Core Competency 2: Participating in Professional Activities

Core Competency 2: Participating in Professional Activities

A profession is defined by us when we nourish it with commitment to develop ourselves and to be in the community that shares a similar vision.

Just-in-time training helps us in our daily work while deeper knowledge and skills help us stay ahead of the curve and into the future.

It is important to stay connected with fellow practitioners in the early childhood sector and network with people who hold various positions in different early childhood or early intervention organisations.

  • The Association of Early Childhood Education, Singapore (AECES) is ‘a professional body committed to working with educators, other professionals and stakeholders for the purpose of creating an inclusive society.’ In AECES, it is where you can get connected with likeminded people who have a common vision for the work with ALL children and families. As a member, you will be able to reap the benefits of participation in regular Community of Practice, receive bi-annual local journal, participate in local visits and overseas trips. You may also meet fellow ICOs from other Centres and learn from each other what works best.
  • If you wish to venture further, you could join the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) which is based in the USA. It is a ‘professional membership organisation that works to promote high quality early learning for all young children, birth through age 8, by connecting early childhood practice, policy and research’.

From both professional organisations, you will be able to obtain up-to-date reading materials about early childhood education, inclusive practices, leadership and professional development. Self-reading is one great way to update and upgrade yourself professionally.

The mandatory training which you have completed kick starts your role in the Centre. As you work with the Centre Leader and Educators, you will soon wish that you have a magic bag to dip into when encounters with issues isn’t as straight forward as what you have learnt in the ICO course.

Besides a network of friends and practitioner to have professional conversations while taking care to guard confidentiality, you need to continually be equipped through self-study or attend professional development courses.

Where should you start?

Identify your area of needs. Look through your reflective journal if you had mentioned it before where you felt helpless. Have a heart-to-heart talk with a trusted peer to find out if you are correct in how you feel and think about your own competency. Areas for development may not be functional knowledge and skills. They may also be areas of handling stress and having clarity when communicating.

There are plenty of resources on the internet these days and valuable lessons to learn from inspiring TedTalks.

What are your developmental goals in the next one year? Have a discussion with your Centre Leader or a mentor if you have one. Discussion could centre on what can I do to help me do my current job better and what else can I do to support the Centre in furthering inclusive practice? Are there courses to meet just-in-time training needs? Am I ready to look for courses that will provide you with deeper knowledge and skills so that I can serve the children and their families better?


Check out these links for just-in-time training: