Early Childhood Education

The Early Childhood Education curriculum prepares individuals to work with children from birth through eight in diverse learning environments. Students will combine learned theories with practice in actual settings with young children under the supervision of qualified teachers.

Course work includes child growth and development; physical/nutritional needs of children; care and guidance of children; and communication skills with families and children. Students will foster the cognitive/language, physical/motor, social/emotional, and creative development of young children.

Graduates are prepared to plan and implement developmentally appropriate programs in early childhood settings. Employment opportunities include child development and child care programs, preschools, public and private schools, recreational centers, Head Start Programs, and school-age programs.

Learning Outcomes

  • Create environments that are healthy, respectful, supportive, and challenging based on their knowledge of child development.
  • Create respectful, reciprocal relationships that support and empower families, and involve all families in their children’s development and learning.
  • Use systematic observations, documentation, and other effective assessment strategies in a partnership with families and other professionals to positively influence children’s development.

Contact Information

Image of Melissa Holt
Melissa Holt, MA
Lead Instructor of Early Childhood
Phone: 336-838-6587


This part of the website is currently undergoing maintenance. Please refer to the WCC Catalog for program information.

Technical Standards

The Early Childhood Education program technical standards have been developed to inform students of the nonacademic essential functions of the program and profession. Examples are not all inclusive.

Standard Essential Function Examples
Oral / Written
  • Skills sufficient to communicate information and ideas so others will understand
  • Communicate effectively and professionally verbally and in written form
  • Communicate with people of all ages
Mobility / Motor Skills
  • Motor skills sufficient to move the hands and use hands to grasp or manipulate objects
  • Mobility sufficient to perform physical activities that require considerable use of arms and legs and moving the whole body
  • Lift children, move furniture, and move equipment
  • Reach and lift above shoulder height
  • Physical activities may include:
    • Bending
    • Lifting
    • Twisting
    • Crouching
  • Move around classroom environments
Physical Strength and Stamina
  • Ability to stand and/or move for extended periods of time
  • Ability sufficient to lift and carry a small child
  • Stand and/or move for up to 8 hours while working with children
  • Lift and carry infants and small children

  • Sight
  • Sound
  • Taste
  • Touch
  • Smell
  • Visual skills sufficient to see details at close range
  • Ability to distinguish colors, shades, and shapes
  • Listening skills sufficient to communicate with others
  • Ability to tolerate various odors
  • Observe and participate in activities with children
  • Hear verbal cues and responses from children such as questions or crying
  • Change infants’ diapers, care for sick children
Environmental / Occupational Exposure
  • Possible exposure to blood and bodily fluids and communicable and infectious diseases
  • Possible exposure to extreme temperatures
  • Environmental hazards
  • Hepatitis, chicken pox, flu virus, measles, etc.
  • Indoor and outdoor temperatures, weather-related elements
  • Slippery floors, various levels of lighting, cleaning chemicals
Field or Industry Professional Standards
  • Criminal background check
  • TB test

Disability Services Statement

Wilkes Community College is an ADA compliant institution. WCC does not discriminate based on a disability in the admissions process or in access to its programs, services, and/or activities for qualified individuals who meet eligibility requirements. WCC will provide reasonable accommodations for individuals with documented disabilities who are eligible to receive or participate in college programs, services, and/or activities. If a student believes that he/she cannot meet one or more of a program’s essential functions without accommodations, the student is encouraged to disclose this to Disability Services as soon as possible.

Associate to Bachelor Agreements

An Associate to Bachelor agreement is an opportunity for students to complete their Associate's degree at Wilkes Community College and then transfer into a specified program at a partnering four-year institution for their Bachelor's degree. Wilkes Community College has the following Associate to Bachelor agreements for our Early Childhood Education graduates: