Sinead Matson, course leader for NCI's new BA Hons in Early Childhood Education, talks about the benefits of Continuous Professional Development.
I am often asked about the benefits of Continuous Professional Development (CPD) in the Early Childhood Education sector. Apart from the obvious reasons like staying on top of new developments and research in your field, maintaining and continuing to improve your skills as the first point of contact with the formal world of education for both parent and child, and having the latest up-to-date knowledge of the legal requirements for the safety of all – there are other benefits. These benefits have less to do with the regulatory side of things and more to do with the social side.
Our Early Childhood Education (ECE) sector in Ireland can be disjointed, alienating and lonely. The very diverse nature of the sector could mean you are the only professional in your chosen curriculum or method for miles. One very good reason to engage in CPD is the opportunity to meet your fellow professionals from all over the country and to learn as much from them as you do from the formal training. Just sitting down with a cup of tea and realising you are not the only one with frustrations or feelings of isolation can be worth the trip needed or the time given to CPD. It is the networking and sharing ideas which can offer the feelings of collegiality that are needed by our ECE professionals. By engaging with CPD you can set up communities of practice and shared spaces of dialogue and ideas spurred on by the training you are taking part in.
This September 25th & 26th National College of Ireland will be running a series of seminars and workshops at the Early Years Health & Education Show, hosted by Childcare.ie and Canavan & Byrne. Come along to the RDS and let us help you to continue your CPD and grow as a professional as well as have the chance to network with your peers. We will be running workshops on mapping Aistear to different curricula such as Montessori, Play-Based and Steiner; Family Participation; Communities of Practice; Communities of Learning and Going back to College. We also offer a c.v. clinic which will tell you the do’s and don’ts of writing your c.v. We will also have staff in the main hall who will answer all your questions on the B.A. in Early Childhood Education, returning to education and the types of supports NCI can offer you. Drop by and say hi!
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