Resources for Early Childhood Educators and Program Operators

Early childhood educators play an important role in the healthy development of the children in their care. The GNWT provides free professional development opportunities for early childhood educators working in licensed early learning and child care programs to support quality child care in the NWT.


ECE has distributed bins with materials, resources, and a booklet on physical literacy to support early childhood educators to bring more physical activities into the classroom and support the development of physical literacy of children in their care. 

ECE, in partnership with Northern Mosaic Network (NMN), also distributed a collection of books related to identity, gender, and diverse family structures to all licensed programs. 

Free Professional Development

NWT Early Childhood Essentials course

The GNWT offers this free online professional development for early childhood educators working in licensed early learning and child care programs, which they can do at their own pace.

Early Childhood Essentials is a non-credit course that reviews aspects of early childhood and the role of the caregiver. It consists of 17 sessions covering a range of topics, such as observations, providing for play, and guiding behaviour, as these ideas relate to working with young children in a child care setting.

Assistance during the Licensing Phase

During the licensing phase, the Early Childhood Consultant in your region will help you understand the Child Day Care Act, Early Learning and Child Care Standards Regulations, and Early Learning and Child Care Funding Regulations, as well as what is required to pass a licensing inspection. Once you become licensed the Early Childhood Consultant in your region will continue to provide support. 

Professional Development

Free ongoing professional development opportunities are provided to licensed programs throughout the year. Early childhood educators and licensed program operators receive email notifications for these opportunities as they become available. Some examples of professional learning that ECE has supported offering in the past include, YogaPlay and DancePlay, which focus on physical literacy through fun, engaging movements, as well as the delivery of on-the-land workshops that focus on culturally relevant play-based, inquiry-based, child-led learning outdoors to support creativity and healthy development. 

NWT Diploma Programs in Early Childhood Development

If you are interested in a diploma or degree program in early childhood development, the GNWT provides scholarships to part-time and full-time post-secondary students to assist with costs associated with pursuing their education.

You may also want to check out the diploma programs offered in the NWT:

•    Early Learning and Child Care Diploma at Aurora College
•    Éducation en services à l'enfance at Collège nordique francophone