MACE highly value the amazing work of our Early Childhood Educators at Mansfield Community Cubby House. They are an incredible group of talented and dedicated people who provide incredibly important services and care to the children in our community. To help recognise the work they do, we recently sat down to chat with Teagan Hopgood to hear all about the work that happens at Cubby. Teagan is an exceptional Early Childhood Educator who is making a positive impact in the lives of young children, and who has stepped up into the Assistant Director role with absolute gusto!
Could you please share a bit about your background and what inspired you to become an early childhood educator?
I started studying my certificate III in children’s services whilst completing year 11 at High school. I continued to do a School Based Apprenticeship completing my Diploma, working part time at Cubby in 2004.
I always knew I wanted to work with children and Mansfield Cubby House was the perfect place to begin my career. I now have three children of my own. I left Cubby in 2009 to have my first son and returned in 2013 after having more children.
And what inspired you to step up in the midst of Cubby going through a lot of changes?
We were so lucky to have had amazing management for so many years; always supportive and understanding. All I wanted was for Cubby to remain the same and be just as successful as ever.
Can you tell us about a particular moment or experience that stands out to you in your career as an early childhood educator?
Not a particular moment but rather the many beautiful relationships I’ve made with both children and families.
In recent years I have also worked alongside children I once looked after here at Cubby 😊
What are some of the challenges you face as an early childhood educator, and how do you overcome them?
The biggest challenge is not being able to cater for more families. We would love to help more families out but there’s just no space currently available.
Can you share with us a success story that demonstrates the positive impact you've had on a child or their family?
I have been able to create amazing bonds with many children. When I’m able to help a child settle in for the day, making them feel safe and comfortable, it is always a rewarding moment. This also creates a sense of calm and ease for families.
Is there an achievement or contribution that you are most proud of?
Being given the opportunity to become Assistant Director.
What advice would you give to aspiring early childhood educators who want to make a positive impact in the lives of young children?
Get to know both children and families as much as possible, create strong relationships. Then it will flow naturally from there.
What do you think other people should know about this organisation?
Mansfield Cubby House is and has always been my second home. I've grown up here and have loved every year welcoming new families and children, and working with an awesome team.
I’ve made lifelong friendships and have loved every second of my Cubby journey. I look forward to many more years learning new skills and keeping Cubby the happy and positive environment I’ve always known.