Each and every day early childhood educators dedicate their lives to the wellbeing, learning and development of your children while they’re in their care. To recognise their hard work and show our appreciation, we celebrate the efforts of our wonderful educators on the first Wednesday of September.
Early Childhood Educators’ Day 2023 will take place on Wednesday 6th September this year.
What are the roles of early childhood educators?
In a nutshell, early childhood educators provide education and care to children from infancy to five years of age. But in reality, their role encompasses so much more than that. Educators work tirelessly every day to impart important social, emotional, physical and cognitive skills that can have a huge impact on your little one’s learning outcomes down the track. They inspire children to develop a passion for learning and encourage them to develop resilience, confidence and self-esteem. Educators work with parents to help them implement behaviour management and learning strategies in the children’s home environment and provide updates on their child’s development while at the early learning service. Ultimately, educators help to set children up for success throughout their lives and shape them into contributing members of society.
Beyond these roles, here are some of the other ways that educators aid in shaping and impacting children's lives:
- Educational foundations,
- Social and emotional development,
- Cognitive progress,
- Language development,
- Physical improvement,
- Cultural awareness,
- Nutrition and health,
- Early intervention,
- Parental involvement, and
- Build confidence and independence.
Why do we celebrate early childhood educators?
There are so many reasons to celebrate early childhood educators. With that said, this event serves three main purposes for early childhood educators and the childcare industry in general.
1. Recognition and appreciation
Early Childhood Educators’ Day acknowledges the essential role that early childhood educators play in the lives of young children and their families. It aims to highlight the benefits of early learning, which are recognised not just in Australia but around the world. At a local level, it allows the childcare community, including parents, children and employers, to show their gratitude and appreciation for the hard work and role that early childhood educators play in children’s lives.
2. Staff wellbeing
There’s no doubt that any role within the childcare industry comes with its fair share of stressors and challenges. With a strong focus on recognition and community support, Early Childhood Educators’ Day can help contribute to job satisfaction while fostering a positive team culture. It can also play a key role in each early learning service’s staff wellbeing plan.
There are so many ways to celebrate Early Childhood Educators’ Day, but some celebrations choose to incorporate wellness-focused activities, like mindfulness sessions, relaxation activities and self-care workshops. These initiatives help to recognise the impact of the job and encourage educators to participate in self-care practices, stress management and other activities that promote their well-being.
3. Advocacy and raising awareness
Finally, Early Childhood Educators' Day acts as a stage for spotlighting the significance of top-notch Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC). It sheds light on the invaluable roles early childhood educators play in establishing the groundwork for children's future learning, growth and happiness. Additionally, it highlights the necessity for sufficient resources, assistance and acknowledgment for early childhood education programs and educators.
In essence, Early Childhood Educators' Day strives to celebrate and elevate the early childhood education profession, fostering a positive influence on both educators and the broader community.
How to show your appreciation
Early childhood educators have a huge impact on your little one’s life. Not only do they ensure your child’s well-being while they’re in their care, but they also help to provide them with foundational skills that will set them up for success in the future. Early Childhood Educators’ Day is the perfect opportunity for early learning providers and families alike to come together and celebrate the early childhood educators who make their service so special.
If you’re after a bit of inspiration, we’ve pulled together a few suggestions on how to show your appreciation to your educators. If you’re not able to express your gratitude on the day, it’s still worth honouring them in your own way during the week of Early Childhood Educators’ Day.
Here are a few ways that you and your child can celebrate their educators:
- Make a homemade thank you note, card or artwork to express your appreciation for your early childhood educator,
- Write a short story or poem detailing all the things your child loves about their excellent teacher and why they are such an amazing educator,
- Give them a homemade present, like a pasta necklace or painted pot for a plant for your patient and compassionate educator,
- Pick a bunch of flowers from the garden or florist, make a paper bouquet or put together a daisy chain for the early childhood educators or daycare teachers in your service,
- Sign a giant thank you card with other families at your service to validate the value of childhood education and care providers in your child's life,
- Make some sweet treats or savoury snacks for a shared morning tea at the early education service,
- Print out shapes for your child to add to an appreciation wall or thank you tree at your service,
- See what’s happening on the Early Childhood Educators’ Day Facebook page (there are prizes to win), and
- Don’t forget to say a BIG “thank you!” to your educator at drop-off or pick-up.
If your early learning service isn’t aware of Early Childhood Educators’ Day, it could be worth encouraging them to get involved and show their thanks to their incredible educators. You can even send them a link to the dedicated Early Childhood Educators’ Day website so they can find out how to get involved and explore the different resources available to them.
At the end of the day, it’s the thought that counts, but be sure to wish your educators a heartfelt thank you for all their hard work.