I felt my professional knowledge and skills were rusting, and becoming obsolete. Did I just finish attending a workshop? For a time, I was excited to pass on my colleagues all the new things I learned, practice them in the classroom but, the experience seemed like a temporary satiety for thirst quenched. Weeks, and months pass after a workshop, I reach a level of dissatisfaction again. I want to make continued connections, keep learning. Engaging in discussions with colleagues did not seem enough. How can I continue to learn? These thoughts drifted away for a time.
Competition in my field suddenly surfaced. Completing a Master’s degree in education almost seemed like a must. I have enjoyed discussions with colleagues and professors, heard new perspectives and discovered that I could still widen my connections to learn and share. Then the time came to expand connections with other organizations…
Day one, I was so excited to send out emails to as many groups as I can. First, I looked at all the possible places where I could establish connections. I know that I have limited links with the groups in my home country. I have been attempting to forge partnerships with public schools so I can contribute my skills and resources, but this has not yet materialized. I looked up to Reggio Emilia schools, so I visited the Reggio Children website. I found Lella Gandini’s email, one of the authors of Reggio books. I emailed other organizations such as the country to where I will move for my next job and one from a developed country to have a balance of ideas from organizations operating in different economic zones.
Day two, I was overjoyed to see Lella Gandini’s email. She mentioned suggestions on how to establish links. I am still far from accomplishing something concrete, but I thought it was a good start. I have yet to hear back from the other organizations I emailed.
Day three, no replies yet. I remembered the connections that I just made through LinkedIn. A non-governmental organization, Developing Real Learners, would like to expand their connections. I am still learning in what capacity I can participate.
Day four, five, six … I am still waiting for replies.
Meanwhile, I explored the World Forum Foundation website. What a treasure of resources to read and learn from. Stories of successes on how early childhood advocates have made a difference in the lives of many children. I was moved by Meenakshi Dahal’s story about Nepal. What a great spirit to rise from adversity to help not only the children but families and teachers to rise from the remnants of the earthquake. Perusing the pages of the organization’s website demonstrated the work of many people working on child’s rights, curriculum initiatives, global learners for young children and many more. I can’t wait to participate! I signed up to join the MyFoNet conversations and made my first post on Play. There are still many more to learn from this website as I explore it.
I have just unveiled the endless possibilities of learning more about the issues and trends in early childhood education. The International Step by Step Association (ISSA) offers information on its effort to “to ensure equal access to quality care and education for all young children from birth to 10 years old.” I aim to be a Friend of ISSA, but still waiting for a reply to my request.
The clock is ticking, I might not be able to receive replies promptly but I will continue to communicate until such time I am not a single piece of a puzzle anymore. I hope to find the other pieces to tackle the issues and trends of early childhood.