Ashley Lundt was already working in the childcare field, but recently took the opportunity to develop her expertise and skillset with the University of Wisconsin-Platteville’s Infant-Toddler Credential program, offered through the Continuing Education Institute. Lundt completed her credential in December and, along with other teachers, was honored at a ceremony on Dec. 4, 2021.
Lundt will now take what she has learned back to her childcare center. In addition to the knowledge and skills she gained in the program, it has helped her to become more confident in her role. “I made huge gains through this credential and feel very good about the teacher I am becoming,” she said. “I would recommend this program to anyone who works with infants or toddlers.”
Q: How was your experience in the Infant-Toddler Credential program?
A: I really liked the Infant-Toddler Credential program and how the work I completed during the first three courses came together at the end when I applied it to my program and my final portfolio. The teacher, Jeanine Obrien, is amazing. I would happily take more courses with her. She sets up the assignments in a way that guides you into understanding the material. I felt very comfortable asking her questions, and she was always very helpful and responded quickly. She really goes out of her way to help. She also pushed me out of my comfort zone where I needed a little pushing to become better. She challenged me and helped me gain confidence.
Q: What do you feel you’ve gained from completing the program?
A: Now I feel very comfortable with things that I wasn’t before, such as building relationships with the families in my program. Since taking these courses, my relationships with ALL the families in my center are much stronger. I feel like all the families feel very good about my teaching skills and confident with leaving their children in my care. I also feel like I am more confident and more skillful when it comes to building good relationships with children who are new to our center. I also learned better communication skills, and now talking with parents about challenging behaviors has come much easier and I feel that the parents are responding well to it. They seem to have a good idea of where my intentions lie, which is that I want what is best for the children and the families as a whole. Parents know how much I care about the wellbeing of all of them. I also feel like parents see me more as a professional than before. Some of them do not know that I am taking this credential, but I feel like they feel it by the amount of knowledge I've gained and by talking with them about child development and their child.
Q: Were there any challenging aspects of the program?
A: One challenge that I had to overcome was my lack of experience and skills with a computer. However, I had the support of my instructor and I learned a little at a time. Now I can do so many cool things that I didn't know how to do before. I can't wait to use my computer skills and computer programs like PowerPoint for work and other things too.
Q: Would you recommend the program to others in your field?
A: I would recommend this program to anyone who works with infants or toddlers. The Infant-Toddler Credential courses guide you in all areas of caring for and educating young children. All the assignments included things that I could use right away in my program. The coursework helped me improve my teaching, the children's learning environments, and my curriculum planning skills. Many of the assignments were actually very fun to complete. I made huge gains through this credential and feel very good about the teacher I am becoming.
Learn more about the University of Wisconsin-Platteville Online Childcare Credential Program, including the Infant-Toddler Credential at go.uwplatt.edu/ece.