Program Overview

A major in early childhood education provides graduates with the foundation needed to successfully enter the field with initial licensure from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE): Teacher: Early Childhood PreK-2. 

Comprehensive and Career-Focused

The three pillars of the Early Childhood Education program include:

  1. a comprehensive curriculum focused on research-based, best-practices in the education and care of young children (prekindergarten through grade two)
  2. a comprehensive pre-practicum / practicum sequence including opportunities for field-based experiences beginning as early as their first semester in the program
  3. career-focused mentoring from a dedicated faculty and staff with decades of experience across the PreK-12 spectrum, as classroom teachers, educational leaders and researchers.  

A Broad Curriculum Supported By Seasoned Instructors

The comprehensive curriculum in the Early Childhood Education program is child-focused and provides our students with the knowledge base and practical skills to enter the field ready to teach. Coursework includes an emphasis on developmentally appropriate practices that enable our graduates to meet each student where they are, while simultaneously setting high standards for all students.

  • EDU 104 Early Care & Education
  • EDU 202 Reading: Theory and Instruction
  • EDU 207 English Language Learners
  • EDU 210 Child in Prekindergarten and Kindergarten (required pre-practicum)
  • EDU 213 Inclusive Learning in Early Education (required pre-practicum)
  • EDU 220 Children’s Literature
  • EDU 301 Assessment and Analysis in Education
  • EDU 306 Speech and Language
  • EDU 312 Art, Music, and Movement for the Young Child 
  • EDU 315 Curriculum and Instruction (required pre-practicum)
  • EDU 430 Practicum: Early Childhood 
  • EDU 440 Practicum Reflective Seminar 
  • EDU 201 Developmental Theories 

Featured Early Education Courses

Early Care and Education

This covers historical, social and philosophical foundations of early childhood education and the integrated preschool. It examines a variety of instructional models in the field and looks at developmentally appropriate practice in terms of classroom environments, classroom management and constructivist learning theories.

Inclusive Learning in Early Education

This course provides students with a comprehensive study of issues surrounding children (ages birth to school age) who have special needs. Focus includes legislation, early intervention and the role of the family in the education of a young exceptional child. Fieldwork with preschool/ kindergarten students with special needs is required.

Curriculum and Instructional Design

This course familiarizes PreK-12 pre-service teachers with instructional and pedagogical approaches and materials for teaching. It develops beginning competence in designing and evaluating curricular programs and activities. The course emphasizes lesson planning, unit planning and implementation in the PreK-12 classroom. Computer literacy skills are addressed throughout the course.

Creating Connections Between Theory and Practice

To complement their coursework, the Early Childhood Education program includes a comprehensive pre-practicum / practicum sequence designed to ensure that our graduates have experience working with students and teachers across the grade levels covered by their licensure. All early childhood education majors have the opportunity as early as their first semester in the program to complete field placements alongside general education and special education teachers in a variety of school and community settings.

Students also complete pre-practica alongside specific courses to enhance their connections between the theory of the college classroom and the reality of the PreK-2 practice. These experiences more than prepare our students to complete a full semester practicum (student teaching) alongside a supervising practitioner during their senior year.

  • Jones Early Childhood Center Stoughton Public Schools 
  • Blue Hill Montessori School 
  • Easton Public Schools, Early Childhood Buildings  
  • Trinity Catholic Elementary School, Brockton 
  • Brockton Public Schools 

Career-focused Mentoring

Stonehill’s small class sizes allow licensure candidates to receive career-focused mentoring. Through experiences both inside and outside the classroom, dedicated faculty and staff with decades of experience across the PreK-12 spectrum work with licensure candidates to individualize their program to meet their interests and future career goals. 

Faculty teaching in the Early Childhood Education program have extensive teaching experience in public and private PreK-12 settings; deliver professional development to  teachers, schools, and districts across the Commonwealth and across the nation; present their research at local, regional, and national conferences; work in the field in places such as Boston Children’s Hospital; and serve on the boards of several professional organizations. This wealth of experience and connection to PreK-12 schools and teachers enables the faculty to provide high quality, practical educational experiences to Stonehill students.

Research Opportunities

Students who have completed their first year at Stonehill have opportunities to perform significant, publishable, full-time research under the guidance of and in collaboration with an experienced faculty researcher.

Stonehill Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE)

SURE is an opportunity for students who have completed their first year at Stonehill to perform full-time, high-quality research over the summer under the guidance of an expert faculty researcher. The experience includes weekly lunches, postgraduate career seminars, program-wide outings and a student poster session in the fall.

Recent Projects

  • Briana Burke '13 with Eunmi Yang, assistant professor of Education: “Investigating impacts of community based learning on preservice teachers’ perceptions of teaching STEM subjects and working with diverse group of students.” (Summer 2012)

Career Development Resources for Students

The Stonehill Career Development Center (CDC) offers extensive assistance to students seeking employment, pursuing advanced studies or participating in postgraduate service opportunities. By working with our mentors, students are empowered to build lifelong career management skills.

Education Studies Specific Career Resources

  • Education Mock Interview Week – Alumni in administrative positions in school districts prepare students for job interviews.
  • Externships and internships in New York; Washington, D.C.; and Los Angeles (weeklong and semesterlong programs) give students critical field experiences.
  • CDC staff members regularly work with Education Department faculty to present programs on preparing for teaching jobs from resume and cover letters to interviewing.

Graduate Outcomes

Whether learning in a Stonehill classroom or working in the field as student teachers, early childhood education candidates learn to navigate the intricacies of today’s classrooms, from inclusivity to highly effective teaching practices to social-emotional learning.

Our early childhood education graduates have gone on to teach across the country. Recent graduates have been hired to teach in places such as: 

  • Developmental Specialist, South Bay Mental Health Center 
  • Barrett Russell Early Childhood Center Brockton Public Schools 
  • Stoughton Public Schools 
  • Long Island School for the Gifted  

Camp Shriver

Camp Shriver at Stonehill College officially launched its opening session on July 8, 2013 with 58 campers from the Brockton area. Camp Shriver’s mission is to use sports as a vehicle to bring children with and without disabilities together so that they have the opportunity to develop their motor as well as social skills, create positive peer relationships and make new friends.

Camp shriver campers and volunteers take a photo together. Learn more about Camp Shriver

Partnerships & Special Programs

Stonehill College has developed academic affiliations with colleges and universities that enable our students to augment the degree they earn at Stonehill with graduate and undergraduate degrees that further enhance their opportunities.

Earn Your Master's in Inclusive Education

The Inclusive Education Master’s Degree Program prepares students to deliver evidence-based instruction and intervention for individuals with disabilities in Pre-K to 8 settings. Stonehill education students can complete a traditional four-year undergraduate program and contact the Office of Graduate Admission in their junior year for information about enrolling full-time on campus or in the Stonehill Teacher Residency Program to earn a Master of Education.

Learn More

Contact Information

Margaret E. Pierce

Associate Professor of Education, Education Studies Department Chair
College Center 110C
Education

Lisa Biederwolf

Administrative Assistant II
Education