Child, Family and Community Relations

I.     Course Prefix/Number: ECE 270

       Course Name: Child, Family and Community Relations

       Credits: 3 (3 lecture; 0 lab)

II.    Prerequisite

ECE 102, ECE 104, and ECE 106, all with minimum grades of C, or consent of department chair.

III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course focuses on teacher’s role in working with child, family and community, in an early childhood setting.  Emphasis on contemporary family life, communication, diversity, professionalism, national public policy, legal responsibilities, and family involvement.

IV.   Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of the course, students satisfactorily complete all work will:

  1. Understand the inter-relatedness of the child’s home, the setting, and the community.
  2. Recognize changing dynamics of family life. Be knowledgeable about different cultural, religious, and socio-economic family systems.
  3. Establish and maintain mutually respectful, cooperative relationship with families. Conduct effective family conferences.
  4. Understand the role of ethics in the Early Childhood profession.
  5. Become acquainted with community agencies, community resources, and family education programs.
  6. Understand the role of the Early Childhood professional as an advocate for young children and a partner to parents and families in supporting their needs.
  7. Understand the impact of national public policy on young children, their families, and the community.

In addition to the objectives listed above, this course also meets the following Illinois Professional Teaching Standards and National Association for the Education of Young Children Teaching Standards.

IPTS Standards

STANDARD 1 – Teaching Diverse Students – The competent teacher understands the diverse characteristics and abilities of each student and how individuals develop and learn within the context of their social, economic, cultural, linguistic, and academic experiences. The teacher uses these experiences to create instructional opportunities that maximize student learning.

Knowledge indicators – The competent teacher:
1A) understands the spectrum of student diversity (e.g. race and ethnicity, socioeconomic status, special education, gifted, English language learners (ELL), sexual orientation, gender, (gender identity) and the assets that each student brings to leaning across the curriculum;
1B) understands how each student constructs knowledge, acquires skills, and develops effective and efficient critical thinking and problem-solving capabilities.
1C) understands how teaching and student learning are influenced by development (physical, social and emotional, cognitive, linguistic), past experiences, talents, prior knowledge, economic circumstances and diversity within the community;
1D) understands the impact of cognitive, emotional, physical, and sensory disabilities on learning and communication pursuant to the Individual with Disabilities Education Improvement Act) also referred to as “IDEA”) (20 USC 1400 et seq.),m its implementing regulations (34 CFR 300; 2006), Article 14 of the School Code [105 ILCS 5/Art.14] and 23 Ill. Adm. Code 226 (Special Education);
1E) understands the impact of linguistic and cultural diversity on learning and communication;
1F) understands his or her personal perspectives and biases and their effects on one’s teaching;
1G) understands how to identify individual needs and how to locate and access technology, services, and resources to address those needs.

STANDARD 2 – Content Area and Pedagogical Knowledge – The competent teacher has an in-depth understanding of content area knowledge that includes central concepts, methods, structures of the disciplines, and content area literacy. The teacher creates meaningful learning experiences for each student based upon interactions among content area and pedagogical knowledge, and evidence-based practice.

Knowledge indicators – The competent teacher:
2A) understands theories and philosophies of learning and human development as they relate to the range of students in the classroom;
2B) understands major concepts, assumptions, debates, and principles; processes of inquiry; and theories that are central to the disciplines;
2C) understands the cognitive processes associated with various kinds of learning (e.g. critical and creative thinking, problem-structuring and problem-solving, invention, memorization, and recall) and ensures attention to these learning processes so that students can master content standards;
2D) understands the relationship of knowledge within the disciplines to other content areas and to life applications;
2E) understands how diverse student characteristics and abilities affect processes of inquiry and influence patterns of learning;
2F) knows how to access the tools and knowledge related to latest findings (e.g. research, practice, methodologies) and technologies in the disciplines.
2G) understands the theory behind and the process for providing support to promote learning when concepts and skills are first being introduced; and
2H) understands the relationship among language acquisition (first and second), literacy development, and acquisition of academic content and skills.

STANDARD 8 – Collaborative Relationships – The competent teacher builds and maintains collaborative relationships to foster cognitive, linguistic, physical, and social and emotional development. This teacher works as a team member with professional colleagues, students, parents or guardians, and community members.

Knowledge Indicators – The competent teacher:
8A) understands schools as organizations within the larger community context;
8B) understands the collaborative process and the skills necessary to initiate and carry out that process;
8C) collaborates with others in the use of data to design and implement effective school interventions that benefit all students;
8D) understands the benefits, barriers, and techniques involved in parent and family collaborations;
8E) understands school- and work-based learning environments and the need for collaboration with all organizations (e.g., businesses, community agencies, nonprofit organizations) to enhance student learning;
8F) understands the importance of participating on collaborative and problem-solving teams to create effective academic and behavioral interventions for all students;
8G) understands the various models of co-teaching and the procedures for implementing them across the curriculum;
8H) understands concerns of families of students with disabilities and knows appropriate strategies to collaborate with students and their families in addressing these concerns; and
8I) understands the roles and the importance of including student with disabilities, as appropriate, and all team members in planning individualized education program (i.e., IEP, IFSP, Section 504 plan) for students with disabilities.

STANDARD 9 – Professionalism, Leadership, and Advocacy – The competent teacher is an ethical and reflective practitioner who exhibits professionalism; provides leadership in the learning community; and advocates for students, parents or guardians, and the profession.

Knowledge Indicators – The competent teacher:
9A) evaluates best practices and research-based materials against benchmarks within the disciplines;
9B) knows laws and rules (e.g., mandatory reporting, sexual misconduct, corporal punishment) as a foundation for the fair and just treatment of all students and their families in the classroom and school;
9C) understands emergency response procedures as required under the School safety Drill Act [105 ILCS 128/1], including school safety and crisis intervention protocol, initial response actions (e.g., whether to stay in or evacuate a building) and first response to medical emergencies (e.g., first aid and life-saving techniques);
9D) identifies paths for continuous professional growth and improvement, including the design of a professional growth plan;
9E) is cognizant of his or her emerging and developed leadership skills and the applicability of those skills within a variety of learning communities;
9F) understands the roles of an advocate, the process of advocacy, and its place in combating or promoting certain school district practices affecting students;
9G) understands local and global societal issues and responsibilities in an evolving digital culture; and
9H) understands the importance of modeling appropriate dispositions in the classroom.

NAEYC Standards

STANDARD 1. Promoting Child Development and Learning
Candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs are grounded in a child development knowledge base. They use their understanding of young children’s characteristics and needs, and of multiple interacting influences on children’s development and learning, to create environments that are healthy, respectful, supportive, and challenging for each child.

Key elements of STANDARD 1
1B) Knowing and understanding the multiple influences on early development and learning
1C) Using developmental knowledge to create healthy, respectful, supportive, and challenging learning environments for young children.

STANDARD 2 – Building Family and Community Relationships
Candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs understand that successful early childhood education depends upon partnerships with children’s families and communities. They know about, understand, and value the importance and complex characteristics of children’s families and communities. They use this understanding to create respectful, reciprocal relationships that support and empower families, and to involve all families in their children’s development and learning.

Key elements of STANDARD 2
2A) Knowing about and understanding diverse family and community characteristics
2B) Supporting and engaging families and communities through respectful, reciprocal relationships.
2C) Involving families and communities in young children’s development and learning.

STANDARD 3. Observing, Documenting, and Assessing to Support Young Children and Families
Candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs understand that child observation, documentation, and other forms of assessment are central to the practice of all early childhood professionals. They know about and understand the goals, benefits and uses of assessment. They know about and use systematic observations, documentation, and other effective assessment strategies in a responsible way, in partnership with families and other professionals, to positively influence the development of every child.

Key elements of STANDARD 3
3A) Understanding the goals, benefits, and uses of assessment – including its use in development of appropriate goals, curriculum, and teaching strategies for young children.

STANDARD 4. Using Developmentally Effective Approaches
Candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs understand that teaching and learning with young children is a complex enterprise, and its details vary depending on children’s ages, characteristics, and the settings within which teaching and learning occur. They understand and use positive relationships and supportive interactions as the foundation for their work with young children and families. Candidates know, understand, and use a wide array of developmentally appropriate approaches, instructional strategies, and tools to connect with children and families and positively influence each child’s development and learning.

Key elements of STANDARD 4
4A) Understanding positive relationships and supportive interactions as the foundation of their work with young children
4D) Reflecting on own practice to promote positive outcomes for each child.

STANDARD 6. Becoming a Professional
Candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs identify and conduct themselves as members or the early childhood profession. They know and use ethical guidelines and other professional standards related to early childhood practice. They are continuous, collaborative learners who demonstrate knowledgeable, reflective and critical perspectives on their work, making informed decisions that integrate knowledge from a variety of sources. They are informed advocates for sound educational practices and policies.

Key elements of STANDARD 6
6A) Identifying and involving oneself with the early childhood field
6C) Engaging in continuous, collaborative learning to inform practice; using technology effectively with young children, with peers, and as a professional resource
6D) Integrating knowledgeable, reflective, and critical perspectives on early education.
6E) Engaging in informed advocacy for young children and the early childhood profession.

V.    Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.

Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at
www.oakton.edu/studentlife/student-handbook.pdf

VI.   Sequence of Topics

  1. The Child’s World in Context
  2. Changing Family Trends
  3. Communicating with Parents
  4. Parent Involvement & Parent Education
  5. Families in Crisis:  Current Parenting Concern
  6. Families with Special Needs
  7. Parent Conferences
  8. Developing Programs for Parents & Families
  9. Making a Referral
  10. Dealing with Issues of Abuse
  11. Advocacy & Outreach to the Community

VII.  Methods of Instruction

Discussion, some lecture, role play, small group in-class projects, reading assignments, written assignments, videos, student presentations, exams.


Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

Attendance:
Except in unusual circumstances students must notify the instructor prior to an absence.  Students are required to read text and a selection of relevant handouts from professional and popular journals.

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

Gestwicki,  Home, School & Community Relations.  9th edition,  Thompson, Inc.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

Written reports; quizzes; mid-term exam; final exam.

XI.   Other Course Information

A.    The instructor will provide each class with further information as to attendance, policies, and support systems.

B.    Plagiarism/Cheating policies are covered under the Academic Dishonesty section of the current catalog.

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.

Resources and support for
  • pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
  • victims of sexual misconduct
can be found at www.oakton.edu/title9/.

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at www.oakton.edu/lgbtq.