There are a couple of different ways to look at this question… I looked at it and saw “Why DO I work with young children?” I wish the answer were simple, but like young children, it is complicated and kind of all over the place!
Over the last fifteen and a half years I have been in the early childhood education field at every level. I have run my own home daycare, been a Pre-K teacher, a supervisor, a trainer, and a center director. But what has kept me in this challenging career field? THE CHILDREN! Watching them grow and develop into little individuals is the most rewarding benefit any job could offer.
On an average day as a center director I dealt with staff call-outs, budget issues, parent concerns, and a whole host of other frustrations. A quick walk into a toddler room to watch those little guys concentrate as they explored in the rice table or hearing them laugh and squeal as they tried to catch and pop bubbles would make all the frustration disappear.
As a PAT Parent Educator, I have found the perfect balance of administrative duties and child interaction. I enjoy teaching parents the best practices to enhance and understand their children’s developmental stages. It is overwhelmingly gratifying to know that I have helped a family and improved that child’s chances of being understood, enjoyed, loved, and appreciated by their parents. There is no greater joy than knowing that a child has benefited from the work I do.
So the answer, almost 16 years later, remains the same: I work with young children because I get the privilege of teaching them during their most vital developmental years!