week 15-December 2
Creating Community through Literature
Including Families and the Community 

1. Read Vukelich, Christie, and Enz, Chapter 11 

2. Read Morningstar, J. (1999). Home response journals: Parents as informed contributors in the undertanding of their childs literacy development, Reading Teacher, 52, 690-697.Read assigned journal articles. Assigned during November 19 session.

3. Choose a book reflecting diverse family cultures to share in class.
4. Assignment #3, Five-Hour Kindergaten/Primary observation due today.   See Week 11 for assignment details.   125 points.


Week 16-December 9

Finals week.  Family Communication on Classroom Language/Literacy Program due today.  See class assessments and rubric for detailed information.


Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life. Park University students and faculty members are encouraged to take advantage of the University resources available for learning about academic honesty (www.park.edu/current or http://www.park.edu/faculty/).from Park University 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog Page 92

Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. from Park University 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog Page 92-93

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  6. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.

Park University 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog Page 95-96

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: http://www.park.edu/disability .


This material is protected by copyright
                               and can not be reused without author permission.

Last Updated:7/29/2010 7:48:56 PM