A day in the life of an early childhood educator – insights from the front line
For those who are working in other sectors and industries, or for those who are in school and have yet to enter the workforce, getting an understanding of what happens on a typical day in early childhood education and care (ECEC) may look like is an important part of deciding whether or not to pursue a career in this field.
The first thing to note is that no two days in ECEC are ever the same. There are so many complicating factors from the weather to the make up of the staff team, the number of children who are present, and the mood and energy of the children who are there.
Some common aspects of a day in ECEC include:
- Setting up activities for the children
- Completing programming and observations
- Dealing with challenging behaviour
- Chatting with parents and families
- Serving food
- Setting up learning environments
- Supervising children
- Following policies and procedures.
The sector is also one which is culturally and linguistically diverse, meaning there is a space for everyone.
Being able to be inclusive – whether it is in relation to cultural or linguistic diversity, or in working with children and families who have additional needs – is a core aspect of what makes ECEC educators great.
For many educators, the relationships they build with children and families are the most important aspect of their work, and what keeps them coming back.
Knowing that each and every day you are making a difference in the lives of others is also a powerful motivator, as well as knowing that when you arrive at work, the chances of having fun are high.
Children learn through play, and learn best from educators who are caring and nurturing as well as fun. Educators who are able to join in with children and interact with them will drive their learning, and the passion and enthusiasm that educators bring is contagious.
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