Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Providing Nutrition, Health, and Safety Services

Chapter 10 / Planning and Administering Early Childhood Program

Aloha Everyone!

It’s so important to have an adequate nutrition menu in an education system. Especially during early childhood care were there are periods of rapid growth for every student. Without that students become very vulnerable to harm from malnutrition. According to Planning and Administering Early Childhood Programs by Decker, Decker, Freeman, & Knopf, 2009.

“A comprehensive approach to nutrition, health, and safety services in early childhood programs requires you to: Provide children nutritious meals and snacks. Make sure the environment for children’s care and education is healthy and safe. Educate children, staff, and families on importance of health, safety, and nutrition. This includes emphasizing the importance of prenatal care and nutrition as appropriate.”

In our school we have a weekly menu that we follow:

Breakfast – High Vitamin C, Fruit Juice, and Eggs, Meat and/or Milk, Bread or Cereal, and Beverage

Lunch – Meat, Fish, or Poultry. Bread, Rice or substitute Green leafy or yellow Vegetable and/or Salad, Fruit or Dessert, and Beverage

We need to promote good nutrition in all our schools, especially in our early childhood care centers. With this nutrition and a healthy diet we will be able to supports our student’s immune systems. This way our students can stay healthy and have enough energy to learn, plays, exercise and explore their own little world.

“Now days early childhood programs are becoming more focused than ever on ensuring that children are offered a variety of appealing foods with high nutritional value.” (Decker, Decker, Freeman, & Knopf, 2009).


H1N1 Flu and Your Program

What is 2009 H1N1 influenza? According to Hawaii Department of Health "2009 H1N1 influenza (sometimes called Swine Flu) it is caused by a new strain of influenza virus. This can be spread from one person to another person through coughing, sneezing, and sometimes through touching objects contaminated with the virus. Here are some signs: Fatigue, Chills, Fever, Coughing, Sore Throat, Sneezing and Muscle Aches. Also, some people may have diarrhea and vomiting.

The Federal Government is providing this vaccine for receipt on a voluntary basis. However, state law or employers may require vaccination for certain persons. The Department of Health conducted influenza vaccinations on our school campus today. November 24, 2009. I decided to take the shot. With all the hype it wasn’t that bad. ;-D

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Crossing Boundaries

Crossing Boundaries: A Variety of Perspectives on Preschool Stories (Iorio & Visweswaraiah)

Aloha Everyone!

While reading Crossing Boundaries: A Variety of Perspectives on Preschool Stories (Iorio & Visweswaraiah): It reminded me of a bad experience I went through in my past but it turned out to be a blessing in disguise. Before I started working for HIDOE, I work at a non-profit organization for 3 years as a skills trainer (my part-time job) while attending school. I loved working as a ST (skills trainer), until I was confronted with a dilemma, reporting on a staff member who was abusing couple of our students who was mentally challenges. This staff would mentally abuse them and sometime use physical focus. With the physical force right away there was couple of staff members including me reported this immediately to our supervisor. Well as time went by it seems that nothing was done. Later on that month I was inform that our supervisor just gave this staff a verbal warning. “WOW!”

The protocol with this company was to report any incident to our immediately supervisor (through the chain of commands) and I felt that didn’t work. But here’s the real problem, this certain staff who was abusing our students has been with this company for over 8 years and had friends in management position. Morally, this didn’t sit right with me. It’s sad to say this, but I had to think about it for a while before deciding to report it to upper management. I was thinking about my job, should I turn the other way and just collect my paycheck and say nothing or should I report it and make my work environment a harmful place for me (mentally and spiritually) to work at. Now, let’s not forget about the two students who is being abuse by this staff.

Now here is where I cross the boundaries, to make a long story short, I reported this incident to the vice president of the company through e-mail messages and a written report on the incident. They did an internal investigation and within a month or so I left this company (some people at work wasn’t being nice to me) and 4 months later this staff member got fired because of code of ethics, behavior management, and abuse & neglect of a clients/student by parent, legal guardian, caregivers & staff.

This was my turning point of my professional career before I became a teacher. I called this “The crossroad to my character” What I have learned through this event is that, I can not hesitate when it comes down to the well being of a child (student) who is helpless. I became a stronger advocate for my students because of this incident and I learned two things to do as a teacher. Take a lot of notes and documentations to back you up when you are planning to report anyone who is doing wrong. That’s the best advice I could give to you all ;-D!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Assessment: An Essential Component Of Effective Early Childhood Programming

Chapter 11 / Planning and Administering Early Childhood Program

Aloha Everyone!

Before a student is accepted in our school they need to go through a screening assessments this determine an in-depth assessment of that student. They also need to go through a diagnostic assessment this identify a special plans (interventions) for that student.

I do believe that assessment does benefit both the teacher and the student. Performance assessment and documentation are method we use in school. These process helps a teacher understand his/or her student’s growth and learning development.

“Assessment is an essential component of the evaluation process through which professionals collect and analyze data to help gain an understanding of children’s development and program effectiveness.”

We also use naturalistic observation in our school and this method is awesome in my opinion. We let our students engaged in regular day to day activities this allows us to see our students individuality.

The Quality of Assessment in Early Childhood Education

The four principles of Te Whariki was interesting to me. First Kei Tua o te Pae helps teachers improve their teaching with a series of books to show how children and parents can contribute to their child’s assessment and learning goals. As teachers we have parents meeting were we discuss their Childs learning goals, we have teachers training program to learn about new up-dated learning skills, and books to keep us informed with new ideas and theory.
Second Te Whatu Pōkeka “provide a resource based on a kaupapa Māori perspective and context.” My fellow classmate, I don’t understand what this is saying “The focus of the resource is the assessment in early childhood setting?” Third Assessment for Learning this involves noticing, recognising and responding to a student’s learning skills. As a teacher this helps me understand my student learning skills. I learn something new about my students when I use this method. And last, Learning outcomes this includes quality teaching with learning practice in early childhood care, this improves learning outcomes for my students. The quality of assessment is so important in early childhood education. Like I said in some of my earlier blogs, early childhood care is a student’s learning foundation.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Some Characteristics of Space

Chapter 4 / Caring Spaces

Aloha Everyone!

It’s all about transition from inside and outside, from one point to another point, the flow in entries and pathways, and space within the classroom environment. We as teachers need to set up our classroom with our students in mind. The Chinese believes in harmony within their environment this is called Feng Shui.

Feng Shui - ”is a 5,000 year-old Chinese philosophy about understanding the laws of nature and the relationship between human being and their environment to live in harmony. Feng Shui is translated to wind and water is the study of the flow of energy in relations to nature, objects, and people. Everything around us is connected and has the potential to affect our well being. The life force ch’i is thought to be a vital force that breathes life into plants, animals, and humankind, and inflates the earth to form hills and mountains. It is important that the ch’i in living things and the atmospheric ch’i are in harmony. If we accept that and live with nature rather than against nature and incorporate beauty, warmth, gentleness, order, and other positive aspects of life into our setting, rather than disorder, ugliness, discordant noise, and symbols of indifference towards life and nature, we will live and work in an environment that is healthier for us and the environment around us.”

I totally believe in the laws of nature between human being and their environment. My grandmother is Chinese (my father’s mother) and I believe that we need to respect everything that mother nature gives out to us. So let us start with our students by making their classroom environment flowing with learning harmony. ;-D


Swine Flu Update / October 27, 2009

I’m so glad that we have a strategy plan for swine flu. This information is from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: 1) Get vaccinated against the flu, 2) Stay home when sick, 3) Early childhood programs, parents, or state and local health officials may elect to require longer periods of exclusion, 4) Conduct daily health checks, 5) Separate ill children and staff, 6) Encourage hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette of both people who are well and those who have any symptoms of flu, 7) Perform routine environmental cleaning, 8) Encourage early treatment for children and staff at high risk for flu complications, and 9) Consider selective early childhood program closures. This information is so important for everyone who has contact with children.