A local organization that drew my attention is called First Steps Kent. This organization specializes in providing intentional professional development opportunities to early childhood teachers as well as parents and caregivers. This organization facilitates “Play and Learn” groups that provide parents with opportunities to experience literacy-rich activities and best practices being modeled by coaches. Monthly literacy-based activities and tools for supplying additional learning are provided to the community through this organization as well. I love that this organization is so focused on educating and partnering with families to provide quality early childhood resources, education, and experiences.
The second organization that appealed to me is called the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. This organization is dedicated to early childhood education, more specifically, to grant making that supports flourishing kids, working families, and unbiased communities. I love that the heart of this organization centers on supporting and nurturing families with the goal of helping these families to thrive.
The last organization I found is called the Health Net of West Michigan, specifically a program called FitKids360. This is a seven week healthy lifestyle program that caters to children aged 5 to 17 and their caregivers. The program infuses nutrition, exercise and behavior education with various physical activities to assist participants in eating healthier, becoming more active, and engaging in exercise. I love the fundamental beliefs behind this local organization in that I believe children obesity is a growing epidemic in our country and one that should be actively addressed.
I have taught for nine years now in the capacity of first grade and kindergarten teaching positions in poverty-stricken communities. A job opportunity that appeals to me at this point of my life is a kindergarten teaching position in a well-resourced, well-respected, and high-performing district in my hometown. This is a position I recently attained and am transitioning to. I have also been encouraged by many people in my life to seek an administrative degree or certification. This is a position that does not currently appeal to me, but may in the future. At this point in my life, I may look into directing an early childhood facility or being a principal at an early elementary school.
Skills needed to fulfill these administrative roles would be solid leadership skills, excellent communication skills, public relational skills, organization, and experience. I would also think that it would be important to have various age and grade level teaching experience to draw off of. I think it is also crucial to have strong knowledge behind building effective partnerships and relationships with colleagues as well as families.
(n.d.). In W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Retrieved from https://www.wkkf.org/what-we-do/educated-kids
(2016). In First Steps. Retrieved from https://www.firststepskent.org/early-learning-communities
(2015). In Health Net of West Michigan. Retrieved from http://healthnetwm.org/programs/fitkids360