October 14, 2016

By Guest Blogger, Kristin Habicht, Department Chair of Early Childhood Education, Arapahoe Community College

I wanted to share a unique partnership that we at Arapahoe Community College have enjoyed for a couple of years with Early Learning Ventures (ELV). As you may know, ELV is a non-profit designed to support child care providers in business operations. They have a variety of services available. We have used their Resource Platform in several of our ECE classes. This is a web-based resource that has tons of material for ECE professionals—cost savings, classroom helps, program admin, human resources, marketing, quality, training, finance and more! A couple of examples of how we have used this tool in the classrooms include using their family handbook template to compare and contrast with handbooks the students bring in and discussing the differences; using their safety checklists as students go out to programs to observe; and using their information on CACFP to help with menu planning. These are just a couple of ideas—there are lots of opportunities to explore.

Tim Garcia and Ty Johnson are two of the people from ELV that have helped us get this available to our students. This year, the process was very simple. The students created an account with ELV, verified by their ACC email address, and I sent a list of ECE student names (through the IT Dept.) to ELV to cross check. The students generally had access to the platform within 3 or 4 days. ELV is looking to expand their partnerships to other community colleges to use this tool as well!

We have found tremendous value in ELV’s tools and would love to see more and more students at local colleges benefiting from these resources! If your school is interested, you can contact ELV to find out more at info@earlylearningventures.org.