Study Guide

Field 105: Early Childhood Education 
Sample Selected-Response Questions

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General Test Directions

This test consists of two sections: 1) a section with selected-response questions and 2) a constructed-response section.

Each question in the first section is a selected-response question with four answer choices. Read each question and answer choice carefully and choose the  start uppercase ONE end uppercase  best answer.

Try to answer all questions. Even if you are unsure of an answer, it is better to guess than not to answer a question at all. You will  start uppercase NOT end uppercase  be penalized for guessing.

The second section of this test consists of one constructed-response assignment. You will be asked to provide a written response to the assignment. Directions for completing your written response to the constructed-response assignment appear immediately before the assignment.

You may  start uppercase NOT end uppercase  use any type of calculator or reference materials during the test session.

Sample Selected-Response Questions

Competency 0002 
Apply knowledge of methods, strategies, and procedures to create and manage positive learning environments for children in prekindergarten through grade three.

1. Ms. Laski, a second-grade teacher, is making plans for the upcoming school year. Ms. Laski wants to create a classroom environment that fosters mutual respect and appreciation of diversity among her students. Which of the following strategies by Ms. Laski would likely be most effective for this purpose?

  1. pairing students with a different partner each week to work together on a special project or activity
  2. extending an open invitation to students' families to visit the class regularly to take part in learning activities
  3. providing role-playing opportunities involving scenarios designed to teach the language of cooperation, collaboration, and problem solving
  4. assigning students to make presentations to the class about their families' cultural practices and traditions

Correct Response: C. Research supports explicit instruction around topics of diversity, collaboration, and cooperative learning. Young children are keenly aware of their similarities and differences. By modeling planned scenarios in a controlled and safe environment, students can talk about and practice socially appropriate interactions with teacher support. Teaching and learning from each other also helps create a meaningful classroom community.

Competency 0004 
Apply knowledge of how various types of instructional materials and resources, including current technology, can be used in early childhood classrooms to support children's learning.

2. A third-grade teacher incorporates a range of technologies to engage students' natural curiosity about the world of nature. Which of the following technology-related activities would best promote students' curiosity about the sounds of ocean wildlife?

  1. playing audio recordings of various marine animals while asking students to guess what type of animal made each of the sounds
  2. reading aloud a book about marine animals that characterizes the types of sounds made by such animals (e.g., whistling, barking)
  3. showing a silent video clip of marine animals while asking students to demonstrate the sounds they associate with each animal
  4. projecting images of marine animals on a whiteboard while discussing how each animal makes sounds (e.g., by slapping the water, by vibrating air)

Correct Response: A. Students in the early childhood years are deeply interested in the natural world, and audio technology can be a highly effective way to take advantage of this interest. Listening to recordings of the sounds produced by marine animals—sounds such as thumps, groans, barks, chirps, whistles, clicks, and slaps, to name just a few—and trying to imagine what type of animal could have made each sound would readily kindle the children's interest in learning more about creatures of the sea and the sounds they produce.

Competency 0005 
Apply knowledge of expressive and receptive language development and how to provide learning experiences that encourage children's development and use of language and literacy skills.

3. Ms. Holt, a first-grade teacher, wants to promote students' reading, writing, and spelling abilities. To this end, Ms. Holt routinely creates small groups of students and provides each group with an enlarged picture of a person or object. In small groups, students create a story about the picture, with each student adding a sentence that logically builds on the preceding sentence. The groups then share their pictures and present their stories to the whole class. Ms. Holt's routine use of this activity most strongly suggests an understanding of which of the following principles?

  1. Oral language is the foundation for literacy development.
  2. Explicit instruction promotes students' language skills.
  3. Knowledge of fiction can be solidified through storytelling activities.
  4. Phonics skills development is crucial to early literacy development.

Correct Response: A. Research has shown that strong oral language development, beginning at an early age, supports the likelihood of the child developing strong literacy skills. Oral language is also linked to cognition. Both speaking and listening are integral in the development of oral language. In this scenario, the teacher is using a student-centered, cooperative learning activity to teach and support the children's use of language.

Competency 0006 
Apply knowledge of emergent literacy development and strategies for fostering young children's literacy, including creation of a classroom environment that encourages a positive disposition toward literacy.

4. Ms. Jaffi is listening to six-year-old Felipe read aloud. Felipe chooses the book The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle and says the title, pointing to each word as he speaks. However, he treats the two syllables of the word  start italics tiny end italics  as separate words, so his tracking and speaking do not match up, as shown below.

The words The Tiny Seed...

The words The Tiny Seed are shown. Below the words the four syllables are written, The Tie nee Seed. Arrows indicate which syllable Felipe spoke as he pointed to each word. An arrow points from The to The, from Tie to Tiny, from nee to Seed, and from Seed to empty space.

Felipe complains to Ms. Jaffi that "it doesn't work right." Which of the following conclusions would be most appropriate for Ms. Jaffi to draw in this situation?

  1. Felipe becomes easily discouraged when he attempts to read aloud.
  2. Felipe would benefit from instruction in decoding two-syllable words that follow basic patterns.
  3. Felipe is self-selecting books that are at his frustrational reading level.
  4. Felipe needs additional practice in using context to confirm or self-correct word recognition.

Correct Response: B. At this age, Felipe should be utilizing foundational skills in decoding single-syllable words that follow a basic pattern. Explaining to Felipe that, start italics, tiny, end italics, is one word with two vowel sounds is the next logical instructional task.

Competency 0007 
Apply knowledge of phonological awareness and phonemic awareness and effective instructional strategies for promoting children's knowledge and skills in these areas.

5. A kindergarten teacher plans to promote students' language development by having students participate in activities that support their development of phonemic awareness. Which of the following student activities would be most appropriate for this goal?

  1. determining the meaning of common homophones, such as  start italics ate end italics  and  start italics eight end italics  and  start italics hair end italics  and  start italics hare end italics 
  2. encouraging students to identify frequently used compound words such as  start italics outside end italics 
  3. showing students how to recognize vowel patterns (e.g.,  C V C ) in one-syllable words such as  start italics had end italics 
  4. teaching students to segment and blend individual sounds in one-syllable words such as /c/ /a/ /t/ in  start italics cat end italics 

Correct Response: D. start italics, Phonemic awareness end italics refers to the ability to hear and manipulate individual sounds (start italics, phonemes, end italics) in spoken words. Teaching students to segment and blend the individual sounds in one-syllable words is an effective way to direct children's attention to the phonemes in words and build their facility in working with them.

Competency 0009 
Apply knowledge of reading comprehension, reading fluency, and vocabulary skills and effective instructional strategies for promoting children's development in these areas.

6. A teacher has Kayla, a third-grade student, read a short fiction text and then asks her to retell it in her own words. Kayla has a great deal of difficulty recalling the important elements of the story such as major characters and events. Her teacher would like to help develop Kayla's understanding of the concept of story structure. Which of the following would be most effective for achieving this goal?

  1. having Kayla list all the main characters in the story and write a sentence about what happens to each one
  2. providing Kayla with a story map to fill out as she rereads the text
  3. helping Kayla recall the ending of the story and then work backwards through the events to the beginning
  4. asking Kayla to draw pictures of the most important events in the story

Correct Response: B. A story map is a graphic organizer designed to tie all the elements of a story together, thus assisting the reader in processing and comprehension. Elements of a story or work of fiction are intricately woven by the author to paint a literary picture. For the reader, it is essential to understand and recall each key piece in a text in order to comprehend the big picture of plot and theme. Story maps can range from simple to complex depending on the grade of the student and the length or complexity of the text. Research supports the use of graphic organizers such as a story map for students who have difficulty with visual memory and short-term memory.

Competency 0012 
Apply knowledge of the fundamental skills, concepts, and vocabulary in mathematics and how to provide developmentally appropriate learning opportunities to enhance young children's mathematical understanding.

7. A third-grade teacher who wants to promote students' ability to communicate mathematical ideas should emphasize which of the following teaching practices?

  1. helping students create and maintain a personal dictionary of mathematics terms
  2. having students explain their problem-solving strategies orally or in writing as a regular part of mathematics instruction
  3. engaging students in the process of writing their own mathematics problems
  4. providing students with frequent opportunities to complete mathematics tasks with a partner or in a small group

Correct Response: B. Routinely requiring students to explain their mathematical problem-solving strategies, whether orally or in writing, will give them ongoing practice in articulating their mathematical ideas. This practice will not only help students clarify their own ideas and thus increase their own understanding, but will also in turn enable them to communicate those ideas more clearly to others.

Competency 0013 
Apply knowledge of the skills and concepts in science and how to provide developmentally appropriate experiences that promote young children's inquiry, exploration, and learning in this area.

8. A first-grade teacher plans to promote students' understanding of how to safely use science materials in the classroom. Which of the following initial activities would best promote the teacher's goal?

  1. providing students with opportunities to explore the materials, share what is unique about them, and categorize them according to texture
  2. showing students materials that will be used, modeling how to use them, and allowing students to voluntarily model to other students how to use them
  3. asking students to retrieve the materials from their storage location, discussing the importance of storing them correctly, and asking one student to put them back
  4. telling students the purpose of each material, asking them to take notes, and allowing each student to select one material to experiment with

Correct Response: B. In the situation described, the teacher's primary responsibility is to ensure that the students understand how to use the science materials safely. The best strategy for doing this would be through teacher instruction and demonstration: showing students each tool or material and modeling how it should be used. The additional step of observing student volunteers as they model the use of the materials for classmates will help the teacher determine whether additional instruction is needed to ensure all students' safety during the science activity.

Competency 0015 
Apply knowledge of the role of the arts, including visual arts, music, creative movement, dance, and drama, in the overall development of young children and how to provide children with a range of meaningful experiences in the arts.

9. A second-grade teacher is planning an art activity that will promote students' understanding of the concept of design and composition. The teacher wants to ensure that the activity will allow Jermayne, a student with limited fine-motor control, to participate successfully. Which of the following art activities would likely be most appropriate for this purpose?

  1. making torn-paper collages
  2. stitching burlap-and-yarn designs
  3. creating watercolor paintings
  4. making paper-strip weavings

Correct Response: A. Young children need to develop strength and dexterity in their hands and fingers in order to develop fine-motor skills. In tearing a piece of paper, a youngster pinches the paper between the "pointer" finger and thumb. This pincher action is fundamental to the ability to perform a wide variety of tasks, including buttoning a coat, using a spoon, and holding and manipulating a writing instrument. Children with strong pincher skills often have a greater endurance for using these smaller muscles in learning how to hold a pencil and write.

Competency 0016 
Understand young children's physical development and their needs related to personal health, safety, and nutrition and strategies for providing developmentally appropriate experiences in these areas.

10. An early childhood teacher wants her students to develop hygienic personal behaviors that will help protect them from communicable illnesses such as the common cold. Which of the following would be the teacher's best strategy for this purpose?

  1. discussing symptoms of various illnesses with the children and teaching them how to feel their foreheads to check for a fever
  2. providing antibacterial wipes in the classroom and teaching the children to use the wipes regularly to clean materials they plan to use
  3. teaching the children to cover their mouths with their elbows when they cough or sneeze and promoting habitual frequent hand washing
  4. conducting lessons on appropriate types of clothing for different types of weather and providing reminders to specific children as necessary

Correct Response: C. The best strategy for protecting young children from the spread of common communicable illnesses in the classroom is to teach the children simple, easily performed habits of hygienic behavior. The acts of covering a cough or sneeze with one's elbow, and of washing one's hands frequently with soap and water, are such habits—easy for young children to learn and to implement. Keeping the hands free of germs has been determined to be one of the most important means of protecting people from communicable illnesses such as colds and the flu.