Saturday, March 31, 2012

Research in Australia

This week, we were instructed to look at the issues of early childhood internationally. I decided to look at Australia to see what issues Australian children and child care providers face. One positivie issue is one of childcare reform. 
As of January 1st Australia mandated one child care worker to every four babies. Hope is that this reform will provide higher quality of care and child care professionals will develop special bonds with these babies (Early Childhood Australia, 2012).
An interesting story I found on the website related to children's stress and anxiety when starting school. All children experience stress on their first day of school. I would stress about my outfit, would I still fit in with my friends, would my teacher be mean,etc. Even young children experience stress--especially when they have only been with mom or dad since birth. The website gave some great tips to help their child overcome stress of the first day of school. I think these tips would help American children too--check out the link:

This website features useful, interesting information on early childhood. Although it is designed for Australian families/professionals does not mean it can't be a good resource for American professionals/families. Our Preschool center sends out a weekly newsletter with early childhood information attached. This website may become a great resource for me!

Early Childhood Australia. (2012). January 2012--Media release--Biggest reform of Australian childcare begins today. Retrieved March 31, 2012, from

Early Childhood Australia. (2012).  January 2011--Tips to minimise stress during your child's first year at school. Retrieved March 31, 2012, from


Christine said...

I picked Austalia, too, mostly because I am dying to visit. I found the website interesting and was impressed with the reforms they implemented this year. I think there is a lot to be learned from erly childhood professionals in Australia.

Julia said...

Hi Rebekah,

Your post brought back memories of my own first day of school. Because my birthday was in December, I started first grade when I was five. There was no kindergarten or preschool. On the first day of school, I rode the bus with my two older sisters. The bus was late and since my sisters were in different grades, they entered the school through different doors. My sister left me in the schoolyard and pointed to a door, saying "You go in there." I remember standing in that huge playground looking up at the gigantic brick building and feeling completely lost. There were people everywhere, but no one noticed me. I saw a very tall man and figured that he must be the principal--I had heard my sisters talk about Mr. Hyatt--the principal. I remember trying to be brave and looking up and asking him if he was the principal. The man bent down and kindly said, "No dear, I'm not." Then I started to cry. Before long, a woman came and took me by the hand and led me into the school. Funny how that memory is so fresh and it was in 1959!

Ginny said...

I have enjoyed learning about this organization since our last class. It has a lot of professional learning tools and as you mentioned the resources for handling stress in children. Even though I a teacher now I still can't sleep the night before the first day of school. This also includes when I am going back after a long break. I think of all sorts of things that night. It's funny how that stress has not changed. Many children as we know coming away from mom or dad is a very stressful event. Our new principal came to us first as an assistant principal. We had a new principal that year also. He had decided that kindergarten parents would not be aloud to walk their child to their classroom on the first day of school. You can only imagine the tears shed by parents and children. I was sad for them. I turned to the assist. principal and told her how I thought it was sad she said I would have to toughen up. I hated feeling the way I felt about that I I truly hurt for those parents who were having to break that promise of "don't worry I'm going to walk you to meet your teacher", then they didn't get too. Would stress it must have been for those children.
Just thought I would share that story with you. If you haven't subscribed to webwatch on the ECA website it is a really good publication.

Patricia Robinson said...

I researched this site as well and it has a lot topics and research that can be used at the beginning of the school year. The topic of stress will be most helpful since when students enter into our kindergarten or preschool center they will bring a lot of stress with them such as who will take care of me, fear, and a need to survive by trying to run away or out of the building. I am hoping this article will give us lots of suggestions.