Praxis Early Childhood Education Exam

You will be given 2 hours to complete this 120 multiple choice question test that covers the content of Early Childhood Education. Usage of a calculator is not permitted. There are approximately 20 questions on creative arts and physical education, 17 on science, 30 on mathematics, 17 on social studies, and 36 questions on language and literacy. The test questions will assess the test takers knowledge regarding the interrelationship between the above content areas, and the major concepts of each area.

Language and Literacy
This portion of the exam will assess your knowledge of oral language development and its relationship to literacy development, the integration of literacy across all other content areas, the main indicators of speech and language delays, articulation issues, phonics development and, the development of language syntax and sentence structure. Your knowledge of the process of learning to read, learning to spell, knowledge of various types of children’s literature, and the process of learning how to write will also be included in the exam.

This portion of the exam will assess your knowledge of the development of numbers and operations, patterns and relationships, reasoning skills, connecting mathematical skills to other areas, problem solving skills, geometry and spatial skills and, measurement and mathematical thinking skills in young children. Your ability to collect, analyze and organize data is also included in the mathematics portion of the exam.

Social Studies
This portion of the exam will assess your knowledge of the development of self awareness, interpersonal relationship skills, and group social skills in young children. Knowledge of cultural, family, and geographic influences on young children will also be assessed. Your knowledge of the influences of environment, government, civics, and the economy on the development of young children will also be assessed.

This portion of the exam will assess your knowledge of fundamental concepts of scientific inquiry within the physical sciences, earth sciences, space sciences, and life sciences for young children.

Physical Education
This portion of the exam will assess your knowledge of the development of body awareness, the emotional and social influences on physical activity levels and; motor and movement skills in young children.

Creative and Performing Arts
This portion of the exam will assess your knowledge of the elements of theatre, dance, music, and visual art. Your knowledge of the concepts of pitch and beat of music for young children will also be assessed. In the area of visual arts, your knowledge of the concepts of line, color, texture, and the creative processes in young children will also be evaluated.

PRAXIS II Early Childhood Content Knowledge Practice Questions

1. In early childhood, children:

A. widen social interactions
B. explore their environment
C. discover how things work
D. All of the above

2. Which of the following is not a result of learning self-control?

A. Demanding attention
B. Resisting temptation
C. Suppressing impulses
D. Delaying gratification

3. A child-centered kindergarten is:

A. an environment that grows and changes
B. has lots of hands-on activities
C. understands play is fundamental to development
D. All of the above

4. Which of the following is not found in a low-literacy home environment?

A. Broken English
B. Lots of reading material
C. Pronounced accent
D. Nonstandard vernacular

5. Which of the following characteristics is missing from a fluent reader?

A. Recognition of words and expressions
B. Concentrate on meaning
C. Oral reading is slow and monotonous
D. Read for pleasure

Answer Key For Early Childhood Content Knowledge

1. Answer: D

In early childhood, approximately three to five years of age, children widen their social interactions and become more involved with and attuned to the people around them. They are eager to explore their environment, take risks, find adventure in the back yard, and discover how things work. Children this age are very creative and expressive. Their world might have purple trees, an orange sky, and super heroes living behind the garage.

It is the responsibility of the caregivers in his or her life to encourage initiative and exploration and help the child learn from mistakes. If the caretaker offers appropriate praise when earned and is consistent with discipline when needed, the child will become more responsible, follow through on assigned tasks, and develop a healthy, positive self-esteem. If the child is not allowed to make some decisions for himself and be a little independent, he may stop taking the initiative altogether and be easily led by other people.

2. Answer: A

Some researchers consider self-control, or self-discipline, one of the two most critical building blocks of character (the other being empathy). Between the ages of about five and seven, children should learn to resist temptation, suppress impulses, and delay gratification. The primary caregivers, including parents, babysitters, and teachers should help children develop self-regulation by:

Providing situational management, which protects the child from his impulsive actions
Helping the child learn to control emotional outbursts by soothing him until he calms down
Consistently teach coping skills when the child is confronted with a difficult or unfamiliar situation
Explaining the possible consequences if the child says or does certain things
Showing self-control when dealing with the child in challenging situations
Children are highly influenced by and learn from the behavior of those with whom they interact on a regular basis. It is important for children to have good role models to emulate.

3. Answer: D

One critical factor to remember is that five-year-olds learn differently than older children. The physical space and the teacher’s approach to instruction should reflect the unique learning requirements of the kindergarten student. A five-year-old needs an environment that grows and changes as he acquires new skills; a curriculum that addresses his physical, social, emotional, and intellectual development; provides lots of different hands-on activities and materials that encourage active participation; and views play as fundamental to his development.

The kindergartner’s experiences should include opportunities to try new ideas and concepts and introduce and celebrate multicultural differences. The physical area should be inviting, colorful, encourage interaction, and be easy to navigate. The room should be arranged from the child’s viewpoint with large and small spaces designed for different activities. All areas should be visible to the teacher. Parental involvement should be strongly encouraged, from helping in the classroom to asking about the kindergartner’s day.

4. Answer: B

High-literacy students who live in homes surrounded by books, magazines, and other reading material were read to when they were young. Because their parents and siblings are avid readers, these children learn to read earlier, easier, and with better comprehension. These students start school knowing the alphabet and have relatively large vocabularies; some may already be reading. They are more apt to read for pleasure and carve time into a hectic schedule to accommodate the habit.

Low-literacy students come from homes where little reading material is available, were probably not read to very often, and usually have limited vocabularies. Their parents may use broken English and/or speak with a pronounced accent, or the family may use a dialect filled with nonstandard vernacular. These students may not be eager to learn a new way of speaking because they identify with a particular culture and language and don’t want to give it up.

5. Answer: C

Fluency is the ability to read and comprehend the written word accurately and quickly. Fluent readers recognize words and expressions and understand their meaning automatically. When reading out loud, their presentation is smooth, expressive, and effortless. They sound natural, like they are talking instead of reading a prepared text. Fluent readers don’t focus on the words; they concentrate on the meaning. They make connections between knowledge they already have and ideas and concepts discovered in the new information. Because of their fluency, they enjoy reading and frequently read solely for pleasure.

Readers who are not fluent read word by word because they have to sound each word as they move through the text. When they read out loud, their presentation is slow, choppy, and monotonous. Because less fluent readers must concentrate on decoding the words, they usually don’t understand the information in the text and have difficulty processing and integrating the new data.