Nova Sco­tia Col­lege of Early Child­hood Ed­u­ca­tion

FAQs an­swered on the ed­u­ca­tion of chil­dren

The Coast - Career Minded - - NEWS -

Michael Horne has al­ways dreamed of a ca­reer that made him feel like he was mak­ing a dif­fer­ence in his com­mu­nity, and he found it with early child­hood ed­u­ca­tion. With train­ing from NSCECE — the Nova Sco­tia Col­lege of Early Child­hood Ed­u­ca­tion — he has been work­ing in the field for three years, and is cur­rently at Leeds Street Child Care Cen­tre as a preschool teacher. With his ex­pe­ri­ence, he is well po­si­tioned to an­swer some FAQ’s about the ECE field.

What was your ex­pe­ri­ence as a stu­dent at NSCECE like?

Dur­ing my time at the col­lege, I got to see a va­ri­ety of dif­fer­ent per­spec­tives peo­ple had on the ed­u­ca­tion of chil­dren. From al­ter­nate life ex­pe­ri­ences to per­sonal cul­tural views, it was an eye-open­ing ex­pe­ri­ence to see so many takes on child care and in­ter­est­ing philoso­phies.

What phi­los­o­phy of child care do you fol­low or be­lieve in?

I firmly be­lieve that the cur­ricu­lum for chil­dren can­not be pre­planned weeks in ad­vance. It needs to be fluid based off of daily ob­ser­va­tions on chil­dren’s de­vel­op­ment and needs. In my day-to-day at work, I plan ac­tiv­i­ties based on fol­low­ing the chil­dren’s in­ter­ests in or­der to cre­ate a child-cen­tred cur­ricu­lum.

What do you re­mem­ber from your first practicum place­ment at a child care set­ting?

I re­mem­ber it be­ing busy, loud and al­most over­whelm­ing when I first walked in. Thank­fully the staff that I was work­ing with knew what they were do­ing and had an an­swer for every ques­tion I came up with. Af­ter a few days into my place­ment, and a lot of ques­tions later, it stopped feel­ing so busy and be­gan to quiet down. Once the noise came down, I could take a good look around and see what I was a part of: chil­dren’s learn­ing ex­pe­ri­ence.

What made this pro­gram spe­cial for you?

Many pro­grams will throw in­for­ma­tion at you in a lec­ture that you can eas­ily find in a text­book. Since my teach­ers at the col­lege were di­rec­tors in charge of ac­tive child­care cen­tres, I was learn­ing hand­son in­for­ma­tion from knowl­edge­able in­struc­tors in the field. In ad­di­tion, the pro­gram has sev­eral work place­ments where I could test my skills. Be­fore I grad­u­ated, I had hun­dreds of hours of ex­pe­ri­ence, along with ref­er­ences that would fol­low me into the work­ing world.

How easy is it to get a job in early child­hood ed­u­ca­tion?

Early child­hood ed­u­ca­tion is al­ways ex- pand­ing and of­fer­ing new op­por­tu­ni­ties for grad­u­ates, pro­grams to fur­ther our knowl­edge and ed­u­ca­tion, and adding cen­tres to pro­vide jobs for those of us com­ing out of the pro­gram. Many stu­dents in our pro­gram, my­self in­cluded, re­ceived job of­fers well be­fore we even grad­u­ated. Hav­ing made con­tacts through­out our work place­ments made it easy to con­nect with pro­fes­sion­als, and to cre­ate these re­la­tion­ships. Once the di­a­logue was there, it was only a mat­ter of time be­fore I was of­fered a teach­ing po­si­tion.

Do you have a piece of ad­vice for any­one en­ter­ing the field?

Be open minded. You can’t suc­ceed in this field if you come in think­ing that you know ev­ery­thing. We’re con­stantly learn­ing from our fel­low teach­ers, from new teach­ing aids and most of all we learn from the chil­dren we teach.

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