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Developmentally Appropriate Programming for Youth
An Infopeople Online Learning Course
If you work at a public library, there's a good chance that you're offering plenty of program options for youth from birth through grade 8. When it comes to designing and evaluating these programs, what resources and frameworks do you consult? Does developmentally appropriate programming, or DAP, factor into your plans and reflections? Developmentally appropriate programming identifies the program spaces, formats, content, and staffing models that equip libraries to offer high-impact programs designed precisely for the developmental levels of their intended audiences. The result is programming that best supports social/emotional development and achievement of developmental milestones.
This course will prepare youth services staff to:
- Understand the optimal program space, format, content, and staffing to provide high-impact programs for targeted age groups.
- Apply concepts of universal design and connected learning to existing programs.
- Evaluate existing programs for developmental appropriateness and adapt program components to effectively reach multiple ages.
After completion of this course learners will better understand the research behind developmentally appropriate programming as well as find inspiration in a wide range of exemplary programs and services for youth from ages 0 to 14. Learners will also leave the course with a rubric for developmentally appropriate programming as well as a suite of go-to resources for developing and evaluating high-quality, age-appropriate programs for their young library users.:
Course Description: During this four-week online course, learners will become familiar with a framework for developmentally appropriate programming (DAP) as well as its applications in designing and evaluating programs for youth ages 0-14. Learners will apply concepts of universal design and connected learning to existing and exemplary programs, allowing the course learning to be injected directly into your own library and community. Students will interact with the instructors and one another through weekly discussion forums, sharing program plans and other resources with the group to facilitate an understanding of the myriad possibilities for DAP. Learners will leave the course with knowledge about DAP and its library applications as well as experience putting together developmentally appropriate programs and services for their youth library users.
Course Outline: When you log in to the Infopeople online learning site, you will see weekly modules with these topics:
- Week 1: What is developmentally appropriate programming, and how does it fit within youth services in a public library?
- What is developmentally appropriate programming
- Introduction to the brain and developmental milestones
- A rubric for developmentally appropriate programming
- Universal design and adaptability
- Benefits of embracing developmentally appropriate programming
- Strategies for evaluating existing programs for developmental appropriateness
- Week 2: Developmentally Appropriate Programming for ages 0-5
- DAP rubric for babies age 0, with exemplary program examples
- DAP rubric for infants age 1, with exemplary program examples
- DAP rubric for toddlers age 2, with exemplary program examples
- DAP rubric for preschoolers ages 3-5, with exemplary program examples
- Adapting program components for the 0-5 age range
- Week 3: Developmentally Appropriate Programming for grades K-5 (or ages 6-11)
- DAP rubric for grades K-1
- Grades K-1 exemplary program examples, including reading, activity/learning, and passive programs
- DAP rubric for grades 2-3
- Grades 2-3 exemplary program examples, including reading, activity/learning, and passive programs
- DAP rubric for grades 4-5
- Grades 4-5 exemplary program examples, including reading, activity/learning, and passive programs
- Adapting program components for the K-5 grade range
- Week 4: Developmentally Appropriate Programming for Grades 6-8 (or ages 12-14)
- DAP rubric for grade 6-8
- Connected learning for grades 6-8
- Serving grades 6-8 through mentoring roles
- Grades 6-8 exemplary program examples, including reading, activity/learning, and passive programs
- Volunteer opportunities for grades 6-8
Time Required: To complete this course, you can expect to spend 2 ½ hours per week, for a total of ten course hours. Each week's module contains readings and various options for assignments, discussions, or online meetings. You can choose the options most relevant to your work and interests. Although you can work on each module at your own pace, at any hour of the day or night, it is recommended that you complete each week's work within that week to stay in sync with other learners.
Who Should Take This Course: Youth librarians, youth services staff, managers and administrators interested in evaluating youth programming.
Online Learning Details and System Requirements may be found at: infopeople.org/training/online_learning_details.
Learner Requirements: None
After the official end date for the course, the instructor will be available for limited consultation and support for two more weeks, and the course material will stay up for an additional two weeks after that. These extra weeks give those who have fallen behind time to work independently to complete the course.
Keywords: Children's services, K-12 services, Programming