- voice: 510.794.3666
- tty: 510.794.3672
- fax: 510.794.2409
Family is the most important part of a young child’s life. Infants, toddlers, preschoolers, and kindergarteners are uniquely dependent on their families for their survival and nurturance. Because of this special relationship, one of our main goals is to develop a long-term partnership with families that respects, supports, and empowers them to play a greater role in meeting the educational needs of their child.
We view each family and child from a Deaf perspective, respecting individual family cultures and diversity, focusing on each family and child’s strengths as opposed to weaknesses. We strive to provide a stimulating, language rich and communicatively stress free environment.
Children learn best through play and active exploration. Each child develops at his own pace and in his own time. Our classroom program is based on developmentally appropriate practices in a play environment in order for us to “tune-in” to each child’s unique needs and style of learning.
American Sign Language (ASL) is used in communicating with the children in our program in order to recognize the visual modality of learning as a strength among Deaf children. Families are encouraged and supported in their efforts to communicate with their child in ASL and to also utilize other modes of communication to ensure access to their environment. ASL classes are offered for parents as well as other family members through the Outreach department.
While maintaining a nurturing environment where children thrive and learn, the ECE team is committed to providing the students full access to American Sign Language (ASL). Promoting communication in ASL is achieved by using the following language development techniques with young children: modeling, inquiring, facilitating, and interacting. Research has shown that ECE children who acquire ASL and English are more likely to succeed in functioning bilingually in ASL and English and achieve academically far more than those who do not acquire sign language at a young age.
In addition to the language acquisition of ASL as a critical part of child development, the ECE department provides quality education by adhering to the best practices compiled in social-emotional, cognitive, physical, and literacy domains in the Creative Curriculum © and the Hi-Scope Curriculum©. Both curriculums are aligned with the California Department of Education’s ECE learning standards that are developmentally appropriate and support project-based instruction. Auditory and speech training are also a vital part of our program and are provided in the classroom setting and in small group pull-outs by our Communication Teacher.
By focusing on a family and Deaf-centered approach we are committed to provide the opportunities for each child to reach his/her full potential as a unique and very special individual.