Standards - Public Preschool

Maine’s Early Learning and Development Standards (MELDS) 

Maine’s Early Learning and Development Standards (MELDS) replaces the State of Maine Early Childhood Learning Guidelines (MELG), 2005, and serves as a guide for all early childhood educators’ efforts to improve professional practice and programs for young children from the age of three until kindergarten entrance. To read the full report, view the MELDS PDF file

MELDS outlines the following guiding principles and essential practices: 

  1. All children are born learners and the quality of the environments in which children spend time affects what and how they learn.
  2. Nurturing relationships are essential to promote healthy social emotional development.
  3. Families are children’s first teachers and essential partners in education. 
  4. Children learn through play and active experiences that cross all areas of development.
  5. Development and learning are rooted in culture and supported by family.
  6. High quality learning experiences are related to skilled, knowledgeable, and responsive early childhood educators.
  7. Personalized learning for diverse learners involves providing multiple approaches to learning for each child within inclusive settings.
  8. Intentional planning for young children involves integrating formative assessment that guides meaningful curriculum and child outcomes.
  9. A collaborative approach across early care and education systems supports a continuum of learning from birth through age eight and into adulthood.

MELDS also covers school readiness and what children should know and be able to do by kindergarten entry. The standards also covers students with disabilities, English language learners, social and emotional development, organization of a preschool, language literacy, testing, writing skills, and more. To read more about MELDS, view the MELDS PDF file

TSG/MELDS Crosswalk

The crosswalk aligns the Teaching Strategies GOLD assessment (TSG) and the Maine Early Learning and Development Standards (MELDS). The alignment covers social and emotional development, building relationships with adults, respecting similarities and differences, approaches to learning, curiosity, engagement and persistence, reflection and problem-solving, content areas such as literacy and visual arts, integration of knowledge, and more. To read the full crosswalk, view the PDF file

    Contact Us

    Sue Reed
    Early Childhood Specialist 
    Maine Department of Education
    Phone: 207-624-6632
    Email: susan.d.reed@maine.gov