Confusing isn’t it?
Understanding critical reflection and knowing how to use it to implement a childcare program.
What is ‘critical reflection’?
How is it relevant to childcare?
How do you use it to meet Element 1.2.3 of the NQS?
It’s all so … difficult.
But it doesn’t have to be. There’s really three simple steps to getting it right.
So let’s unpack them, shall we?
1. Unpacking Critical Reflection
The first step is to unpack what is meant by ‘critical reflection’ and what is expected of educators in relation to the National Quality Framework.
This needs to be done effectively so you can distinguish between evaluation, reflection, and critical reflection. Once this becomes clear, you can apply the critical reflective process to a range of practical context and issues.
Getting crystal clear on this also allows you to identify a range of strategies for recording and documenting critical reflection.
2. Strengthening Early Childhood Programs
Critical reflection is more than just a process to be followed. It’s doing reflection at a more conscious level.
Critical reflection is the process of analyzing, reconsidering and questioning experiences within a broad context of issues, ideas, and values. Used correctly it strengthens early childhood programs.
But it requires a deep understanding of the process, and how to make it work for you. You need to be able to participate in reflective conversations, reflection on action and reflection in action
3. Developing a Growth Mindset
A key outcome of the critical reflection process is developing a growth mindset. Not just in yourself, but in your team, and the children and families you work with.
Developing a growth mindset changes “I can’t” into “I’m working on it”. It moves you from “impossible” to “I’m possible”. This is deeply transformational for both educators and families.
Developing this mindset increases creativity and eliminates boundaries. It makes almost anything possible.
How To Make It Easy
Understanding critical reflection is one thing, but harnessing the power of the process can be complex.
It can take years of discovery, setbacks, and experience to get it right. But there’s a shortcut you can take.
You can discover key strategies from experts like Stephen Gallen, Caroline Fewster, and Rod Soper. Their experience encompasses all aspects of early childhood learning, from classroom teaching to managing services, consulting and developing professional development programs.
They’re passionate about early learning and providing optimum opportunities for young learners to realise their full potential, and they’re sharing their knowledge and expertise with us at the Day With The Best.
Sam has experience in public and private sector organisations across Australia and has been with Kool Kids Training College since 2014.
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