Mind Mapping for Ideas in Early Childhood Programs, Dr. Diane Kashin

Sponsored by Storypark.   Have you ever used mind maps in your practice? Mind mapping is the process of graphically organizing emerging ideas and interests as they evolve, like they might if you were brainstorming ideas. Mind maps are intuitive frameworks that will help you build connections and see relationships. Referred to webs as they resemble a spider’s intricate creations, mind maps have so many[…] Full Description

How to Lead a Nature-based Program Without Losing Your Purpose (or mind!) By Rachel A. Larimore, Ph.D.

Sponsored by Samara Early Learning. Nature-based learning is growing in popularity, particularly in the time of COVID. Yes, there are many benefits to children and teachers alike by integrating nature into the preschool curriculum. Yet, many leaders find themselves facing challenges in supporting a shift to nature-based learning. These challenges are sometimes administrative related to policies, funding, and licensing. There are also pedagogical leadership challenges[…] Full Description

Even Superheroes Need Support: The Power of Emotional Intelligence for Early Childhood Educators, by Dr. Donna Housman and Emily Stone

Sponsored by Housman Institute. Early childhood educators have always been Superheroes, tasked with the single most important role, aside from parents, in a child’s early development and education. Your work is one of the most rewarding in education, one most of us cherish, but one that also brings great stress. There is a lot of pressure squarely on you. The impact that stress and anxiety[…] Full Description

Promoting the Positive Racial Identity of Black Infants and Toddlers in Early Childhood Programs, by Iheoma U. Iruka, Ph.D. and Kamye Hugley, M.S.

Produced in partnership with Equity Research Action Coalition at UNC Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute. The first 1,000 days are a sensitive period in children’s development. This is critical period for language, emotional, and social development. Evidence is also accumulating about these early years as critical for positive ethnic-racial identity. Positive ethnic-racial identity is protective and promotive for children’s healthy development especially children from[…] Full Description

Inspirations from Reggio Emilia for a STEM-Infused Environment, Dr. Vicki Carper Bartolini

Sponsored by Redleaf Press. From her recently published book, Creating a Reggio-Inspired STEM Environment for Young Children, award-winning educator Dr. Vicki Carper Bartolini offers practical suggestions and resources for teachers to re-envision their early learning environments with a focus on STEM. Using the Reggio Emilia lens that honors the right of children to a wondrous learning environment, the author guides participants in how they might[…] Full Description

Growing Natural Outdoor Preschool Classrooms to Scale: LA Unified School District’s Bold Approach

Sponsored by Nature Explore. Join Dr Dean Tagawa, Ranae Amezquita, and Kirsten Haugen to learn how and why the second-largest school district in the United States has committed to creating natural outdoor classrooms in every one of its early care and education centers. The presenters will share California’s Los Angeles Unified School District multi-year journey to convert largely asphalt play areas into nature-rich outdoor classrooms[…] Full Description

The Power of Emotional Intelligence for Children Birth Through Eight, by Dr. Donna Housman

Sponsored by Housman Institute. In this time of uncertainty and anxiety, we need to focus on all that our littlest learners have experienced. Almost all pre-school-aged children made their first start to school carrying more than their backpacks with them this fall. They also brought loads of emotions- from separation anxiety to how to make friends, play with others, fears of getting scary germs… lots[…] Full Description

Intentional Preschool Environments Set the Stage for Young Children, by Laura Delgado

Sponsored by Learning Beyond Paper. Every early childhood program’s physical environment, both indoor and outdoor, sets the stage for learning and engagement. The physical environment sends strong messages to children and adults about what is valued, who is valued, and what learning can occur within the spaces. It is up to family child care providers, directors, and teachers to carefully design their environments with absolute[…] Full Description