Primary responsibility, under the guidance of the Teacher, is to provide a safe and nurturing environment for children that encourage their social, emotional, physical and intellectual development through designing and implementing a developmentally appropriate curriculum according to guidelines established by Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, Creative Curriculum, and ExceleRate Illinois.
Interaction between staff and children:
- Interact frequently, affectionately, and respectfully by smiling, touching, and holding children. Speak in a friendly, calm, soft and courteous manner within close proximity of the child.
- Respect and observe children’s interests. Intervene when needed to maintain safety. Enhance children’s play with language, toys and activities.
- Communicate directly with each child at the child’s level.
- Engage and communicate constructively with individual children during activities and routines. Take every opportunity to positively extend children’s thinking and actions.
- Be available and responsive to children’s needs, questions, and requests.
- Encourage and model social behavior and expectations which are developmentally appropriate.
- Acknowledge feelings with sensitivity and demonstrate appropriate expression of emotions.
- Practice positive discipline techniques in guiding children’s behavior according to Memorial Child Care’s Guidelines for positive discipline.
- Be attentive, flexible and supportive of children and their families during transitions to and from classrooms.
- Implement a developmentally appropriate curriculum based upon the guidelines set forth in the Creative Curriculum which reflects observations and assessments of individual children.
- Assist in the design of an environment which responds to children’s individual developmental levels, physical and emotional needs and current interests through the use of Creative Curriculum.
- Foster positive self-concepts by supporting individuality, independence, and the ability to make choices.
- Encourage creative expression.
- Demonstrate respect for diversity by providing anti-bias, non-sexist language, images, and experiences which reflect both center and global communities.
- Share ideas in planning a daily schedule which provides a balance of activities using the Creative Curriculum lesson plan.
- Assist in the documentation of children’s accomplishments through anecdotal notes, observations and portfolios.
- Acknowledge parents and all classroom visitors. Demonstrate a friendly, courteous and professional manner.
- Respond to parents’ comments and concerns with sensitivity, interest, and respect. Maintain confidentiality.
- Participate in a Primary Care giving relationship with individual children and their families.
- Share appropriate information with parents on a daily basis regarding the development and specific activities of the children in their primary care. Utilize appropriate written communication tools as assigned.
- Assist in the planning and attend center/classroom events and meetings.
Physical environment, health safety and nutrition:
- Maintain and follow all safety and health rules of the center.
- Supervise children at all times. Demonstrate awareness of entire group while working with a small group or individuals.
- Know the number of children in your group and maintain ratios at all times.
- Maintain accurate attendance records throughout the day.
- Complete appropriate paperwork (i.e. accidents, medication, etc.).
- Encourage children to utilize appropriate health, safety and nutritional practices.
- Keep environment and equipment safe, clean and attractive. Encourage respect for classroom materials. Notify designated individual in advance when supplies are needed.
- Assist in arrangement of space in clearly defined, well organized activity areas.
- Organize a variety of materials on low, open shelves for children to used independently.
- Maintain confidentiality about issues concerning the out faculty members, children and families or Memorial Child Care management and operations. Must not involve parents in center concerns.
- Become very familiar with ages and stages of development for those children under your care. Understand the general areas of physical, social, cognitive, and emotional development for this age group.
- Support organizational mission, philosophies, values, goals, and policies to parents, co-workers, and community.
- Ensure continuity of care for children by reporting to work on time and maintaining consistent attendance, arranging and communicating leave requests in advance.
- Respect and adhere to staffing schedules which may be adjusted as programs needs change and may include working in another classroom.
- Demonstrate flexibility and openness to new ideas in child care practices.
- Attend faculty meetings, training sessions and other center events.
- Continue professional growth by attending courses, asking for feedback and reading professional literature.
- Receive constructive criticism with an attitude that indicates a willingness to improve. Give feedback in a respectful manner.
- Establish and maintain a relationship of cooperation and respect with co-workers.
- Assume fair share of work. Look for ways to be helpful. Demonstrate initiative.
- Offer and share ideas and materials with co-workers.
- Participate actively in teaching team through communication, collaboration and curriculum planning.
- Communicate directly, work to resolve conflicts quickly and avoid gossip.
- Exercise care in expressing views regarding the personal attributes or professional conduct of co-workers. Statements are based on first-hand knowledge and relevant to the interests of children and programs.
- Assume additional classroom and center responsibilities as needed. (i.e. kitchen, pets, etc.).
- Performs other related work as required or requested.
The intent of this job description is to provide a representative summary of the major duties and responsibilities performed by incumbents of this job. Incumbents may be requested to perform tasks other than those specifically presented in this description.
- Must be at least 19 years of age and have high school diploma or equivalency certificate (GED).
- Child Development Associate Credential (CDA) required. If hired prior to July 2012, CDA requirement waived.
- Illinois Gateways to Opportunity Registry member
- Provide 3 letters of reference per DCFS requirements
- Hold or be able to obtain First Aid/CPR certification
- Minimum of one (1) year of experience in child care, early childhood, and child development or related required.
- Maintain 20 hours of in-service hours each fiscal year, 5 hours must be from a Gateway Registry-approved training.
- Excellent communication skills.