Back-to-School: Onboarding new educators and building strong staff morale [Webinar]

In this webinar we were welcomed by Antoinette Mahabir and Kayla Warburton, previous Early Childhood Educators and now ECE experts at HiMama. Antoinette and Kayla joined us to discuss effective onboarding strategies for new educators to ensure a seamless transition into your center. They dove into the tools and techniques directors need to make sure all staff feel confident and prepared, helping centers foster a collaborative and supportive atmosphere for the first day of school. Creating a warm and welcoming classroom for children and families starts with the educators. Keep reading so you can access the recording and make sure your educators start off strong this school year! 

🎤Our Special Guests:

Antoinette Mahabir – Early Childhood Educator, HiMama

Antoinette is a former Registered Early Childhood Educator, and Child Development Specialist. She has 7 years of combined experiences in classrooms, social services and directing a center. She is an advocate for the early learning industry, while empowering professionals in the field to be able to showcase their knowledge and skills. She has been with HiMama for 5 years on the sales team, customer success team, and now a Presales engineer.

Kayla Warburton – Early Childhood Educator, HiMama

Kayla is a mother to a toddler and was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario. She entered into the child care space at a young age; first, as a volunteer at before and after school programs, and then as a youth mentor, tutor, and reading buddy at various organizations. Kayla went on to receive her Bachelor of Arts Honours In Drama and Criminology from the University of Windsor in 2013. She then reentered the child care space as an assistant director of a school age program and later as a preschool teacher. In 2018 Kayla returned to school and achieved a 4.0 in the Master of Education program at OISE, University of Toronto. Kayla studied Curriculum Studies & Teacher Development with emphasis in Arts in Education, STEM Education, and Critical Pedagogy (focus on anti-oppressive approaches to education). Kayla has helped organize conferences such As the AAACS (American Association for the Advancement of Curriculum Studies) and has now joined the HiMama team and helps support educators with relevant & applicable professional development content.

🧪Key Learning Outcomes from Antoinette and Kayla!

  • Be a people first leader. Making sure all new and returning staff feel welcomed and supported is the key to positive staff morale and strong staff retention.
  • Set expectations for new educators so they know what they are walking into on day one, and make sure to give them time to observe and shadow in the classrooms during their first week.
  • Create a buddy system / mentorship program to help new educators get to know the center, learn about the culture and start to build relationships.
  • Give staff the opportunity to share their feedback (positive and negative) and make sure staff feel valued for sharing their voice.


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Maddie Hutchison

Maddie is a Registered Early Childhood Educator with a Master's in Early Childhood Studies. Her specialty is in Children's Rights and she is currently a Content Strategist for HiMama!