The sounds of children playing throughout learning centers as teachers circulate the room engaging in conversations around the children’s play fill the early childhood classroom. Laughter is a key ingredient here as teachers develop their curriculum around the children’s interests. Block towers are scattered throughout the interest area, while patrons are dining at a fine restaurant provided by the chef, Elmo. Splashes of tempura paint are seen on various art easels, while other artists are sculpting away with playdough. These are just the typical scenes in your every day early childhood program. For some individuals, this is more than a job, it is a calling. Teachers who walk through the early childhood program doors are different than those who teach at high schools, or even in elementary schools. They have a passion for the early childhood years; they know and understand the various levels of child development from birth to age five; and they thrive on the pedagogy of children learning best through play. But how did those teachers get to where they are?
To become a preschool teacher, each state, (and even program) has different requirements. The degrees vary from Child Development Associates (CDA) or Child Care Professional (CCP) certificate to upwards of a master’s degree in early childhood education. The option of which degree is best, depends on the individual teacher and the age group/program they want to teach in. Typically, Head Start programs (programs funded by the Department of Health and Human Services that provide early childhood education services to low-income children and families) require at least an associate’s degree with close to 50% of their teachers having a bachelor’s degree in early childhood. Many private programs, however, require at least the CDA or CCP to become a preschool teacher. We here at H&H Childcare Training offer the CDA courses in a self-paced environment to help you reach your career goals! Click on our website here to learn more on how to register for this course and have a jump start to your career!