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The #1 Ranked Preschool Curriculum

The Creative Curriculum for Preschool empowers children to be confident, creative, and caring learners through play-based, hands-on investigations—a research-based approach that incorporates language, literacy, and mathematics throughout the day.

  • nurture the whole child with the only skill progressions from birth to age 8
  • connect families to what their children are learning
  • provide support for teachers when and where they need it
Print Resources

Spanish, or bilingual versions also available

The Foundation

  • 7 Foundation Volumes (print and digital)
    • Volume 1: The Foundation
    • Volume 2: Interest Areas
    • Volume 3: Social–Emotional, Physical & Cognitive
    • Volume 4: Language & Literacyo   Volume 5: Mathematics
    • Volume 6: Science and Technology, Social Studies & the Arts
    • Volume 7: Objectives for Development & Learning, Birth Through Third Grade
  • Getting Started Guide (print and digital)

Daily Resources

  • 20+ Teaching Guides (combination of print and digital)
    • The First Six Weeks
    • Getting Started Guide
    • Balls
    • Buildings
    • Clothes
    • Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
    • Trees
    • Water
    • Wheels
    • Exercise
    • Insects
    • Sand
    • Signs
    • Simple Machines
    • Tubes and Tunnels
    • Bread
    • Pets
    • Roads
    • Music Making
    • Boxes
    • Exercise
    • Cameras
    • Light
  • Intentional Teaching Experiences (251 bilingual, in print and digital)
  • Mighty Minutes (300 in digital, 100 in print)
  • Children’s Book Collection and 20 Book Discussion Cards (more than 200 digital, 73 in print)
  • 20 Mighty Minutes Posters (bilingual, print only)
  • Teaching Strategies Resource Organizer

The Creative Curriculum Cloud

Streamline planning, teaching, and family engagement anywhere, anytime, with 24/7 access to the full library of curriculum resources, in both English and Spanish; engaging, multimedia family-friendly playlists tied directly to classroom instruction; a Digital Children’s Library; and two-way communication with families.

Learn More about The Creative Curriculum Cloud

Professional Development

With the Teacher Membership, receive detailed guidance, support, and encouragement through a built-in online professional learning community; embedded microlearning; and flexible courses provided in a variety of formats, including all CDA and CCDF training.

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Inspire Children With Project-Based, Investigative Learning

Build children’s confidence, creativity, and critical thinking skills through hands-on, project-based investigations. Promote discovery and inquiry with opportunities for children to think critically and develop process skills with rich, hands-on investigations of relevant and interesting topics in the classroom. Reinforce learning with family-friendly activities designed for home.

See Our Preschool Curriculum in Action

The Cloud

Discover smart tools for responsive planning and meaningful engagement with every child and family. Designed to work for you, The Creative Curriculum Cloud streamlines planning, teaching, and engagement so you can focus on the important work with children that no technology could ever replace.

Explore the Cloud

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Differentiate Learning
for Every Child

Individualize instruction by understanding how children’s abilities progress and supporting them with unique color-coded progressions that show the typical development of skills from birth through third grade. Effectively scaffold learning experiences to respond to each child’s current strengths and needs, including those with disabilities, with embedded guidance and strategies located on curricular resources.

See it in Action

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Boost Teacher Confidence and Joy

Unlike any other curriculum, embedded video-modeling supports teachers when and where they need it for each focused learning experience. With guidance, support, and encouragement for effective implementation, teachers feel confident creating joyful learning experiences for every child.

Explore the Teacher Membership

Bring Imagination to Life Without Compromising Academic Rigor

Take a Look Inside

Promote Language and Literacy Skills

Each day, utilize daily resources focused on language and literacy skill development, and read aloud using our children’s book collection and Digital Children’s Library from a wide range of genres that explore life in other cultures, celebrate diversity, spark curiosity, and inspire children’s imaginations.

Integrate Language and Literacy Daily

Inspire a Love for Reading

Nurture Mathematics Skill Development

Throughout the day, include meaningful discussions and applications to develop the essential mathematical process skills of problem-solving, reasoning, communicating, making connections, and representing. Just like these skills are used by children in their daily lives, we integrate mathematics skill each day in our pre-k curriculum.

Make Mathematics Part of Each Day

Two preschool girls hugging outdoors in the park

Build the Social–Emotional Foundation Children Need

Promote social–emotional development with support from a new foundation volume focused on social–emotional, physical, and cognitive development; Teaching Guides with a special social-emotional, including The First Six Weeks: Building Your Preschool Classroom Community; Daily Resources designed to build social-emotional skills; and embedded coaching and support for social-emotional development.

Explore Our Objectives

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Connect the Dots Between Curriculum and Assessment

Amplify the power of The Creative Curriculum for Preschool by adding GOLD formative assessment. Capture observations in the moment and automatically connect assessment data to daily instructional resources, creating an instantaneous feedback loop for the teacher to effectively and easily individualize learning for each child.

Discover GOLD

The Creative Curriculum provides a scalable way to support a novice teacher to grow into a masterful teacher.
Aaron Ross-Franco, Early Childhood Education Coach
Edmonds College, Bellevue, WA
The Creative Curriculum is a rigorous framework of study that is developmentally appropriate while still meeting the needs of individual learners. The team of experts at Teaching Strategies have supported our district in ways that exceed expectations.
Carrie Pearson, Ed.D., Director Early Learning Program
Keller Independent School District, Keller, Texas

More Reasons to Love The Creative Curriculum for Preschool


Improves Kindergarten Readiness

Read an independent study exploring the effectiveness of The Creative Curriculum for Preschool.

Read the Study


Supports the Whole Child

Watch the video to learn more about our whole-child approach and how it supports academic learning alongside social-emotional, cognitive, and physical development.

Explore Whole-Child eBook

Watch the Video


Research-Based. Field Proven.

Early childhood development research provides the foundation for The Creative Curriculum for Preschool.

Read About Our Research


Aligned to Your Early Learning Standards

Our preschool curriculum is aligned to early learning guidelines in each state and the Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework, so you can demonstrate that your program is meeting all requirements while focusing on the needs of individual children.

View State Alignments
Head Start Alignments

Frequently Asked Questions

What age group is The Creative Curriculum for Preschool designed for?   

This curriculum is designed for preschool programs that serve children from 3 to 5 years of age, whether they are in single- or mixed-age classrooms.

How is The Creative Curriculum different from traditional preschool curricula? What makes it special?

The Creative Curriculum for Preschool is a whole-child, comprehensive curriculum that emphasizes rich, engaging, play-based learning experiences; hands-on investigation of interesting materials; nurturing environments; and warm, welcoming, responsive relationships between teachers and children and their families.

The Creative Curriculum for Preschool – like the GOLD assessment system is founded in 38 objectives for development and learning that are at the heart of everything we do at Teaching Strategies. They represent our goals for young children, and they are essential to the guidance we provide for teachers and school leaders. The objectives cover four major domains of child development (social–emotional, physical, language, and cognitive), five content areas (literacy, mathematics, science and technology, social studies, and the arts), and two objectives that relate to English-language acquisition.

Twenty-three of the objectives include research-based progressions that define the path children typically follow from birth through third grade when acquiring the knowledge, skills, and abilities most correlated to success in elementary school and beyond.

The Creative Curriculum is the only early childhood curriculum with research-based progressions of development and learning that span the entirety of the early childhood years. These progressions empower educators to observe and document children’s development and learning and intentionally plan future experiences based on each child’s currently demonstrated knowledge, skills, and abilities. The progressions help a teacher identify if a child’s skills are either meeting, progressing towards, or exceeding the widely held expectations for the child’s age group or class level. Teachers are offered ideas for individualizing learning experiences based on each child’s current skills, to gently scaffold continued growth.

The Creative Curriculum for Preschool is organized into long-term, project-based investigations called studies, which last 4–6 weeks and cover topics that 3- and 4-year-old children are interested in learning about. The curriculum includes a wide variety of study topics from which to choose. Examples of study topics include cameras, balls, and wheels.

Where is the support for literacy in The Creative Curriculum for Preschool?  

The Creative Curriculum for Preschool provides guidance for supporting children’s language development and literacy learning both through comprehensive programming (meaning it is embedded throughout the entire day, every day) and through focused, intentional learning experiences.

Guidance within the curriculum helps teachers nurture essential components of literacy, such as helping children:

  • build vocabulary and background knowledge essential for comprehension;
    develop phonemic and phonological awareness;
  • grow their knowledge of words, letters, and the sounds that letters and groups of letters make; and
  • engage in play-based physical experiences that foster the fine-motor skills necessary for later handwriting.

The Teaching Strategies Children’s Book Collection that is a part of The Creative Curriculum for Preschool helps children build a love of reading by engaging with a wide variety of texts, across multiple genres, including non-fiction selections related to each of our study topics. The curriculum’s Book Discussion Cards offer teachers support for engaging in rich, repeated read-aloud experiences of age-appropriate books with complex storylines and interesting characters. Other Daily Resources include more than 75 Intentional Teaching Experiences whose primary objective is related to language and literacy and dozens of Mighty Minutes activities that are perfect for reinforcing skills during the many transition times that occur during a typical day in preschool.

Play-based learning is important in early childhood, but my program is focused on literacy and mathematics. How can I prioritize literacy and mathematics while still allowing children to play? 

Quite simply, play is the work of childhood. The Creative Curriculum leverages constructive, purposeful play as the best and most powerful means of supporting young children’s learning, across all developmental domains and content areas.

The learning experiences, long-term studies of interesting topics, and literacy- and mathematics-rich environments described in The Creative Curriculum offer daily opportunities for children to develop essential knowledge, skills, and abilities, at a just-right level of challenge, within the context of what children already know how to do best: play.

Teachers and school leaders will find the primary and related learning objectives of each of the curriculum’s Daily Resources is clearly stated, while children will find that coming to school sure is fun.

How does The Creative Curriculum support children’s social–emotional development?  

The Creative Curriculum for Preschool recognizes that two essential aspects of a teacher’s role – teaching and caring – cannot be separated. The curriculum offers guidance to help teachers create a social environment that consistently conveys positive messages, promotes children’s social-emotional development, and helps children become capable, enthusiastic learners. These aspects of school make a profound difference in the way children come to view themselves as learners. More than any other factor, the high quality of a teacher’s interactions with children leads to positive outcomes.

The curriculum’s foundation volumes guide teachers in building and maintaining positive relationships with both children and their families.

The curriculum also includes a Teaching Guide titled The First Six Weeks: Building Your Classroom Community, a powerful resource that prepares educators to connect with children and their families at the beginning of the school year and build a solid foundation for all the learning that is to come during the rest of the year. Teachers receive guidance for creating an inclusive classroom community that intentionally sends positive messages to help all children and families feel welcomed, valued, included, safe, and competent.

Are there resources or training available for educators to learn about The Creative Curriculum?  

Yes. Teaching Strategies offers the Professional Development Teacher Membership, which provides 24/7 support for the entire year, which includes access to

  • a large catalog of flexible, modular, asynchronous courses in English and Spanish;
  • rapid onboarding programs for teachers and coaches;
  • a professional learning community of nearly 100,000 educators;
  • an “Ask an Expert” service;
  • virtual, live sessions on a variety of early childhood topics;
  • all training for CDA and CCDF requirements; and
  • an opportunity to earn continuing education units (CEU).
How does The Creative Curriculum for Preschool support family engagement?

The Creative Curriculum provides resources that guide educators to communicate, build trust, and establish meaningful relationships with families. Teachers share letters that introduce new study topics in the curriculum and offer ideas for how families can reinforce those topics at home.

Our family mobile app enables families to stay connected and informed. The system curates a playlist of resources, such as Modeled Moments, which are videos that demonstrate how children learn from everyday routines and interactions, such as riding in the car on the way to school or unpacking groceries in the kitchen. Another resource is Mighty Minutes activities, which are short songs, chants, rhymes, and games that families can use to reinforce their children’s learning. With a subscription to The Creative Curriculum Cloud, educators can individualize playlists to align with current study topics.

The app also includes a chat feature, allowing families and educators to communicate with each other. Educators can share videos, photos, and real-time observations of children in the classroom. Families respond with information about their children that help teachers better understand the children’s needs. With a subscription to The Creative Curriculum Cloud, families will have 24/7 access to over 200 books in the Teaching Strategies Children’s Book Collection.

Is The Creative Curriculum aligned with early learning standards? 

Yes. The Creative Curriculum for Preschool meets the early learning standards of each state, as well as the Head Start Early Learnings Outcomes Framework. To learn more about the alignment with your own state’s early learning standards, check out the “Find My State” feature on the Teaching Strategies website at

Does The Creative Curriculum support children with disabilities?  

Yes. The preschool curriculum prepares educators to best support children demonstrating a wide variety of skills and abilities, including those with disabilities. It uses a Universal Design for Learning teaching approach. The curriculum provides guidance to help teachers tailor and individualize learning experiences, so that children with disabilities are able to engage in the same kinds of learning experiences as their peers.

With a resource called Intentional Teaching Experiences, educators have special guidance for adapting the teaching experience to best support children with disabilities. Teachers also have access to a robust library of resources to explore tips and best practices for teaching children who may require extra assistance.

Does The Creative Curriculum support multilingual learners?  

Yes. Not only does the curriculum provide materials in both English and Spanish, but it also adapts the daily activities beyond a translation. For example, a nursery rhyme used as part of an activity is not merely translated from English into Spanish but transadapted to ensure the new text is meaningful to Spanish speakers, helping multilingual learners develop the associated skill in their first language. The study topics reflect real-life experiences, such as visiting different buildings in the community, which are relatable for all young children and their families.

Families have direct access to digital books in the family mobile app. They can simply log in to enjoy these books with their children. The titles within the Digital Children’s Library comprise the key tenants of a high-quality literature program—they’re equitable and expose children to a wide range of genres. The books, available in English and Spanish, explore life in other cultures, celebrate diversity, spark curiosity, and inspire children’s imagination.

Can educators personalize The Creative Curriculum?  

Yes. Teachers are encouraged to adapt activities to the needs and interests of the children in their class and to incorporate experiences, knowledge, and resources from their community into studies to make the investigations even more relevant and interesting  for children. Our digital resources also offer teachers the ability to customize pre-populated daily and weekly plans or write their own learning activities.

As an educator, you’re not limited by the resources and guidance in The Creative Curriculum. Instead, use it as a foundation to implement a developmentally appropriate preschool program that offers children the opportunities to gain the skills they need for kindergarten.

young happy boy giving high five to happy teacher

Improve Learning Outcomes for Every Child

Let us help you begin your journey of transforming your program with The Creative Curriculum for Preschool.

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