• Amanda Vanderbeek

    Amanda Vanderbeek

    Class of 2012
    Ely, MN
    Elementary education

    Amanda's Bio:
    I grew up in the Twin Cities, but now live up in Ely, MN near the BWCA, where my family has been for the last 7 years. I have three brothers, who I adore, and I enjoy fishing, playing basketball, and rough housing with them whenever I can. My mom has been a daycare provider since I was born, which served as inspiration for me to pursue a degree in Elementary education. I also love to paint, draw, and DANCE! I have been dancing for twenty years and am a dance instructor in Superior, WI....I can't imagine a life without it!

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    Accounting Major; Finance minor

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Daycare vs Teaching: Not So Different Afterall

Today is my first day off of work in the last two weeks, which means one thing: helping my mom with daycare for the day. She has been a provider for over twenty years, and her patience, care, and love for the kids she takes care of is contagious. She always puts her whole heart into her work, just as I do when I plan lessons and teach the students I work with in the field of elementary education. While this woman never went to college for schooling in childcare (she started before a degree became an option), she is a natural care provider. However, teaching and taking care of children in a daycare are really quite similar. In both settings, you need to be aware of the needs of the children you are responsible for, provide them with structured activities to fill up their day and give them experiences for learning and exploration, as well as caring for them as a parent would day in and day out throughout the week.

As a teacher, we are responsible with:
– Giving children the opportunity to learn by preparing lessons, assessments, and learning activities that foster an equal opportunity for success for each student
– Providing a comfortable, colorful, and positive environment in which our students can learn efficiently
– Having a schedule and daily pattern of activities for students to follow and be aware of
– Establishing rules and behavior models for students to follow to ensure safety and comfort for all students in the classroom
– Being a role model that shows students a positive attitude, understanding, and care on a daily basis
– Being understanding and just when it comes to a student’s success and potential in the classroom
– Communicating efficiently and often with the parents and family of students to enable the best network of support possible for the child

Daycare providers, similarly, do the following:
– Provide a comfortable and home-like setting for children to spend their day

– Provide meals and snacks for their children that meet the requirements of the state and are healthy and nutritious

– Establish rules for their children to follow that promote the safety and well-being of everyone

– Provide their children with a schedule of insightful and developmentally appropriate activities to foster growth and brain development

– Act as role models for their children and show them responsible and caring behavior day in and day out

– Communicate with parents and family everyday to discuss behaviors, schedules and events, and strengths/weaknesses that the child displays each day

So, despite the fact that these are two different jobs in two different career arenas, they are in actuality quite the same!  I am, in essence, building onto my teaching experience by helping in a daycare setting.  One thing is for sure, whether you are becoming a teacher or are a full-time daycare provider, you need to have a lot of patience!  These kids can sure be a handful 😉

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