After students voiced a need for quality child care on campus in the early 1970's, President Hoffman appointed a Child Care Student Group to examine the feasibility of opening a child care center at the University. With the Board of Regents approval the University of Houston Child Care Center opened in February 1975. In response to the increasing demands of the UH community for child care services the Center gradually grew. In 1989, the addition of four classrooms expanded the Center's capacity to 153 children. Then in 2010, five additional classrooms were opened at the Cameron building across the street from the original location. Today, the Children's Learning Centers, formerly UH Child Care Center, has two convenient locations on campus with a combined capacity of 221 children.
The mission of the Children’s Learning Centers (CLC) is to facilitate an inclusive learning environment that celebrates diversity as well as promotes a professional commitment to impacting our community and supporting student success, through the provision of a nationally accredited early childhood educational program for the children of University of Houston (UH) students, faculty, and staff.
At UHCLC our primary goal is for children to feel safe and secure. Additionally, we believe that a learning environment that fosters respect for cultural diversity and that utilizes an eclectic approach to education allows for optimal growth and development of young children. Young children's developmental tasks are to build trust, learn social skills, begin mastery of academic skills and develop positive self-esteem. In order to best support these tasks, our program strives to provide developmentally appropriate activities, well-trained and consistent staff and a safe and healthy learning environment. Also, throughout the whole learning process we believe parents are children's first teachers; thus, we work to support parents in their efforts to guide their child's development as well.
Standards of ethical behavior in early childhood care and education are based on commitment to core values that are deeply rooted in the history of our field. At CLC we have committed ourselves professionally to:
- Appreciating childhood as a unique and valuable stage of the human life cycle.
- Basing our work with children on current knowledge of child development.
- Acknowledging and supporting the close ties between the child and family.
- Recognizing that children are best understood and supported in the context of family, culture, community and society.
- Respecting the dignity, worth and uniqueness of each individual child, family member and colleague.
- Helping children and adults achieve their full potential in the context of relationships that are based on trust, respect and positive regard.
- Fostering an appreciation for and building a natural connection between the arts and learning.
In addition, CLC is committed to the mission of the University of Houston, the UH Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Services, and Student Life. We value and support the Division’s Strategic Initiatives:
- Create new opportunities for student success through learning, engagement and discovery.
- Actualize and leverage the fiscal, human, technological, and facility resources that enhance the student experience.
- Foster the creation of a global learning community that actualizes and embraces inclusion while preparing students to become active citizens.
- Develop a culture of innovation and accountability in the redesign of Division policies, processes and procedures.
- Cultivate a collective identity that demonstrates a united vision.
- Create and engage in strategic partnerships.
The early years in a child's life set the tone for future learning. Our goal at the UHCLC is to stay current with research in child development so that we are able to build a foundation for each child that lasts a lifetime. Our curriculum is designed with specific objectives for each age level and child; however, the following curriculum goals are incorporated into every classroom:
- Developing safe and healthy habits in young children.
- Fostering positive self-esteem.
- Providing opportunities for creative expression.
- Supporting the development of social skills.
- Supporting cognitive problem-solving skills.
- Strengthening communication skills necessary for listening, reading, writing, and speaking.
- Enhancing fine motor and gross motor skills.
- Assessing the individual needs of each child.
Consult with your child's teacher for specific objectives addressed in each classroom.
Program Quality / Standards of Excellence
High quality early childhood education benefits children. Children who experience a quality program are more likely to have greater academic success, enhanced self-esteem and increased self-control. UHCLC aligns the program and curriculum with national (NAEYC & Cognia) and state guidelines and is licensed by Texas Health and Human Services.
We utilize multi-age classrooms to assist the overall development of the child within the family-like community of learners. The program is organized and staffed to minimize the number of group, teaching staff and classroom transitions experienced by the child.
We believe a learning environment that fosters respect for cultural diversity and utilizes an eclectic approach to education allows for optimal growth and development of young children.
Please refer to the CLC Program Guides for classroom transition strategies and planning.