Monday, April 22, 2013

Time Well Spent

I really feel like I have learned so much from this program.  It has made me a better and more effective teacher.  It has also fueled my passion for helping children and their families.  I feel like I can accomplish anything I set my mind to.

The first learning I would pick would be the effects of poverty on the brain.  Until this program I was unaware of the “achievement gaps” between children growing up in poverty and those growing up in more affluent households.  This information has been extremely helpful to me as an educator to students living in poverty.  This knowledge has helped to understand my students and their needs better. 

The 2nd learning I would pick would have to be developing a preschool program.  Since my background is in high school, I truly enjoyed visiting and observing preschools.  I am very excited to start working directly in the early childhood field. 

The 3rd deep felt learning is how important the first 3 years of life are in the development of a child.  This is what inspired me to develop the teen parenting program for my Capstone challenge.  I want to help my teen parents be the best parents they can be in order to help their children have a fair start in life. 

My long term goal is to secure funding and support for my teen parenting academy and child care center.   I believe this is integral to ending the cycle of poverty as a result of teen parenting.  I am very confident that I will be able to achieve this goal.

Even though I have never met you guys, I feel like we are old friends and colleagues.  I wish you all luck in your future endeavors.  If you want to keep in touch you can find me through Roosevelt High School in San Antonio Texas.  All of my contact information can be found at

I can’t believe this journey is almost over!  

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Jobs/Roles in the ECE Community: Internationally

Save the Children ( 
·         I chose this organization because they are committed to improving the lives of children all over the world and in the United States.  They focus on protecting the children through education.  They also help to protect children from exploitation by teaching children from around the world how to protect themselves. They respond to tragedies and disasters in the US and worldwide by creating kid friendly areas and helping children cope. They protect children who have been separated from their families and work to reunite them.  They also have programs to improve the health and nutrition of children around the world.
·         Job opportunities with Save the Children:  Save the Children has several job opportunities around the world.  One that looked interesting to me is program director for the READ (Reading Enhancement for Advancing Development Activity) program in Bangladesh.  The purpose of the program is to improve the reading skills of children in Bangladesh.  Requirements for the job include a minimum of a Master’s degree in education and at least 7 years’ experience implementing similar programs.  Must have supervisory experience and committed to follow the equality guidelines of the organization.

 The International Step by Step Association (         
·         I chose this organization because they connect professionals in the field of early childhood from around the world.  They provide information and resources for education and help children and parents from around the world gain access to quality education.  They also provide professional development and support to early childhood professionals.
·         Job opportunities with ISSA:  Program manager of Romani Early Years Network (REYN).  Managed by ISSA, the network focuses on emerging and established Romani early childhood development professionals, as well as other professionals working in the field of Early Childhood Development (ECD) with Roma communities. The network will work to develop skills and good practice, establish effective partnerships and support professional development.  The director is in charge of implementation and support of the programs, in addition to fundraising and maintaining the budget.  Must have a university degree in related field and understand Romani children, families, and communities.  Must also have at least 3 years’ experience with international early childhood programs and be committed to the mission, goals, and values of ISSA.

·         I chose UNICEF because it is an organization that everyone has heard of, but not everyone really understands what they actually do.  Until today I did not know that UNICEF had several areas of focus.  They are: child survival and development, basic education and gender equality, HIVS/AIDS and children, child protection, and policy advocacy and partnerships.  They help children from all over the world.
·         Job opportunities with UNICEF: An interesting job opportunity is education specialist in Nairobi, Kenya.  The position requires working with the United Nations Girls' Education Initiative (UNGEI) in order to plan, implement, and sustain quality education for the children in the area.  Qualifications include an advanced university degree in education, social sciences, and development studies or other related field.  At least eight years of relevant work experience in similar program management. Must be fluent in English and at least one other UN language.  

Friday, March 29, 2013

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

National/Federal Organizations that appeal to me:

 The National Association for the Education of Young Children
·         I chose NAEYC because they are the largest and most recognized early childhood professional organization.  They provide resources to EC professionals and their practices shape much of the early childhood programs today, accredited or not.  They are pretty much the industry standard.

National Head Start Association              
·         The National Head Start Association provides advocacy and support for the nation’s head start programs.  They provide a variety of services to the head start community including referrals, professional development, job opportunities, scholarships, marketing, and more.  I am drawn to head start because they provide early education to children in need. 

·         The YWCA is one the nation’s oldest and largest organization that is dedicated to serving women and children.  I picked this organization because the San Antonio branch of the YWCA teaches a program to my parenting class to help them become better parents.  They have a great message of strengthening families and empowering women.

Job Opportunities that appeal to me:

Master Teacher: Pre K for San Antonio
·         Skills and experience needed for this job are a Bachelor’s degree in education and at least 3 years of early childhood teaching experience.  Preferred experience is five years with special education endorsements.  Must be certified to teach in the state of Texas and hold a class c driver’s license.   Experience in lesson planning, curriculum development, and planning in professional development is preferred.   Salary is $60,000 to $90,000 based on experience.  The position is year-round, full-time.

Senior Director, NAEYC Academy
·         (I am definitely not qualified for this position, but it looks like an exciting and fulfilling career).   The Senior Director works with the NAEYC staff to ensure that the programs meet the gold standards of early childhood education that have been established by the association.  They work with the states to promote NAEYC accreditation and standards.  Qualifications are advanced degree in nonprofit management, business administration and/or early childhood education/child development.  Must have experience in management of EC programs in addition to organizational and leaderships skills.  Must be willing to travel.   Position is at the Washington D.C. headquarters.

YWCA  Precious/Minds New Connections & Mi Carrera educator
·         This position is not available, therefore I am not sure of the actual qualifications.  However, I have worked with this program in my teen parenting class for several years.  I am fairly sure I would qualify with my education and experience.  The position entails teaching the two programs to parenting groups.  Groups include teen parents, parents in prison and on probation, and parents from head start programs.  Having seen the program, I am very impressed with the message and believe the program to be quite effective.  

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Exploring Roles in the ECE Community: Local and State Levels

Three local or state organizations or communities of practice that appealed to me:
  1. The Northeast ISD School-age parenting program.  The program is well-established within the district and I already have a relationship with them.  They are committed to helping teen parents and their children.
  2. City of San Antonio City Council district council woman Ivy Taylor.  She is on the board of Healthy Futures of Texas which is an organization that is committed to preventing teen pregnancies.
  3. Healy-Murphy Center.  Offers an alternative high school program to pregnant and parenting teens.  The school has an on-site daycare.  This is very similar to the program I would like to start in NEISD.

Job opportunities (currently available or not) that interest me:

  •  I love my current job as a high school teen parent educator.  I also teach 3 sections of Child Development and 2 sections of a teacher preparation course.  If I never get a new position, I will be OK.  However, the position I would like to obtain would be director of the district’s child development center.  This would be part of the teen parent academy that is my dream.

Skills and experience that you would need to competently fulfill each of these roles.

  • My educational experience at Walden University has provided me most of the skills and knowledge that I would need for this position.  It would be nice if I had experience working in a child development center, but, alas, I do not.  In order to learn more about the position, I could visit the Healy-Murphy Center to learn more about running this type of program.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Wordle - Early Childhood Passion

My journey at Walden University is coming to an end.  I began my final course this week.  In about two months I will have earned my Master's of Science in Early Childhood Studies.  This has been an interesting journey and I have learned much along the way.

Our assignment this week to create a Wordle which represents the issues and challenges in the field or early childhood that are personally intriguing.  Please take a minute to follow the link below to view my Wordle.

Wordle - Early Childhood Passion