Early Childhood Education
Compassionate, inquisitive, motivated and energetic. That pretty much describes Tyler Andersen. For a long time, she’s wanted to be a teacher. Now, through the early childhood education program at the College, she’s found the ideal way to hone her skills and cement her career plans.
Child development fascinates Tyler. Specifically, she’s interested in teaching children who are learning English as a second language. “I want to ensure that they have the same opportunities as other children,” she says.
Chances are, that interest grew out of her own educational experiences. At first, she was homeschooled. Then she moved on to a one- room, rural schoolhouse, and ultimately to a private, bilingual school in an urban setting.
When researching colleges, Tyler looked closely at their education programs. “The Department of Teacher Education at the College offered what I wanted. The professors represent different walks of life and they’ve actually taught all over the world. Because of their broad experiences, they push us to think in new ways. It’s also an advantage that our field experiences take place in all types of schools – from urban, to suburban to rural.”
It’s also important for Tyler that all of her education classes have included practical applications, connecting methodology and theory with what actually goes on in a classroom. Some of that has taken place right on campus within the College’s N.E. Miles Early Childhood Development Center, where Tyler and other students can observe children ranging in age from three to five.
Throughout the program, our professors use modeling and role-playing to teach us how to teach. In our science methods class, we did the same experiments that children do. In another course, we learned how to incorporate physical activity into the classroom, using movement to keep kids alert and help them learn. I love it. It’s the best way for me to really understand what will happen when I teach.”
Tyler is also helping to develop a manual for teachers who work with the Cofan Indians in Ecuador. “What’s important to me is that this work will be relevant to any teacher who is working with students that represent diverse backgrounds. That’s really why I want to teach.”
Early childhood education majors explore the physical, social, intellectual and emotional development of young children. They get hands-on experience at schools in our community as well as at the N.E. Miles Early Childhood Development Center on campus. In addition, they work with dedicated faculty whose specialties range from kinetic learning to literacy development.
- Our graduates are actively recruited by schools in South Carolina.
- Our students’ scores on the PRAXIS II exams are well above state and national averages.
- The program is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).
- We have strong partnerships with elementary schools in all three surrounding counties.
- Scholarships are available for qualified students in this major.
- South Carolina Student Education Association offers pre-professional workshops and conferences, professional development activities and more.
Interim Department Chair