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Q&A with Ekta Taneja of Blue House International

LearnPost Category - LearnLearn - Post Category - SchoolsSchools

Find out why Ekta Taneja loves teaching at Blue House International!

Teacher: Ekta Taneja
Teaches: Senior Kindergarten

What is your background and training?
I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Home Science and Honours in Child Development, plus a Master’s Degree in Human Development (Early Childhood and Education).

I have over 10 years’ experience through a range of roles such as Primary teacher, course co-ordinator, lead co-teacher, curriculum specialist and campus co-ordinator.

What made you want to become a teacher?
Teaching to me is about making an impact on the world so that the world is different than it was before I practiced my craft. In my view, children are capable learners, inquisitive thinkers, and fearless experimentalists. Knowing clearly what kind of impact I want to make means I continuously ask myself the fundamental evaluative question of “What effect am I having on my learners and what are they learning?”, which in turn provides me with the satisfaction and gratification to progress in my professional journey as a lifelong learner.

What do you love about working at your school in particular?
I thrive best when I am in a reciprocal relationship with educators, specialists and the children. It allows me to explore the possibilities on many levels whilst continuing to reflect, review and evolve. 

What is your take on ‘play-based learning’?
I have been deeply influenced by the philosophies of Reggio Emilia and believe play is at the heart of all learning. Our emergent approach at Blue House brings to life true accounts of play as an expression, which allows children to be successful in their choices. This empowers children to meaningfully build connections which they encounter both in their everyday life and their educational journey at Blue House.

What is your favourite game or activity to do with your students?
The most enriching experience I share with the children of my class would be engaging in meaningful dialogue, drawing upon children’s ideas, interests and hypotheses. I hope to foster a sense of connectedness and belonging in the group, and to encourage self-awareness, autonomy, and confidence.

What is one fun fact about you?
I have humour; I carry my smile wherever I go, and radiate positive energy.

How do you describe the Reggio Emillia teaching approach to someone not familiar with it?
To me it’s like The Wizard of Oz, as it helps us to realise our full potential that is within us, connecting your mind, heart and behaviours through environments and resources that are rich in learning opportunities. Teaching is a process of engaging in external and internal dialogue about things of importance conducted with passion and discipline.

Can you share with us an example of the Reggio Emillia approach used in your classroom activites?
We inhale experiences every minute of every day, throughout our whole community. Whether it’s a child taking a moment of reflection in a space of beauty, or an intersection between art and weaving, collaborating with peers through the process of design to create a tapestry or a hoola loop loom.

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