Masters Theses/Capstone Projects

Date of Award

Spring 4-14-2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Curriculum and Instruction (MAE)

First Committee Member

Dr. Allison McGrath


Dr. Daniel Cho

Second Committee Member

Dr. Diane Ross


Early Intervention, Play, Project Based Learning, Curriculum Development

Subject Categories

Curriculum and Instruction | Early Childhood Education | Special Education and Teaching


The purpose of this study is to present an early intervention curriculum incorporating Project-Based Learning (PBL) and opportunities for play. The project aims to answer the questions: What does a Project-Based Learning curriculum model look like in high quality early childhood special education? How does PBL curriculum work in conjunction with play? The created curriculum answers these questions based on a review of research and guidance from three theoretical frameworks: a Vygotskian Tools of the Mind approach (Bodrova & Leong, 1996), implementation of PBL in early childhood (Lev et al., 2020) and the early intervention Building Blocks framework (Sandall et al., 2019). Early learning standards and differentiation strategies are embedded throughout the curriculum’s high-quality early learning environment set up, sample daily schedule, lessons for daily routines, lessons for rotational small group play centers, and four-week PBL unit. The proposed curriculum is designed for inclusive early learning settings (ages three to six years old) for peers and students who qualify for preschool special education services under Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

Licensing Permission

Copyright, all rights reserved. Fair Use



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