Working in ECEC

Marc Battle

Marc Battle: Early Childhood Education Instructor, Red River College, Winnipeg, MB

For Marc Battle, quality early childhood education and care programs provide a “marvelous staging ground” for children to learn to live as human beings in a community.

“Kids should be able to feel, ‘This is where I belong” he says. 

Battle, an ECE instructor at Red River College, first became interested in child care when he was a student at York University. A friend working at the Glendon Campus child care centre asked him to come and help out with a walk. 

“I did and I thought, ‘this is great, this is a job,’” he says.

After getting his degree in sociology, he went to Durham College for a diploma in Early Childhood Education (ECE).

Battle first worked at Toronto’s Children Services, then at the child care centre at Durham College. For six years, he taught ECE at Northwest Community College in B.C. Inspired by fellow ECE instructor Joan Turecki, he became interested in emergent curriculum, which builds on the children’s interests, and in incorporating a more artistic approach to child care programs.

He has been at Red River College since 2002, and now teaches in the college’s Workplace Program. The program is for those who have at least two years of experience in the field and need more training. Battle teaches 10 classes two days a week, and regularly visits students in the workplace on practicum. 

“Every day is different, that’s the great thing about my job,” he says. “Some days I’ll be marking or prepping for six-hour classes, or I’ll be in departmental meetings or doing community things, and then in the classroom and visiting child care centres.”

Battle’s advice for those interested in a career in child care is to think seriously about what motivates them.

“The most important thing is to think about why you are interested in the field and to be aware of your values, and then you can’t go wrong. You tend to do good work when you live by your values, and you get rewarded for that.”