Meghan M. Fitzgerald is a graduate of Teachers College, Columbia University with an Ed.D. in Early Childhood Policy, of the Curriculum and Teaching Department. She was faculty with the childhood education program at Teachers College and presented at local, state, national and international conferences on topics related to teachers’ perceptions and professional learning of early care and education (ECE) teachers. From 2008-2010, she was one of six Student Research Scholars funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation.
Before BMCC, she taught teacher education courses at both Queens and Hunter College and facilitated professional development with the New York City’s Department of Education, Office of ECE, in Queens, Manhattan and Bronx field offices. Meghan hails from California and has a strong background as an early childhood educator and advocate. Once a demonstration classroom teacher, a congressional staff member and a planning commissioner for Fresno County for ECE, she understands the field of education from multiple perspectives — administrator, policy maker, advocate, and teacher. She understands what influences governance issues as well. She hopes to explore professional learning, educational policy, and systems approaches to professional development for all members of the ECE workforce.
Meghan’s teaching interests: early childhood history; early childhood policies; supervision of college students when facilitating best early childhood practices when placed in typical of early childhood programs available to young children and families in urban settings
Meghan’s interests for fun: reading Jane Austen novels now and modern day biographies, all aspects of photography, cooking and eating, playing with harmonies while using her Mezzo Soprano/alto voice at church, and being with my new family
My research interests: the investigation of influences on adult learners currently in the field; the exploration of various early childhood professional roles; a general interest in early childhood quality programs in urban settings
- B.S. California State University, Fresno, Child Development/Early Childhood Education Certification,1994
- M.A. California State University, Fresno, Education Administration and Supervision,2000
- Ed.D. Teachers College, Columbia University, Curriculum and Teaching , Doctor of Educaiton in Early Childhood Policy,2010
- This course is a continuation of ECE 211, focusing on the theories, methods and materials of curriculum planning in early childhood education (preschool to 2nd grade). The emphasis in this course is on providing developmentally and culturally appropriate learning environments and experiences that encourage foundational social scientific, mathematic and scientific thinking and skills in young children. The following topics are explored in-depth: social studies as a lens by which young children can explore our diverse ethno-cultural society and their place in it; the use of materials and play-based techniques to facilitate ways of constructing everyday mathematical ideas; the creation of environments and experiences that stimulate children?s scientific curiosity and playful exploration of our natural and human-made world; the use of block/construction and cooking experiences for the integration of social studies, mathematics, science, literacy and the arts. Course work includes workshops in planning and implementing inquiry/play-based experiences for young children.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in ECE 210 and ECE 211
Research and Projects
- Common Core and assessment indicators captured in photos and videos: What school leadership should know and be able to do to support developmentally appropriate practice and standards-based instruction
Professor Fitzgerald, after supervising multiple students in one field placement classroom, developed an common interest with the cooperating teacher. In collaboration, this work resulted in sharing the Common Core and assessment experiences of this one classroom during a presentation on June 8, 2014, at the National Association for the Education of Young Children’s 2014 National Institute for Early Childhood Professional Development entitled: “Common Core and assessment indicators captured in photos and videos: What school leadership should know and be able to do to support developmentally appropriate practice and standards-based instruction”. The long term purpose of this work is to create a multi media publication from this work to support school leadership’s understanding about the potential quality of prekindergarten settings in public school systems.
- What Students in Early Childhood Classes Learn and What Instructors Believe They Teach
The purpose of this research project is to examine the correlation between the beliefs and course content that early childhood instructors prioritize and those that students demonstrate they consider most important. This is a collaborative project with two other faculty members, which is currently in the analysis stage. A two-phase research study: in phase 1, data collection and analysis seek to provide a deeper understanding of the role of ideology in early childhood classes; and in phase 2, the researchers will examine to what degree the students in early childhood classes are learning what the instructors believe they are teaching.
- Head Start Professional Development: great leadership, great intentions and great expectations,NHSA Dialog: A Research-to-Practice Journal for the Early Childhood Field