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Key Terms: Leaders in Early Childhood Education

Term Definition

General Terms

creed A statement of beliefs

early childhood education Education in the early years of life; the field of study
that deals mainly with the learning and experiences
of children from infancy through the primary years

pedagogic Of or pertaining to the work of a teacher or to

instructional methods

proximal development Potential development

self-regulation Changing from a dependent infant to a

self-regulating adult

self-discipline Learning control of oneself, usually for improvement

Contributions from Abroad

atelierista In Reggio schools, an art director who helps

teachers and children express their interests and
knowledge in many different media
pedagogista A person trained in early childhood education who
meets weekly with teachers in Reggio schools to
consider what experiences mean to children, how to
help them learn more, and what additional
experiences should be planned

id The instinctive part of personality that drives a

person to seek satisfaction; part of Sigmund Freuds

ego The rational part of personality that forms a persons

sense of self; part of Sigmund Freuds contribution

superego The moral side of personal that tells a person what

is right and wrong; part of Sigmund Freuds

kindergarten In German, a word coined by Froebel in 1837

meaning, literally, childrens garden; in America, a
school or class for four- to six-year-old children

tabula rasa A mind not yet affected by experiences, sensations,

and the like; in John Lockes theory, a child is born
with this clean slate on which all experiences are

American Contributions

kindergarteners In 19th century America, a term used to describe

early childhood practitioners who worked in
kindergartens patterned after Froebian models

NAEYC National Association for the Education of Young Children;

founded by Patty Hill

traditional nursery school A school that nurtures good health and educates young