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Magda Gerber’s approach to Professional Infant and Toddler Care


Things to note:

– Please only reply if you are familiar with Early Childhood theories!

– Video of Magda Gerber’s Approach to Professional Infant and Toddler Care here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=miA4rDQ2am8 but you will need to outsource other sources

– Study guide given

– Word count 3500 max

– APA format


Before you begin

Review the Magda Gerber’s approach to Professional Infant and Toddler Care in depth as you will be writing a summary of it in this assignment. You will also need to take a good look at either Abecedarian or High Scope programme – enough so you are able to make logical, coherent, and well-supported comparisons.

Part 1: Review the Literature

Note: This is the review of the existing literature to acquire information about Magda Gerber’s approach to Professional Infant and Toddler Care in its original conception. This review work entails the following:

  • Conduct a search of the professional literature on the approach. This may include videos, research and literature review articles, books. You may begin by using the sources indicated in the Study Guide. However, you are expected to search for additional ones to enhance the information already provided.
  • Decide on which sources you could and should use to address the below questions about the approach.

Write up:

a. Who, what, when, where, how and why was Magda Gerber’s approach to Professional Infant and Toddler Care started? What was it like in its original conception?

b. Which theoretical orientation does it reflect? What makes you think this? Answer this question by identifying the key assumptions underlying it.

c. In what ways are Magda Gerber’s approach the same and/or different from that of Abecedarian OR High Scope programmes for young children?
Discuss this question in terms of the philosophical/theoretical and practical implications surrounding:

i. The theoretical orientations – describe one common way by which these two approaches/programmes reflect or do not reflect the notions underlying constructivism.

ii. Teaching practices – one key similarity OR difference for each of the below:
– Scaffolding
– The THREE (3) components of developmentally appropriate practice introduced in this course

Part 2: Observation

This is the SO WHAT of the information you have uncovered. Reflect on the following questions.

Write up:

Observe and record one event at your placement/preschool that involves an adult-child interaction during an individual, small group or large group setting in ONE (1) age-group of your choice.


  • It may be of your own or another adult’s interaction with children. If it will be of a teacher in your placement, you will need to seek his/her permission before the observation.
  • Recording the observation may involve writing down verbatim, what you see and hear and/or audiotaping the conversation or videotaping the event. Regardless, you will need to check with your cooperating teacher and/or your principal on the method of recording you are allowed to use. Please assure them that you will only use pseudonyms; the names of children, school and adults involved will not be used in the assignment.

Write a transcript of the event, including the below information:

Event date: ______________________

  1. Age group (e.g., Kindergarten 1 class of 5 years old)
  2. Setting (e.g., whole class activity during outdoor time at the playground / free- choice centre time – art table / inside the bathroom / hallway, etc…)
  3. People involved (child/children – age and number of children; adults – who)
  4. Activity (e.g., obstacle course / water play outdoors / guided reading / phonics / painting, etc…)

v. Transcript of interaction – i.e., what happened, who said and did what…

include conversations that took place: Example:

Time Event Remarks

9:08 am Teacher A …. (did/said what?)…. ….

9:05 am

3 children were at ……. (and doing what?) … Teacher A was ……

Child 1 approached the teacher: Teacher A, I cannot draw…..
Teacher A: Tell me ….

Part 3: Reflections

This is your analysis of your observations in relation to your readings.

Write Up:

  1. What elements of Magda Gerber’s approach to Professional Infant and Toddler Care do you see in this event? Discuss this in terms of:
    •  The role of the teacher
    •  Assumptions about how children learn
      Use examples from the event to support your point. If you see NONE, also provide explanations of how so – what did you see that suggests that it is totally unlike the Magda Gerber programme/ approach?
  2. Putting yourself in the shoes of Magda Gerber AND either David Weikert or Joseph Sparling:
    i. If you were Magda Gerber, propose what would you have done? How so and why?
    ii. If you were David Weikert OR Joseph Sparling, propose what you would do differently. How so and why?
  3. Which theoretical orientation does this interaction reflect? How so? Explain by identifying the key assumptions about the teaching and learning process involved in the event and relate them to those underlying the main theories of development discussed in this course.
  4. Compare and contrast the extent to which developmentally appropriate practice happened in this event.

Presenting the Final Report

Your write up should include information about the programme, your reflections and analyses. Use headings and sub-headings to organise your answers, label your responses using the numbering system that matches the above sections and corresponding questions.

Part 1: Review of the literature on The Magda Gerber’s Approach to Professional Infant and Toddler Care

a. Etc…
Part 2: Observation Part 3: Reflections

a. Etc…
Remember to explain your points and provide elaborations and/or use specific examples to illustrate your points. The use of relevant visual/graphics is acceptable.

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