Chinese program directors attend Erikson professional development

Erikson recently hosted a group of preschool directors from Xi’an, China, for a three-day professional development program designed specifically for them.

“We worked really hard to tailor this leadership training to the needs of Chinese preschool directors,” says professor Jie-Qi Chen. “We focused on teacher professional development, providing approaches and strategies to help in-service teachers improve their practice. This is a national agenda for the Chinese government and for early childhood educators in China.”

Over the three days, the group attended seminars at Erikson and visited four sites that are examples of high-quality care and education — Francis W. Parker School, the University of Chicago Laboratory School, Chicago Commons’ Paulo Freire Family Center, and the Chicago Children’s Museum.

One of the preschool directors, Kai Huang, found the professional development very valuable. Through a translator, she says, “Our visit suggested that the American educational philosophy may be more attuned to young children’s development, encompassing their physical, cognitive, social and emotional development. In my future teaching practice, I will provide an environment that can better support children’s development.”