It’s no secret that your childcare curriculum is the foundation of your business. Every decision you make in your business from the staff you hire to lesson planning all align with your center’s curriculum.
So what exactly is a curriculum and how do you create one? How do you make sure you choose the right curriculum for your business?
I’ll share my thoughts and best tips in order to help you develop a curriculum you are proud of even if you’re inexperienced.
Curriculum refers to both what is taught and how it’s taught… Think of it as the folder that holds lesson planning, goal setting, approaches, holistic development, interventions, resources, learning material, and evaluations.
An age-appropriate, stimulating, and creative curriculum will make your business stand out! It will help guide your staff lesson plan, intervene and organize their daily routines.
But what happens when you’ve never actually developed a curriculum? How one earth do you even begin?
Here are my three tips for developing your curriculum.
* Before you begin, make sure you're respecting your provinces or state's guidelines.
The first step when developing your program’s curriculum is to get clear on your vision for your business. You could have opened any other type of business but you decided on childcare which means this was your calling. What do you want the kids in your care to experience? What are your non-negotiables? What are some of your values and beliefs? Take some time and think about what you want the parents in your business to tell others about your center. Think about experiences and what your staff’s role will be in the children’s lives. Write it all down.
Next, educate yourself. The best way to know what you want as a curriculum is by knowing what you don't want. Spend some time researching and reading up on other early child care curriculums but don’t commit to any just yet. It’s really important that you align with the curriculum you develop even if that means mixing and matching and coming up with your own. That’s what I did and it worked well!
Start writing an outline. Here are a few ideas to help you get started. You will find that a well thought out well-written curriculum won't leave parents feeling confused. In fact, when writing it, use simple terms your customers will understand. No need to use educational terms only someone in our field would use.
Begin with writing your guiding principles or beliefs about children and their learning
Values and your staff's role within your curriculum
Daily routine and schedules
Interventions and behavioral theories
Touch on how your curriculum is intended to encourage learning processes
Observational tools and resources used.
Clarify its' use in your childcare center
Now, you can always hire someone to develop the curriculum for your childcare business. This can be effective and save you money BUT it can also leave you with a curriculum that you don’t align with. (not a big fan ) because your curriculum is your vision on paper. If you do decide to hire someone to develop your curriculum it’s important that you at least have knowledge on what you don’t want hence my previous point.
In conclusion, your curriculum can also be updated regularly. As your business grows, you will be so much better at knowing what your business needs from you! Trust yourself!
If you feel like it, I can teach you how to develop your curriculum with my step-by-step program called Childcare Business Academy.
I offer templates and walk you through my process. Here’s the link to learn more
Let me know in the comments if this post helped!