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This report is a summary of the year one data collected from early childhood educators (ECEs) throughout Alberta from November 1, 2022 to March 31, 2023.
Feedback from early childhood educators
Post evaluation results from 176 participants who completed the evaluation are summarized below. Testimonials show the impact on participation in the Theory-to-Practice sessions when early childhood educators were asked what they learned.
97% of early childhood educators reported having a better understanding of the role they play in brain development in the early years.
“Brain development in early years has lasting impact on a child's ability to learn and succeed in life. And we as an ECE have a huge impact on building children's brains.”
“Building brains is group work!” I loved this quote, it made a big impact on my viewpoint of the early years. It truly takes more than one person to nurture a child's growth.”
“It is our role as [educators] to build the structures needed to connect these [neurons] and build pathways. With [repetition] these pathways become stronger. Extrapolating from this, I understand why children love repetition and routine.”
“I have learned how to help children build resilience through positive supports, improved skills and abilities and reduced adversity as we build relationships with the children.”
“I feel validated as an early learning and child care educator. It's important to understand the science behind the work that we do.”
97% of early childhood educators reported having increased confidence in applying the brain science theory to their daily practice with children and families.
“I like seeing how to adapt the theory of the brain story to actual life working with young children.”
“The connection between practice and theory is important as it demonstrates your ability to use evidence to increase your understanding of key concepts, justify your decision making, and inform future practice.”
“Reminding myself that each and every connection I make with the children and the families daily are so important in order to build the healthy strong foundation for the children.”
“As an early childhood educator, I play an important role in helping build children’s resilience. So I would … apply the return and serve with them, provide a safe environment and provide developmentally interactive play to build their resilience. I will do my best to be the green box in the fulcrum of resilience scale.”
“I will start using more of the language in my dialogue with families to help them understand that what they are doing is helping support executive function! And to highlight more in my learning stories so that parents are able to have examples of what it looks like in practice!”
“This is one of the best workshops I have taken. Very rich in ideas, very useful in my daily work. It not only helps me get a deeper understanding of my work, but also gives me the answers to my questions. Now I can explain to the parents why we design this or that activities, what we can do together to help the children develop their brains with great confidence.”
98% of early childhood educators reported making some connections between the Brain Story Certification course and other early learning and child care ideas such as Flight: Alberta’s Early Learning and Care Framework and inclusive child care.
“Personally, I enjoyed learning how the brain architecture is connected and linked to Flight: Alberta's Early Learning and Care Framework. It was fascinating.”
“How FLIGHT and brain story is connected and how we can apply in our daily work.”
“I learned about resilience, relationships, and play. They are very important for brain development. And the connection between brain development and Flight has helped us to gain a better understanding of the motivations of Flight.”
“The information was concise and offered in an easy to follow way. The handbook is a useful resource to have, especially connecting the Brain Story to Flight and having the core concepts of Flight at the back of the book.”
98% of early childhood educators would recommend the Theory-to-Practice sessions to other early childhood educators.
“It was very informative, interactive and [comprehensive] course. I will [recommend] it to my [colleagues] as this will help us to be better professionals and build better brains of the children in our care.”
“Incredible course. [Should] be mandatory for all [Early Childhood Educators]. Provided me with the knowledge, skills, and confidence to use the Brian story in practice to help provide quality, life changing care to children and their families.”
“It is an amazing course not only for ECEs, I believe every parent should take this course to understand their children`s need and better understand the brain function. How important these early years are in one’s life. I am grateful that I got this opportunity to be a part of this wonderful learning.”
When asked about the Theory-to-Practice Sessions, early childhood educators offered comments such as:
“This course had [an] amazing delivery with our moderator and the workbook was a fantastic selling bonus as this is now a resource I can share and reflect on. I enjoyed how much it connected to flight to expand my learning. I also enjoyed the games, discussion, activities, and videos throughout the course.
“I am very thankful for taking this course as this expanded my learning of brain stories and left me feeling well educated. I hope there is a part 2.”
“The Theory-to-Practice Series was amazing, very knowable, and informative workshop. In my opinion both workshops Brain Story Certification and The Theory-to-Practice Series should be [mandatory] for teachers and add to Alberta Child Care Orientation Course for Level 1 ECE.”
“When I took the Brain Story Certification, I have learned so much although there were things that were so deep. This Theory-to-Practice made it clearer to me and I understood it more fully. It made it easier for me to connect Flight to the information I received. My hope is that more educators can take this course and benefit from it like I did. I hope that there will be a continuation of this course.”
“I graduated from Bow Valley College last spring and was surprised to learn that the Core Brain Story Certificate course and the Theory-to-Practice series were not integrated into the diploma program as a required workshop as we learned about the Flight Curriculum. The Core Brain Story concept has been fundamental to my core training and knowledge as a new Early Childhood Educator in the field, who is currently working with infants and toddlers.”
“The series actually exceeded my expectations. It has made me more confident to keep supporting children in my care by being a responsive educator and provide them with authentic age appropriate activities, enough time, space, responsive environment and also continue to support parents on best practices on how to support children to build strong foundations for [their] future learning, good health and behaviors.”
“Theory to practice is a way to understand and learned more [about] yourself as an educator. The synergy of brain science (architecture) and understanding flight framework will give you a whole scenario of what an early childcare is all about. As an educator it is an eye opening for all of us the significant role we are playing in the life of the mighty child capable of being resilience, self-regulated individual and stress buster human being.”
“It`s a great opportunity for our community, schools, child care and day home centers to learn how function the brain and to be able to support that development and provide the best nurturing environment from babies to school age children and be able to [cope] with the stress and create calming and relaxing environment for everyone. The course is great foundation and tools for every educator and give us the right keys how to practice what we learned and support healthy and happy kids.”
“[This] course of brain story theory to practice is very helpful as a dayhome Educator. I learned a lot [about] how the brain of a child [develops,] how those behaviors from caregivers and environment affects the behavior of a child [and] how to handle kids with different situations and circumstances.”
98% of early childhood educators would recommend the Brain Story Certification Course to other early childhood educators.
“I think that taking this [The Brain Story] course should be a standard across the industry for all Early Childhood Educators. It is important for educators to have the knowledge in order to best support children and their families.”
“The Brain Science theory is so amazing that I can apply to understand on how to deal the child's behaviour and their individual development.”