The Mastery Cup®

An online course with Elise Waghorn from Phoenix Support for Educators

Are you an early childhood educator working with children who:

  • Physically lash out at other children;
  • Will not follow directions (‘do not listen’ to staff);
  • Have low self-esteem;
  • Are strong willed;
  • Are a high achiever;
  • Want perfectionism;
  • Seem to need a lot of control;
  • Need to ‘get their own way’? 


Learn how to confidently respond to these behaviours by increasing every child's sense of self-competence.

This course will enable you to have a deeper knowledge of how to support children to fill their Mastery Cup®.

The Mastery Cup drives our need for efficacy, visibility, and self-competence. This Cup is filled by challenge, control, validation, growth, achievement, and success.

This course will give you practical strategies and more confidence to plan for children's holistic wellbeing, increase children’s opportunities to experience mastery, and ensure children in your care have a strong sense of self-competence.

Become an expert at planning for the Mastery Cup®

Learn how to confidently foster a child's self-competence by:

  • Responding to children’s need for mastery

  • Developing holistic wellbeing plans

  • Proactively plan for children’s self-competence

  • Understand and plan for differences in individual children’s needs for mastery

  • Empowering them to succeed

  • Recognise their achievements

  • Encourage independence

  • Validate children’s thoughts and feelings

Course curriculum

    1. Before we begin...

    2. Introducing The Phoenix Cups® Framework

    3. The Phoenix Cups - An overview with Sandi Phoenix

    4. The Phoenix Cups framework - An Overview

    1. Mastery Cup Handout

    2. Filling the Mastery Cup with Elise Waghorn

    3. The Mastery Cup Mind Map

    4. Resource Library

    5. A Reflection on the Mastery Cup

    1. Final Reflection

    2. Get in touch with the team at Phoenix Support

    3. Other Professional and Personal Development Opportunities

About this course

  • $60.00
  • 17 lessons
  • 0.5 hours of video content

Link theory, research, and evidence to your practice and planning

This course will show you how to incorporate the following theories into your planning

  • Maslow's hierarchy of needs

    In his famous 1943 paper, A Theory of Human Motivation, Maslow said that satisfaction of self-esteem need leads to feeling of self-confidence, worth, strength, capability and adequacy of being useful and necessary in the world.

  • The Phoenix Cups®

    A shared language, an approach, a revolutionary framework. The Phoenix Cups is a philosophical framework that your team can use to share ideas, language, and understandings about human behaviour. This course looks specifically at one of The Phoenix Cups - The Mastery Cup.

  • Positive Psychology

    The PERMA model proposes that there are five elements essential to human well-being. The A in this model refers to Relationships. To achieve well-being and happiness, we must look back on our lives with a sense of accomplishment: ‘I did it, and I did it well’. This course considers this research and the fact that children start filling their Mastery Cup with achievement at a very young age.

  • Guidance Approach

    The guidance approached is centred on the idea that children’s behaviours are driven by an attempt to meet a need. Dr Louise Porter says that when children engage in learning, they learn not only the content of the activity itself, but also that they can devise a goal and work towards it. In short, they develop self-efficacy. This is an important aspect of Mastery Cup filling.

  • Glasser's Choice Theory

    Dr William Glasser assumed that a drive to power is one of five basic human life needs. In this course, this is called the Will to Fill the Mastery Cup.

Bonus material

  • Video

    This course includes video content to provide further depth to your knowledge and understanding. Additionally, you will have several opportunities to join a live Q&A webinar with Elise.

  • Downloadable PDFs

    Downloadable resources that every educator needs for understanding how to support children to fill their Mastery Cup.

  • Internet resources

    Web links to key learning material and helpful educator resources.

Your Facilitator

Facilitator, Education and Care Mentor Elise Waghorn

Elise is a huge advocate for giving children a voice in things that directly affect them. She has a passion for play-based learning and uses a strength-based approach with coaching and mentoring. Elise believes she gets the best out of educators by recognising their individual strengths and making sure they can be incorporated within their practice. Elise is the person you want in your corner! She recognises and empathises the challenging (and wonderful) job that educators have, having worked in services previously. Elise joined Phoenix Support for educators in 2016 bringing with her a wealth of knowledge and experience in education and care. In fact, Elise has taught over 21 units in The Bachelor of Early Childhood and Primary and Masters of Early Childhood and Masters of Education. In addition to her coaching and mentoring with Phoenix support for educators Elise is a collective mentor to students in the graduate program at the University of Melbourne. She is also a PhD candidate, and her studies explore scholarly Habitus in children's lifeworld's by exploring high stakes testing and educational capital. All her workshops are theory-based, as Elise heavily researches the literature to provide as much current and peer-reviewed information as possible. Elise currently delivers a number of courses and workshops including the Holistic Infant and Toddler Development series, the Fostering Children’s Wellbeing series, the Protecting Children’s Rights educator training bundle, the Educators' Toolkit for Behaviour workshop, and the Documenting to Discover workshop. She loves developing content-specific information for individual services to meet their needs.


  • How long do I have access to the course?

    You have access to this course for 4 weeks. We estimate it will take you about 3 hours to complete, so we have allowed for 1 hour per week and an extra week for catch up.

  • How do I get my certificate?

    To receive your certificate, you must click on 'Complete & Continue' on every page of the course. Once you've done this your certificate download button should come up in the top left corner of your course, where the progress bar is.

Want more?

Register for the whole Fostering Children's Wellbeing series today.

What people thought of this course:

5 star rating

Filling the Mastery Cup: Fostering Self-Competence

Kim Nowlan