Developing Content for My Philosophy

My Vision for working with children has always been a very child-led approach and as I reflect on a visit we had in the class last year from an educator named Lesly Henderson, I realized that my natural approach was actually being taught by many and this was a great source of confidence in my ability to work with children, as I had been told to be ‘more structured’ by some, I didn’t feel right for me and I now claim a child-led approach with confidence and one of the main components of my practice working with children.  Inclusivity is at the forefront of my vision and being flexible is something I’m good at and now know is a super valuable characteristic in a human relations field of work.

In three years I see my greatest strengths with children to be my patients, flexibility and building strong relationships with and for the families in my care as well as the community. I have seen how valuable it is for kids to build strong bonds with each other and their parents get to know each other and let the relationships flourish outside of the daycare environment, all the way through to elementary school and in there own private lives as well . Families can rely on each other in times of need. The Empowering Pedagogy textbook states that in the province of New Brunswick, one of the core values the province has is for its youngest learners is that the children and families be respected and share responsibility for one another in order to enhance communities and cultures.

I envision the early years environment as flexible and nurturing, The environment as the third teacher. The Empowering pedagogy text says on page 177, “the Environment is directly correlated to the depth of learning the child will experience.” The early years environment has to be a place for children, caregivers, parents, and educators to feel included and valued and build pride within the community.

I see children as capable individuals with individual wants, needs and expectations. As we learned more about Regio Amelia, it speaks of the child as capable of speaking one hundred languages, if we see children as protagonists of their own experience of learning, we support them in having the right to express their understanding of their world through many languages.

I view families as diverse and know best for their children. All Families need to feel valued, respected and engaged.  On page 40 of our textbook, it states that for families to feel they are members of a community, they must feel engaged. The family’s sense of worth and empowerment has a positive effect on the parents, the children and the early learning professionals.

I suspect that cultural diversity is something very important to strive to better understand as it is our responsibility to do as early learning professionals. Cultural competency is the ability to facilitate mutually rewarding interactions and meaningful relationships in the delivery of services for children and families whos cultural heritage differs from our own. This is called an essential skill in the Empowering Petagodgy textbook and having practiced and learned my own cultural awareness I’ve been able to see this as an essential skill.

I envision my colleagues as individuals with diverse backgrounds of education and life in which to draw knowledge from and gain inspiration. It is shown in the textbook on page 44 that adults learn when they have opportunities to engage in practical learning and feel respected as a learner, also it says an integral part of being effective in planning and developing learning experiences and programs for families and children is being able to engage in dialogue with other professionals. This is something I am learning and now realize it is an important part of being a professional.


Advocacy assignment: A call to action

After reading the assignment requirements and having a discussion with Paula, I feel a lot better now that I am ok with my role in advocacy.  I thought at first I wouldn’t know what to do or where to start but after some reflection, I realize that I am a listener and helper.  I do this with my own children when they feel the need to put a call to action in listening to their thoughts and helping to support them in the cause. I might not feel the need to “picket” but I am helping them look up information and preparing them for a favourable outcome. I like to think of my role as a bit of a “campaign manager” of sorts. In my professional life as a childcare provider, I advocate for the parents and children who express a need to do so and after a great conversation with Paula, I learned there is room for everyone in advocacy. I personally take great interest in nature and especially when there are habitats being threatened by humans or ocean acidification, this gets me thinking about what I can do for those creatures, being a helper to animals is a bit trickier than humans so I go to information nights and community events that interest me and make me inspired to help in any way I feel I can.  This leads me to an advocacy topic that isn’t so much about advocating for families but an opportunity for a conversation about our oceans and by providing information, families can take part or learn more about how they can help to ensure a sustainable future for generations to come.

Ocean Acidification

Some of you may know I spend a lot of time on the ocean, boating with my family as we love to be out on the water. Over the years we have seen changes in the ocean health and the more we learn about the negative effects of global warming due to human consumption, the graver the prognosis is for the largest part of our earth, the Ocean. I cannot imagine a world without a thriving ocean and many communities rely on the ocean as their main food source. There is no big answer as of yet to stop this process but there are many ways to be informed about projects happening and research being done to better understand how we can lessen the impact we have from day to day consumption to research projects we can choose to help fund. Our current local NDP MLA Gord Johns is a very informed advocate for our oceans and supporting him to get re-elected is a great place to start. Please have a look at the youtube video at the end, from our Ocean and Fisheries Department of Canada to better understand how Ocean Acidification works.

Here are a few websites; the first being a local look at our oceans in the Georgia Straight, the second is a world organization doing great work you could choose to financially support and the third is an article explaining the science of the impact of acidification.

International Ocean Acidification Initiative

Personal Growth and Professionalism: A look at my first philosophy statement in 2009!

Before I write my philosophy statement for this final class, I would like to share a philosophy statement I made eleven years ago after completing my required 30 hours of professional development to start my in-home Daycare. This is a reflective tool for me to recognize how I’ve changed and how my philosophy has remained the same, even after completing a College Certificate course.

Philosophy Statement 2009-

Every child is unique and has limitless potential. As a caregiver, I will support them by providing a safe nurturing environment to allow the child to thrive physically, cognitively, socially, emotionally and foster an opportunity to gain a spiritual understanding of themselves and the world around them.




Philosophy Assignment: A Reflective Moment

My vision for working with children: a child-led playful space that is open and inviting, inclusive and flexible from day to day.

In three years I see my greatest strengths with children to be: my patients, flexibility, and relationship building with families as well as my ability to adapt to the needs of the kids in my care.

I envision the early years environment: as flexible and nurturing. It should foster wonder and creativity in children as well as build pride within the community, a place for children, parents and educators to all feel included and valued.

I see children: as capable individuals with individual wants and needs.

I view families: to be very different, they know best for there child. All families need to be respected and valued as individuals.

I suspect that cultural diversity: will be something we can strive to understand better as it is part of our responsibility to do so.

I envision my colleagues: as knowledgeable collaborators with individual values and backgrounds of education or life in which to learn from and offer advice to.


Thoughts on Ethics

I have most certainly had many ethical dilemmas as a childcare provider.  I think I have a good understanding of ethical responsibilities but I feel like reading the code of Ethics is such an important document and a reminder that when caring for a child, you are also nurturing the entire family and the diversity of families means leave your own bias out of the equation. I am very thankful for documents like the code of Ethics as it ads consistency of quality of care to our field where otherwise there is not a lot of unified decision making as it is a relationship based line of work which can vary dramatically.

Program Models and Approaches: Group Discussion

After reading, commenting and discussing our programs we all individually researched, I think my take away is that no matter how different a philosophy or program is, they all mostly adhere to the provincial guidelines set in place that is best practice for health and safety for the particular environment or setting. I feel lucky to live in a country that celebrates diversity and there are many types of programs to support families and their children as they see fit. I love that the Strong Start program is a place where it is not a time or financial commitment and is a thriving environment for children and families that chose to utilize it. The Roots of Empathy program is right up my Alley and if it were to offer me full-time work I would be facilitating it absolutely. I will consider it in the future perhaps in a less busy time in my life where I may want a slower work week and could take that on as a side gig. I find it is relevant to all children and will be a benefit to the people involved, the facilitator, the volunteer family and the class full of kids who get to see and experience the strong attachment of baby and caregiver. Seems like something so simple but could make such a difference in quality of life.

Program Models and Approaches/Roots of Empathy

Roots of Empathy was created by Mary Gordon in 1996 in Ontario Canada, she is an award-winning serial social entrepreneur in the field of education, also an author, educator, parenting expert and child advocate. (  Mary also created  The Seeds of Empathy Program for 3-5-year-olds in 2005, Her programs are now offered in fourteen countries across the world and have reached over one million children. (

As stated in the official website, their mission is to build caring, peaceful and civil societies through the development of empathy in children and adults and the Vision is to “change the world, child by child.” They also believe that the leaders of tomorrow are sitting in the classrooms of today and they need imagination and empathy to be able to identify and solve society’s problems, as well as empathy are foundational to helping children navigate relationships, form connections and be inclusive of others and they fundamentally believe if children have empathy, they can change the world. ( What this looks like is a program with a qualified instructor and a volunteer parent with a 2-month-old baby come to primary classrooms to demonstrate the power of a secure attachment relationship between infant and parent – the first and most powerful model of empathy, and it is designed for children ages 5 to 13. In Canada, the program is delivered in English and French and reaches rural, urban, and remote communities including Indigenous communities. (

The children in Roots of Empathy classrooms can develop executive functioning skills, develop emotional literacy and emotional regulation, develop resilience, learn to challenge cruelty and injustices and learn to form a consensus, contributing to a culture of caring in the classroom. Children in the Seeds of Empathy classroom can foster social and emotional competence and early literacy skills and attitudes in children three to five years old while providing professional development for their educators. (

With the changing times and the current global pandemic, the program has already adapted.  The website has up to date information regarding a program called The Recovery program. It begins in the fall of 2020 hosted by teachers in their classrooms, Roots of Empathy Instructors will deliver the program in classrooms or virtually with a “tiny teacher” and their parent(s) and will visit students virtually in the fall and in-person in January, supporting students’ adjustment back into the regular routine of school. ( There are opportunities to either be a volunteer parent and baby online as well as there are opportunities to take instructor training to become a certified instructor on their website.


“Home,” Roots of Empathy,,D

Professional Resources

After reading through a few Profesional Journals done by The Canadian Childcare Federation, there were two that stood out to me for different reasons. I’ll start with the first article Found in Interaction Volume 25, Number 1, Spring 20011, Nurturing Creativity in Children. The title of this article is -To Evaluate or Not Evaluate Preschool Development, That is the question? Written by Suzanne Major, B.A., C.A., M.A. ECE PhD candidate in Anthropology of Health and Education. In this article, Suzanne poses the question of whether or not school readiness can really be determined by professionals who might not know the child as well as the parents or close friends, as these people know the children’s genetic and biological inheritance, as well as their social and family life, temperament, attitude, abilities and talents.  This quandary leads to the questions; does evaluating school readiness by professionals lend to participating in moulding the children to serve a system? Does it provide equal opportunity for self-fulfilment? Does evaluating support integration or assimilation?  These were some big questions that made me really think about conformity vs. individuality.  I’ve always been a person who seeks to embrace the differences in children, whether their specific behaviour or development is viewed as a positive attribute in their lives.  Now that I’ve had an opportunity to read this article I can trust my own intuition and know that I most certainly agree with Suzanne on this topic. With my own children, I have never thought the evaluation process in schools was a  beneficial or accurate representation of a child’s learning either. Going forward, I would never suggest evaluating another person’s child in my care as “normal Develpomentaly” as I do not believe that even exists.

The next Journal article I chose to talk about is also from the Canadian Childcare Federation found in Volume 32, Number 1, summer 2018, The Power and Importance of Play. The title of the article is -The Value of Play, Everything we do inside we can do outside! Only Better! written by Denise Skuce. In this article Denise talk about instead of bringing the outside in, why not bring the inside out? she gives many good reasons this should be and could be done and the benefits of outside play. As I read this article It was perfect for describing my current setup with my own daycare center as we are currently facing quite a few restrictions and regulations in this pandemic time, I’ve made the decision to run my Daycare outside my home aside from bathroom and baby nap spaces. This is a big change for me and I felt a bit uneasy about how the parents would respond to my new set up. The article talks about having all the same zones you would have in a traditional classroom and it is possible to achieve this same quality outside and it may even enhance some of the play. I find reading this article gave me a way more confident approach to my decision and I will use some of the ideas talked about in creating spaces for the children to be more similar to what my inside classroom we used to use had. I still have some reservations of what the colder, wetter weather will look like for the coming months but I am more confident about my setup and I’ll be doing some research into how to adapt in the changing weather as it approaches.

group discussion

In our group discussion last Monday night we read a scenario from our text book and talked about our thoughts on the questions asked about the scenario. My take away from that learning is that had I just read the scenario myself and simply answered the questions, it would have been a more, almost bias answer as to the ethical behaviour of the two educators in the scenario. By having the group discussion, thoughts came up that I hadn’t even thought about and would have gone unnoticed so clearly there is so much learning that can happen in a collaborative discussion.  As someone who works alone, it reinforced how important this is going forward I would and should reach out more often to other educators for thoughts and opinions. I feel like all the people in my cohort could be a future contact for me and I’m super happy to have all these awesome, different perspectives to be able to draw on to better my own practice.