The EARLY LEARNING CENTER is a fully-licensed, nationally-accredited lab school for young children.

It is a full-day pre-school that serves children ages 3 to 5 from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuition includes breakfast, lunch and afternoon snack, a choice of three instructional models, enrichment programs and parent resources.

The Early Learning Center curriculum is based upon the concept that each child is an individual and should be able to develop at his or her own pace while providing hands-on sensory experiences to encourage children to think, analyze problems, and arrive at logical conclusions based on their own experience. The curriculum is centered around the interests, needs and abilities of the individual child.

The Early Learning Center provides a stimulating learning environment through three classroom models: Child Development, Modified Montessori, and Creative Curriculum.

 

History

The ELC opened in March 1983, through the great efforts of Dr. Earnestine Kirkland and Susan Logston. The primary function of the Early Learning Center was to provide a training site for preschool teachers and quality childcare for the community. It was the aim of the ECE department to integrate theoretical concepts with practical applications for those enrolled in the Early Childhood Education Program. Gateway Community College students in the areas of Human Services, Early Childhood Education and Psychology programs would also have the opportunity to use the Center as a learning resource in child development.


QUICK LINKS

 

CONTACT
Sarah Chambers, Director
(203) 285-2130
schambers@gatewayct.edu

 

HOURS OF OPERATION

  • Monday - Friday
  • 7:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m

 

WEEKLY FEES*

  • Community: $275
  • Students: $170
  • New Haven residents: Sliding fee scale

*Subject to change

Mission 

The ELC is a fully licensed, and National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) accredited childcare program for children ages three to five. The primary function of the Early Learning Center is to provide an exemplary training site for prospective preschool teachers and students enrolled in Human Services, while offering quality childcare for the community. Through guided involvement in Center operations, students are more able to be successful integrating theoretical preparation with practical application. Gateway Community College students in the areas of Human Services, Early Childhood Education and Psychology programs will have the opportunity to use the Center as a learning resource in child development. The staff provides a stimulating learning environment through three curriculum models: Child Development, Modified Montessori, and Diversified Creative Curriculum. Operating the Center will create a more successful integration of theoretical preparation with practical application.

Philosophy

Our program is centered upon the concept that each child is an individual and should be allowed to grow and develop at his/her own pace. Children learn best by participating in first hand sensory experiences. Therefore, our curriculum provides stimulating sensory experiences to encourage children to think, analyze problems, and arrive at logical conclusions. Our curriculum is centered around the strengths, interests, abilities and needs of the children. We believe children learn best through play and discovery.

Our program is an inclusive model, serving children with a variety of needs. Therefore, we are committed to serving children with special and typical needs. The Early Learning Center adheres to ADA policies.

 

Instructional Models

Child Development: This program focuses on the development of the whole child. The classroom environment is planned to allow opportunities for exploration and discovery. Learning through play, central themes, and developmentally appropriate activities are provided in a child-centered classroom.

Modified Montessori: This curriculum model is based on the theory that sensory-cognitive learning influences affective development. This approach is individualized and the child learns about the world around him or her by observing, comparing, classifying, and reasoning through the use of self-correcting, didactic Montessori materials.

Diversified Creative Curriculum: This curriculum is a comprehensive curriculum that provides the framework for a developmentally appropriate program for preschoolers. The beliefs and theories that guide curriculum development and implementation include an understanding of how children develop physically, socio-emotionally, and intellectually. The teachers are adaptable and flexible.

 

 

Weekly Fees (subject to change)

  • Community: $275
  • Full-time Students: $170
  • New Haven residents: Sliding fee scale

To be eligible for the student rates, students must be enrolled in Gateway Community College for a minimum of three credits. New Haven families may apply for the School Readiness Grant Sliding Fee Scale. Breakfast, lunch, and an afternoon snack are provided.

 

 

Early Learning Center Staff

Sarah Chambers, Director

(203) 285- 2132

Linda Alston, Child Development

(203) 285-2133

lalston@gatewayct.commnet.edu

Helene N'Guessan, Child Development

(203) 285-2133

hnguessan@gatewayct.commnet.edu

Leasa Moon, Modified Montessori

(203) 285-2134

lmoon@gatewayct.commnet.edu

Stella Okparanta, Modified Montessori

(203) 285-2134

sokparanta@gatewayct.commnet.edu

Marion Williams, Diversified Creative Curriculum

(203) 285-2135

mwilliams@gateway.commnet.edu

Annmarie Amendola, Diversified Creative Curriculum

(203) 285-2135

aamendola@gatewayct.commnet.edu

Mary Palermo, Secretary

(203) 285-2131

mpalermo@gatewayct.commnet.edu