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The Early Childhood Professional

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Brooke Fuller

on 19 November 2016

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Transcript of The Early Childhood Professional

Early Childhood Professional:
Encouraging Professional Growth to Influence Change
In the Early Childhood Profession
Presented by:
Brooke Daniels

November 19, 2016
Training Objectives
To discuss the definition of professionalism in the context of early education.
To discuss the importance of professional practices and the effect they have on children and families.
To examine key factors associated with professionalism in early education.
To define the characteristics of professionalism and the role they play in establishing a high quality profession.
To explore personal professional development goals and the steps required to accomplish those goals.

What is Professionalism?
Close your eyes and think of someone you would describe as professional.
What characteristics does this individual possess?
Jot down your thoughts on a sticky note.

Form a small group of 5 and work together to compile your responses to form a group definition for “professionalism”.

What are your thoughts?

What does it truly mean to be a Professional?
Food for thought…
Professionalism is not an end in itself-a state of being, but an ongoing effort, a process of becoming!
–Rick Caulfield

What is a Profession?
Profession is a term that has been used for hundreds of years and the earliest meaning was declaration or vow made by a person entering a religious order.

To profess meant to make a fundamental commitment to work for something that was worthwhile.

Traditionally, professionals were viewed as individuals who pursued a learned art in the spirit of public service.

Professionals have long been understood to be moral endeavors, moderating their personal interset in order to provide service to others.

Professions were also viewed as...
Embedded with moral and ethical elements
Extensions of Moral Character
Originally Referred to only the "learned professions"-law, medicine and the ministry
Someone who possessed specialized training that enabled that person to meet a need in a society
Professionalism in Today's Society...
Is Early Education a Profession?
Professionalism in ECE

Professionalism as
Individual Practice

Professional Knowledge & Skills in ECE...
Professional Behaviors & Attitudes
Personal Qualities
A Special Message From
Professionalism is linked directly to improved child outcomes, higher quality programs, and higher leader qualifications.

It is also directly related to higher salaries and more benefits.

Research shows professionalism is linked to societal perceptions of ECE professionals and professionals struggle with status and respect as a result of low levels of professionalism.

Children as well as educators benefit from increased interest in professionalism.

What Does the Research Suggest?
In Today's Society, Professionalism is associated with...

Committing to knowing and maintaining the skills necessary to provide the service
Doing the job with skill and competence
Being committed to the task to be accomplished
Being a "good" employee
Providing reliable, competent service
Being paid for a service
Competent/knowledgeable in a specific area
Being dedicated to service
Determining the professional status of the ECE is problematic because their is a lack of consistency when describing the field. (Much Diversity in the field)
Various Types of ECE
Various Settings
Various Educational Levels
Various Funding Sources, etc.

Professionalism as it relates to early education has received much attention in recent years.

It involves the utilization of knowledge and adherence to standards in a particular occupation in order to achieve specific outcomes.

Professionalism in ECE has begun to gain momentum during the last ten years as concerns about the quality of care and education has increased.

How Does ECE Differ from Other Fields?
Early Childhood Education

Service Related
Child/Family Focused
Relationship Based
Larger effect on overall profession!

How Does ECE Differ from Other Fields?
Other Professions

Structured/More Product Based
Focus More on Individual
Less Inclusive
Less effect on overall Profession!

The Effect of Professionalism in ECE...
Why is Professionalism Important in ECE?

The Effect of Professionalism in ECE...
Who is influenced?
How are they influenced?
What consequences do these individuals face?

Working with young children/families is serious work that requires high quality dedicated individuals who see the importance of what they do!

ECE take on a tremendous role of service and have the ability to alter outcomes based on their performance.

The inability to be professional can lead to serious consequences and directly affect the lives of individuals around us.

The Effect of Professionalism in ECE...
How can individuals exhibit the ideals and principals of professions in their daily interaction with children and families?
What does it mean to demonstrate a high standard of professional knowledge, skill and commitment in their daily work with children/families?
What skills are required in order to in body the full meaning of what it means to be a professional in our field?
Professionalism In Practice...
When working with young children and families, it is imperative that we consider the individual needs of young children and how they differ from the needs of older children.
Teachers require competencies that are different from those needed by other educators.
Who am I?
What makes me unique?
How am I different from my peers and family members?
What makes me, me?
Why am I special?
All About Me!
Take a second to complete the activity by listing as many individual traits that make you unique!

Don't forget to draw a picture of yourself!!!
All About Me...
Early educators must have the foundational knowledge of child development (Theories) in order to be highly effective.
Educators must also...
Have current knowledge of trends affecting ECE, taking into consideration factors that influence our line of work. (SES, available sources,funds, etc.)
Knowledge in observation, assessment and documentation
Knowledge in health, safety and nutrition
Knowledge in relationships and positive guidance
Knowledge in learning environments and curriculum/teaching strategies
Knowledge of diversity
Knowledge of techniques to partner with families
Knowledge of professionalism
Key Factors of Professionalism in ECE…
In order to be considered an ECE professional, you must…

Have specialized knowledge of best practices for optimal development.
Be knowledgeable of the NAEYC’s Code of Ethical Conduct and be able to apply them to practice.
Have a solid understanding of yourself (characteristics, knowledge, skills and behaviors)

How Does Knowledge and Sills Come Together in Practice?
In order to make this happen, ECE must first know themselves and the children they teach (practice being responsive to children, families and the community)
ECE must be intentional when educating children, based on their needs, strengths, challenges and interest!
ECE should practice being reflective( studying individual practice, often)
Strive for personal development and actively seek professional development opportunities
ECE should engage in life long learning

How do we ensure that we are doing what's best for children?
Discover "your " calling by reflecting on your past professional career and including personal talents, skills and interest.
Take on a developmental perspective by constantly referring back to "your" needs throughout the process.
Continue to grow and learn
Remembering to mentally process changes to "your" personal philosophy around the growth and development of children.
Keep moving froward!!!!
Must be able to communicate and from health relationships
Must have a work ethic
Must possess moral and ethical behavior
Must behave ethically
Must advocate on behalf of yourself, children/ families and the Early Education Field.
A recent study conducted found that attributes of a "good" teacher include a positive outlook, energy, physical strength, a sense of humor, flexibility, self understanding, emotional stability, emotional warmth and sensitivity.

Positive Temperament (a person's behavioral style and the way they respond to situations)
Aware of their strengths and skills set (how do you process information)(assess the impact of who you are on your relationship with children/families)
Intellectual capacity
Psychological well being
Intellectual engagement (the ability to solve problems, creativity, create new ideas)
Passion & Commitment
Self Knowledge

Moral and Ethical Behavior
Professionalism in Action Activity
Lisa Smith is a lead preschool teacher at ABC Childcare Center. She lives in Greensboro, NC and commutes an hour each day to and from work in Rockingham County. She attends church in High Point, NC where she also serves as the preschool Sunday school teacher. One afternoon, she is invited to join a group of friends for lunch after church and accepts the invitation without a second thought! During lunch, the group of friends catch up on recent changes in each others lives and even discussed many of the awesome things happening in each of their classrooms. Halfway through the conversation, the friends begin to reflect on the Sunday school events that had taken place earlier that morning! Lisa begins to discuss issues that she is having with one of the children in her class. She states Johnny has a very hard time keeping his hands to himself and she is extremely tired of discussing the issues with him parents. Each of the friends comfort her and begin giving examples of similar situations that have taken place with other children in their classrooms.
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