Making professional development more accessible with HiMama Academy

Center Name: Ressurection Lutheran Child Development| Location: Dublin, CA

THE CHALLENGE

Giving educators the right tools for professional development

Professional development is a key component of being an early childhood educator. Every year we are seeing new research being released on child development, new trends in child behavior and new philosophies on how best to support children. It is becoming a requirement for educators to stay on top of this continuous learning in order to provide quality care, and to stay in good standing with their local licensing regulations. It is no surprise then, that many directors are on the hunt for a seamless way to bring professional development into their center.

Wazhma is the Center Director for Resurrection Lutheran Child Development in Dublin, California. Wazhma  is dedicated to the continuous growth of her educators and strongly believes that quality educators are the key to her center’s success. From her perspective, investing in educators is an investment into more referrals, positive reviews, returning families and a thriving center. Though even with this dedication, Wazhma faced an age-old barrier for those working in a childcare setting, finding the time.

“It is so hard to find time for staff professional development days when all the staff work different schedules. It wasn’t working and we needed a better way”

Wazhma Masarweh

THE SOLUTION 

Offering a flexible and online option to make professional development more accessible

For a director as committed to continuous learning as Wazhma, those sparing professional development days throughout the year were not enough. They needed an easier and affordable way for educators to access learning, without needing to close classroom doors or ask staff to come to the center after their shift. 

Wazhma started searching through all the various professional development tools to find the best one for her staff. Knowing who and what tool to trust was a hard decision. Discovering that all HiMama Academy courses are IACET accredited and developed by experts in their field, it quickly became a top contender as their one stop shop for high-quality professional development. 

Wazhma got her educators started with HiMama Academy 5 months ago. The idea that educators could choose when and where they want to complete their professional development hours, and could even have the agency to seek out the courses that are the most valuable to them, was appealing for everyone. With unique challenges and strengths in each classroom, the professional development needed by one educator might be different for another. With HiMama Academy, professional development no longer had to be a one-size-fits-all solution. To properly grow their center, Wazhma wanted to invest in each educator that works there, and she found that HiMama Academy was helping them do that.

Another top consideration was that the professional development resources provided should encourage deep thinking among the educators. This is where they really fell in love with HiMama Academy courses. Each HiMama Academy course has quizzes embedded between the learning modules. In order to move on to the next module, you need to demonstrate your learning beyond simply regurgitating information from a previous slide. Wazhma felt strongly that professional development should be more than just retaining information for an hour or two, it should be about deep learning that educators value and use for years to come. Wazhma was really impressed with the deep learning offered by HiMama Academy and was glad to find that she had invested in resources that would have a lasting effect on the quality of her educators’ knowledge and their center as a whole. 

THE RESULT

More consistent professional development and deeper learning being applied in the classroom

When it comes to professional development, the last thing any director wants to do is turn it into another task on teachers’ to-do lists. Wazhma believed strongly that continuing education needed to be engaging, meaningful and worth teachers’ investment.

Since the team of 13 educators at Resurrection Lutheran Child Development joined HiMama 5 months ago, they have accomplished even more than expected with the online professional development platform: 

  • 109 courses started
  • 82.5 total hours of learning 
  • an average of 5.9 hours of growth per educator! 

With HiMama Academy, Wazhma and her educators went from struggling to find time for professional development, to creating an environment where educators seek out learning opportunities on their own time, and are able to make lasting impacts in their classrooms. 

“I am noticing my teachers implementing their learning from HiMama Academy in their classrooms. As the person responsible for their growth, that is exactly what you want to see.”

Wazhma Masarweh
Wazhma and her staff
Staff development at RLCD
Resurrection Lutheran Child Development

Ressurection Lutheran Child Development is one of many HiMama customers who have improved their professional development and enhanced the learning in their classrooms with HiMama Academy.

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 Customer Advocacy Specialist for HiMama!

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