This week I explored the European Early Childhood Research Association (EECERA), web site. What a wonderful resource, as well as a great place to do research. I know that this will be a resource that I will be able to use for my future course work in school, as well as staying informed as a teacher.
As I explored this web site it was interesting to find out that this association was started in 1992, and the publication of their journal started in 1993. The journal that the EECERA publishes is one of the most prestigious Early Childhood journals in the world. Luckily, the journal is free for anyone to access. If you click on the publications tab (view journal), it will take you to a page where you can access all the past journals. The most wonderful part is that they are all peer reviewed, and wonderful resources to be used.
One thing that surprised me is the conference that they hold each year. The last conference was help in Ireland, in September. Per their web site, over 900 delegates from all over the world come together during this time to share information. It was also interesting to read that the EECERA work with an ethical code, one in which they work in respect to the American Educational Research Association.
While skimming through some of the publications, I noticed that many of the articles contained research about things like social and emotional development, importance of play, as well as friendships, and self-regulation. I know that I could spend hours on this web site. One of the great tools that I feel is very helpful is the read this section on the journal page, as well as the easy access to new articles in the current journal.
Over the last couple of years in my studies I have read many different articles that mention positive effects of research that have been done with children. And while it is hard to pinpoint just one example of a positive example, I felt that I would share one example that has stayed with me personally since I started my work with children.
I can still remember, in one of my first child development classes, watching a video of the Still Face Experiment. While learning about the importance of responsive relationships, after watching this video I realized exactly the result is with the types of interactions that I have with children.
I feel that these experiments/research has benefited everyone by providing a vivid image that stays in your mind and helps you think about the connections that you have with children, not only as a caregiver, but as a parent as well.
I have always been a believer that children need to learn social and emotional skills in order for them to be able to be successful when they enter the public school system. If children are not ready socially and emotionally, I believe that their learning can be compromised. They will also have issues in making friendships, and being part of a group. With this in mind I came up with the general topic of: helping children develop emotional/social skills in the most effective and developmental appropriate way. With help from Professor Dartt, I now have the sub-topic of “how to promote empathy in young children”.
I am very excited to look into this topic, I feel that empathy is such an important quality for children to possess. I have read many articles over the years about empathy, and how even infants can show and display empathy. I am very excited to be able to dive into this topic deeper, and see the research that has been done, so that I can apply it to my work with young children.
This is actually my first experience in higher education that I will be doing a research simulation. While I do not understand all the details of what we need to do, I do trust the process and know that with the help of Professor Dartt, and the resources that we have available, we will all be successful!
There are two tools or “insights” that I have gained so far for our work on this project. The first would be the resource from week 1 on how to read research. With this tool I feel I will be able to save a lot of time, as well as have a better understanding of what I am reading. The second tool was in our reading this week about keeping a log of the resources that we will be using. Many times in the past I have forgotten to keep track of resources that I have used, then find myself spending too much time trying to find the resources again. This is something that I can also use after this class.
As I read your posts I will offer any suggestions that I can or share any resources that I may have concerning your topic. I would ask the same in return! Thank you in advance.