17 Mar A Day in the Life of an Early Childhood Educator
Today was another wonderful day at work. I started on an Early Shift today- I love starting early, and no it’s not just because I leave earlier, it is mostly because it gives me the opportunity to plan for the day and have the activities ready for the children who find it difficult to settle on arrival.
Today I was assigned as the floater- it’s pretty challenging to have to move around all 3 rooms but I do enjoy it. First I started in the babies room (my favourite) the babies were quite content today, except on first arrival (as expected). We had a few crying babies, one in particular never stopped crying for almost an hour. I tried so many different ways to settle her: I rocked her, I tried to distract her with photos, I used activities she liked- it felt like it took forever! But when I finally got her to settle, it was the most beautiful moment, and all of the past events were long gone from my memory. Later that morning I took all the babies for a group time experience and we sang a very popular children’s song called open, shut them– the reaction on their faces throughout was very funny and I could tell they did enjoy it – some children pulled faces and raised their hands really high when I demonstrated the hand actions. I decided to explore the music concept ‘tempo’ – they thought it was hilarious when I sang it really fast and they couldn’t stop laughing.
After spending the morning with the babies, I was moved over to the pre-schoolers. By now, it was almost time for lunch, I spent time on the floor helping some children construct a space ship- it is amazing to see how developed children are at this age- they were following step by step photo instructions and hardly needed my assistance, it was lovely to see them working as a team. Every now and then I would scaffold their learning by working alongside giving verbal prompts. At 12, the Room Leader reminded children ‘’it’s nearly time for lunch boys and girls” about 5 minutes later I started to sing the pack away song whilst prompting the children to join- it goes something like this: Everybody pack away, pack away, pack away. Everybody pack away, just like… then you insert a child’s name in. There was one little boy who continued to play and did not seem to want to listen to me, so I started to praise other children around him, soon enough he was also packing away- it’s amazing what a little recognition does.
Lastly, I moved across to the toddler’s room. By this time toddlers were going down for a nap. I sat down next to 2 children (one of which was known to be difficult to get down to sleep). He got up and began to jump on his bed, I asked him nicely to lie down however, he ignored this and continued to jump and sing. There were certain strategies the mother had asked us to apply however, as I was not a permanent staff, I was not fully aware of these- I asked the Room Leader and she told me that he would need his special bunny – it was a little difficult (actually, very difficult) but eventually I got him to sleep. I need to work on applying certain behaviour management skills with children, but I think in time I will be okay. Thank goodness I am studying my CHC30113 Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care! I think if I didn’t have any prior theoretical knowledge I would be stepping inside this industry blind. I hope one day I will gain the confidence to take on more of a management role and do my Diploma- but until then, I need some extra work.