Children learn best when they are respected and encouraged to be active participants in the learning process. Modern research suggests that optimal learning and understanding occurs in the context of warm, consistent and caring relationships.

Our Philosophy

At the Alice Brown Early Learning Center, we strive to form sincere, meaningful relationships with children and their families. We create an atmosphere of mutual trust and acceptance with a deep awareness of children’s personalities, their understandings of the world and their interests.

Children benefit from varied multi-sensory experiences and materials, and are given the opportunity to engage in activities that form a positive self-image.  Through these experiences, children learn independence, turn-taking and appropriate interaction with their peers. Family involvement, including daily communication and collaboration between families and teachers, is an integral part of our program.

Our Mission

The mission of the Alice Brown Early Learning Center (ELC) is to offer a high quality experiential learning environment to children and families, as well as to faculty, employees, students, and early childhood professionals. At the ELC, we believe that an optimal environment is one where learning is rooted in play-based, multisensory, language-rich experiences that foster meaningful and reciprocal relationships and nurtures the continued development and learning of all participants.

The ELC will be recognized as an innovative leader in early care and education best practices. The program is committed to implementing and promoting understanding and excellence in early childhood teaching practices; encouraging professional growth in the early childhood field, while providing students and faculty of Adelphi University with opportunities to pursue educational studies and research.


The ELC will strive to fulfill its mission through the following objectives:

  1. The ELC will provide an optimal learning environment to support the developmental needs of individual learners and their families. This environment will involve all participants in learning through the constructivist education principles utilizing child-centered curriculum topics, hands-on active learning, play, and the development of meaningful reciprocal relationships.
  2. The ELC will provide varied experiential opportunities to AU students, teacher candidates, and faculty within the schools and departments of the university. The ELC offers adult learners opportunities for:
    • observation of children (either short or long term)
    • class tours organized by faculty
    • discussions regarding the educational philosophy and physical environment of the program
    • video recording of student-initiated activities
    • opportunities for AU students to engage with families to apply theories learned in the formal classroom setting
    • a site for early childhood/family-oriented research projects and studies by faculty and students
  3. The ELC will strive to implement, promote, and lead current best practices in the field of early childhood education and adult learning while remaining relevant in a changing world. The ELC will work in conjunction with faculty and early childhood experts to incorporate recent research and trends in the early childhood field.
  4. The ELC will strive to become a recognized resource for early childhood practitioners and providers through the following activities:
    • Provide opportunities to tour, observe, and reflect on best practices in the early childhood field
    • Facilitate parent resources and workshops
    • Offer a site for professional seminars & workshops
    • Showcase the knowledge of an expert faculty
    • Maintain the National Academy for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Accreditation
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