Meeting Early Childhood Needs: Québec’s Educational Program for Childcare Services was published for the first time in 1997 and since then the program has been revised and enriched in order to better support childcare personnel and home childcare providers in their work with children and to help them update their role in a constantly changing context.
In Québec, all childcare services must notably apply an educational program comprising activities which seek to foster children’s overall development, particularly their emotional, social, moral, cognitive, language, physical and motor development, and to help children to gradually adapt to life in society and to integrate harmoniously. The educational program also includes promotional and preventive services aimed at providing an environment conducive to the development of a healthy lifestyle, healthy eating habits and behaviours that have a positive effect on children’s health and well-being.
Meeting Early Childhood Needs is made up of two parts. The first part recalls the objectives of childcare services and describes the theoretical foundations on which the program is based, the basic principles that should guide educational interventions and the various dimensions of child development which the childcare establishment must endeavour to support. The second part presents the various stages in the educational intervention process with children as well as the different intervention styles, including the one favoured by the Ministère de la Famille et des Aînés. It also illustrates how these principles and orientations can find tangible expression in the way in which the activities proposed to children are structured, premises are laid out and educators interact with parents.