Title

Redesigning a Child Development Laboratory Program to Meet the Changing Needs of Students, Faculty, and Parents

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book Title/Conference

Early Childhood Teacher Education

Volume

20

Issue

1

Publisher

Taylor & Francis (Routledge)

Publication Date

1999

First Page

59

Last Page

65

DOI

10.1080/0163638990200109

Abstract

Since the first child development laboratory school opened its doors in the 1920s (Wortham, 1992), the fields of child development and early childhood education have looked to child development laboratory programs as essential contributors of knowledge about theory and practice (Osborne, 1991). Traditionally, laboratory programs have operated under a three-pronged mission: 1) training pre-service and inservice early childhood education and child development professionals; 2) conducting and disseminating research; and 3) serving children and families. It is not surprising that this mission has mirrored the foci of Land Grant Universities, institutions that have been instrumental in nurturing laboratory programs' growth and development in the past seven decades (Osborne, 1991). As McBride (1996) notes, by effectively combining these three mission components, laboratory programs play a vital role in "articulating the interconnections between theory, research, and practice in the early childhood field" (p. 17). The purpose of this paper is to illustrate how one child development laboratory school, without additional space or monetary resources, expanded its program to not only increase the number and ages of children served, but more clearly address the mission of a laboratory program.