The Guidelines begin with The Newborn Period, which discusses the first four months of children’s lives and the experiences that are unique to this time. The first of the six sections, Self-Regulation: Foundation of Development, focuses on children’s development of self-regulation, which is essential for overall healthy development and learning. Self-Regulation refers to children’s emerging ability to regulate or control their attention, thoughts, emotions and behaviors. Next, Domains of Development are specific areas of growth and development. The Guidelines consist of four developmental domains: Social and Emotional Development; Physical Development and Health; Language Development, Communication, and Literacy; and Cognitive Development. The final section, Approaches to Learning, focuses on specific methods by which children engage with the world around them in order to make meaning and build understanding of their experiences. These six sections are each structured in the same manner and are further broken down into Sub-Domains/Sub-Sections, Standards, Age Descriptors, Indicators for Children, and Strategies for Interaction.
These six sections include six different components:
Children’s biological rhythms are supported and impacted by their caregiver(s) in order to establish their sleep/wake, feeding, and elimination patterns. Children also begin to develop awareness of stimuli in their environment.
Indicators for children include:
Strategies for interaction
Real World Stories are real-life examples that demonstrate the specific concepts of development in action.
Keep in Mind lists behaviors that can be used to identify possible concerns for development and are found at the end of the Self-Regulation section, and the four developmental domains section.
Since development occurs across multiple, inter-related areas, readers will see a short list of other, closely related sub-domains/sub-sections in every sub-domain/sub-section introduction and in each real world story. While every sub-domain and sub-section can relate to the others, the Guidelines highlight those most relevant to each particular one. At right is an example.
IEL is providing access to a PDF of the full 170-page printed version of the Guidelines:
This webinar provides a short overview of the Illinois Early Learning Guidelines for Children Birth to Age Three. It also provides a tour of the resources available on the Illinois Early Learning Project website that can support the use of the guidelines in practice and at home.
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