Recently I have heard some amazing stories of kindness in early childhood. Stories of giving, sharing, care above and beyond anyones expectation.
Who you may ask - was it parents, community support, children or charities. No these special kind and caring people are the teachers in childcares. There is a Māori whakatauki which says, "Kaore te kumara e whaakii ana tana reka - The kumara does not say how sweet he is.
This week I have heard of teachers kindness on numerous occasions. Teachers who would not say 'this is what I have done for others' so I would not name them because this would possibly embarass them, however their story still needs to be told.
While visiting a centre this week I heard that one of the teachers there and her husband had spent the weekend transforming a rubbish area in the backyard into a space that the children could use to create a garden of their own. They did this while in the midst of packing and moving house. The possible outcomes for the children drove their passion to create a space that the children could use to create wonderment and awe in a magical space.
Another teacher, different centre, spent hours with her husband creating a wonderful display of children's art work for families to view while this was a whole centre project it would not have had the impact if these two had not tireless worked to create awesomeness.
Yet another day in another setting two teachers used their own money to replace the bark surface with a soft fall surface for the up to 2's area. They had approached the centre owners but they had not received the funding they needed to make their environment better for their children. Undeterred and convicted of the need to create a safer space for their children they paid for the resurfacing themselves.
Then there are the teachers that put in the extra hours with learning stories, displays, planning, finding resources and never switching off. These are the teachers that go for walks and think oh that would be good for..... they drag their husband, children, partners to beaches and parks in the weekends to collect natural resources filling pockets and bags as they go.
I am sure that there are many many more stories of passion and conviction of wanting the very best for children and going above and beyond expectations. I would like to acknowledge all those teachers that have commitment, care, passion and enthusiasm to make a big difference in children's lives.