Above and Beyond – Traci McNeil, Ohio

Traci McNeil

Starting a new job in the childcare arena was exciting! I knew that I enjoyed working with children, and it was a great opportunity to stay at home with my daughter. One year turned into two, and before I knew it two years turned intobutton six. On daily walks with the children I passed by Pratt Educational Services, which provided CDA training. This was my first time hearing about this type of training. I inquired and received information about the benefits of educating myself in the field of early childhood education and development. I wanted to provide the best experiences for the children in my care and offer activities that will help them when entering school. After careful consideration I decided to sign up for training.

Participating in the five month training course was the best thing I ever did! I learned the fundamentals of early childhood education, learned what developmentally appropriate practice was, how to make interactive charts that align with curricula for the children, and most of all how to improve my verbal skills with parents when discussing their children. I had learned the verbiage and education that set me apart from being just a “babysitter” to a Professional Childcare Provider. The CDA training was a plus when I interviewed families and I had evidence of specialized training; that set me apart from other providers. Furthermore, my passion for early childhood education grew, and I soon enrolled in college. I have an associates degree in ECE and a bachelors in Child Psychology, and I became an advisor for the Council of Professional Recognition! My home has been used as a learning station for a vocational program that teaches ECE to high school students. I have truly gone beyond my expectations, and I know the CDA process was a base for my enthusiasm.

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