Wednesday, November 13, 2013

A conversation with a parent

We must paint the right picture.

I was on the train and I meet a parent of a child that attended the center that I use to work at.

We chatted a little about the overall structure of the preschool, the management and information about her child attending another school.

She was careful not to say anything negative about the center, because she wasn't sure may take on things. I did the same, but was very open about the things that would make the center a smoother transition for the students.

We chatted about my future plans and  asked if I wanted to open my own preschool one day, my reply was “yes,” but only after I received my Master’s degree in Child psychology.

Then she asked if I was still teaching, I said “no,” it wasn't something I wanted to do anymore, that I would enjoy being in a classroom as a support system to other teachers.

She asked if I wanted to work in an Elementary School, my reply was “no,” then she said is it because Preschool is easier?” Again, I replied “no,” but this time I didn't know what to say, I was taken back and a little sad that the parent thought that being a preschool teacher was easier than being an elementary teacher. 

On some level based on the student’s age it could be, but deep inside I knew what she was implying.

Although she did not overtly say it, it was implied that we watch students and teach them their alphabets, colors numbers and shapes, but it is more to it than that, and I think that’s what a lot of people don’t understand about Early Childhood.

We get students with no formal education, some of the students are still crying for their parents, but with patience and understanding they leave us with a foundation to their educational future, they learn how to sit and listen to others speak, share, communicate effectively and so much more.

But because not all preschools are on the same page we all appear to be babysitters. This seems to be an ongoing battle.

I will always be an advocate for Early Childhood Education, I think that we as educators need to band together to change the prospective of what Early Childhood really does for children and it starts in each and every preschool throughout the world.


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