Master of Arts in Teaching Early Childhood Education
Initial Teacher Preparation Unit Standards Framework
Initial teacher preparation at Winthrop University is built around the central belief that teachers must be able to demonstrate knowledge, skills, and dispositions that produce learners prepared for 21st century challenges within the context of a free and democratic society. Through field-focused learning in school partnership settings, candidates demonstrate evolving skills in the domains of diverse needs of learners, learning environment, technology, assessment, instruction and learner engagement, literacy, and professional learning and ethical practice. These domains are embedded throughout an integrated series of classroom and field experiences involving core and discipline-specific curricula, grounded in evidence-based practice and professional standards, and designed to support teacher candidates as they learn about themselves, individual learners, classrooms, and the American school system.
Expectations for Candidate Professional Dispositions
The teacher candidate assumes responsibility for the learning of all students in the classroom in a caring, nondiscriminatory, and equitable manner and persists in effective learning for all students.
The teacher candidate demonstrates a recognition of and adherence to the moral, legal, and ethical principles of the University and the profession.
The teacher candidate interacts in ways that convey respect and sensitivity.
The teacher candidate embraces the complexity of work through reflective practice and professional growth.
UNIT STANDARDS AND ELEMENTS
US1. DIVERSE NEEDS OF LEARNERS
The teacher candidate plans and implements differentiated instructional strategies for diverse learners (including, but not limited to, English language learners, learners who are living in poverty, learners with disabilities, gifted and talented learners, and other exceptional needs in general education settings) to achieve learning outcomes.
US 2. LEARNING ENVIRONMENT
The teacher candidate creates a positive, safe, and caring environment that promotes learning through active engagement and respect for individual differences.
US 3. TECHNOLOGY
The teacher candidate plans and implements meaningful learning opportunities that engage learners in the ethical and appropriate use of technology to meet learning outcomes.
US 4. ASSESSMENT
The teacher candidate designs, selects, and implements multiple assessments and systematically uses data to make instructional decisions that support, monitor, and promote learning.
US 5. INSTRUCTION AND LEARNER ENGAGEMENT
The teacher candidate uses developmental and pedagogical content knowledge to independently and collaboratively plan and implement learning experiences that are relevant, appropriately challenging, and aligned with curriculum goals and standards.
US 6. LITERACY
The teacher candidate implements essential components of literacy instruction (reading, writing, listening, speaking, viewing, and visual representation) within the discipline(s) to enhance opportunities for learning.
US 7. PROFESSIONAL LEARNING AND ETHICAL PRACTICE
The teacher candidate participates in ongoing professional learning and critical reflection, upholds ethical and legal standards, and articulates the impact of social, legal, and political contexts on American schooling.
To ensure knowledge of content, the Early Childhood Education teacher candidate is required to achieve the South Carolina passing score on the Praxis II Specialty Area Examination prior to internship semester. In addition, successful graduates must obtain a satisfactory score on the Praxis II Principles of Learning and Teaching before earning teacher certification.
Master of Arts in Teaching teacher candidates must demonstrate dispositions that reflect the highest standards of the profession as they relate to students, their families, and their communities. The Richard W. Riley College of Education has established appropriate criteria for professional dispositions in the following areas: professional commitment; communication skills; interpersonal skills; classroom personality; emotional make-up; and academic integrity. Further information about the criteria is distributed to teacher candidates in a dispositions booklet.
The Master of Arts in Teaching curriculum covers a variety of subjects from professional core courses to courses specific to early childhood education. Acquired competencies emphasized in this program will enable graduates to assume leadership roles in their classrooms, departments and schools.