Featuring Dr Jacqueline Chung, ECDA Fellow and Senior Principal and Academic Director of St James’ Church Kindergarten; Ms Rebecca Han, ECDA Fellow and Senior Programme Specialist of Busy Bees – Odyssey the Global Preschool; and Dr May See, ECDA Fellow and Senior General Manager of MY World Preschool.
While teaching resources, facilities and methods are important; do you know that teachers are the most crucial factor in providing quality preschool education?
Meet three of our Early Childhood educators, who see the importance in nurturing the professional development of our teachers, alongside the growth of our children.
Here are three tips on guiding our teachers in their professional growth:
“Leaders need to have clear beliefs, strong values and sharp minds.”
Dr Jacqueline Chung believes that leaders ought to have these three items with them:
A map, a hiking stick and a torch light.
Having ‘map’ – or knowing yourself, your end-goal in mind and the steps you have to take – would give them clarity in their actions; a ‘hiking stick’ – or a set of values – would keep them grounded despite things happening around them; and lastly a ‘torch-light’ – or a sharp mind – that is essential in the field of education.
These would help guide educators in their journey to nurture young minds.
- “When teachers are inspired and given opportunities to become mentors, they expand their influence, and build themselves and others up.”
In turn, Ms Rebecca Han believes that good leadership begins with mentoring.
“Mentoring has always been dear to my heart. It gives me great joy to know that I have made a positive impact in the lives of teachers I worked with, and witnessed these teachers moved on to mentor other teachers,” shared Ms Han.
Through mentoring, teachers learn to design high quality programmes, improve their teaching practices and are able to pass on their knowledge and teaching skills to others; creating a community of teachers that are constantly encouraging and helping one another grow.
- “Recruitment and Retention work hand in hand. Talent would only stay if we nurture, care and appreciate them.”
For Dr May See, being able to retain teachers is as important as recruiting the right teachers.
“Recruitment is pointless if measures are not taken to retain these recruits,” said Dr See. “Teachers ought to have a mentor that they can seek advice and support from when things get tough.”
Having a good support system would then encourage teachers to preserve when times are tough; and in this way, a strong body of professionals would be formed to nurture our children to their fullest potential.
About ECDA Fellows
The ECDA Fellows are a select group of exemplary early childhood professionals with high levels of leadership and professional expertise. The sector as a whole benefit from their extensive experience and deep expertise. The ECDA Fellows work closely with ECDA to train and mentor other early childhood professionals. They will also develop sector-wide resources for professional development, curriculum leadership and sector partnerships.