Early Childhood Educators’ Professional Development at McKernan Child Development Centre

What are YOUR plans for Early Childhood Educators’ Professional Development Day? This year, McKernan Child Development Centre hosted their ECE PD Day events in September!  

On Friday, September 20, the McKernan Child Development Centre team and Community of Learners partners took part in “Action Research: It Sounds So Scary” with Beverly Dietze. This full day workshop answered questions such as: Why Action Research? Why do the words Action Research sound so scary? Why is the topic becoming prevalent in early childhood education?  Where do I begin? Where do we begin as a team?

Participants were introduced to principles of action research and how the process can provide a new lens to discover how children embrace their indoor and outdoor environments, their sense of curiosity, play, learning, and development. Using a variety of action research strategies, participants explored ways to capture action research, document the process, include children in the process, examine the findings that shed light on what the story is telling us, and determine how pedagogy and action research support quality programming.

On Saturday, September 21, MCDC hosted another session with Beverly Dietze. Thirty-two CAFRA directors and members attended “Cultivating Change Processes and Advancing Practices = Staff Renewal.” This session explored the questions: Why is change so challenging?  How are plans for change rolled out?  What happens if the change process is not done correctly?  What leadership skills are necessary? Why do some staff embrace it and others find it hard to adjust? How do I coach and support change?

New research, curriculum frameworks, and emerging ways of knowing are causing change to early learning programs and practices. But, going through change can either be rocky for and with staff or be the impetus for cultivating new areas of staff curiosity and renewal. This workshop introduced the theory of change followed by the examination of leadership skills and strategies to support the change process in teams with diverse generations, cultures, skills and talents. Using a variety of examples, participants engaged in thought-provoking discussions that provided insight into how staff can be empowered to embrace change and gain a sense of renewal through the change process. 

If you haven’t shared your ECE PD Day plans yet, please send them to Vicki at admin@cafra.ca so we can share them on the website. It doesn’t matter if you have room to host other attendees – just let us know how you are promoting ECE PD Day! Feel free to share photos and reports about your day as well and we will post them on our website.

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