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#210 Diane Gagnon, Class of 2007, Staff
(AA in Early Childhood Early Childhood Specialist)

When my son graduated from High School I decided it was time for me to go back to school. I started in the summer and took an English class. Writing essays was quite a bit different from when I had graduated in 1978; I used a typewriter back then. My class had several exchange students so our professor was very patient in teaching us how to use our computers to write a proper paper.

When I took my Early Childhood Education classes, my lab was done at the McCarthy Center here on the COD campus. I had an wonderful Mentor teacher, Rena Maddox. She was an incredible inspiration and had me look at Early Childhood in an entirely different way. How blessed I am. I am doubly blessed to have Rena Maddox as a co-teacher. She continues to inspire me and push me to go further with my goals and ideas for children.

The McCarthy Center is a fabulous learning and "hands-on" environment for the children in our community. The staff works together with parents to enrich the lives of each child.

Each class sets up activities according to children's interests both indoors and outdoors. This is a wonderful opportunity for me as a teacher to continue to learn and grow along with my toddlers.

I have changed from being a teacher that had a very busy primary color classroom into a teacher that realizes that neutral colors and natural materials are more appealing to toddlers. Children learn from their own environment so using items found in our environment are familiar to children.

Thank you to COD for not only a wonderful education, but an incredible place to work, that allows me to continue to grow in my wonderful and ever changing field of Early Childhood Education.