What makes Early Childhood Education Distinctively Christian? CIU Education Professors have written the book on it

CIU Education Professors Drs. Lynn Hoestra, Milt Uecker, and Michelle Clevenger
July 24, 2020

Two CIU Education professors offer their expertise in two new books in the series, “Distinctively Christian: A Christ-centered Approach to Early Childhood Education” edited by CIU Professor Emeritus Dr. Milt Uecker.

Book two, which includes contributions from CIU’s Dr. Michelle Clevenger, centers on Philosophy and Principles. In book three on Teaching and Learning, Clevenger is joined by CIU colleague Dr. Lynn Hoekstra.

Uecker says the name of the series is Distinctively Christian because the distinctive of Christ-centered early education is that its philosophy centers on the whole child and that includes the faith or spiritual development of the children.

“Once that is understood then there needs to be attention given to understanding faith development and the means to facilitate this development,” Uecker said, adding that there is “a danger of becoming merely academic.”

“We maintain balance when we develop early education programs that have a mission and vision to reach the whole child. This vision includes clearly defined spiritual or faith outcomes and a curriculum that addresses the means to these outcomes.” 

Uecker says that all who contributed to the project “hope that this trilogy will serve to lay the foundation for a Christ-centered worldview during early childhood.”

The books are published by Wheaton Press.

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