Alexander Peden - Men into Early Years Education

A new course at West Lothian College is encouraging men to consider a career in Early Learning and Childcare. With only 4% of the early years workforce being male, this course is designed to address the gender imbalance.

The course, which runs on Thursday evenings at the college, includes 13 men ranging in age from 16 to over 50.

The men have taken up the course for different reasons like wanting to switch careers into working with children or a desire to learn more about early development so that they can understand their own children better.

Sixteen-year-old Alexander Peden told us why he joined the course:

“I was doing Duke of Edinburgh and I started helping out at the Scout group I was with and enjoyed helping the younger ones there. I started volunteering at the Family Centre in Broxburn and that was good as well. I did some work experience in a primary school and decided that’s what I wanted to do. So this is my first step into that.

“It’s been a lot of fun and we’ve been learning about different types of play and how children learn through many different methods, not just standard teaching. They learn through play and adventuring and things like that.

“I’m still in S5 just now and I want to finish S6 and I’ve got an interview for another college course on children and development so I’m hoping to get into that. After that I’m hoping to go to university and do childcare there and then probably from that try and get into primary teaching.

“The course has been a really good learning environment, I was scared at first to apply because I don’t enjoy school a lot but this is a different kind of learning and I can really get into it.”