At the most basic level, the CEC is a list of environmental indicators organized according to four primary areas. Each categorical area includes specific indicators that are impactful components of an ideal classroom setting. Below is a sample of the CEC and lists of the indicators included in each area:

Center/Independent Workstation Areas and Descriptions: (6 indicators)
Basic classroom management, Center management system, Variety of accessible center materials, Center material labels, Books in centers, and Writing tools in centers

Literacy Areas and Descriptions: (5 indicators)
Book availability, Interactive read aloud supports, Shared or interactive writing, Writing journals and alphabet/PA activities
Meaningful Print Areas and Descriptions: (6 indicators)
Children's names, Letter wall, Authentic print, Children's daily schedule, Rules chart, Helper chart

Instructional Planning & Delivery Areas and Descriptions: (4 indicators)
Lesson plans, Thematic connections, Assessment techniques, Displayed children’s work