Winter is a great time to move forward from annual reviews and set new professional goals. Many early childhood professionals are likely considering the next step in their career path. Similarly, most teachers want to continue making a direct impact on the lives of young children while pursuing their next step. One way to take that next step is to become a master teacher.
So what is a master teacher?
In early childhood, master teachers may officially have a different title. Their business card may list titles such as mentor teacher, quality coach or education specialist. Despite differing titles, all of these positions play similar roles of working alongside other teachers. They offer support through coaching, support, modeling, and assisting with curriculum and lesson plans. Additionally, some master teachers train both current and new employees. Many conduct both classroom and child observations. They can almost act like travel agents through the world of early childhood – they support other teachers on their journeys.
Coaching is a central part of a master teacher’s skill set. According to the Colorado Coaching Consortium, “coaching is a learning process based on a collaborative relationship that is intentionally designed to promote sustainable growth in the necessary attitudes, skills, and knowledge to effectively implement the best practices for the development of young children and their families.” In this role, these master teachers serve as embedded coaches, in programs or organizations. In that role, they facilitate collaboration among their peers and help their professional community reflect upon their shared implementation of best practices.
You can become a master teacher!
To learn these coaching techniques, along with taking a deeper dive into the field of early childhood education, Early Learning Indiana’s Partnerships for Early Learners is offering a master teacher credential in collaboration with Ball State University and Indiana AEYC. The first cohort for this credential began in January 2017. The students are already sharing positive experiences. One enrolled teacher said:
“This opportunity has challenged me to look at my own philosophy of education. I wrote a philosophy statement as an undergrad but now that I have been in the field for several years my philosophy has evolved. It has been a great opportunity for reflection on that growth.”
Earning a master teacher credential can give you a strong foundation as you learn new skills and techniques. Read more about the courses that will be taken and the competencies covered.
This program is available to early childhood teachers and staff who are eligible for the T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood Indiana Scholarships. The master teacher credential program is built as a cohort experience, with participants learning and building their professional network together. A second cohort of this credential is set to begin in Fall 2017, and scholarship applications are now being accepted. Begin your first step to the next phase of your career by completing the form below. Once you’ve completed it, we’ll be in touch shortly with more information!
Beth Riedeman joined the Partnerships for Early Learners team at Early Learning Indiana in March 2016 as the Manager of Workforce Initiatives. She manages workforce development-related partnerships and projects across the state, focusing on learning communities and cohorts, strengthening the pipeline of early childhood educators and promoting workforce initiatives. She’s also the mother of a young learner, a very active community member and a steadfastly supportive colleague, a skill she honed in her previous work as a program administrator.