Saturday, April 27, 2013

Time Well Spent

Can you believe this journey is complete?!?! When I finished my undergraduate degree, I would sometimes dream (for several years actually) that my degree in fact had NOT been completed and I had to return to school to complete a course, retake a test or write a final paper. I'm sure those dreams are sure to follow--I guess my subconscious can't believe that I completed my degree :). Now that I have completed my master's degree, I would like to share three things I have learned:

  • I have the knowledge of the early childhood field! When I first began, I was anxious about the amount of information I was about to obtain. The more in depth my degree became, I realized I actually know this stuff! This course helped me realize that I do have the knowledge and passion in this field.
  • I learned about the definition of and the importance of a Community of Practice! I've always known about collaboration, but had never heard the term Community of Practice. This group is a group of individuals who share a passion for a particular topic/issue (my issue being parental involvement and early literacy) and work together to help others understand the importance of the topic/issue. I had fun creating a Community of Practice :).
  • I learned about the type of leader I currently am and what type of leader I would like to become! I am a relaxed type of leader and individual and I would like to become less relaxed as a leader. It's something I will continue to work on--every year I will set a goal to become more organized and stronger :).
I have to come up with a long term goal. This is a little difficult because I tend to not focus too much on the future. Of course, I would love to still be able to work in the field of early childhood. Funding is so scary in this field and I worry that my position will be cut. I would love to work with families and their infants and toddlers--I'm not sure in what capacity, but this is my ultimate goal. I would also love to work on early literacy awareness--reading is so important for a young mind!

Thanks to all my peers and my professor this term. You have inspired and motivated me and have given me the knowledge to complete this course. THANKS!!!!!!

I will finish this post with a quote of farewell--always remember:
 "Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world" Harriet Tubman


Friday, April 12, 2013

International Jobs/Roles in ECE

My sister is currently teaching in Madrid Spain. In college, she majored in Spanish and then received her master's in the art of teaching. She wanted to become more fluent so she moved to Spain. Three years later, she is still living abroad, but will be moving home to teach in Georgia next school year. It is possible to find a job internationally with an ECE background. I will explore some international organizations that appeal to me--and the jobs that would interest me (if I were young and single like my sister!).

United Nations Children's Fund orUNICEF: The early childhood education portion was of interest to me especially the early childhood education and school readiness. This would be a wonderful addition to my community of practice. UNICEF works toward school readiness three ways: "children’s readiness for school; schools’ readiness for children; and the readiness of families and communities to help children make the transition to school" (UNICEF, 2012a, para. 5). 
Luckily, UNICEF offers a listing of jobs on the website, so I started my search. France would be fun, but I couldn't find a job that appealed to me in France, so instead of focusing on the country, I focused on the job. I found a Health Specialist (specializing in Maternal, Newborn and Child Health). I understand that this job does not fit with my challenge, nor with my degree, but I love working with families and their young children. The job is located in Nigeria and one requirement is: "advocate for and influence resources for the replication of effective maternal, neonatal and child Survival interventions" (UNICEFb, 2012, para. 8).The job requires a university degree in a health field, but this area sounds so interesting! I believe educating mothers and their babies is important in the ECE field.
Save the Children: This website has a section on education--and what I found fits my challenge! The Literacy Boost program was created to "help ensure children around the world learn valuable reading skills that are key to unlocking further education and career potential" (Save the Children, 2013, para. 2). What a great resource! I would love to be a international volunteer...this isn't a paid position, but what a great experience to advocate for children! I can play, teach and read to the children of Africa, Asia, Latin America or the Middle East. No experience is necessary--but I'm sure a master's degree in ECE will be a wonderful reference :).
Association for Childhood Education International: This international resource is dedicated "to promote and support in the global community the optimal education, development, and well-being of children birth through early adolescence" Association for Childhood Education International, 2011, para. 3). This organization has created a preschool for young girls of Tanzania. My cousin is currently in Tanzania through his work with the Peace Corps. I've enjoyed his emails from his journeys and think it would be a great experience to work with preschool children of different cultures. This kind of relates to my challenge--but I'm including it because it sounds inspiring! A Reviewer seemed interesting to me---reviewers "represent teachers, teacher educators, policymakers, and school specialists. The overall mission of the coalition is to set national standards that help assure quality and credibility in preparation for professional school personnel" (Association for Childhood Education International, 2011b, para. 4). Reviewers have to have experience in education--they do not receive monetary compensation, but what a great experience!
Association for Childhood Education International. (2011a). About us. Retrieved April 12, 2013, from

Association for Childhood Education International. (2011b). NCATE. Retrieved April 12, 2013, from

Save the Children. (2013. Literacy boost. Retrieved April 12, 2013, from

United Nations Children's Fund [UNICEF].  (2012a). Early childhood education and school readiness. Retrieved April 12, 2013, from

UNICEF.(2012b). Data overview. Retrieved April 12, 2013, from PARAM=cG9zdF9pbnN0X2d1aWQ9NTE2NkZDMUFEQTYwNTJCNEUxMDAwMDAwOUU3MTBGMEYmY2FuZF90eXBlPUVYVA%3d%3d&sap-client=100&sap-language=EN&sap-accessibility=X