Pacific Union Conference
Office of Education
Volume 17, No. 3
Fall, 2018
Setting up the Environment........for Teachers
Compiled by Julie Yamada
We talk a lot about setting up the learning environment for children and discussing what that may look like and what it may include. The environment that we set up for children can also offer ideas for what a space for teachers could look like and the activities that could be offered or implemented there.

A well-designed space for teachers demonstrates to them that they are a valued part of the early childhood program’s community. Since early childhood programs seem to be lacking in space, it important to use the space wisely. The space that is most beneficial is a teacher work room combined with a staff lounge. The teacher work room can become the “hub” where teachers meet to talk, eat, and relax during a break or where they come together to plan for the children in their classroom.

What is the importance of a teacher workroom?
The teacher workroom provides opportunities for teachers to collaborate on curriculum as they come together to discuss and plan the beast ways to implement their ideas. This time to work together helps teachers to learn what others are doing and to network with each other on how to share various activities that can be implemented within and with the other classrooms. This helps teachers to see the importance of planning, teaching and taking joint responsibility for every child in the program and not just in their classroom. This will affect children’s learning in a positive way.

The teacher work space enhances communication among teachers as they share insight with each other and encourages sustained planning and preparation time as well as fostering a professional community among teachers. The teacher workroom is not only a space for social interaction but can potentially be a space for professional learning communities. The space can represent a place where there is potential to learn about things that they may not be able to learn in the classroom, the playground or places where the children are present.

Planning an Environment for Teachers
The teacher work space should be seen at as an important element to the success of the early childhood program. When teachers do not have a work space allotted for them there is potential for teacher preparation and innovation to be negatively affected. Some things to consider when planning a teacher work space:
  • Include the teachers in the planning so that they can share what their needs are.
  • A large table where teachers can gather to talk and work.
  • A computer.
  • A resource library.
  • Office supplies such as paper, stapler, paper cutter, laminator.
  • Comfortable lounge chairs to relax in.
  • A refrigerator to store lunches and snacks in.
  • A microwave.
  • A window to view the outside.
  • Teacher wall with photos of each teacher and their “All about Me” paper.
  • A place for teachers to store their personal items.
  • A white board.
Thinking of the teachers needs will show them that they are supported and valued as part of the early childhood program’s team. The environment should be welcoming, inviting, and inspiring and teachers will know they are part of the team.

Earp, J. 2014. Learning spaces: Don’t forget the staffroom.
Gordon, D. 2010. Teacher Workspaces.
Carter, M. & Curtis, D. The Visionary Director. Redleaf Press: St. Paul, Minnesota, 1998
Vukovic, R. 2017. The Importance of the school staffroom.

The teacher work room can become the “hub” where teachers meet to talk, eat, and relax during a break or where they come together to plan for the children in their classroom.

The teacher work space should be seen as an important element to the success of the early childhood program

California Senate Bills to Watch
AB 605 - Would require the CDSS to adopt regulations on or before 1/1/19, to develop and implement a birth to entering first grade license option for day care centers. Lists proposed regulations to address age appropriate transitions from one age group to another, continuity of care and more.  SUPPORT - PLACED ON SUSPENSE FILE.

AB 676 - 
Would require the Commission on Health and Safety and Workers’ Compensation to establish and maintain an Early Educators’ Occupational Safety and Health Training Program relating to occupational health and safety risks specific to early education professionals that includes specified components, including a discussion of the risks of chemical and biological hazards, infectious diseases, and physical hazards and stress, and how to identify and minimize those risks and more. Would require an early educator to attend that training within 6 years of it first being offered, or within 3 months of the person becoming an early educator, whichever occurs later. OPPOSE - PLACED ON SUSPENSE FILE

AB 1754 - Pre-K for All Act of 2018 Would require the state to provide all 4-year-old children of low-income working families with access to early care and education programs. OPPOSE until amended to include mixed delivery system. Bill suspended until January 2019.

SB 837 - As a condition of receipt of apportionments for pupils in a transitional kindergarten (TK), beginning in the 2020–21 school year, would require progressively younger 4-year-old pupils to be admitted to TK maintained by a school district or charter school, until, in the 2022–23 school year and each school year thereafter, all 4-year-old pupils are admitted. OPPOSE - PLACED ON SUSPENSE FILE
Book recommendation for every staff to read and discuss. Validates everything we do for preschool age children. 
Opening Reports
Thank you to everyone who got their opening reports in. This will help us in gathering our data and reporting the data to the North American Division. For those of you who are still working on them, please remember to fill in the FTE box. Here is the link to the Full-Time Equivalent Census Sheet This will help to figure out your numbers. 
Reports due this week!
Join the Pacific Union ECEC Professionals Group Facebook page for great ideas and discussion. Can't wait to see you there! 
For resources to help you in your ECEC program go to the Pacific Union Conference web page for helpful resources.   
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