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ECDA TA Commendation Awards 2020

This year, 13 ECDA Training Award (TA) recipients have been given the TA Commendation Award to recognise their exemplary performance during their studies.

With the COVID-19 situation posing various challenges to our early childhood educators, our TA Commendation Award recipients have been learning to adapt their skills and experiences to continue their daily activities in the new normal. Watch the video below on their reflections and the new way forward for EC educators and the sector!

Read on to find out more about each TA Commendation Award recipient.

Alicia Wee Yu Xuan

Graduated with Diploma in Child Psychology and Early Education from NIEC (Ngee Ann Polytechnic)
Currently pursuing Bachelor of Early Childhood Education with Minor in SUSS

TA Commendation award recipient  

The educators in my life, including my parents, made an impact in shaping me into who I am today. Like what they did, I also want to become an early childhood educator to make a difference in children’s lives. As an introvert, I am often challenged to step out of my comfort zone when I teach. However, I do not let these limitations stop me from carrying out the meaningful and fulfilling job as an educator.

I want to provide fun learning experiences for the children under my care, as I believe that lessons are usually best remembered when children enjoy them. I hope to make use of games and creative activities to help children develop a love for learning. More importantly, I want to empower every child to have a happy and healthy start in life, with the right values and attitude.

I look forward to improving my competence as a teacher and contributing to the sector.

Emilya Farisha Bte Ismail

Graduated with Higher NITEC in Early Childhood Education from NIEC (ITE College Central)
Currently pursuing Diploma in Early Childhood Development & Education (ECDE) in NIEC (Temasek Polytechnic)

TA Commendation award recipient  

When I was younger, my relatives shared with me their experiences as early childhood educators. It intrigued me as they often had a ‘glow’ when they spoke about their children. When I became involved in my niece’s and nephew’s growing up years, I was further inspired to help other children learn in their preschool years.

I am passionate about the Malay Language and Culture. I aspire to be a Mother Tongue Educator to provide a positive learning environment to ease the children into the Malay language. I hope to work with like-minded early childhood educators to promote the importance of the Malay language in children’s learning of their cultural roots.

Having experienced the benefits of teaching the Malay language and culture through games, I see the value of children learning through hands-on activities. I would like to explore the use of technology to complement my teaching methods, such as creating a Malay Language mobile app for pre-schoolers. It would be fun to also use social media to share my teaching resources, while giving the public an insight into my life as an educator.

Goh Ya Hui Elaine

Graduated with Diploma in Early Childhood Studies from NIEC (Temasek Polytechnic)
Currently a teacher at My First Skool @ Serangoon North

TA Commendation award recipient  

I enjoy taking care of children. Nonetheless, in the initial stages of my early childhood journey, I was unsure whether I could connect well with the younger age group. It took me some effort to learn how to communicate with them, but eventually I was able to reach out to the children and gained their trust.

I find it very fulfilling to watch children grow and learn, especially when the intended outcomes of my lesson plans and materials are achieved. I hope to impart important values, like kindness and respect, through community projects that they can volunteer in. In my interactions with the children, I also try to demonstrate these values by catering to their different needs.

As an early childhood professional, I look forward to establishing good relationships with parents. I encourage them to take part in the school's activities so that they can work closely with the school to support their child's holistic development. In the long term, I aspire to take on more responsibilities and challenge myself in new ways, such as guiding new teachers in the sector.

Grace Goh Yanqi

Graduated with Diploma in Child Psychology and Early Education from NIEC (Ngee Ann Polytechnic)
Currently a teacher at Pat's Schoolhouse @ Aroozoo

TA Commendation award recipient  

I enrolled into my Diploma because of my passion in special needs education. The programme taught me to appreciate diversity in different aspects. I also learnt to adapt my lessons to cater to the needs of diverse groups of learners, regardless of their ability.

As I believe that children are curious and competent learners, I always seek to tap these strengths to scaffold their learning and development. As an educator, I am committed to serving the children under my care and want to make a difference in their lives and their families’.

I hope to advance my career and become a servant leader who leads educators to nurture our children, while looking after the educators’ professional development and well-being.

K Thanya

Graduated with Diplom​a in Early Childhood Education from NIEC (Ngee Ann Polytechnic)
Currently a teacher at PCF Sparkletots Preschool @ Geylang Serai Blk 412

TA Commendation award recipient  

Having two brothers who are five and nine years younger than me helped me realise my passion for nurturing young children. When I heard about the meaningful experience my relative had when she worked in the early childhood sector, I was further encouraged to join the profession myself.

Through cultivating strong and positive partnerships with young children and their parents, I aspire to use my knowledge and skills to help them experience the best years of their lives. I also value working closely with my colleagues, learning from them to create a safe and nurturing environment for children.

As an early childhood professional, I aim to continuously develop myself through training workshops and courses and wish to pursue a degree in early childhood in time to come. I seek to become a lead teacher who supports other educators with the same passion and make a lifelong impact beyond the classroom.

Miza Afiqah Binte Mahdi

Graduated with Diploma in Early Childhood Studies from NIEC (Temasek Polytechnic)
Currently a teacher at My First Skool @ Blk 209 Ang Mo Kio Ave 3

TA Commendation award recipient  

I take pride that early childhood educators play an important role in making a lifelong impact on children. My goal as an educator is to inculcate values and good morals in my children and prepare them for their transition to the next phase in life.

I love gaining knowledge in the early childhood field and aim to sharpen my teaching skills, in alignment with the centre's approach and pedagogy. As I progress in my career, I seek to be adaptable and flexible to new environments. I would also regularly seek feedback from my mentors to ensure that my lessons are fun and meaningful to support children’s holistic development.

A believer of lifelong learning, I aim to develop myself through continuing professional development courses. As I view leadership as an empowerment to support people in need, I aspire to take on leadership roles so that I would be able to make changes that benefit the teachers, children and the sector.

Neo Shi Xuan

Graduated with Diploma in Child Psychology and Early Education from NIEC (Ngee Ann Polytechnic)
Currently a teacher at My First Skool @ Blk 487 Segar Rd

TA Commendation award recipient  

My passion to work with children is innate, as my attention is easily drawn to any subject matter that involves children. Since young, I have joined several CCAs which allowed me to interact with children. I believe strongly in developing the potential in each child through empowering them to express their feelings and thoughts.

When undergoing the Diploma programme, I often looked for opportunities to apply my early childhood knowledge to my work. Now that I have started working, I continue to explore new ways to apply my knowledge while refining my teaching philosophy with the new perspectives gained on learning and teaching.

I aspire to take on leadership roles and inspire like-minded early childhood educators to provide high quality preschool education. I also aim to empower parents by educating them about how children learn and their developmental milestones as I believe strongly that parents play an important role in a child’s growth. Academically, I hope to further my studies in an early childhood degree after completing my ECDA Training Award (Polytechnic) bond.

Nurul Ain Bte Norhazli

Graduated with Higher NITEC in Early Childhood Education from NIEC (ITE College Central)
Currently pursuing Diploma in Early Childhood Development & Education (ECDE) in NIEC (Ngee Ann Polytechnic)

TA Commendation award recipient  

My passion for early childhood has developed over time. As I enjoy learning, I look forward to making new discoveries together with my children. I find myself constantly engaged when I adapt my teaching methods based on the children’s needs and preferences. These moments allowed me to hone my skills continuously.

I am proud to be an early childhood educator because it is a profession which requires exceptional dedication. I aspire to be a role model to my children as I embrace the challenges I might face as a preschool teacher.

Given the prevalence of digital gadgets today, I hope to implement an outdoor learning programme for my children so that they can appreciate the natural environment. I believe that children will be able to develop holistically when they explore Mother Nature, with their senses engaged. In the process, I also hope to gain parents’ support by sharing with them the benefits of outdoor learning to their child.

Ong Zi Hui Isabel

Graduated with Diploma in Child Psychology and Early Education from NIEC (Ngee Ann Polytechnic)
Currently a teacher at MY World @ Bidadari

TA Commendation award recipient  

My interest in working with children turned into a passion during my Polytechnic studies when I learnt about children’s development in-depth. I aspire to be an educator who enables the choices and opinions of children, while providing a nurturing and holistic learning environment to promote creativity and decision-making. I constantly seek new and meaningful ways to engage children and hope to make a difference in the lives of the children under my care.

In the near future, I plan to further my studies in the early childhood field. In the longer-term, I hope to become a leader so as to promote the importance of early childhood education and progression of teachers in the industry. As an educator, I want to partner with parents and communicate with them regularly to better understand the development of their children.

Eventually, I hope to attain a master's degree in early childhood education to contribute to the training of future teachers in the industry. I aspire to make use of my knowledge and experience to continue building up positive perceptions of the early childhood sector.

Sarvini

Graduated with Higher NITEC in Early Childhood Education from NIEC (ITE College Central)
Currently pursuing Diploma in Early Childhood Development & Education (ECDE) in NIEC (Ngee Ann Polytechnic)

TA Commendation award recipient  

I strongly believe that children should be allowed to express themselves using different platforms like show-and-tell, drama and even skits during their preschool days to further strengthen their language skills and ability to express their emotions. Personally, I am eager to learn new and inclusive ways to communicate, through arts and sign language.

To me, communication is key in facilitating an inclusive environment for children with special needs in mainstream classrooms. I hope to use sign language as a bridge to help children with special needs interact with others better. I would also like to explore how sign language can be incorporated into the inclusive curriculum and preschools.

Having received the support from a teacher who built up my confidence when I was younger, I hope to pay it forward as an early childhood educator. I want to partner parents to help children develop strong mental health and see them become more resilient and joyful by the time they move on from my care.

Sharani Govindaraj

Graduated with Diploma in Tamil Studies with Early Education from NIEC (Ngee Ann Polytechnic)
Currently a teacher at PCF Sparkletots Preschool @ Ang Mo Kio

TA Commendation award recipient  

I am passionate about the early childhood sector, particularly in teaching the Tamil Language. I aspire to provide students with a holistic education and instil good values to gain a head start in life. I aim to carry out my lessons in a fun and meaningful way, so that children could learn through play and a more hands-on approach, as compared to traditional methods.

I believe in creating an inclusive classroom by having a positive social environment, building strong rapport with students and meeting the needs of children from different backgrounds. I also seek to partner with parents to support their children’s development.

In the longer term, I hope to become a senior teacher, inspiring the passion for early childhood teaching in young teachers and guiding them to excel. I also want to contribute resources (especially for teaching the Tamil Language) to be shared amongst the early childhood community.

Sim Jianing

Graduated with Diploma in Chinese Studies (Early Childhood Teaching) from NIEC (Ngee Ann Polytechnic)
Currently a teacher at EtonHouse ZhongHua Preschool

TA Commendation award recipient  

I believe strongly in child-directed learning. Children’s competence at a young age are often easily overlooked and I seek to take a different approach to preschool teaching in my career as a preschool teacher.

As a Chinese Language teacher, I want to make every Chinese lesson fascinating for my children, based on topics that they express interest in. I also want to allow them to learn through play, an approach inspired by Reggio Emilia's pedagogy. In the long run, I hope that every child has a good start, regardless of their socio-economic background, through an equal opportunity to experience quality child-based learning in every preschool.

In the longer-term, I aspire to further my studies and acquire a master’s degree in early childhood education to further explore different teaching approaches.

Walter Loke Yanley

Graduated with Higher NITEC in Early Childhood Education from NIEC (ITE College Central)
Currently a teacher at PCF Sparkletots Preschool @ Canberra Blk 330

TA Commendation award recipient  

I enjoy interacting with children and aspire to be a good role model as a male preschool teacher in the sector. I believe in nurturing children to become resilient individuals by creating quality learning experiences in school and strive to partner with families in raising the children together.

As an early childhood professional, I hope to support young and new educators so that they can develop to their best potential, as they find their purpose and hone the necessary skills. I look forward to contributing in the sector’s efforts to attract more educators with the right heart to join the sector, regardless of their age, gender and background.

In future, I want to pursue more experiential learning and gain exposure to the early childhood field before furthering my studies in early childhood education.