National Simultaneous Story Time was a great success in all of the rooms at our centres, with discussions around what happened in the story, jumping and stretching as high as we could to reach the moon and singing the nursery rhyme that underpins the story being told, among many things that happened.
In the Art Studio in Subiaco, the story was read to small groups in various places highlighting the importance of the environment as a space and how it can facilitate further learning, significance or meaning to a story. The children used the medium of clay to work with as they read through the story. It provoked further stories in relationship to their space and ignited memory from their factual learning.
Six Kanimbla children, also from Subiaco, ventured out to read the story while at St Luke’s Nursing Home, reading the book at spot on 11:00am. It was a fabulous story enjoyed by both the children and the elderly residents.
Acting out the story is a great way to get involved and an extra aid to recall and comprehension.
Everyone at West Leederville was also buried deep in the book, with many of them reading it several times over the last week or so, and more than once on the day too.
Davinci children engrossed in the story…
By Dr Marie Martin
“According to the latest statistics from the Productivity Commission, the early childhood education and care (ECEC) sector collectively employs around 140, 000 people, of which only 3 per cent are male. That’s just 4,200 men across the whole country…” 1
SOEL recruitment policy
Schools of Early Learning employ males and females who are knowledgeable, skilled, committed, have beautiful interactions with children and a belief in children’s competency and capability. They know that children can “break new ground”.
Our experience is that both men and women are equipped to care. Men and women are capable of nurturing relationships with children. Children need the opportunity “to see men and women carrying out the same tasks equally, which will help to break down the stereotype of what is traditionally seen as male or female work and therefore makes it more acceptable for men to work with children”. Role modelling is important but so are “opportunities to form relationships with a diverse range of adults and peers.” 3, 4
What men bring to SOEL…
“Men can bring different skills and qualities to the profession which could help to broaden the curriculum and enhance the quality of the service. Having a male childcare worker present is good for staff relationships and brings a healthy mix.” Research suggests that men “do have different styles from women in many aspects of their work such as their use of language, risk-acceptance, physical play and humour, as well as behaviour in staff meetings, input in policy discussions etc. Men are not better than women, but they are different and together men and women create a rich culture in which to raise child”. 6
Supporting our male and female educators
SOEL has comprehensive policies and procedures that support male and female educators to work professionally and supportively as a team to create wonderful learning opportunities and positively engage with children. We have robust recruiting and orientation procedures, thorough and regular training requirements including detailed child protection training, and reward structures for high levels of performance to which educators aspire. Our quality assurance system involves internal audits of every aspect of educators’ practice, performance review processes enable regular review of performance, team meetings assist feedback on individual and team work and our quality improvement program requires systematic self-reflection.
All are welcome…
Caring and educating children is one of the most challenging and rewarding roles anyone can have. SOEL welcomes men and women who aspire to inspire children to grow, develop and learn with “consciousness of mutual respect, open communication, complementary expertise and an appreciation of different perspectives”. 7
1. NSW Community Childcare News http://ccccnsw.org.au/early-childhood-education-and-care-no-boys-allowed
2. Amy Harty, An exploration of the influence male childcare workers have when working with children, p. 23 https://www.barnardos.ie/assets/files/publications/free/childlinks_body28.pdf
3. Ann Conroy, ChildLinks, Editorial, p.1 https://www.barnardos.ie/assets/files/publications/free/childlinks_body28.pdf
4. Aiofe O’Gorman, Teachers in Early Childhood: An exploratory study of the influence on gender, p. 11 https://www.barnardos.ie/assets/files/publications/free/childlinks_body28.pdf
5. Amy Harty, An exploration of the influence male childcare workers have when working with children, p. 24 https://www.barnardos.ie/assets/files/publications/free/childlinks_body28.pdf
6. Lauk Woltring, Get the Good Guys in and the Wrong Guys Out, p. 15 https://www.barnardos.ie/assets/files/publications/free/childlinks_body28.pdf
7. Aiofe O’Gorman, Teachers in Early Childhood: An exploratory study of the influence on gender, p. 12 https://www.barnardos.ie/assets/files/publications/free/childlinks_body28.pdf