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The Personal Side of Bias, Prejudice, and Depression

 

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What memory do you have of an incident when you experienced bias, prejudice, and/or oppression, or witnessed someone else as the target of bias, prejudice, and/or oppression?

When I was 7 years old I wanted to have my best friend over for my birthday. I was so excited to have her come and see my dolls and share my birthday. When she arrived my father made a big deal of it and sent her home because she was African American and my father didn’t want her staying in our house. I felt horrible and wanted to go curl up in a ball in the closet and never come out. My friend didn’t understand why she couldn’t spend the night however her mother did and she said we couldn’t be friends anymore. My father told me I wasn’t ever to talk to her or anyone of her kind again and the next day our house was on the market. We sold our house a month later and moved to the suburbs where at the time very few African Americans lived. My father was very prejudiced however; I never really understood it until my 7th birthday. I promised myself that I would never belittle anyone because of what color skin they were or what language they spoke. I didn’t what to give up my friendship however; I didn’t have a choice and neither did my friend.

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In what way(s) did the specific bias, prejudice and/or oppression in that incident diminish equity?

I no longer was allowed to be friends with anyone different that I was. AT the time I I had no idea that there was a difference between my color skin and other peoples color until that incident. Was eyes were opened and it was frightening to me to realize that such prejudice excised in this world. Even though I was young at the time that incident has been a memory that has never erased and when I was married and started having my own children I had a long talk with my future husband to make sure he wasn’t prejudiced and was willing to teach our children that it didn’t matter what color our skin was or what language we spoke, everyone is unique and we accept them as they are.

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What feelings did this incident bring up for you?

I was sad and frustrated because my friend and I could no longer be friends yet I couldn’t understand why we couldn’t be friends. My parents didn’t really go into detail of why we couldn’t stay friends, just that we couldn’t stay friends because that was the way it was. What made it right? Why were we made different if we weren’t supposed to get along with one another? Of course I was born in the 60’s when life was so different yet that didn’t make it right. I am not perfect and I say the wrong thing sometimes that upsets people however; I strive to try harder and learn from my mistakes.

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What and/or who would have to change in order to turn this incident into an opportunity for greater equity?

In the society we live in we have the opportunity to change our thinking towards one another. There is still a great deal of prejudice in this world and those that are feeling it the most are the ones that need our trust and support the most. We can make a difference when we learn more about diversity and why everyone is unique individuals. Our world would be so boring if we were all the same. I am grateful for whom I am and the unique qualities I bring to society. I also am grateful that my husband and I are complete opposites because it brings joy and laughter into our home.

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Have a marvelous week!

Tammy

Practicing Awareness of Microaggressions

 

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This week we are studying microaggressions and how they affect people. A microaggression is a comment, gesture, or circumstance viewed as an ambiguous, understated, or unforeseen discrimination critical of affiliates of a sidelined minority or racial group.

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My husband and I spent Thanksgiving Day flying from Phoenix Arizona to Michigan to be with our family. The time we spent at the airport was an interesting experience.  Everyone was anxious to get to their destinations. So, as we were putting all our belongings on the conveyor belt and an older African American lady was having a hard time removing her shoes. A young Caucasian male looked at her and stated, ” you look awful old to be traveling, shouldn’t you have stayed home.” I went over to the lady and offered to help her with her shoes and she was grateful. The young man said “You should let her take care of herself.” My husband told the young man to go and get ready to board the plane. He walked away however, his statement was an intentional microaggression toward the older lady. She had done nothing to this young man she was just trying to board the flight like everyone else.

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On Friday the day after Thanksgiving My husband and I spent two days with our grandchildren in a hotel with a pool. On Friday we swam for two hours in the pool and we had the pool to ourselves for the first hour and then an African American family joined us and then a white grandfather and his younger granddaughter joined us. I was on the deep end and I watched the interaction of the children in the pool. My grandchildren joined me on the deep end and the other children stayed together on the shallow end. My oldest granddaughter who is 17 saw that the African American children were afraid of the water, so she went over and offered to walk them around the pool. At first, they seemed unsure, so she took a swim around the pool and returned. Then when she offered again the youngest girl accepted and the mom said it was OK. Then my granddaughter took her around the pool and then the other children wanted a turn. As we have been studying microaggressions this week it gave me pause to think about this scenario. My granddaughter had good intentions to help these children however; they weren’t sure how to accept her kindness. She was trying to interact with these children, yet they weren’t sure whether thy could trust her. Once they accepted her help they had a wonderful time together and all weekend we talked off and on with this family.

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I felt that both scenarios were descriptions of microaggressions. The first scenario at the airport could have been avoided. The older lady did nothing to cause the young man to call her to old to travel. There were many older people at the airport that were traveling and they all had a right to be there. Sometimes the best thing we can do is say nothing at all. That would have been good advice for this young man. My granddaughter wanted to help the children enjoy their time in the water. yet, they were not sure how to accept her kindness. She didn’t pressure them she went around the pool and then offered again. The children then accepted her invitation with the consent of their mother. As Dr. Sue talked about in the video conditions to prevent microaggressions are having a common sense of connection with one another. My granddaughter was trying to have that connection with these children. Have a marvelous week!

Tammy

Reference

Laureate Education, (2011). Microaggressions in everyday life, Retrieved from

 

https://class.waldenu.edu.

 

 

 

 

 

Perspectives on Diversity and Culture

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As I spoke to different people about culture this week I was told that culture is ‘A set of traditions, beliefs, and concepts that bind individuals together.’

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This can be seen when people who really enjoy football are joined together in football culture.

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This can also be seen when different people who really enjoy classical music such as Beethoven are joined together in classical music culture.

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Another person I interviewed talked about the importance of family in her culture. They do everything together. She was raised poor however they always were having family gatherings that were like parties where everyone danced and ate together. They didn’t have a great deal to eat yet they were happy and grateful for all they had. She said that since they moved here from Mexico she misses the family gatherings and the joy she felt. She said it was also a slower paced environment and she liked always being around family.

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Another definition I received about culture was that ‘it is a part of you and your innate beliefs.’ One thing I didn’t here as I did my interviews was about dominant culture. However; I believe the people I interviewed gave some powerful statements about culture and diversity and what they meant to them.

 

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I believe that my own definition of culture and diversity has been enhanced as I continue to think about these topics. I believe that everyone is unique and distinct individuals and our culture and diversity is a part of each of us.  My family and my faith are an innate part of me and my culture yet many other people believe in their family and their faith also. We may all do it differently however; we are all a part of a family and faith culture. I believe that we need to delve deeper into understanding every aspect of diversity and culture so we can learn and grow from one another. Have a marvelous week!

Tammy

My Family Culture

If a major catastrophe has almost completely devastated the infrastructure of my country and the government has decided that the surviving citizens will be best served if they are evacuated to other countries willing to take refugees. I and my immediate family are among the survivors of this catastrophic event. However, I don’t know where I am being sent or the details. I am told that the host country is completely different from my own, and I may have to stay permanently. I can take one change of clothing and 3 small items. What do I hold dear that I would chose to take that represents my family culture.

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I am a christian and a Mormon and I have a wonderful relationship with God who would go with me on my journey. I would communicate to him through prayer, guidance, and support. With his love I could make it through anything.

Jim

I would be grateful to take my husband with me sense he is my immediate family and he is my rock and my best friend.

The personal item I would want to take with me is my scriptures so I could read and give support to the people around me.

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 A picture of my children and grandchildren would be nice however; they are always in my mind so I would remember them with or without the picture.  There really is no third item I would need because God would give me what I need. My wonderful husband would be there to comfort me and give me a good listening ear. I am blessed beyond measure and I know I would made it through any calamity I go through.

Comfort and Hope

“Never assume that you can make it alone. You need the help of the Lord. Never hesitate to get on your knees in some private place and speak with Him.”

Gordon B. Hinckley, “Stay on the High Road,” Ensign, May 2004, 114

Retrieved from https://www.lds.org

Have a marvelous week!

Tammy

When I think of Research

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As I have gone through this journey into research I have learned that there is still so much more to learn. I feel that my life is a continuous journey into the early childhood field and I hope to always consider it a journey. We never know everything about any certain topic in in this ever changing world  early childhood is  changing from day to day. So I always want to stay abreast of the current issues and research in this ever changing field. My students and families deserve the best educational experience I can give them and that comes from my journey in the early childhood field.

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My simulation is important to the field of early childhood because many young children are malnourished and it affects their mental decision making skills and their developmental growth in learning. So this research is an essential element in learning what we as a nation can do to help alleviate hunger and malnutrition starting with our young children.

 

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If I were to conduct my simulation proposal young children and their families, policy makers, communities, head start and daycare centers, and health care organizations would benefit from my research. This is because there is a need for research on nutrition and the lack thereof in young children and why this is taking place.

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I just want to take this opportunity to thank my fellow colleagues for being here to support and give insight throughout this eight weeks. Your comments have been uplifting and respectful and I have gained a wealth of knowledge from each of your posts this semester. I wish you all the best, and hope your next eight weeks are amazing!

 

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We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today.”
– Stacia Tauscher

Retrieved from https://www.successdegrees.com.

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“Experts tell us that 90% of all brain development occurs by the age of five. If we don’t begin thinking about education in the early years, our children are at risk of falling behind by the time they start Kindergarten.”
– Robert. L. Ehrlich

Retrieved from https://www.successdegrees.com.

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I thank each of you for being wonderful examples and for sharing a wealth of knowledge and insight in this course. You are all amazing!

Your fellow colleague,

Tammy

 

Research around the World

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I have chosen to use the website http://www.earlychildhoodaustralia.org.au/ for my posting this week. I chose it because I thought it would be interesting to see how  Australia’s early childhood programs compare to the early childhood programs in the United States.

Retrieved from http://www.everyonebenefits.org.au/

One of the current international research topics was how all Australians benefit from early childhood learning experiences. The sight gave insight on how collective investments in their young child’s development will enhance their countries economy (Early Childhood Australia, 2017).

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Another research topic was ’The Early Years Learning Framework’ which is a great research resource in Australia. You can retrieve this by going to http://www.earlychildhoodaustralia.org.au/nqsplp/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/RIP0904_EYLFsample.pdf. Joy Goodfellow the author gives insight into the importance of high-quality care for all young children under the age of 5.

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 An insight I gained about the early childhood field in Australia was found in the Australian Early Development Census the “AEDC introduces a strengths based measure of early childhood development called the ‘Multiple Strength Indicator’” (AEDC, 2017). This was developed by the “Telethon Kids Institute” (AEDC, 2017). This indicator complements the information they already have obtained from the young child when they begin the school year.  A fact that I learned from this website is that Australia is the first country in the world to use this MSI. This ‘Multiple Strength Indicator’ shows the strengths of the child and in-turn  creates positive approaches for the schools, lawmakers, and communities to help children get the best start on their young life (AEDC, 2017).

 

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An extraordinary insight that I gained from this site is that Australia hardly ever asks their young children about their experiences in the early childhood program. Instead on their website they ask their parents to complete a short survey about their child early childhood program experience. (Early Childhood Australia, 2017). In the United States we ask our parent’s questions about their child’s early childhood experience in our program however I had never seen it on our website and I thought it was a great idea. It was fun to research this site and see similar results that we see here in the United States and to see research that they are using that we aren’t and why. Have a marvelous week!

Tammy

References

AEDC, (2017). Let’s talk about strengths: AEDC introduces a strengths based

          measure of early childhood development in Australia.  Retrieved from

https://www.aedc.gov.au.

Early Childhood Australia, (2017). Early Learning Everyone Benefits. Early

          Childhood Management Services, Retrieved from

http://www.everyonebenefits.org.au.

 

 

Research that Benefits Children and Families

My son David suffers from severe Asthma and has from the time he was born. He was in the hospital more than home his first five years of life. He was there so much that they kept his name on the door. This isn’t how any child wants to spend their life however; my son took it in stride and made jokes about it as he grew up. However, I will never forget when he was fifteen and had only been out of the hospital for a week and my daughter was celebrating her birthday at the skating rink. David wanted to go and told me that I couldn’t keep him in a bubble forever. He know he could die yet he still wanted to live. I cried and let him go to celebrate with his sister. He had a wonderful time however when he arrived home he was having a severe asthma attack so I gave him an injection and he continued to get worse. On top of that it was snowing hard and it was hard to see when you drove so my husband took him to the hospital and I stayed home with my children and my daughters friends. This was hard because I always went to the hospital with David. The drive was horrible and my son went into unconsciousness on the way to the hospital. My husband was afraid he would die yet he couldn’t drive faster. When they arrived at the hospital David wasn’t breathing and they had to incubate. He was revived however, the doctors said he was in critical condition and they weren’t sure if he would make it. When my son woke up he asked for me and my husband called me and let me talk to him. He asked me to write out want he wanted done at his funeral. He told me that he loved me and he wanted me to be happy.

David made it through the night and his pulmonologist came to see him the next morning and told us of a new drug that was in a research study and David was a good candidate to be in the study. He felt that it was a chance to see if David responded to the drug and could help his asthma improve. We talked to David about it and he was willing to try it. He was on a participant in the study for one year and within that time we saw a complete change for the better in our son’s health. He went down from 15 medications to 4 medications and was able to resume his life. The drug made it through the trial and study and was approved and is today being used on children with moderate to severe asthma as a preventative. Normally it is only used on young children however; my son was an exception to the role. David is still on this medication today and he is the proud father of three children and has a wonderful wife named Trish. I thank God every day that my son’s pulmonologist thought of David for this trial study.

 

My family means everything to me and I thank God every day that David is here with us.

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Have a marvelous week!

Tammy

My Personal Research Journey

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I have chosen to research poverty in young children of the state of Arizona where I now reside. I moved to Phoenix Arizona this summer and I am an early childhood educator in the Head Start Program. My children and families mean the world to me and I want to learn more about poverty so I can advocate for the early childhood families and community I serve in. I have worked in the early childhood field for 20 years and have watched young children and their families suffer because of low or no income and poverty. It hurts me to see the devastation that families go through because they don’t feel adequate as a parent because of their lack of education and knowledge. They just want to make ends meet for their families yet many times they feel hopeless because they don’t see a way out.

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Subtopic 1: How are young children affected educationally or social/emotionally when their home has more than 10 people living together? This is a real dilemma in Arizona. I visited several families who have their family and their extended family living within one home or apartment. There were mattresses against the walls and there were no more than one or two rooms and a bathroom. There are many emigrants in Arizona and they are just trying to keep a roof over their head and have food to eat. There is a wonderful website called “Homeward Bound” where they are making a difference in Arizona by helping families make a change in their lives from being homeless.  There data for the year 2016 was amazing. They served 410 of which 147 were adults and 263 were children. Out of those 147 adults 80% now earn a steady income and 69% graduated and received permanent living accommodations.  I encourage you to go to this site and read more about their amazing work they are doing (Homeward Bound, 2017). Children who live in poverty are more apt to fall behind in school. Children who live in big households are more susceptible to health related hazards which can lead to sporadic attendance in school. (Driscoll, Nagel, 2010)

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Subtopic 2: Explore the differences in kindergarten readiness between children in Head Start versus children not in child care. One of the sites I will be researching on kindergarten readiness is “Rhode Island Kids Count” where there were 17 states that from the years 2001 through 2004 that developed an all-inclusive set of school readiness indicators to give a course of action that benefited young children and their families (Roade Island kids count, 2005). I chose this website because Arizona was one of the states that participated in the study. There is also a wealth of information to study on this site.

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Subtopic 3: Nutrition

Many young children fight malnutrition around the world. Yet we can even find young children in our own communities that are suffering from malnutrition. As an early childhood educator I even see it in my own classroom. Children aren’t eating right and many times are lacking the nutritional value in foods that help a body grow big and healthy. Why is this happening in our communities and throughout the world. One of the websites I plan on researching is Orphan Nutrition who recognizes the need of proper nutrition is critical to a child’s growth and development (Orphan Nutrition, 2017). I will also research UNICEF USA and their website on childhood malnutrition because they work with families and children all over the world that are suffering from malnutrition.

A few days ago Samba Keita, 8 months, was in intensive treatment of severe malnutrition in URENI of Kangaba hospital. Today, he is completely healed.

Retrieved from https://www.unicefusa.org/mission/survival/nutrition

As I continue on my personal journey of researching poverty this next 6 weeks, I encourage each of you to feel free to share resources and stories on poverty and its effects on young children and families. Each of us early childhood educators has knowledge and experiences to share. I look forward to hearing from each of you. I am excited to continue on my quest and learning how to research and gain knowledge so I can advocate for the families I serve. Have a marvelous week!

Tammy

                                                                         References

Homeward Bound, (2017). Creating pathways out of poverty. Retrieved from

https://homewardboundaz.org.

Driscoll, A., Nagel, N.G., (2010) Paenting and families. Poverty and the effects on

                        children and parents, Retrieved from education.com.

Rhode Island Kids Count, (2005). Getting ready. The school readiness indicators

                        initiative: A 17 state partnership, Retrieved from

http://www.rikidscount.org/IssueAreas/EarlyLearningampDevelopment

/GettingReady.

 

Orphan Nutrition, (2017). A child’s best start. Understanding malnutrition.

Retrieved  from http://www.orphannutrition.org/about-us/about-

a-childs-best-start.

UNICEF USA, (2017). Child survival. UNICEF works to give kids a healthy start,

Retrieved from https://www.unicefusa.org/mission/survival/nutrition.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Collaborative Leaning Community Final Blog

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Hello early childhood educators around the world. As we come full circle together to this final week of this semester I feel immensely grateful for the knowledge and insight I have gained from each of you. I could go back through each of your blog’s, and posts and share different things each of you have taught me this semester however, I feel that wouldn’t truly justify the impact you have made on my life. I have had an extraordinary eight weeks. My family moved to Arizona, I started a new job in Phoenix for the Head Start Program which I love, and I had this course with each of you and our marvelous professor Dr. Nigel. We are each here because we believe in early childhood and what it stands for. Thank You for supporting and teaching in the early childhood field. You are needed and appreciated more then you know! Have an outstanding fall semester!

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Three consequences I have gained about in the international early childhood field for my professional development are:

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  • My personal awareness viewpoint has expanded this semester as I have studied and communicated with people from other countries. I have been blessed with a great wealth of knowledge that I have gained with new colleagues that are from other countries that I now work with on a daily basis. As I communicate with them on a daily basis the one thing that stands out to me is that family is important. They don’t care about how much money they earn, or what kind of clothes they wear, or how many people are living in their home, they care about the love and support they receive from their family. I also have a firm belief in family and how important my own family is to me. Yet, many of these wonderful colleagues are separated from their mom’s, dads, grandparents, sisters and brothers, because they live in the United States. When they talk about their family they talk about the cherished memories from home and their favorite meals, or their favorite place to go. They talk about having big family gatherings where there was very little food yet so much love to go around. They talk about mom being home when they get home from school and she always gave a listening ear. They talk about dancing together and sharing music from their culture. I issues and trends I have received from these awesome colleagues is that wealth doesn’t come from money and material goods it comes from the heart. I will always cherish the insight I have gained from these marvelous people.

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  • My local viewpoint has changed professionally this semester as I have studied and talked to fellow colleagues about health conditions, poverty, homelessness, and lack of food and water in other countries. These are issues and trends that I have taken for granted in the United States because even though I have lived in poverty and had no health insurance for my children when they were young. There were other resources that I found to help me face these issues. My son David had severe Asthma and lived in and out of the hospital and we had no insurance which was very costly. I found a wonderful organization called the Mott Foundation that ran Mott Children’s health Center. I was accepted and went there for free medical care for my children. The doctor would have me bring my son and other two children to the clinic when they opened and have us stay until they closed at 7pm so David could receive breathing treatments every two hours. This kept him out of the hospital and helped my husband and I not go into further dept for hospital and childcare costs. There was also a food commodity that provided free cheese which was a wonderful staple to my family. The WIC program was also a great benefit to my children and I throughout my pregnancies and my children’s first five years. I received milk, cereal, peanut butter, and juice for myself and children. As I researched and talked top colleagues about their countries these programs don’t exist. UNICEF is a marvelous organization that is working toward helping children have a future. They provide food, immunizations, health care, and protection from harm. This is costly and there is so much more they can do with our support.

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  • My final consequence of issues and trends that I have obtained about the International Early childhood field for my personal development is that I can be an advocate with other early childhood educators around the world and write letters to my congressmen. I can be a voice about the poverty and living conditions of children throughout the world and in my own community. I can volunteer for these organizations in my community to help alleviate hunger and homelessness. I can speak out at conferences and with business people in the community about the importance of early childhood and the need to help all children receive an education so they can have a future. I can make a difference and so can you. We just need to have a willing heart.

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Fellow colleagues,

I thank you for your insight and experiences you have shared with me this semester. I feel invigorated as I continue forth on my path toward my Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Studies. I wish each of you a joyous fall semester as each of you continues on your journey towards your Master’s Degree in the Early Childhood Field. Have a marvelous week!

Tammy

Professional Goals, Hopes and Dreams

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Issues early childhood educators face in Arizona:

Some of the issues we face regarding quality and early childhood professionals are the lack of education and the resources available to fund the overall needs in the early childhood field. In Arizona we have Quality First which “is an effort that significantly improved the quality of many – but not all – early childhood care and education centers and family childcare homes, through a rating system, increasingly sophisticated feedback and incentives. The program also uses scholarships to make early care affordable for some youngsters.”

Retrieved from http://aztownhall.org/resources/Documents/103EarlyEducationFinalReportweb.pdf.

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“The government has an important role to create an aspirational environment of leadership for the overall system of high-quality early care and education by providing regulatory oversight, coordination, vision, and funding. Ideally, federal, state, county, school district, city, and town governments and tribal governments work together to set goals for early childhood education in the state in order to sew Arizona’s patchwork system into a cohesive quilt. The Arizona Constitution requires that the Legislature provide a general and uniform public education system. As such, the government should prioritize early childhood care and education, striving to make it accessible to all residents, and the community should encourage these goals and stress their importance. Overall, a more targeted role is needed at all levels of government to create a full continuum of care from pre-birth to adulthood.”

Retrieved from http://aztownhall.org/resources/Documents/103EarlyEducationFinalReportweb.pdf.

As I just moved to Arizona 6 weeks ago I am very interested in the issues that we face here in Arizona as early childhood educators. These are some of the issues that are important in all states however, it is wonderful to know that Arizona is committed to bringing about change in the way they support the early childhood program.

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One opportunity for professional development in Arizona is:

We have the Arizona Registry that gives early childhood educators the opportunity to share their experience and education and allows others to see your job experience and education. “The Arizona Early Childhood Workforce Registry (Registry) is a web-based system that enables early childhood professionals and those interested in a career in early education to find and register for professional development opportunities and also to keep a record of their experience, education, professional development and credentials in a central location. It is also used to manage application and enrollment in First Things First College Scholarships for Early Childhood Professionals.” Retrieved from http://www.azearlychildhood.org.

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Another opportunity for professional development in Arizona:

There is also CDAClass.org.  Which is an “online program meets and exceeds the Council for Professional Recognition’s standards for CDA coursework.” This program is available to all interested early childhood staff and the Arizona Registry has scholarships for these classes that if you live in Arizona you can apply for them. Arizona registry also has scholarships to help with education of college in the early childhood field if you are within the income level. Retrieved from CDAClass.org.

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Some of my professional goals are:

  • To continue my education to receive my Masters Degree in Early Childhood.
  • Live by and uphold the NAEYC standards. (Found at naeyc.org)
  • Always be willing to learn and grow in the early childhood field.
  • Support my families and the children I serve.
  • Support my colleagues and the program I represent.
  • Continue to research and study the theorists and studies conducted on early childhood.
  • Be professional in all I do and say.

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Some of my hopes, dreams and challenges are:

  • Teaching classes to future early childhood educators.
  • Stay focused on loving and supporting the families I serve.
  • Continuing to work for Head Start and help bring joy to the community I live in through service and dedication.
  • Continue on toward my doctorate once I complete my Master’s Degree.
  • Health is always a challenge however since I have lost 100 pounds this year my energy and health have improved 100%.

God is my strength and my refuge with his help I can succeed. Have a marvelous week!

Tammy