The Zaentz Early Education Innovation Challenge recognizes promising new ideas and approaches that have the potential to transform the quality of early education and to drive lasting change and improvement.
The program, part of the Early Education Initiative at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, picked 16 finalists from more than 200 ideas submitted. Each idea was submitted to one of three different challenge tracks: Idea, Pilot and Scaling.
Learn more about the 16 finalists here:
- Seeds of Learning: The New Britain Infant/Toddler Early Childhood Business Incubator —An alternative business model for sustainable, affordable high-quality infant and toddler care for women in poverty.
- Iterative Development: Using Stakeholder Voice to Create a True-Impact Program Promoting Maternal-Child Attachment in At-Risk Young Mothers — Small-group mother-child psychotherapy sessions that are individualized, adapting to the challenges faced by at-risk mothers.
- Pin Your Park: An Offtrail Lesson Planning Guide for Educators — An online tool designed to empower educators to bring children of every age to their local parks and green spaces.
- Building Single Points of Entry that Serve Families and Communities — Designing and building an integrated, online Single Point of Entry (SPE) system that provides families and caregivers with a portal to all child care options and related services in their location.
- Virtual MOMbile – An interactive app to reach and deliver virtual early childhood education and home visiting services to children and families living in “early learning deserts.”
- Louisiana Early Childhood Leaders Fellowship — A leadership academy for child care directors.
- PLAY® Interactive Choice Board (P-ICB) — A high-resolution, interactive classroom touchscreen that involves an avatar teacher-host with text, pictures, and sample videos.
- The Beautiful Stuff Project — Bringing quality play experiences to all early childhood classrooms with easy-to-use, low cost treasure boxes full of small collectible and reusable items.
- ESCALERAS — A training model that improves the quality of child care in low-income, underserved communities by bringing family, friend and neighbor child care providers who are English-learners into the mainstream early care and education profession.
- Family, Friend and Neighbor (FFN) National Community of Practice — Extending the advocacy and technical assistance activities of The Alliance for Family Friend and Neighbor Child Care to create a FFN National Community of Practice.
- STE(A)M Truck — A growing fleet of mobile innovation labs filled with tools and talent that helps eliminate inequities in learning opportunities that are often predicted by zip code.
- Early Childhood Support Organization (ECSO) Initiative — A public-private partnership that provides resources and aligns financial incentives to support better outcomes for children from low-income communities.
- Leading Men Fellowship Program — Recruiting young men of color to implement evidence-based literacy interventions to help more children become kindergarten-ready and address the systemic shortage of high-quality and diverse early childhood educators.
- Access to Quality for All: Empowering Early Childhood and PK–12 Stakeholders — An interactive tool to explore the local availability of child care across the state of Texas.
- Leveraging Text Messages to Support Early Childhood Development and Parental Resilience — Delivering caregivers bite-sized and developmentally-targeted text messages drawn from research-based curricula as well as curated content for children from prenatal to five years old.
- Focus on Early Learning — A model for preK through second grade teaching and learning, aligned around five key instructional practices and curriculum components.