Lindsey McKinnon, Early Years Practitioner, Glasgow
Lindsey McKinnonEarly Years Scotland
Lindsey McKinnon is an Early Years Practitioner and works for Early Years Scotland in Glasgow.
My journey into Early Learning and Childcare
Lindsey left school five years ago to begin her career in Early Learning and Childcare. She’s always loved being around children and often babysat for family friends. After speaking to people already working as Early Learning and Childcare Practitioners, Lindsey knew that’s what she wanted to do, too.
During her sixth year of school, Lindsey undertook a nursery placement of one day a week, through which she gained valuable experience of what life could be like working in childcare. The staff were very helpful and gave Lindsey advice on what courses were out there for her to study; she went on to obtain an NC and an HNC in Early Education and Childcare, and an HND in Childhood Practice at Ayrshire College.
No two days are the same
In her current role with Early Years Scotland, Lindsey is able to support many families in different ways and loves being able to interact with children every day, as she explains:
“Many of the families whom we work with tell us they enjoy coming along to our groups because it gets them out of the house and gives their children opportunities to interact with other children. It feels really special to be supporting those families and it is amazing to see the children develop and achieve different things as they grow.
“Giving parents or carers someone to talk to about what’s happening with their child or helping them with different aspects of parenting is very rewarding. It’s not until the parents leave and say ‘thanks so much for all your help today’, or they recommend our groups to their friends, that I realise how much of an impact we have made.
“No two days are the same for me in my current job, with different groups at numerous venues to run throughout the week. We have baby massage classes for parents/carers of young babies, as well as stay, play and learn groups. The ages of the children vary for many of the groups, so each day is always different.
“In my role, I am encouraged to think of new ideas and low cost/no cost activities that families can recreate at home – this encourages me to think outside the box of new and interesting ways to have fun.
“Early learning and Childcare can make such a difference to the lives of little ones, because it provides children with an opportunity to learn in a safe space with other little people their own age. Giving these children positive role models and challenging experiences helps them to develop in all aspects of life. Parents do a fantastic job of bringing up their children and we, as Early Learning and Childcare Practitioners, are there to build on that. Every family is different and some children get more opportunities than others at home for many different reasons, and so we can help to provide equal experiences for all children, giving them the best start in life.
“For anyone considering a job in Early Learning and Childcare, I’d definitely encourage them to do it. I don’t think people know how many different and unusual opportunities there are in Scotland for childcare workers and I would encourage people to look in to it, because it’s so rewarding.”
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