Office of Pre-Primary Education and Childcare

 

Follow us on FacebookFollow us on Twitteryoutube

Member Login

Member Login

 

Robert Barlow: From Company Director to Being a Father and Discovering ECE Teaching as a Rewarding Career

By Arwen Hann 

Robert Barlow Men in ECE grantRobert Barlow was the director of a successful company when he decided to sell his business to become a stay at home dad to his eldest son who was 10 months old.

With his son, Robert became actively involved in Playcentre, which gave him a grounding in early childhood education (ECE) and helped him discover a passion for teaching and supporting young children to learn.

Robert began to think about a possible career change to teaching with encouragement from family, friends, and other parents, but some unexpected significant life challenges for the family meant that all thoughts of becoming a teacher had to be put on hold for four years.

Then Robert and his wife welcomed their third son into their family who was looked after by Robert from his birth. Robert joined Steiner Play Circle and Playcentre with his youngest son and volunteered as a parent helper at his eldest son’s primary school, which reignited that passion to be a teacher.

Following these experiences, and with continued encouragement from family, friends, and other parents Robert made the decision to start studying to become an ECE teacher; a career that he says, “holds a lot of responsibility as well as being exciting, challenging, and rewarding with a diverse range of opportunities”.

Robert has since begun studying for a Bachelor of Teaching (ECE) at WINTEC and says the experience so far has been great.

“The commencement of my study at WINTEC has been awesome,” he says.

“I have found the facilities new and modern creating a supportive learning environment. For me it has been good to learn alongside other students in a class and to be taught and supported by a strong team of lecturers”.

The course also includes 12 hours a week practicum that allows Robert to put his classroom studies into practice, something he says has been invaluable.

Despite the shortage of male teachers in ECE there is little in the way of support to encourage men into the profession, so Robert says a grant from the ChildForum Inviting Men into ECE scheme was extremely helpful.

“There are significant initial start-up and ongoing costs to begin and complete a three year degree, especially for a career change and when one is the primary carer for their children. There is an extensive book list alongside the purchase of a laptop then childcare etc,” he says.

“The ChildForum grant is very much appreciated taking away some of the pressure towards these expensive start-up costs, I would like to say thank you to the sponsors and encourage others to support future students”.

Robert says he would definitely encourage other men to think about early childhood teaching as a career.

“Teaching is challenging, rewarding, and exciting, as a teacher one makes a real difference to children’s lives, giving them the foundation for successful future learning,” he says.

More support, especially financially, could help, but Robert says he hopes as more men like him qualify as ECE teachers that it will in turn become a more popular career choice with other men. 

Note:  We wish to acknowledge and thank the Ole Schoolhouse early childhood centre in Rotorua for sponsorship of the grant awarded to Robert.  


To keep reading, login with your member's username and password Smile

Or click on the blue button below to join 

Free E-Newsletter

Receive the free Early Childhood Alert.

captcha 

We hate spam as much as you, we will not sell your contact details to anyone.

You can unsubscribe at any time.

Read our Privacy Policy here.

Don’t miss out any longer, click the button below to join ChildForum

Join Us!

child-with-binoculars-small

 

Subscribe now for information you can trust, expert advice and research, as well as access to quality resources. 

We are confident you will be delighted to discover and experience the benefits of membership - so join now and make this message for non-members disappear from your screen. 

Membership Options

Individual
Member

Who is this for?
Teachers, Caregivers, Teacher Educators, Policy Advisors - any indivdual with an interest in ECE

$98.00 12 months from the date of joining
$60.00 6 months student-only

Choose your own personal username and password
(Note that this membership does not give access to specialist ECE Service members-only info and support) 

ECE Service Organisation
Member

Who is this for?
Centres, home-based, hospital-based, playgroups ... established or newly licensed.

$198.00 12 months per standalone licensed service
Special rates for organisations with more than 1 licensed service

This membership gives access to professional & research materials enjoyed by individual members PLUS ECE service management area info and support. 

Library NZ-International Research
in ECE Journal Subscriber

Who is this for?
Universities, Polytechnics and organisations wishing to have online access to the NZ-Int Research in ECE journal (includes all past and current issues) 

$125.00 annual subscription, renewable in November each year

A username and password for your library users linked to your IP address.