Taking advantage of the induction and mentoring programme within your centre will help to develop your teaching practice and is a requirement of the Teaching Council of New Zealand. If you centre has this option in house, ensure that you meet with your mentor or leaders regularly. It is essential that you lead your journey in professional development. Your leadership team is there to support and guide you through the process.
You may even look at enrolling in further studies. Even though you may have a degree, taking additional classes in a topic that will help develop your skills is an advantage. Many teachers aspiring to take up leadership roles may look to enrol in an advanced Diploma in Educational Leadership to compliment the mentoring that they are receiving from the leaders within their centre. Many papers require you to complete assignments that have an element of necessary research. This allows you access to online portals through universities that are now available to the general public.
With the recent release of the strategic plan, the government has given us guidelines for the upcoming few years. There is a move to a more inclusive practice across the education sector enabling all children to be involved and make progress in education. This gives teachers scope to build on their capacity of learning new strategies to support children with additional needs. Educational leadership is also another area of focus with a need to develop teachers’ skills and knowledge to help them into leadership roles in the future. Along with this is developing teachers into more mentoring or coaching roles within teams, an area which has not had a focus on in the past.
Whether you are an experienced teacher or a newly graduated teacher, it is crucial that you keep up to date. The education sector is a vibrant and ever-changing landscape. New children with more and more diverse needs attend our ECE services so it is important that you know how to be able to provide the best for them. In essence, teachers need to ensure that they are up to date with subject knowledge, pedagogical skills and communication skills on an ongoing basis. This forms the basis of an ancient Japanese philosophy called Kaizen or ‘Continuous Improvement’.