Eleonora joined The Open University as a Lecturer in Early Childhood in the School of Early Childhood, Education, Youth and Sport in September 2019. Previously she was a Senior Lecturer at the University of Northampton teaching on both undergraduate and postgraduate degrees, leading the Master's programme in Early Years. Before entering Higher Education Eleonora had worked in the early years sector for 19 years as an early years practitioner, early years teacher, Local Authority advisor and children centre teacher in one of the most disadvantaged areas of Leicestershire. Eleonora completed her Master's Degree in Early Years, Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching in Higher Education and her Early Years Professional Status (now Early Years Teacher Status) at The University of Northampton and she is also a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Currently, Eleonora is a research degree student working towards her PhD.
Eleonora's main reserach interest is focused on early childhood pedagogy, mixed-age pedagogical practice in particular, which she is investigating for her doctoral study. She is conducting a Q-methodological case study that examines the features of multi-age practice in Hungarian kindergartens.
Most recent national and international research projects she has been involved in include:
Eleonora has 10 years experience of teaching and assessment in Higher Education on undergraduate and postgraduate programmes and she has a keen interest in work-based learning. When designing module materials, she draws on her prior practice experiences as well as her theoretical understanding of child development, early childhood curricula and pedagogies to bring learning to life for students. She is particularly interested in topics relating to:
She is co-chair on module E229 'Listening to Young Children's Living and learning: Critical Reflections'.
Eleonora has links with the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia where she studied one of the most reputed pedagogical approaches in early education: the Reggio Emilia approach. Observations, reflections and professional dialogues with ‘pedagogistas'enabled her to develop a more in-depth understanding of a participatory, rights-based approach to listening to and engaging with young children and the affordances of a creative curriculum. These have influenced the module materials she has written.
Eleonora has close links with Abai Kazakh National Pedagogical University through an academic mobility professional development programme, which provided her with a valuable insight into early childhood education in Kazakhstan.She has worked closely with fellow academics, doctoral and Master’s level students to help develop their research literacy and skills of writing for publication.
Eleonora also engages with the School of Early Childhood at Debrecen University in Hungary through collaborative scholarly activities, research projects, which produce publications both in English and Hungarian. She works closely with the Kindergarten Pedagogues' National Professional Network where her main focus is the interpretation and implementation of the National Core Programme for Kindergarten Education.