Daily Archives: April 12, 2014

Guest Blog: Gisela Wajskop

Yesterday I (Gisela Wajskop) shared with Monica McGlynn-Stewart an important moment Gisela Wajskopin her professional and personal life as well as in the lives of her students at George Brown College (Toronto, Ontario). I attended the Second Annual Bachelor of Early Childhood Leadership Research Symposium organized jointly with Fanshawe College (London, Ontario) and Sheridan College (Oakville, Ontario). The event celebrated the innovative early childhood education (ECE) program. This four-year program prepares students to be educators and to become leaders in curriculum and pedagogy development for Ontario’s early childhood settings. These include: childcare centers, nursery schools, family drop-in programs (including Ontario Early Years Centres, family resource centers and parenting programs), family support programs, and early intervention services.
I was quite excited by the students’ serious and enthusiastic research presentations that were based on their practice/placements in schools and community centres. The program believes the field of ECE requires critical thinkers and practitioners who have vision, a professional demeanour, and in-depth knowledge. The ECE program wants to prepare future leaders and educators; they hope to empower students by using a variety of pedagogical strategies (e.g., research on practice). Overall they aim to raise expectations for their students; the new standards for the profession raise the accountability bar.
Attending the Symposium reminded me of my Brazilian students and the practices we developed together the last 12 years. As a teacher educator I was committed to empowering my students to have a critical voice in the field just as those three Colleges aim to do.
Participating in this very special event reminded me that we are entering Passover: I am grateful to Monica who opened her door to me … and I wish her students all the best. Under her supervision and leadership may they develop and become better people and excellent professionals.
Chag Sameach for all!