Practicum II

I.     Course Prefix/Number: ECE 258

       Course Name: Practicum II

       Credits: 5 (2 lecture; 15 lab)

II.    Prerequisite

ECE 257 with a minimum grade of C or consent of department chair.

III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Advanced course is second-semester capstone experience for students pursuing the Associate in Applied Science Degree in Early Childhood Education. Students continue practical application of early childhood principles and theory.  In addition, more long-term curricular planning, parent involvement activities, and portfolio required. Students supervised by qualified professional and college instructor, and , and required to work in approved center for a minimum of 4 days/15-18 hours per week, in addition to 2 –hour weekly seminar.

IV.   Learning Objectives

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

  • To continue observing and assessing the developmental needs of young children.
  • To continue applying principles of child development and curriculum by planning and implementing developmentally appropriate activities according to the physical, emotional, intellectual, creative and social needs of children.
  • To continue developing and utilizing appropriate guidance techniques.
  • To continue demonstrating the ability to create special learning activities and materials to meet the individual and group needs of children.
  • To prepare, execute and evaluate curricular units for young children.
  • To continue participating in the preparation of a safe and healthy learning environment for young children.
  • To continue practicing professional relationships with children, staff and parents.
  • To continue functioning as part of the setting’s professional team, following the routines, rules and policies.
  • To understand the importance of feedback from supervisors and children in addition to self evaluation in achieving competence in classroom activities.
  • To develop an understanding of the need to advocate on behalf of children and families.
  • To demonstrate mastery of Infant CPR and First Aid.

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.

Performance indicators – The competent teacher:
1H) analyzes and uses student information to design instruction that meets the diverse needs of students and leads to ongoing growth and achievement;
1I) stimulates prior knowledge and links new ideas to already familiar ideas and experience;
1J) differentiates strategies, materials, pace, levels of complexity, and language to introduce concepts and principles so that they are meaningful to students at varying levels of development and to students with diverse learning needs;
1K) facilitates a learning community in which individual differences are respected; and
1L) uses information about students’ individual experiences, families, cultures, and communities to create meaningful learning opportunities and enrich instruction for all students.

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 3 – Planning for Differentiated Instruction – The competent teacher plans and designs instruction based on content area knowledge, diverse student characteristics, student performance data, curriculum goals, and the community context. The teacher plans for ongoing student growth and achievement.

Knowledge indicators – The competent teacher:
3A) understands the Illinois Learning Standards (23 Ill. Adm. Code 1. Appendix D), curriculum development process, content, learning theory, assessment, and student development and knows how to incorporate this knowledge in planning differentiated instruction;
3B) understands how to develop short- and long-range plans, including transition plans, consistent with curriculum goals, student diversity, and learning theory;
3C) understands cultural, linguistic, cognitive, physical, and social and emotional differences, and considers the needs of each student when planning instruction.
3D) understands when and how to adjust plans based on outcome data, as well as student needs, goals, and responses;
3E) understands the appropriate role of technology, including assistive technology, to address student needs, as well as how to incorporate contemporary tools and resources to maximize student learning.
3F) understands how to co-plan with other classroom teachers, parents or guardians, paraprofessionals, school specialists, and community representatives to design learning experiences; and
3G) understands how research and date guide instructional planning, delivery, and adaptation.

Performance indicators – The competent teacher:
3H) establishes high expectations for each student’s learning and behavior;
3I) creates short-term and long-term plans to achieve the expectations for student learning;
3J) uses date to plan for differentiated instruction to allow for variations in individual learning needs;
3K) incorporates experiences into instructional practices that related to a student’s current life experiences and to future life experiences;
3L) creates approaches to learning that are interdisciplinary and that integrate multiple content areas;
3M) develops plans based on student responses and provides for different pathways based on student needs;
3N) accesses and uses a wide range of information and instructional technologies to enhance a student’s ongoing growth and achievement;
3P) works with others to adapt and modify instruction to meet individual student needs; and
3Q) develops or selects relevant instructional content, materials, resources, and strategies (e.g., project- based learning) for differentiated instruction.

STANDARD 4 – Learning Environment – The competent teacher structures a safe and healthy learning environment that facilitates cultural and linguistic responsiveness, emotional well-being, self-efficacy, positive social interaction, mutual respect, active engagement, academic risk-taking, self-motivation, and personal goal-setting.

Knowledge indicators – The competent teacher:
4A) understands principles of and strategies for effective classroom and behavior management;
4B) understands how individuals influence groups and how groups function in society;
4C) understands how to help students work cooperatively and productively in groups;
4D) understands factors (e.g. self-efficacy, positive social interaction) that influence motivation and engagement.
4E) knows how to assess the instructional environment to determine how best to meet a student’s individual needs.
4F) understands laws, rules, and ethical considerations regarding behavior intervention planning and behavior management (e.g., bullying, crisis intervention, physical restraint);
4G) knows strategies to implement behavior management and behavior intervention planning to ensure a safe and productive learning environment; and
4H) understands the use of student data (formative and summative) to design and implement behavior management strategies.

Performance indicators – The competent teacher:
4I) creates a healthy environment that maximizes student learning;
4J) creates clear expectations and procedures for communication and behavior and a physical setting conducive to achieving classroom goals;
4K) uses strategies to create a smoothly functioning learning community in which students assume responsibility for themselves and one another, participate in decision-making, work collaboratively and independently, use appropriate technology, and engage in purposeful learning activities;
4L) analyzes the classroom environment and makes decisions to enhance cultural and linguistic responsiveness, mutual respect, positive social relationships, student motivation, and classroom engagement;
4M) organizes, allocates, and manages time, materials, technology, and physical space to provide active and equitable engagement of student in productive learning activities;
4N) engages students in and monitors individual and group-learning activities that help them develop the motivation to learn;
4O) uses a variety of effective behavioral management techniques appropriate to the needs of all students that include positive behavior interventions and supports;
4P) modifies the learning environment (including the schedule and physical arrangement) to facilitate appropriate behaviors and learning for students with diverse learning characteristics; and
4Q) analyzes student behavior data to develop and support positive behavior.

STANDARD 5 – Instructional Delivery – The competent teacher differentiates instruction by using a variety of strategies that support critical and creative thinking, problem-solving, and continuous growth and learning. This teacher understands that the classroom is a dynamic environment requiring ongoing modification of instruction to enhance learning for each student.

Knowledge indicator – The competent teacher:
5A) understands the cognitive processes associated with various kinds of learning;
5B) understands principles and techniques, along with advantages and limitations, associated with a wide range of evidence-based instructional practices;
5C) know how to implement effective differentiated instruction through the use of a wide variety of materials, technologies, and resources;
5D) understands disciplinary and interdisciplinary instructional approaches and how they relate to life and career experience;
5E) knows techniques for modifying instructional methods, materials, and the environment to facilitate learning for students with diverse learning characteristics;
5G) knows how to evaluate and use student performance data to adjust instruction while teaching; and
5H) understands when and how to adapt or modify instruction based on outcome data, as well as student needs, goals, and responses.

Performance indicator – The competent teacher:
5I) uses multiple teaching strategies, including adjusted pacing and flexible grouping, to engage students in active learning opportunities that promote the development of critical and creative thinking, problem-solving, and performance capabilities;
5J) monitors and adjusts strategies in response to feedback from the student;
5K) varies his or her role in the instructional process as instructor, facilitator, coach, or audience in relation to the content and purposes of instruction and the needs of students;
5L) develops a variety of clear, accurate presentations and representations of concepts, using alternative explanations to assist students’ understanding and presenting diverse perspectives to encourage critical and creative thinking;
5M) uses strategies and techniques for facilitating meaningful inclusion of individuals with a range of abilities and experiences;
5N) uses technology to accomplish differentiated instructional objectives that enhance learning for each student;
5O) models and facilitates effective use of current and emerging digital tools to locate, analyze, evaluate, and use information resources to support research and learning;
5P) uses student data to adapt the curriculum and implement instructional strategies and materials according to the characteristics of each student;
5Q) uses effective co-planning and co-teaching techniques to deliver instruction to all students;
5R) maximizes instructional time (e.g., minimizes transitional time); and
5S) implements appropriate evidence-based instructional strategies.

STANDARD 6 – Reading, Writing, and Oral Communication – The competent teacher has foundational knowledge of reading, writing, and oral communication within the content area and recognizes and addresses student reading, writing, and oral communication needs to facilitate the acquisition of content knowledge.

Knowledge indicators – the competent teacher:
6A) understands appropriate and varied instructional approaches used before, during, and after reading, including those that develop word knowledge, vocabulary, comprehension, fluency, and strategy use in the content areas;
6B) understands that the reading process involves the construction of meaning through the interactions of the reader’s background knowledge and experiences, the information in the text, and the purpose of the reading situation;
6C) understands communication theory, language development, and the role of language in learning;
6D) understands writing processes and their importance to content learning;
6E) knows and models standard conventions of written and oral communications
6G) understands how to design, select, modify, and evaluate a wide range of materials for the content areas and the reading needs of the student.

Performance indicators – the competent teacher:
6J) selects, modifies, and uses a wide range of printed, visual, or auditory materials, and online stimulates discussion in the content area for varied instructional and conversational purposes.

STANDARD 7 – Assessment – The competent teacher understands and uses appropriate formative and summative assessment for determining student needs, monitoring student progress, measuring student growth, and evaluating student outcomes. The teacher makes decisions driven by data about curricular and instructional effectiveness and adjusts practices to meet the needs of each student.

Knowledge indicators – the competent teacher:
7A) understands the purposes, characteristics, and limitations of different types of assessment, including standardized assessments, universal screening, curriculum-based assessment, and progress monitoring tools;
7B) understands that assessment is a means of evaluating how students learn and what they know and are able to do in order to meet the Illinois Learning Standards;
7C) understands measurement theory and assessment-related issues, such as validity, reliability, bias, and appropriate and accurate scoring;
7D) understands current terminology and procedures necessary for the appropriate analysis and interpretation of assessment data;
7G) understands how to make data-driven decisions using assessment results to adjust practices to meet the needs of each student;
7I) knows assessment and progress monitoring techniques to assess the effectiveness of instruction for each student.

Performance indicators – the competent teacher:
7J) uses assessment results to determine student performance levels, identify learning targets, select appropriate research-based instructional strategies, and implement instruction to enhance learning outcomes;
7K) appropriately uses a variety of formal and informal assessments to evaluate the understanding, progress, and performance of an individual student and the class as a whole;
7M) maintains useful and accurate records of student work and performance;

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.

Knowledge Indicators – The competent teacher:
8J) works with all school personnel (e.g., support staff, teachers, paraprofessionals) to develop learning climates for the school that encourage unity, support a sense of shared purpose, show trust in one another, and value individuals;
8N) uses effective co-planning and co-teaching techniques to deliver instruction to each student;
8Q) establishes respectful and productive relationships with parents or guardians and seeks to develop cooperative partnerships to promote student learning and well-being.

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.

Performance Indicators – The competent teacher:
9I) models professional behavior that reflects honesty, integrity, personal responsibility, confidentiality, altruism, and respect;
9J) maintains accurate records, manages data effectively, and protects the confidentiality of information pertaining to each student and family;
9K) reflects on professional practice and resulting outcomes; engages in self-assessment; and adjusts practices to improve student performance, school goals, and professional growth;
9L) communicates with families, responds to concerns, and contributes to enhanced family participation in student education;
9P) uses leadership skills that contribute to individual and collegial growth and development, school improvement, and the advancement of knowledge in the teaching profession;
9Q) proactively serves all students and their families with equity and honor and advocates on their behalf, ensuring the learning and well-being of each child in the classroom;
9R) is aware of and complies with the mandatory reporter provision of section 4 of the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act [325 ILCS 5/4];
9S) models digital etiquette and responsible social actions in the use of digital technology; and
9T) models and teaches safe, legal, and ethical use of digital information and technology, including respect for copyright, intellectual property, and the appropriate documentation of sources.

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
1A) Knowing and understanding young children’s characteristics and needs, from birth through age 8
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 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
4B) Knowing and understanding effective strategies and tools for early education, including appropriate uses of technology
4C) Using a broad repertoire of developmentally appropriate teaching/learning approaches
4D) Reflecting on own practice to promote positive outcomes for each child.

STANDARD 5 – Using Content Knowledge to Build Meaning Curriculum
Candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs use their knowledge of academic disciplines to design, implement, and evaluate experiences that promote positive development and learning for each and every young child. Candidates understand the importance of developmental domains and academic (or content) disciplines in early childhood curriculum. They know the essential concepts, inquiry tools, and structure of content areas, including academic subjects, and can identify resources to deepen their understanding. Candidates use their own knowledge and other resources to design, implement, and evaluate meaningful, challenging curriculum that promotes comprehensive developmental and learning outcomes for every young child.

Key elements of STANDARD 5
5A) Understanding content knowledge and resources in academic disciplines: language and literacy; the arts – music, creative movement, dance, drama, visual arts; mathematics; science, physical activity, physical education, health and safety; and social studies.
5B) Knowing and using the central concepts, inquiry tools, and structures of content areas or academic disciplines
5C) Using own knowledge, appropriate early learning standards, and other resources to design, implement, and evaluate developmentally meaningful and challenging curriculum 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
6B) Knowing about and upholding ethical standards and other early childhood professional guidelines
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

VI.   Sequence of Topics

  1. New Placement
    1. environment/location
    2. ages of children
    3. staff
    4. student’s role
  2. Personalities and Learning Styles of Young Children
    1. disruptive child
    2. aggressive child
    3. abused child
    4. popular child
    5. quiet child
  3. Discipline
    1. setting limits
    2. transitions
    3. scheduling
    4. disruptive/aggressive behavior
  4. Staff Relations
    1. working with supervisors
    2. working with other teachers
    3. working with parents
  5. Getting Ready for the World of Work
    1. What is my teaching style?
    2. personal philosophy
    3. writing resumes
    4. interviewing techniques
    5. advocating for children and families
  6. Infant CPR and First Aid

VII.  Methods of Instruction

Students spend 15-18 hours per week in placement.  Methods of presentation in the weekly seminar include class discussion, films, guest speakers, exercises in analyzing different situations that may occur in a preschool classroom.
Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

Students are required to attend weekly seminars and put in regular practicum hours (minimum 12) at field placement.  Students are expected to actively participate in seminar discussions and activities and complete all assigned work.

IX.   Instructional Materials

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

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

Grades will be based on Practicum and Seminar Competence, quality of assigned and evaluation of field and college supervisor.

XI.   Other Course Information

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

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

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at

Electronic video and/or audio recording is not permitted during class unless the student obtains written permission from the instructor. In cases where recordings are allowed, such content is restricted to personal use only. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited. Personal use is defined as use by an individual student for the purpose of studying or completing course assignments.

For students who have been approved for audio and/or video recording of lectures and other classroom activities as a reasonable accommodation by Oakton’s Access Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC), applicable federal law requires instructors to permit those recordings. Such recordings are also limited to personal use. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited.

Violation of this policy will result in disciplinary action through the Code of Student Conduct.