SEEDS at Sandcastle
When asked to share a little bit about her history with SEEDS of Learning, long time SEEDS friend Wendy Jackson was overjoyed to share her success stories from implementing the SEEDS framework at her Child Care Center. Jackson is the Assistant Director of Sandcastle Child Care in Saint Paul, Minnesota. As a SEEDS coach herself, Jackson loves watching the quality interactions created between teacher and student. Jackson shares below how SEEDS of Learning helps form the critical student, teacher, and family relationships for a child to succeed in school.
Here at Sandcastle Child Care in Saint Paul, we have been in the SEEDS family for a long time. I believe since 2008, maybe 2007. Our partnership with SEEDS and Kate Horst started with a little adventure project called Project Early Kindergarten. Our staff went from a theme-based curriculum to having a structure and a way of training that gave their teaching meaning. Project Early Kindergarten partnered us with the way teachers were setting up their rooms and teaching within the Saint Paul school district. We then modeled our classrooms after theirs and adapted the Early Childhood Workshop, which included using SEEDS of Learning.
Our teachers began five-day read-aloud, small groups, and then interventions. We noticed our children “leveling up” with their skills in reading and math. Parents reported their children were reading at home, and schools told parents they could tell which children attended Sandcastle.
We were then introduced to Minnesota Reading Corps by Kate and enrolled. Our Teaching staff was given some of the SEEDS training there. As the internal coach, I was sent to SEEDS training to train the staff who were involved in the Minnesota Reading Corps. We then required all of our staff to be trained in an in-service. To this day, we keep all of our teachers trained in SEEDS. It is just that important to us with how it has made a difference with our children.
Over the years, we have used SEEDS as the backbone of our curriculum. It has trickled down to our toddler program. If you walk through our toddler program, I am sure you will hear one or two singing the What Is It song. They also use the ABC song and book along with the five-day read aloud. We are excited to see about getting into the SEEDS for Infants and Toddlers. Our preschoolers and PreK can often be seen at the teacher’s easel doing vocab and the books with their friends as one plays teacher.
Over the years, I can say that SEEDS has helped us develop strong relationships with our children and families. It has assisted us in seeing some learning red flags so that I put help in place for our children who may need a hand before going off to Kindergarten. I cannot say enough good things that we have seen come from adapting the SEEDS of Learning curriculum.