born in Kuwait 1978, is from Istanbul, Turkey. Her bachelors is Industrial
Engineering, but because of her passion to work with children and in the
field of early childhood she decided to change her career. Gaye studied to
be an English teacher and took a Montessori Assistant Teaching course.
Music plays an important part in her life so she has integrated the
Orff-Schulwerk approach (music, movement and dance education) with her
work with children. Gaye has been in Finland for over four years now and
has learnt Finnish as well (she believes that the children are the best
teachers in many aspects).
Helsinki, she has had the opportunity to work in a Reggio Emilia inspired
public kindergarten and is currently working in a Finnish public day care
centre, which is situated in an ecological area called Viikki.
These experiences came forth from her acquaintance with the Reggio
Approach and her interest in outdoor education as it is currently taking
place in the Nordic countries. Her
mission was to "unlearn the learned" and treat the universe as an open
university. She worked in an English Emergent kindergarten in Istanbul as
an English teacher for three years and traveled to Germany, Austria,
Italy, Denmark and Finland to make kindergarten visits and studies with a
special interest in alternative education and how space is used for
children (Reggio Emilia, Rudolf Steiner-Waldorf kindergartens, Montessori,
Wald (forest) kindergartens). These visits mirrored the way the society
approached the child and were both reflective and informative.
In 2007, she decided to go abroad for one year and work in a forest
kindergarten to gain experience and broaden her knowledge on outdoor
education. Her adventure thus began in Finland by first working in a
nature kindergarten, which operates according to the pedagogical
principles of "being at home in natural surroundings."
In her free time she sings in the multi-cultural women’s choir Kassandra,
does woodwork, makes explorations in nature, and plays percussion instruments.
During her stay, Gaye also completed her studies in
early childhood education and graduated from the Environmental school of
Finland, as an Environmental Educator.
Recently, she has had an article published called "An alternative journey
into forest kindergartens and the Reggio Emilia approach", which depicts
some of her experiences in early childhood education during the years
2007-2012. The article can be found online at
If you are interested in workshops, seminars or have any
questions/comments you can contact her by e-mail via: gayeamus(at)gmail.com