Ike (Set 43) discusses why he wants to work in the early years, the importance of more males in the industry and studying at Norland.
“I grew up in Brighton with the most incredible parents and three sisters. My three sisters and I were all adopted, two from China, and me and my sister from Vietnam. Seeing my parents raise four children will always be my motivation to provide the best possible care.
Since choosing my GCSE options, I have always known that I wanted to pursue a career in the early years. I have always wanted a job whereby I can make people happy and working with children certainly fulfils that dream. My sister is also a Norlander, which played a large part in me wanting to attend Norland.”
“I think that it is very important to have more men working in the early years … so that children can see that job roles are not based around gender and that they can grow up to be whoever they want to be.”
“To me, the most amazing part about working with children is how imaginative and creative they can be. You can have an idea for an activity but with their input it will become something you could never have imagined. A job in the early years will never feel like work because it’s something I love and have a passion for.
“I think that it is very important to have more men working in the early years. I believe that being a male in this line of work is going against the usual stereotype for a child carer. This is exactly why it’s important so that children can see that job roles are not based around gender and that they can grow up to be whoever they want to be.
“My time at Norland so far has been an extraordinary adventure. I have learned many new skills, and opportunities have arisen from the course. For example, I never thought I would be having weekly sewing lessons! This was something I had not done before and can sometimes find challenging, however, with practice and the help of lectures for guidance, I now love sewing and feel able to overcome any challenges.
“I have also had very engaging masterclasses, including self-defence, bottle feeding and nappy changing. Whilst at Norland, you are also able to experience placements in a variety of settings which enables you to put the theory that you have learned in lectures into practice. During this past year I have taken a massive interest in creative arts and crafts. In one of my placements in a reception class, one of my highlights was creating the classroom displays with the children.
“There are many parts of the course that I enjoy. My favourite part is the two-hour weekly cooking lessons that we have. Everything is provided and the recipes are so delicious. From cooking basic eggs to deboning fish and meats, we are being equipped with substantial kitchen skills. Another part of the course that I enjoy is how practical some of the lessons can be. Sometimes we go down to the nursery to be creative and come up with new activities for specific areas of development. Norland certainly provides more than your average lecture.
“Overall, nothing can beat the placements. I cannot explain how rewarding working with children is. Although it may be very tiring it brings me much joy to know I am part of the reason a child is smiling.
“If you have a passion for working in early years, I highly recommend Norland. Not only does it provide you with the most respected childcare status, but it equips you with skills that only the Norland Diploma can offer. The endless job opportunities that come up are amazing. Norland is great as it’s not all based around academic study. It’s very practical and if you have the drive to work with children you can definitely succeed at Norland.
“One of the parts that appealed to me about this job is the amount of travelling you can do with it. My plan so far is to go to America and work on the east and west coasts. After I have saved up, my dream is to open a cooking school for children. I believe that children need to be provided with more information on what a nutritional balanced diet is to reduce chances of obesity and further health problems.”