Orchestrating professional development for baby room practitioners: Raising the stakes in new dialogic encounters

Resource Type: Reports & Papers
Author(s): Goouch, Kathy; Powell, Sacha;
Date Issued: February, 2013
Description: This article has emerged from a research and development project, The Baby Room, which was designed to examine how babies are cared for in daycare settings. Within the project, a form of professional development was created which designated a central space for dialogic encounter, primarily to enable the baby room practitioners who participated in the project to begin to theorize their practice. Findings indicate that those working with babies frequently feel isolated and neglected in relation to support for their practice, that the practitioners had a very low sense of self-worth in relation to their work, low self-confidence and an inability or a reluctance to articulate their own understandings of their practice. Significantly we also found that many of the practitioners were not routinely, incidentally or intuitively talking to the babies in their care, nor were they aware of the importance of doing so. While it is difficult to provide robust research evidence to demonstrate any close causal connections between the lack of professional talk, the evident low self-worth of the practitioners and talk experiences with babies, the study does indicate that there may be distinct connections between practitioners' professional knowledge and understanding, their confidence, opportunities for professional talk experience and their perceptions of the need to develop talk encounters with babies. This article describes the background and rationale for the project work, ranges over some key issues in relation to talk, and the importance of professional dialogic encounters for those working with babies, and it indicates the rich potential this may have for positive talk outcomes in baby room practice. (author abstract)
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Funder(s): Esmee Fairbairn Foundation
Journal Title: Journal of Early Childhood Research
Volume Number: 11
Issue Number: 1
Page Range: 78-92
Topics: International Child Care & Early Education > Single-Country Studies

Child Care & Early Education Provider Workforce > Training, Mentoring, & Apprenticeships

Programs, Interventions & Curricula > Programs > Infant & Toddler
Country: England, United Kingdom
ISSN: 1476-718X Paper
1741-2927 Online
Peer Reviewed: yes
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