Off and on when I meet up with my friends, they ask me about my profession. Well, more so recently, as I have announced to them that I would be furthering my studies to Australia.
They ask, if I did my Montessori, how come I am studying at USQ?
Well, this is because Montessori is only up to diploma level, and the tertiary studies is well... tertiary! The Montessori Diploma can be used to articulate into the uni program (this applies more so where my college, Summit International College has a MOU with the university anyways!).
Yes. You guessed right! It is time I informed my avid readers that I am finally going Down Under in about a couple months time from now. I would be there for about 9months, equivalent to one academic year.
Today I met up with an old high school friend of mine, Jen Ee and his wife, Mavis who just got married recently. It really made me feel *old*. That's cause he's only a year elder than me. *lolz*
He asked me this question:
Can anyone qualify to walk into the kindergarten and be a teacher?
The answer to that: it is an obvious NO!
Firstly, a undergraduate qualification in any other area, i.e, banking, I.T, finance, economics, etc, does not mean that the person is able to practise as a trained educator. Even if the person is a mother,or has children, does not mean that AUTOMATICALLY qualifies them to be a teacher.
If it were college students being taught , it would be a different case altogether. But at preschool level, many children are unable to express themselves verbally. They are at that level of learning to socialise, and some even babbling! We do not know how they think, unlike university students, who are already considered independent thinking adults, and know how to differentiate right from wrong.
Learning to be a teacher, means that the teacher has to be trained in the basic foundations and knowledge of the child, psychology, developmental areas & stages, HOW TO teach, and how to use the materials to bring across the knowledge and transmit to the growing child, as well as foster interest in the child to want to learn and read so that they can be a successful, interactive, sociable, useful member of society, able to be overcome problems. and etc. etc. (the list of responsibilities goes on...)
Let me ask you a question: Would you want someone who is unqualified, and not trained in the knowledge and ways of the child to teach your own child?
Preschools that employ qualified teachers would expect a higher cost in terms of montly school fees. If one wants quality preschool experiences for their child, and yet, want to save on the tutelage fees, well, as the chinese proverb says, "yat fun cheen, yat fun for". (what you pay is what you get).
As said, in countries like Australia, you can't even apply for a permit to be a teacher unless you have an additional 4th year, compared to Business students who only need to complete 3 years for their general degree. In fact, the younger the age group is, the more training is required for the teacher!
Of course, the problem is many people have a dim view of going into the profession. Although it provides a steady income and job security, however it only provides enough for an individual to survive with no extras.. I think the same may apply for other countries. Well, we'll see about that in future.