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We all know training is an important part of working in a program serving young children that is regulated by the state. Training is essential to providing a safe and comfortable learning environment for our students. It keeps us up-to-date with safety procedures and health and nutrition practices. It gives us guidelines for how to have a successful early childhood program and is important to keep us informed of regulations we need to observe in order to stay in compliance. However, in the early childhood world many of us talk about training and professional development as the same thing, when in fact they can be very different.
Professional Development has a more personal emphasis. It is about learning new information and strategies to improve your practice and to help you grow in your career. Participating in professional development not only helps improve your own skills, but directly affects the children that you teach. Teachers who receive significant professional development can boost their students’ achievement substantially! Professional development events also give you the opportunity to connect with your colleagues, to share ideas and to brainstorm solutions to the real issues you deal with each day. Sometimes it is easy to forget that we are not alone in our work, that there is a whole community of early childhood educators out there who experience the same successes and challenges.
At The Aspire Registry, we believe that you deserve professional development opportunities that are provided by qualified instructors, in content areas that are relevant to your work, and delivered using methods and formats that meet the needs of diverse adult learners. To this end, it is necessary to do your homework when you search for professional development. One of the best ways to ensure you are receiving high quality professional development is to seek out trainers and coaches with the right qualifications. Trainer qualifications can be demonstrated by earned endorsements or credentials, higher education, and experience in the field.
The Aspire Statewide Training Calendar is a great tool for anyone looking to find professional development. The calendar gives you access to high quality learning experiences that are tailored to the work you do. Be sure to look for events marked “Quality Assured,” that way you know that the content and strategies have been reviewed by our team, and that the event is endorsed by The Aspire Registry.
Coaching is one type of professional development that is on the rise in New York, and here’s why. Research shows that coaching is one of the best ways to improve practice. Coaching is a relationship-based process that is collaborative and strengths-based. The coach works with the coachee through a cyclical process of goal-setting, implementation, and reflection.