The mission of the Ruth Staples Child Development Lab is education, outreach, and research. The mission distinguishes the Child Development Lab from other early childhood programs, which exist solely to provide the service of child care and education.

The educational mission of the Child Development Lab is fulfilled by creating a "community of learning," in which children, parents, students, and faculty all learn from each other. The outreach mission is fulfilled by providing the best possible developmentally appropriate child care and education, and by providing various consulting and support services in Lincoln, in the State of Nebraska, and even for national clientele and organizations.

Parental support of the mission of the Child Development Lab is essential. As parents, you contribute to the community of learning, to child care and education, and to informal research on an ongoing basis.

Staff in Class

The Ruth Staples Child Development Laboratory Program provides an educational and developmentally appropriate setting in which children and adults grow and learn together. To this end, the environment is prepared by staff and students and experiences are provided which:

  • contribute to developing positive self regard
  • maintain good health and safety as a primary concern
  • encourage learning to relate in socially appropriate ways to other children and adults
  • foster optimal development in all areas: physical-motor, social, emotional, and cognitive
  • encourage understanding and acceptance of one’s own and other’s emotions
  • expand a child’s concepts and ideas about the world by fostering an appreciation of individual differences in the home, school, and world community
  • promote language competence in communication with others
  • encourage self expression
  • stimulate curiosity and the desire to learn
  • foster a value for all living things and the responsibility for living in the world in an ecologically wise manner
  • promote the importance of living peacefully with a wide variety of people
Kids Playing with wheelbarrow