Saturday, October 19, 2013

Time Well Spent







Three deeply felt learning’s from this program:

1.)    I have learned what impact teachers can truly make on the lives of children and families. I have learned that teachers have their challenging days, just as everyone else but that the job of a teacher is rewarding and can be a lot of hard work but fun too.

2.)    I have learned that it’s important to always keep up to date with new information/knowledge/statistics about children, schools, child development, etc. It’s important to always do research and find out the latest information on the important topics so you can stay up to date; that’s part of being an effective teacher.

3.)    I have learned how important it is to be an effective communicator. In order to be an effective teacher, you must be willing and know how to communicate effectively because communication is a huge part of every teacher’s career. We must know how to socialize and work with parents and know how to speak to them so there are no misunderstandings.


One long term goal:


1.)    My long-term goal is to become familiar with new state regulations, legislation, laws, etc to effectively maintain compliance with federal and state regulations.


Farewell message to my Instructor:


Dr Teri: You have been a wonderful instructor, always willing to help and answer questions as needed. You have contributed to my knowledge and learning over the last eight weeks and I have truly enjoyed being in your class. I want to express my gratitude for your dedication and passion in what you do. You have encouraged me to want to work towards all my goals and dreams and I’m really looking forward to my future. Thank you for everything and best of luck with your endeavors. 


Farewell message to my Colleagues:

Hello fellow classmates and friends! I just wanted to take a few minutes to let you know how much I have learned from each of you. I appreciate those who have taken the time to read my discussions, blog posts, and commented. It really means a lot! I’m SO excited to be at the finish line and to take a giant leap towards my career as a future teacher. All of you have helped me get here and thank you so much for that!


MY WORDLE:


MY PHOTO:
My Contact Information:
Stacy Perry
865-207-2569
Southernbelletn85@yahoo.com

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Jobs/Roles in the ECE Community: Internationally

International Bullying Prevention Association 
"The mission of the International Bullying Prevention Association is to support and enhance quality research based bullying prevention principles and best practices in order to achieve a safe school climate, healthy work environment, good citizenship and civic responsibility." (2013)
The website did not have any links, resources, or information regarding job opportunities but if I worked for the Association I would want to be a sponsor and help in anyway that I could. I would also attend as many Webinars as often as I could.
The skills and experience that I would need to competently fulfill each of these roles is to be reliable, good with people, good communication skills, like to travel, and must be willing to learn.

Violence Prevention Works! Safer Schools, Safer Communities.
Home of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program.
The website for this program has a lot of useful and helpful information on it for children and parents. It has many links such as:  Recognizing Bullying, Warning signs of bullying, Impact of Bullying, and it offers bullying prevention resources. 

The website/program does not offer job opportunities on the website but it would be neat to maybe work in the funding department or even the professional education department helping children and possibly offering them therapy (For children who have been bullied.)

The skills and experience that I would need to competently fulfill each of these roles is to: Be open minded, have effective communication skills, be good with money, be honest, and love helping others. I must also be educated.

I love this program because it really promotes people helping people and people all around getting involved. It offers a support plan, talks about the widespread problem.  There are ways to help but like the other websites above, it does not list job opportunities available. I'd like to help with the campaign part of this program, possibly go to schools and be a motivational speaker.

The skills and experience I would need to competently fulfull each of those roles is be educated on bullying, the affects it has on children and families, be willing to travel, communicate well, and want to make a difference.



References
International bullying prevention association. (2013). Retrieved from http://www.stopbullyingworld.org/index.php/about-ibpa-28
Plan, learn without fear. (2013). Retrieved from https://plan-international.org/learnwithoutfear
Bullying is a serious issue . (2013). Retrieved from http://www.violencepreventionworks.org/public/index.page 




Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Jobs/Roles in the ECE Community: National/Federal Level



1.)    The National Bullying Prevention Center
I chose this National organization because it has a lot of excellent information and resources on their website. It offers videos, stories, news, and websites for children/parents, and it also has a petition. There is a link on the website that offers a list of Community events as well. They even offer run, walk, and roll events across the county. It’s a wonderful website that helps bring people together within communities and make something negative into something positive.

The National Bullying Prevention Center has many job opportunities available. Some jobs that are being offered that interest me are: ICAN- which is motivational speaking, blue shirt day and unity day. I’d also be interested in being a part of the Youth Crisis line and the Committee for Children.

The skills and experience I would need to competently fulfill each of the roles above would be to have experience working with people, being a good communicator, having a positive outlook on life/experiences, and have interpersonal skills.



2.)    Stomp Out Bullying- A National Anti-Bullying and Cyber Bullying Organizations for Kids and Teens
I chose this National organization because it’s popular, has very informative information and plenty of resources for parents/teachers/children regarding bullying. My favorite thing about this website is that it offers a link titled “Ways to Help” and it shows pictures of actors/actresses stomping out bullying by them being a part of the organization which is wonderful and inspirational to see. This website offers a helpline for children/teens that need it. “Stomp Out Bullying works to reduce and prevent bullying, cyber bullying, and other forms of abuse in schools and online communities across the country.” (McGowan, 2013)

The National Anti-Bullying and Cyber Bullying Organization did not list any job opportunities on their website but there are a few jobs I’d love to be a part of. I would love to be a part of the teen/youth line to give advice to the youth on bullying and to make a difference.

The skills and experience I would need to competently fulfill each of the roles above would be great communication skills, getting along with others, being educated on the topic of bullying, and be willing to speak to children about their personal feelings, thoughts, ideas, etc.



3.)    Stars: Nashville: Students Taking a Right Stand: “STARS exists to serve schools and communities by providing prevention, intervention and treatment services addressing bullying, substance abuse, violence and social and emotional barriers to success.” (Helix, 2013) This seems like a great organization that has such a wonderful and inspiring purpose. I like the organization helps with many other things and is not limited to just bullying.

On the website they do offer a link to apply for employment. The positions available depend on each state. I clicked on “Corporate Office” positions and there were none available. It didn’t seem like they had many positions open even though they offered that link on the website to apply for a job.

If any job opportunities were available, the skills and experience I would need to competently fulfill each of the roles would be to: Have experience working with people, must have great communication skills, be educated on the topics they serve in and be willing to make a difference in the lives of others.



References

National bullying prevention center. (2012). Retrieved from http://www.pacer.org/bullying/
McGowan, J. (23, August 2013). Stomp out bullying. Retrieved from stompoutbullying.org
Helix, S. (2013, September 24). Students taking a right stand. Retrieved from http://starsnashville.org/






Saturday, September 14, 2013

Exploring Roles in the ECE Community: Local and State Levels




First, I'm interested in learning more about the Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. Their vision is to support those that are disabled and that live in the state of Tennessee to live rewarding and fulfilling lives. Their mission is "Through person centered practices, persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities experience optimal health as a cornerstone for quality of life." (Payne, 2013) This organization offers many services in order for disabled people to live in quality homes, be employed, develop meaningful relationships and it teaches them how to become a part of the community in which they live. It seems like a very positive and helpful organization. Through the website, training is available. I would be interested in working with children and/or adults with disabilities. The website didn't list qualities that were important for the job but a few I'd say would be important before getting hired are: Honesty, leadership skills, and reliability.

The second organization that I'd like to learn more about is The National Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health. (Tennessee voices for Children)  "TVC has progressed to become a statewide and national source of referral, support, and advocacy for families and the systems that serve them." (2013) A big part of TVC's mission is to make the public aware, educate the public, provide training to the public and give technical assistance to communities statewide. Under the "Volunteer Opportunities" link on the website, there were none available. This was another website that also provides training. I think it would be fun to be a child's voice, to make a difference, and to help in the community in anyway I can to support children and families. In order to fulfill any job here you would have to be educated, have a love for people, be able to communicate and like to volunteer.


The third Organization that appears to get my interest is The Tennessee School of the Deaf. The purpose of this school/organization is to provide children an educational program. "Students are equipped academically, vocationally, physically, emotionally and morally to meet the daily challenges presented by society." The website had many tools and resources along with many links to click but there was no option that had information about jobs. It would be neat to work with children who are deaf, especially since I'm new at learning sign language recently. What a rewarding job that would be!In order to have any position in this field  you would have to know sign language, have experience with children/families, and have a love for all types of people/children.



References:
Payne, D. (2013). Department of intellectual and developmental disabilities. Retrieved from http://www.tn.gov/didd
Children's mental health week. (2013). Retrieved from http://www.tnvoices.org/events/childrens-mental-health-week 
Tennessee school for the deaf. (2013). Retrieved from http://www.tsdeaf.org/


Friday, August 23, 2013

Reflecting on Learning

 My most passionate hope for my future as an early childhood professional and for the children and families with whom I will work with is to truly make a difference. I want to have a beautiful, safe, secure, positive classroom environment for my students. I want to promote diversity and culture in my classroom too. I want to create a curriculum for my students that will be anti-biased. I will make a good point to let my students know they are loved and cared about and can talk to me about anything if they feel the need. I want parents and families to feel welcome in the class anytime. I want to have a good solid foundation set for my students and families. I want to have great communication with both and encourage that all throughout the year. I want the centers in my classrooms to be educational, fun, and positive. I want to make a difference! That's my goal!

I want to thank my colleagues and friends for taking the time to always stop by to read my blogs and to comment. It truly means a lot to me and I hope my blogs have been informative for you and I wish you the best in all your endeavors!



Saturday, August 17, 2013

Impacts on Early Emotional Development

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  • Share with your colleagues the area of the world you chose and why: Latin America and the Carribean: Barbados. I chose this because I'm unfamiliar with this part of the world and I'm interested in knowing more about it; even if it's just a little bit. I also chose Barbados because my husband's family travels there for vacation a lot and they seem to really enjoy it there.
  • Describe in detail some of the challenges that children in this region of the world are confronting: From researching this I found out that a lot of families struggle with poverty here. The abuse of children is a big problem, children with disabilities and sexual diseases are a concern. Crime and drugs are also a big concern in Barbados and so is education. I'm amazed at how many concerns there are for children and families in this part of the world."Child vulnerability caregivers in all three countries were more concerned about education than anything else." (Johnson, 2006)
  • Explain how these experiences might have an effect on children’s emotional wellbeing and development: These types of challenges can and will effect children tremendously. It can effect their mind-set, their behavior, the way they speak/communication, it can effect their self esteem, how they do in school, it can effect their social skills, and change who they are completely. "While not designed to measure the prevalence of child sexual abuse, the study highlighted an alarming picture of a social problem which is perceived to be escalating; has increasingly severe consequences for Caribbean societies; and has multiple layers." (Knight, 2009)
  • Include a personal and professional reflection. Explain the insights you gained and the influences they may have on you as a person and as an early childhood professional: Personally, I think it's a shame that so many children and families have to suffer and live in such a way that effects them a great deal. It's heart-breaking. These types of stories and information inspires me to want to help others as much as I possibly can. It makes me want to be a wonderful and positive role model for my students and support the families anyway I know how. With that being said, I made a donation to the UNICEF website to help children. It always makes me feel great to know I helped and made a difference!
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  • Reference:
  • Johnson, T. (2006). A study of child vulnerability in barbados, st. lucia and st. vincent & the grenadines. UNICEF, 4. Retrieved from http://www.unicef.org/barbados/cao_resources_vulnerability.pdf

    Knight, P. (2009). Unicef study unmasks child sexual abuse in eastern caribbean. UNICEF, Retrieved from http://www.unicef.org/infobycountry/media_51931.html



     

Saturday, August 10, 2013

The Sexualization of Early Childhood

Sexualization of early childhood is a sensitive topic for many. I could write about my opinion on this all day. I think that young children are being exposed to a lot of sexual images, TV, movies, and children are being exposed to sexualized material everyday. I think it's a shame that the world has come to this. As a parent, I find it frustrating that I can't leave my own TV on in my house for background noise because there are filthy languaged commercial, violence, provocative scenes from movies/tv shows, etc. These messages that young children are getting starting from such an early age are so demeaning. 
 
I want to make clear how important it is to realize that there is a big difference between sexualization and sexuality. " Sexualization is treating other people and oneself as an object of desire, with their value primarily from sex appeal and physical attractiveness." (Shewmaker, 2013)
 
 

From my personal experience, three examples that illustrate the exposure of young children to a highly sexualized environment: 1.) There are many TV shows that expose sexual dance moves. For example: On the music video channel, "Dance Moms" or even the TV show titled "Toddlers and Tiaras." 2.) Children start watching tv at a young age and from the media they are exposed to many wrong messages. "According to research experts, 90% of a child’s brain develops during the first five years of childhood." (Leung, 2010) 3.) Lyrics on TV such as "I like big butts and I can not lie."

The implications this may have on children's healthy development: I honestly think that children are being exposed to too much sexual and violent things which affects who they are, I think it changes them and not always for the better. I think if more parents were involved in their children's life and were able to sit down with their children to discuss what they are seeing on TV and why, children wouldn't be so confused about it. In today's society, so many children have TV's in their room and what they watch is never monitored and they have no limit as to how much TV they can watch. I feel like if adults were to have very open and age appropriate discussions with their children/students about these topics, it would help the children understand the importance of self respect and how important it is to respect others. I think it's important for parents/families to communicate with the teachers and to keep that open line of communication open so they are both on the same page about things. ""We must change the world our children live in," Kilbourne said. Children are being taught sex education in schools, but this sex education is not necessarily the right kind nor correct." (Haight, 2008)

I always knew sexualization of early childhood has been really bad but I don't think I ever realized how bad it was. Watching some videos I found online and reading the many articles I did, I realized what a huge issue it is for society. The media is one of the biggest problems and why we have to deal with all this.





References:
Shewmaker, J. (2013, January 22). [Web log message]. Retrieved from http://jennifershewmaker.com/2013/01/22/what-is-sexualization-anyway/
Leung, M. (2010, April 29). Sponge like brain. Retrieved from http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/exchange/node/7240 
Haight, A. (2008). Kilbourne and levin blame media for early sexualization. The Simmons Voice, 1. Retrieved from http://www.thesimmonsvoice.com/kilbourne-and-levin-blame-media-for-early-sexualization-1.2419085

Friday, August 2, 2013

Evaluating Impacts on Professional Practice



We are all going to experience "ism(s) in our own life. I have been around several people in the past who have been racist and it was very hard for me to listen to and watch specific behavior. Growing up, one of my parents were racist and I was told that I was not allowed to have "Black" friends and that I was never allowed to bring a "Black" man home to date. I was never racist, I love all people regardless of the color of their skin. As a professional, I will not have tolerance for racism in my classroom. I think every educator will encounter children/families that have racial viewpoints. It is important we learn how to deal with those types of situations. Racism has always divided people and it continues to do so. As an anti-bias professional- one of my goals will be to embrace diversity and to teach diversity in my classroom. I want my students to know that each of us are all different and that there is a need to celebrate our differences rather then look down upon them. "
In an anti-bias classroom, children learn to be proud of themselves and of their families, to respect human differences, and to recognize bias and speak up for what is right (Sparks, & Edwards, 2010)."

As a professional, I anticipate some of the families fearing that their children will be picked on/teased/bullied because of the color of their child's skin. I want them to be reassured that I will not allow this type of behavior in my classroom. Everyone is going to feel loved, safe, and we are all going to know the meaning of respect from the first day of class! Every child deserves to feel loved!



Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Observing Communication



This past week we had my husband's family visit from New York. My brother in law is 29 years old and he has down syndrome. He is one of the most loyal, fun, smart, loving individuals that I have ever met and I'm so thankful to be a part of his family. One day while they were visiting we decided to grill out and have a barbecue. All of us went outside and sat on the back patio while watching the kids swim, we talked, laughed and just had a good time. This is where I observed Marc communicating with my daughter, Lailie.

Lailie was playing and swimming. She would go back and fourth between the four wheeler and the pool, play in the sprinkler and then want to swing on her playground set. Marc was so kind in speaking to her. There was a time Lailie was in the pool and she was splashing and getting the grill wet while it was on. Marc said "No, no Lailie Bear (Notice how he gives her a nickname here) and he says "You can't do that because were trying to cook." He directs her attention and throws in some water rings for the tubes that she has to find.

It melted my heart that Marc kept an eye on her and played with her and talked with her. He's such a good uncle! When Lailie was on her four wheeler he would walk over to a specific place in the yard and say "You can't get me, Lailie" and he would laugh. Lailie thought it was funny of course and would go after him on her four wheeler. "In my experience working with children, the way I know a child is to see their play. And the way I can find out about their play is first watch them, and then ask them questions about where they are in their play mind." (Kolbeck, 2013) "Where are you going" Marc asked as Lailie turned the four wheeler the wrong way. Haha :-) Lailie is 2 years old and has Apraxia of speech so she does not use a lot of words and the words that she does use are one words or two words put together, no more then that. "In my time with the children, I learned that each child has a different style, and is likely to talk in different ways and in different contexts. I needed to find ways they could communicate that were enjoyable for them." (Stephenson, 2009)

To make the communication more effective and more affirming Marc could have been a better listener and listened to Lailie more. A big part of communicating effectively is being a good listener. Lailie could have listened to Marc a little better as well. Marc could have asked a few more open ended questions.

It amazes me how Lailie understands Marc and how he speaks even though he speaks differently then most people. She loves being around him, she understands him, and she looks up to him. The communication interactions between Lailie and Marc were overall great and fun experiences for the both of them. Of course everyone could use improvement but life is about learning. The observations really made Lailie laugh and smile.

The adult-child communication that I observed this week compares to how I communicate with children in the way that I'm always thinking, always speaking, always asking questions. At the same time I'm always listening to what others say. I'm a good listener! That's one of my strong points! What I have learned about myself this week is that there are always things I can do to become a more effective communicator. As a future educator, I want to make sure I gain all the skills and knowledge needed to be the most effective teacher I can be. I know how very important communication is, not just with the children/students but with their families too.

References:
Kolbeck. (2013). []. Strategies for working with diverse children “communicating with young children., Retrieved from http://mym.cdn.laureate-media.com/Walden/EDUC/6358/03/downloads/WAL_EDUC6358_03_A_EN.pdf

Stephenson, A. (2009). Conversations with a 2-year-old. EBSCOhost, 95. Retrieved from http://ehis.ebscohost.com.ezp.waldenulibrary.org/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=fd96cc78-f0ac-439e-8ce7-22d2d0ba6ffd@sessionmgr14&vid=2&hid=2

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Creating Affirming Environments

For many years I have had the dream of one day wanting to open up my own child-care center. I just adore being around children and contributing to their growth and development. I love making a difference and I think having my own child care center would be the perfect opportunity to changes lives in a positive way!
 
If I was the owner/director of a child care center I would want it to be very big, have lots of room/space for children to walk around and play in. I would want it to be safe, warm and welcoming, and offer a lot of learning tools for children. My dream child care center would have a big rug with the letters of the alphabet on it. Over by the big rug would be an easel and a comfortable chair to sit in for story/reading time. It's where I would want my students to sit and listen as I read them many stories throughout the day. It would be colorful and comfortable. I would have at least two big tables for all the children for when we do curriculum. I would have a separate room which would be a lunch room where the children would eat their lunch. The room would have a built in kitchen in it. (Children would be required to bring their own lunch but I would offer snacks and juice/milk.) 

I would have many centers. Art center, science center, reading/writing center, sensory center, history center, music center, dramatic play center, block/building center, exploration center, and I would have a water/sand section. Each center would be labeled. "The use of centers in preschool is a valuable way to keep children engaged in positive and constructive activities. Centers promote independence, social skills, creativity, interests, and more." (Stewart, 2010) I would have a lot of dolls, puzzles, games, books, learning games, bulletin board displays, and learning material for the children.

My childcare center would have a lot of the children's art work on the wall, posters that promote diversity, and positive quotes."The toys, materials, and equipment you put out for your children; the posters, pictures, and art objects you hang on the wall; and the types of furniture and how you arrange them all influence what children learn." (Sparks & Edwards, 2010)

My child care center would have a beautiful playground area with many things to play on. (Age appropriate) It would have two playground areas; one for the smaller children and one for the older children.

I would create an anti-bias curriculum and activities for children. Each week we would do a different theme and make it fun in the classroom"Common preschool and Kindergarten themes typically focus on self-discovery, children's families, children's neighborhoods, community helpers, transportation, work, and harvesting food." (Sparks & Edwards, 2010)

Each child would have their own cubby with their name on it. They would bring a backpack with extra clothes, necessities needed for class each day, their lunchboxes, etc. 

I would also hire experienced, loving, caring, trained individuals who were only the best! I truly feel like the people you hire at a child care center make all the difference in the world. Everything would be organized and each day would be so much fun!

I hope one day I will be able to fulfil my dream of becoming a child-care owner :-)


References:
Stewart, D. (2013, April 30). Centers in the preschool classroom. Retrieved from http://www.teachpreschool.org/2010/04/centers

Sparks, L., & Edwards, J. (2010). Anti-bias education for young children and ourselves. (p. 43). Washington, DC: National Association for the Education of Young Children.