Options for Full-Day Services for Children Participating in Head Start . Daily Schedule and Program Features

03/07/1995

Head Start preschoolers at the Bowling Green center follow the High/Scope curriculum throughout the day. After naptime in the afternoon, there are structured activities in the form of a second Circle Time and small group activities. However, afternoon activities are less structured than morning activities. This afternoon flexibility is necessary for two reasons: (1) children begin to tire in the afternoon, even if they have had a nap or quiet time; and (2) parents begin to pick up their children by 3:00 p.m., which can disrupt more structured activities.

The WKUCCC Head Start program has a number of special features and innovations. First of all, through the Kentucky Very Special Arts program, teachers receive special training in arts curriculum and planning and how to include children with disabilities in the arts program. Last year, children studied the work of Michelangelo, Monet, Georgia O'Keefe, and Mozart; and through a linkage with the Humane Society, children are taught how to properly care for pets (small animals are kept in comfortable enclosures in the classrooms).

The center in which the WKUCCC is housed contains a university-operated adult day and health care program for the elderly, especially those with Alzheimer's disease. Preschool children (as well as infants and toddlers) visit daily with the elderly to sing songs, tell stories, and play games together.

Because Head Start and non-Head Start children are served together, all children benefit from a program that adheres strictly to the Performance Standards. However, non-Head Start parents are asked to pay additional fees for those Head Start services that add additional cost per child, (such as dental services and field trips), should the parents choose to use them. Therefore, teachers and parents know which children are Head Start and which are non-Head Start, but no distinction is made between them in the classroom.