Photo of Sarah Nicoliello '19, an early childhood education and fine arts double major

Sarah Nicoliello '19

“Art is a way of expressing oneself. I feel like everyone needs that, especially at a younger age. I’d love to be an art teacher one day.”

Combining her love of art with her passion for teaching, Sarah Nicoliello ’19 is inventing ways for young children to express their creativity and learn about the world.

The early childhood program at Elms College prepares you to teach students from pre-kindergarten through grade two.

As a candidate for your initial teaching license in Massachusetts, you complete rigorous coursework and do fieldwork in local schools with young children with and without moderate special needs, in local schools. You leave Elms prepared to teach all areas of the curriculum and make adaptations for students with moderate special needs.

A degree in early childhood education will prepare you to work in collaboration with parents, colleagues, and educational specialists, such as speech and physical therapists, to ensure that your students have the best experience possible when they enter your classroom. The Elms College preparation program for early childhood teachers exceeds state standards for both knowledge and performance and gives prospective early childhood teachers a competitive edge in seeking employment.

Early Childhood Education students will be able to:

  • Have an understanding of typical and atypical physical, cognitive, language, and social/emotional development of children with and without special needs, and use this understanding to understand students’ needs and interests. This allows them to plan and present developmentally-appropriate lessons and learning activities, and to determine the progress children are making.
  • Draw on subject matter knowledge in teaching reading and language arts, children’s literature, mathematics, science, social studies, health, physical education, and the arts to provide developmentally-appropriate learning experiences that respond to children’s interests, and challenge them to construct an understanding of the world in which they live, through play and active learning.
  • Communicate clearly and respectfully with children, families, colleagues, and members of the community, and work with them to benefit children’s learning and development.
  • Organize and manage a classroom to provide time, space, materials, and support necessary for a stimulating and safe learning environment.
  • Reflect on teaching and learning, and use reflections to meet legal and moral responsibilities for professional growth and service to children and their families.
  • Meet state licensure standards for communication and literacy skills, subject matter knowledge, teaching reading and language arts, and performance.

Quick Info

Required Credits

48

Initial teaching licenses earned at Elms College qualify candidates to begin teaching in Massachusetts and more than 40 states, islands, and territories.

Click to view course requirements for the major in Early Childhood Education (B.A.).

Initial License in Early Childhood (PreK-2)
Note: The early childhood 12-week practicum is completed at two sites: a public school preschool inclusion classroom accredited by the National Academy of NAEYC (National Association of the Education for Young Children), and in a first- or second-grade classroom that includes students with and without special needs and is accredited by the National Academy, or adheres to NAEYC’s guidelines for developmentally-appropriate practices.

Major Requirements (48 credits)

Course #FormerlyCourse Name# of Credit Hours
EDU 1000EDU 100Introduction to Schooling and Education3
EDU 1008EDU 108Writing for Educators3
PSY 2104PSY 214Children’s Learning and Development3
EDU 3109EDU 319Students with Special Needs3
EDU 4908EDU 498Developing Language & Literacy I3
EDU 4909EDU 499Developing Language and Literacy II3
EDU 3004EDU 304Methods of Teaching Mathematics3
EDU 3201EDU 321Curriculum for Early Childhood Inclusion Settings3
EDU 3101EDU 311Writing Workshop3
EDU 3402EDU 342Assessment of Students3
EDU 3805EDU 385Inquiry-based Science Methods3
EDU 4901EDU 491Educating English Language Learners3
EDU 3600EDU 360Educating English Language Learners3
EDU 3600EDU 360Seminar in Professional Education3
EDU 4200AEDU 420AEarly Childhood: Teacher of Students With and Without Disabilities (Pre-K-2) Initial Practicum9