The Vivian Olum Child Development Center is a comprehensive, early childhood care and development program where children are nourished, parents are welcomed, and caregivers feel valued. Our goal is to provide a foundation of experiences that fosters the growth and development of children in a safe and nurturing environment. The center serves UO faculty, staff, and student families, and community families on a space available basis. The Vivian Olum Child Development Center is a program of the UO Human Resources, Work-Life Resources. The center is staffed by a team of dedicated, professional teachers/caregivers.
Professional staff are assisted by university students who work for pay or credit as part of their university education.
The Dreamers classroom serves the center’s youngest children and sets its pace around the needs and unique differences of infants. The program is designed to help babies feel secure, with attentive adults warmly responding consistently and supportively to each child’s cues. Routine aspects of care-giving such as diapering and feeding provide opportunities for significant one-on-one interactions with adult caregivers that nurture relationships as well as promote children’s development. The physical environment is also an important aspect of the program. We provide materials, experiences and the physical space for children to explore through touch, sound and sight, a requisite for their cognitive growth.
While being supportive of infants in their quest for competence, our teachers look to the parents as the best resource for working with their children. We encourage parents to spend as much time as they would like visiting or breast feeding their children in the classroom.
The Builders classroom provides care for older babies and young toddlers. Teaching staff begin to regularly implement carefully planned activities to foster cognitive, emotional, self-help, language, physical, and social growth while continuing to emphasize attentive and supportive relationships among children, caregivers and parents.
Motor development ia a big part of the toddler classroom and activites are planned to engage children and provide opportunities to practice emerging skills for both fine and large motor. Cognitive growth is illustrated through the toddler's growing understanding of the world and how things work. Activities are designed to be open ended and include opportunities for new experiences, as well as repetition and practice.
Language acquisition is another developmental achievement for children at this time. Supporting this emerging cognitive skill is an important focus for our teaching staff. Adults responding to communication attempts, modeling language, and providing daily experiences with books and music and designed to support growing language acquisition.
Identity becomes a significant developmental issue at this age, closely tied to questions of independence and control. In the Pathfinders and Adventurers’ classrooms, adults help toddlers find appropriate ways to assert themselves by supporting their individuality, by giving them choices whenever possible, and by introducing social guidelines.
Cognitive growth continues to occur through active exploration of the physical world. As active explorers, toddlers are eager to try new things and use materials in different ways.
At this age we see emerging social-emorional development, the development of friendships and peer relationships, and the emergence of self-help skills. In planning curriculum for toddlers, our teachers are prepared to be flexible and spontaneous, but also provide a consistent daily routine.
As children develop physically during the preschool years, they are capable of exploring a greatly expanding range of environments and opportunities for social interaction. Considerable growth and change occurs during the 3 to 4 ½ years of age in all areas of development- physical, cognitive, and social-emotional, and our preschool curriculum addresses all of these areas of development. The teaching staff offers a planned curriculum that stimulates their interest, experimentation, and cooperation. Children are offered activities in which they will be involved in a “hands on” manner, encouraged to solve problems with materials, activities and with each other. Teachers carefully design the classroom spaces so that the children can freely choose and follow their interests within the established daily routine. Specific attention is given to supporting children's emerging independence, as well as their peer relationships and their abilities to work together as a group.
The Voyagers classroom offers child-centered learning activities guided by the center philosophy that discovery and exploration foster a positive attitude toward learning through questioning, observing, and experimenting with varied materials. The children make their own predictions and form their own theories in hands-on activities that involve cooking transformations, water movement, group and board games, dramatic play, physical science, experiments with art materials, pattern blocks, and math games. By engaging their interests and inspiring active experimentation, the teachers promote the children’s construction of knowledge and build foundations for school success in reading, math, science, and the arts. We foster children’s interactions and collaboration with peers, thus promoting language development, perspective taking, and conflict resolution.
Our Inventors classroom allows flexibility and freedom of choice within a secure setting for school-age children arriving after a busy school day. In addition, the classroom is open all day during most days the 4J School District public schools are closed. Staff ensures that the classroom functions as a caring community in which all of the children and adults feel accepted and respected. The children have an opportunity to participate in group games or to work or play alone. Opportunities are provided to complete homework if desired, read books, write in journals, and get physical exercise. Planned and spontaneous activities are facilitated in an environment rich in the creative arts. Adults foster and nurture emergent and child-led projects such as publishing newsletters, writing and producing plays, and participation in a variety of clubs. They also can participate in outdoor activities each day.
Transportation for school-age children from several schools is available within a limited area. The center collaborates with the UO Moss Street Children's Center to provide transportation services, which allows each center to include a greater number of schools.
All drivers are qualified staff from one of the two centers and have completed the UO driver certification process. Please check with administrative about current schedules and services.
Summer-By-The-Week! is a dynamic full-day summer camp experience with activities planned around a weekly theme. Opportunities are provided for children to learn, explore, conduct investigations, create, and engage with peers. The program is based at VOCDC, but groups will take daily field trips around campus and into the community. Enrollment is on a weekly basis.