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Early Childhood Assistant Program

Early Childhood Assistant Program

Children  cutting out scissors paper in preschool.

LENGTH: 38 WEEKS | LOCATION: NORTH BAY CAMPUS | NEXT INTAKE: AUGUST 2018 | FIELD-PLACEMENT: 490-HOURS

Overview

Be job-ready in just 38 weeks with NETC's comprehensive Early Childcare Assistant Diploma Program.
The Early Childcare Assistant Diploma program trains students for increasingly important careers in the early childcare field. Early Childcare Assistants play a crucial role in a young child’s early development, and graduates of the program will be well situated for fulfilling and long-lasting careers in this field.
The Early Childcare Assistant Diploma program develops skills and techniques through a mix of theoretical classroom learning and practical “hands-on” training. This mix of practical and theoretical training provides the knowledge and confidence needed to step right into the workplace upon graduation.

Field Placement

Students will participate in 490 hours of placement in a childcare or early learning centre. During the placement students participate in the day-to-day activities of the centres, gaining valuable hands-on experience. Students experience the responsibilities of a childcare worker focusing on age appropriate cognitive, language, physical, emotional and social development.

The practicum provides students with an opportunity to incorporate classroom theory into real work situations. It allows the student the ability to demonstrate, evaluate and refine skills needed by a professional in an early child environment. It provides mentorship for the student to observe and interact with other early childhood professionals. Student practicum placements are arranged and scheduled by the college.  Field placement locations are arranged by the college.

Employment Opportunities After Graduation

Graduates may find employment in a variety of care settings including:

  • Childcare centres
  • Ontario Early Years Centres
  • Parent/Child Literacy Centres
  • Private Regulated Home Based Child Care

Admissions

To be eligible for admission, you must possess the following:

  • Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent OR;
  • Mature student status (19 years of age or older and without a high school diploma at the start of the program). Eligibility may be determined by academic achievement testing.
  • All potential students seeking admission into the ECA program must pass a literacy test. The test administered must meet government standards for admission into post-secondary training where applicable. The passing score must be equivalent to grade 12 level. This includes students with:
  • Grade 12 high school diploma from a Canadian high school
  • Grade 12 equivalency documentation
  • Mature students
  • Foreign credentials

The literacy test must test the student’s ability to:

  • Read and comprehend textbooks and other material as part of the program,
  • Understand and participate in the classroom (lecture, class presentation, discussion, etc.)
  • Write class assignments and tests, and
  • Understand and participate effectively at practicum sites

Prior to Placement

  • Min mark of 65% in theory and practical application of theory
  • Current Standard First Aid and Basic Rescuer (Level C) CPR Certification
  • Negative Police Check, including vulnerable sector
  • Medical form from a Canadian licenced physician stating fitness to complete the practicum and absence of communicable diseases.

Financial Aid

Students looking to start training in this program have a number of options to finance their education. By exploring these options, students will be able to gain financial assistance and support as they are training for a career. Some financing options available to students include:

  • Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP) (if Applicable)
  • Ontario Second Career
  • Student Lines of Credit
  • Lifelong Learning Plan
  • RESP
  • Employment Ontario
  • Monthly Payment Plan

Financial assistance may be available for those who qualify. Please contact us for more details regarding Financial Assistance.

 Course Descriptions

Introduction to Early Child Care and Education

This module presents an overview of Early Child Care and Education. Students gain an appreciation of the historical development of child care and its impact on contemporary approached to care and curriculum. The role of government and associations in Canadian child care and education are explained. The QUAD principles in child care are introduced. And students will develop strategies for being a successful student.

Role and Responsibilities

Students are presented with the professional expectations of early childcare workers, including the roles and responsibilities, attitudes, ethical standards and advocacy issues. The importance of teamwork, work place communication and being a role module are addressed. Strategies for time and stress management are presented. Critical thinking and professional development strategies are also covered.

Child, Family and Community

This module presents an in-depth look at the Canadian Family and the challenges facing families. Working with parents/guardians and building partnerships with families through formal and informal communication is discussed. Students will also gain an understanding of community-based support programs available to assist families who are facing specific challenges.

Introduction to Child Development

In this module students develop an appreciation and understanding of historical and contemporary theories of development, developmental domains and research approaches to child development.

Introduction to Prenatal and Infant Development

In this module students develop an appreciation and understanding of historical and contemporary theories of development, development domains research approaches to prenatal and infant development.

Introduction to Toddler Development

In this module students develop an appreciation and understanding of historical and contemporary theories of development, developmental domains and research approaches to toddler development.

Health and Safety

This module presents concepts and strategies for developing and maintaining a safe and healthy child care setting. Students review Occupational Health and Safety (OH&S) regulations, fire codes and Workplace Hazardous Material Information System (W.H.M.I.S.) as well as discussing employer policies and procedures for emergencies. Child abuse recognition and responsibilities to report are covered. The role of the child care worker in children’s daily habits and routines is defined in addition to specific infant and toddler health issues. Personal health and wellness strategies are emphasized.

Written Communication

Students are presented with skills to improve their proficiency in written communication and documentation in a child care setting. Attention to details in written communication through proof reading, referencing source material and verifying the accuracy of numerical entries is stressed. Evaluating the reliability and accuracy of written material is discussed.

Observation Skills

This module introduces the role of the observer and a variety of approaches to observing development. Ethical standards in observation and documentation are discussed. Writing concise, accurate and objective observations is introduced along with a variety of tools for observation.

Introduction to Preschool Development

In this module students develop an appreciation and understanding of historical and contemporary theories of development, developmental domains and research approaches to preschool development.

Practicum 1: Infant and Toddler

The practicum provides students with an opportunity to incorporate classroom theory into real work situations. It allows the student the ability to demonstrate, evaluate and refine skills needed by a professional in an early child environment. It provides mentorship for the student to observe and interact with other early childhood professionals. The focus of practicum 1 will be on infants and toddlers.

Guiding Children

This module looks at different care giving styles and how each style affects the development of the child. Dimensions of care giving are discussed and positive, developmentally appropriate techniques for guiding children are presented. Cultural sensitivity and various influences on child behaviour are discussed in the context of incorporating positive intervention and discipline strategies.

Curriculum Planning

This module introduces various approaches to curriculum and theories of learning. Curriculum environments and program documentation are covered in the context of developmentally appropriate practices. Various elements of curriculum are introduced including activities and themes, circle time and center activities. Play is presented as the main method for encouraging child development.

Nutrition

This module looks at various factors that affect young children’s eating habits and stresses encouraging positive and healthy eating habits. Students look at Canada’s Food Guide to Healthy Living as a basis for determining the variety of foods, the number of serving and serving size when planning menus. Safe handling, preparation, serving and storage of food are presented. Safety issues around eating are discussed as well as special dietary requirements.

Practicum 2: Preschool

The practicum provides students with an opportunity to incorporate classroom theory into real work situations. It allows the student the ability to demonstrate, evaluate and refine skills needed by a professional in an early child environment. It provides mentorship for the student to observe and interact with other early childhood professionals. The focus of practicum 2 will be on preschool.