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Collaborative Conflict Management for ECEs

I have been thinking lately about the incredible strengths of Early Childhood Educators in the context of conflict management. Their resilience, problem solving skills and their understanding of pedagogy are foundations supporting collaborative conflict management in the workplace.

I have spent many years as an ECE and more recently as a conflict management practitioner specializing in supporting strong and resilient Early Years leaders and workplaces. Themes woven throughout my training in Alternative Dispute Resolution and Workplace Restoration include listening skills, identification of interests, nurturing of relationships and the creation of workplaces that support belonging and well-being.

Early Childhood Educators would not only recognize these themes, but they are also practising them every day in the context of How Does Learning Happen?, Ontario’s pedagogy for Early Years. The foundations of Belonging, Engagement, Expression and Well-Being can also be viewed as foundational for conflict management.

My intention when designing training for Early Childhood Educators is to build on existing knowledge and skills, bridging two professional approaches to healthy workplaces.

A healthy workplace culture views conflict as a natural and creative part of working together. New ideas and new approaches develop when people work together to create change. When I look back at my favourite work experiences, healthy conflict and creativity are part of the good memories. It wasn’t always easy, and sometimes it was a challenge, but we became stronger as a team through the process.  In future posts, I will highlight how the foundations of How Does Learning Happen? and healthy workplace strategies can be woven into a rich and vibrant workplace culture.

I am excited to collaborate and build knowledge with front line Educators and centre supervisors at the Umbrella Daycare Conference later this month. Home – Umbrella Central Day Care Services (

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