Ensuring Continuity of Learning in ECCD Amidst Varying Context and the Pandemic

Achieving inclusive early childhood care and development is a complex challenge. The barriers to ECCD have been further heightend due to the recent pandemic. Teachers and Caregivers now have greather roles in order to provide our young learners the education and care they serve.

let us share experience and discuss how we can provide an inclusive, joyful and meaningful learning experience for our young learners.

Join us this 17 May 2022, 2 pm (GMT+8) for the “ENSURING CONTINUITY OF LEARNING IN ECCD: A Webinar on Inclusive Early Childhood Care and Development”.

Register as a zoom participant here

http://bit.ly/ECCDwebinar-reg

Facebook

https://fb.me/e/1Mtwlrn6c

Live on YouTube

https://youtu.be/OO1_6Cg6gkl

The Webinar will be hosted via Zoom and will be streamed via Facebook Live and YouTube Live on innotech’s social media.

 I. BACKGROUND

Early childhood[1], or a child’s formative years (ages 0 to 8), is crucial to a person’s holistic growth, particularly in their physical, cognitive, emotional, and social development. These early years in a child’s life contribute to their ability to learn and pose significant impact in their adult life. It is also during these years when a child is greatly influenced by their environment and the people around them.

The Convention on the Rights of the Child[2] recognizes the importance of early childhood development (ECD) to improve the well-being of children worldwide, ultimately improving their capacity to learn and develop. UNICEF has identified three vital areas indicative of the quality of ECD: quality of care, access to early childhood care and education, and overall developmental status of the children.

In pursuit of nation building and equity, the Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs) reflects the importance of early childhood care and education as it sets forth the ambition to provide all children with “access to quality early childhood development, care, and pre-primary education” by the year 2030. Different countries in the Southeast Asian Region already have national policies and legal frameworks in place to ensure that elements of inclusive education are present.

However, the issue of achieving inclusivity in education, particularly in early childhood care and development (ECCD), is a complex challenge. It requires addressing various issues surrounding and affecting access to and quality of ECCD programs. And addressing these challenges need cooperation of various stakeholders—from government offices, non-government organization, and private sector, down to the families and communities.

Barriers to ECCD programs are further heightened by the disruption in education experienced due to the global pandemic. More than 150 million[3] children below 5 years old have been affected as schools close in East Asia and the Pacific. Along with the health risk, the pandemic also threatened children’s opportunity to grow and learn with their peers. This also puts great pressure on teachers who need to continuously provide early learning programs amid the imposed distance learning. Likewise, families and parents were put in the spotlight as they take on a bigger role in their child’s learning.

In order to support young learners, teachers and parents alike need to exert extra effort to ensure that learning continues. Both teachers and parents need to be capacitated with skills that could facilitate learning in the most effective way during the pandemic and beyond.

One teaching-learning concept that can be applied both in classroom and in alternative setup is the inquiry-based teaching and learning (IBTL). IBTL[4] is a pedagogy that encourages students to learn by exploring, investigating, analyzing, and asking questions. It helps in honing a child’s critical and creative thinking skills.

In order to help address the education needs of the region, SEAMEO INNOTECH conducts quarterly online learning events focused on specific education concerns. For the 3rd quarter of Fiscal Year 2021-2022, INNOTECH, through its Knowledge Management and Networking Office, will organize a webinar focused on ECCD this 17 May 2022, at 2 pm. This webinar will emphasize the importance of ECCD and will provide a space for teachers and parents to learn together as they work together for the continuous learning of young children.

II.           OBJECTIVES

The half-day webinar on ECCD aims to:

  • Raise awareness on the importance of early childhood care and development in time of pandemic and beyond;
  • Identify best practices of early childhood care and development in school and at home; and
  • Disseminate the Center’s knowledge products related to ECCD (i.e., Inquiry-based Teaching and Learning, Inclusive ECCD).

III.          EXPECTED OUTPUTS

The ECCD webinar is part of SEAMEO INNOTECH’s series of knowledge fora on key issues in education across the region. Below are the foreseen concrete outputs of the webinar:

  • Infographics on ECCD practices; and
  • Forum summary report.

V.            PROGRAM

As the webinar aims to emphasize the importance of early childhood education—in and out of formal school, with or without the pandemic—INNOTECH’s recent publication, “Regional Research on Achieving Inclusive Early Childhood Care and Development in Southeast Asia,” will be the overarching context of the event. The project manager and head of the Center’s Educational Research Unit, Dr. Sherlyne Almonte-Acosta will be the keynote speaker of the event. While the research tackled various aspects of ECCD, her presentation would focus on the importance of ECCD, the usual barriers to inclusive ECCD, some programs done by different Southeast Asian countries to address these challenges, and further recommendations to improve the status of inclusive education in the Region.

The keynote presentation will be followed by two sessions focused on two main facilitators of learning in the context of pandemic—teachers and parents. The first session will focus on formal early childhood education happening within a classroom and facilitated by a teacher. The second session, on the other hand, will focus on early childhood learning happening at home, facilitated by the child’s parents or guardians.

Session 1: Teaching pre-schools in pandemic

Children 8 years old and below are curious about everything, making them easily distracted from less interesting activities. Getting their attention in face-to-face classes is already a challenge for teachers before the pandemic. This challenge was accentuated when classes shifted to distance learning this pandemic. This session will be an opportunity to look back at the experiences of pre-school teachers in the past two years in pandemic.

This session will look into possible activities which can be done in both face-to-face and distance classes, to nurture the critical and creative thinking skills of learners. INNOTECH, through its Educational Innovation Unit (EIU), will share about its research project, “Nurturing Critical and Creative Thinkers Through Inquiry-Based Teaching and Learning in Early Childhood Care and Education.”

Session 2: Parents as learning partners in alternative learning

During the pandemic, parents’ role as learning partners has been greatly emphasized. With the limited presence of teachers in distance learning, parents stood in as learning facilitators at home.

This session hopes to empower parents with tips on how they can provide better support to the learning of children through and beyond the pandemic. An expert from SEAMEO Regional Center for Early Childhood Care Education and Parenting (CECCEP) will serve as a resource speaker for this session.

Following these sessions is an open forum with all the resource speakers. Questions from Zoom participants and live broadcast viewers will be entertained in an open discussion facilitated by the event host.

To further engage the participants, there will be a breakout session for Zoom participants. The breakout session will serve as mini sessions done in parallel where Zoom participants can choose where to join, depending on their preference and interests. There will be three breakout rooms: Application of IBTL practices in classrooms; Good practice of a Child Development Center; and Role of caregivers in providing inclusive ECCD.

The breakout session would involve a brief presentation on the topic, followed by an open discussion among participants. A Padlet will be used to gather the best practices and challenges experienced by the participants related to the breakout session topic.

Following the breakout session, representatives of each group will share the highlights of their discussion in plenary, answering the question: “As teachers/parents, how can we ensure an inclusive, joyful, and meaningful learning experience for our young learners?

While the Zoom participants are in breakout sessions, related videos will be played on broadcast. To mimic a similar breakout experience, the host will encourage the viewers to comment on how they practice early childhood learning in school or at home.

The webinar will conclude with a reflective question through a Mentimeter and a synthesis from the Executive Director of the Philippine Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) Council, Dr. Teresita G. Inciong.

The following schedule is proposed for the webinar:

TIME TOPIC/ACTIVITY
2:00 – 2:05 pm Opening Formalities Entrance of SEAMEO ColorsSEAMEO Song
2:05 – 2:15 pm Opening Messages Dr. Ramon C. Bacani, Director, SEAMEO INNOTECHDr. Suharti, Secretary General, Ministry of Education, Culture, Research and Technology, Indonesia
2:15 – 2:45 pm Keynote (Inclusive ECCD in Southeast Asia) Dr. Sherlyne Almonte-Acosta, Sr. Specialist, Educational Research and Innovation Office, SEAMEO INNOTECH
2:45 – 2:50 pm Check-in (Mentimeter) “In one word, share your experience of distance learning with young kids”
2:50 – 3:20 pm Session 1: Teaching pre-schools in pandemic IBTL practices that can be applied in and out of classroom (Ms. Lauren Nerisse Bautista, Educational Innovation Unit, SEAMEO INNOTECH)
3:20 – 3:25 pm Session Break
3:25 – 3:55 pm Session 2: Parents as learning partners Roles of parents in early childhood learning (SEAMEO CECCEP)
3:55 – 4:15 pm Q&A
4:15 – 4:50 pm Breakout Activity **Broadcast will play relevant videos while Zoom participants are in breakout rooms** IBTL application in classrooms as practiced by a teacher (Dr. Joana B. Romano, Southeast Asian Educational Innovation Awards Winner)Good practice of a Child Development Center (ECCD Council)Role of caregivers in inclusive ECCD (CECCEP Partner University)
4:50 – 5:10 pm Breakout session highlights “As teachers/parents, how can we ensure an inclusive, joyful, and meaningful learning experience for our young learners?
5:10 – 5:15 pm Check-out (Mentimeter) “Share your key takeaways from this webinar”
5:15 – 5:25 pm Synthesis Dr. Teresita Inciong, Executive Director, ECCD Council
5:25 – 5:35 pm Closing Session Closing Message: Dr. Elis Rosdiawati, M.Pd., Acting Director, SEAMEO CECCEPINNOTECH Hymn

VI.  RESOURCE PERSONS, IMPLEMENTATION PARTNERS, AUDIENCE

The following are the proposed resource persons for the Webinar:

  • Dr. Sherlyne Almonte-Acosta, Senior Specialist, Educational Research Unit (ERU), SEAMEO INNOTECH
  • Ms. Lauren Nerisse Bautista, Specialist, Educational Innovation Unit (EIU), SEAMEO INNOTECH
  • Mr. Ith Vuthy, Deputy Director for Programme, SEAMEO Regional Center for Early Childhood Care Education and Parenting (CECCEP)

The following are possible implementation partners/sponsors for the webinar. Sponsors would have airtime during the webinar to show related videos. In return, they will be requested to promote the webinar on their online channels, send participants, and/or provide giveaways for the webinar.

  • SEAMEO Regional Center for Early Childhood Care Education and Parenting (CECCEP)
  • Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) Council
  • Asia-Pacific Regional Network for Early Childhood (ARNEC)
  • Philippine Department of Education
  • SEAMEO Secretariat
  • Children’s Book Publishers (e.g., Adarna House, Lampara Publishing House, Inc., Tahanan Books)

Invitations will be sent to the following audience:

  • Partner public and private schools (Pre-schools, Child Development Centers, Elementary Schools)
  • Department of Education Regional Offices
  • INNOTECH Institutional Partners
  • INNOTECH staff and partners
  • SEAMEO Centers

The target number of Zoom participants for this webinar is 150, a combination of pre-school teachers, school heads, and parents from private and public pre-schools and child development centers. The team will send invitations to partner schools and organizations with early childhood education programs.

As the webinar will be broadcasted through Facebook and YouTube, higher reach is expected. The team targets to reach 3,000 viewers from the two platforms during the live broadcast and hopes to reach 10,000 within 24 hours.

VII.         PLATFORM / SETUP

The Webinar will be hosted via Zoom and will be streamed via Facebook Live and YouTube Live. The team will set up a designated venue at INNOTECH where cameras, microphones, and laptops will be ready for the Live. The Educational Media Unit (EMU) will be tapped for the webinar setup and management. The technical support of the Systems Management Unit (SMU) is also needed to ensure stability of internet connection throughout the broadcast. An outsourced consultant/technical support will also be engaged to help manage and broadcast the live event. Resource persons may be hosted at the Center or at their own homes, wherever they prefer.

Most of the presentations will be recorded to ensure that everything will go smoothly and within the allotted time. Only the Host, the open forum, the breakout presentations, and synthesis will be live to ensure engagement with the participants.

The Zoom platform will be dedicated for the organizing team, resource persons, and invited participants. Other interested participants will be invited to join via live streams.

Registration of Zoom participants will be done through Zoom so that automatic emails may be sent to those who registered to confirm their registration and inform them of the webinar details. Another email may be sent to the registered participants a day before the webinar to remind them of the event. Email blasts will also be done to the Center’s previous participants and institutional partners to invite them to the live broadcast. To reach more viewers, SEAMEO Secretariat, the Philippine Department of Education, and ECCD Council will be requested to share and/or cross-post the live stream in their Facebook pages. Thank you cards, certificate of participation (for those who are inside the Zoom platform), and certificate of attendance (participants on the live streams who submitted an evaluation form) will be emailed after the webinar.

The recorded webinar will be posted and made available for everyone a few minutes after the live broadcast.

-Get Repost From SEAMEO INNOTECH-


[1] “Early childhood care and education,” UNESCO, https://en.unesco.org/themes/early-childhood-care-and-education

[2] Convention on the Rights of the Child, UNICEF, https://www.unicef.org/child-rights-convention

[3] “Young Children and the Pandemic,” UNICEF, https://www.unicef.org/eap/reports/young-children-and-pandemic

[4] SEAMEO INNOTECH, Nurturing Critical and Creative Thinkers through Inquiry-Based Teaching and Learning in Early Childhood Care and Education (Philippines: SEAMEO INNOTECH, 2019)

Spread the word. Share this post!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *