Modern day practice in early years education brings with it necessary documentation and our learning stories are simply an extension of this, however taking part in the learning story awards brings the added benefit of making our experiences meaningful and insightful for families and the wider community.
We take great pride in the opportunities we provide in Carraig Briste & Killegney Early Years, where the value of child led practice and the voice of the young child is respected and truly heard. The stories that have won awards are always a simple honest account of every day experiences inspired by the child. These experiences, I have no doubt, are replicated throughout every county in Ireland each day.
Learning stories give us an opportunity to self-reflect, analyse and share practice within our team, developing an ethos and style of practice which reflects our unique set of beliefs for quality in early years education. This is echoed throughout our team and Chantel and Anne wanted to share their thoughts on learning stories.
The learning stories opened my eyes to see the extraordinary in the ordinary, seeing how a baby discovers her reflection in a mirror, a toddler beginning to climb a rock, a child excitedly telling his friends that his daddy is a carpenter and invites him to visit. And most importantly, the stories remind me as an early educator to slow down, really observe a child as an individual and notice the incredible achievements they accomplish every day.
Having won learning story awards over the years, it is a time of celebration, goodwill, pride and joy. On a deeper level, it has developed a strong self-belief within our team, motivating us to further enhance and develop this very cohesive approach within our settings, whereby providing opportunities for the highest provision for quality care and education in our communities are our absolute priority.
As a team and community, we have both been inspired and reflective of the value that the awards place on early years care and education. These awards through Early Childhood Ireland have brought joy, excitement, exploration and investigative thinking throughout our settings. As educators we are growing in confidence and discovering more successful ways of implementing theory into practice observing meaning within what may seem the tinniest of detail.
In our practice we see how important the validation of our Learning Stories and the recognition from Early Childhood Ireland has been, giving us an enormous sense of security and trust. As our stories become more widely known within our community and local towns, the voice of the Child becomes stronger, valued and more recognized. This creates a wonderful sense of well-being and satisfaction among our wider community, and most of all the process of entering learning stories with Early Childhood Ireland is really good fun.
Orlagh Doyle, along with her husband James, lead a team of twenty- five early years educators in their settings in Carriage Briste & Killegney. Orlagh’s love and passion for early years began in 2003 and has evolved and blossomed to its success of today. Her philosophy is influenced by both herself and James who been brought up in farming backgrounds. Orlagh trained as a St Nicholas Montessori teacher many decades ago, and is working towards her Masters later on this year. As a team in both settings, they constantly engage in continuous professional development, which is reflected in the quality of care and education they provide. The pedagogy and ideals of Carraig Briste & Killegney Early Years are based upon seeing children as capable, resourceful individuals, with a strong voice deserving of the utmost respect in their enabling indoor and outdoor spaces. They love creating beautiful environments in Carraig Briste & Killegney. Their settings are influenced by Reggio Emilia and this sits very well with their Montessori approach. Their settings are gifted with large outdoor spaces which support their love of all year- round outdoor experiences for children.