The Niagara College Child Care Centre is integrating academic studies with practical hands-on learning through the production of a training video for the Good Beginnings on-line preschool nutrition course.
Under the leadership of Pat Eversden, manager of the NC child care centre, the site was offered to be used for the video project. Eversden also coordinated the involvement of several people in the making of the video, including teachers Lina Van Esch and Cathy Howcroft; cook Rhonda Walker, who worked in partnership with a team of registered dieticians from Dairy Farmers of Canada; two staff members from Harbinger/Bing Creative; a videographer from One Track Mind; and a photographer.
Eversden was extremely impressed how her staff rose to the occasion, taking on the challenge with great enthusiasm and teamwork.
“This endeavor was a valuable learning experience and an excellent opportunity to link the child care centre with the teaching and learning component for early childhood education students,” she said. “As a training and learning environment, and observation site for our students enrolled at the College, connecting theory with practice supports the College’s strategic plan in focusing on student success, strengthening partnerships and being a leader in our community.”
Since the launch of Good Beginnings about six years ago, more than 500 child care providers and ECE students have registered for the on-line course, which provides early childhood educators with current nutrition information and age-appropriate nutrition education activities required to optimize the eating habits of preschool children.
A full evaluation of the program showed a high satisfaction rate and identified the program as an effective and efficient way to deliver nutrition knowledge. The video component was rated by both students and professors using the program as one of the most well-liked and useful learning tools.
In response to the positive evaluation, the online version – which was previously only available to ECE students and professors from Ontario college programs – is now being offered free of charge to all early childhood educators working in Ontario childcare facilities.
Check it out at goodbeginnings.ca.