Yale Child Study Center
The Harris Fellowship Program in Child Development and Early Childhood Education is a collaboration between the Yale Child Study Center and Calvin Hill Day Care Center and Kitty Lustman-Findling Kindergarten of New Haven.
The Harris Fellowship blends educational and clinical perspectives on working with young children. In contrast to other more traditional early childhood education training programs, this initiative is not simply a "placement" in two training institutions in which the trainee spends an allotted amount of time in specified activities or a few hours a day in a classroom. Fellows work a full teaching schedule at Calvin Hill and become integral members of the highly experienced teaching team. Under the supervision of their mentor, they gradually assume all the responsibilities of a teacher over the course of the year. They are involved in all aspects of the program including planning curriculum for large and small groups as well as individual children, leading activities, maintaining the classroom and materials, and participating in parent conferences. Their growing participation enables them to become immersed in and to share all aspects of the early childhood classroom environment.
In addition to other Yale courses, Fellows participate in the Clinical Child Development seminar at the Yale Child Study Center. This seminar explores issues of child development, child psychopathology, and clinical evaluation and interventions with young children and their families. Seminar members observe senior clinicians conducting developmental assessments and participate in the ongoing discussion of diagnostic formulations. Through this exposure, Fellows become familiar with the processes of clinical referrals, diagnostic assessment, how clinicians think about the behaviors of children in groups, the differences between an educational and a therapeutic intervention, and models for working with children in an educational setting.
Calvin Hill is a model educational preschool program for the children of Yale and New Haven community families. Calvin Hill values diversity in its children and its staff. Families pay tuition based upon a sliding fee scale and the Center is an inclusive community, serving around sixty children from a wide variety of ethnic and economic backgrounds.