Early Bird Sessions and Preconference Workshops

2013 Conference Schedule

Preconference Workshops

PC1 Coaching for Optimal Performance – The Role of the Center Director
Karla Berra, Senior Director of Recruitment, Bright Horizons Family Solutions
Kendra Kett, Regional Manager, Bright Horizons Family Solutions

Developing your employees is critical to your program's success! It is a key factor in attracting and retaining the best employees, to inspire your staff to work at their greatest potential and to prepare for your program's future.  Join us for an interactive session to learn the manager's role in the development process, the difference in employees and how to best meet their individual needs, sharing critical feedback, and the process and components for having successful career development plans for your staff.
5 hours
Memorial Student Center Ballroom C
Handout 1 [pdf]

PC2 Fire Up Your Curriculum
Lisa Krom, Preschool Educator, M. Ed., UMD Children's Place

Fire up your curriculum! Come and participate in a daylong session focusing on best practices provided by an experienced university laboratory teacher.  This day will feature a wealth of creative teaching strategies and tools for the early childhood teacher, specifically designed to engage young learners and encourage them to develop new skills. Highlighted will be thematic units, which are an ideal way to promote young children's neural connections in their rapidly developing brains and foster language, physical, social, cognitive, and emotional development.  Studies show children learn best from repetition.  Moreover, teachers find using a theme is a powerful way to present important concepts and integrate all curriculum areas.  Developmentally appropriate themes, when thoughtfully planned to represent the needs, abilities, experiences, and interests of the children, are especially motivating to children to practice and develop new skills. This session will provide you with some new, exciting, and meaningful ways to stimulate the child's curiosity and motivation to learn as well as to build on previous learning.  Included will be a wealth of teacher-made materials to support themes such as Mittens, Nursery Rhymes, Fire Safety, Butterflies, Apples, Shapes/Colors, and Frogs will be shared.  Don't forget your camera!
5 hours
Memorial Student Center Ballroom A

PC3 Reggio Inspired Guiding Principles for Learning
Dawn Lees, Early Childhood Teacher, Mount Olivet Intergenerational
Sandra Burwell, Independent Consultant
Marilyn Stalheim, Director, Westwood Early Childhood Center

A focus on learning rather than schooling expands public dialogue about the purposes and places of education in society. Reggio Emilia, Italy, is known for its innovative approach to the learning process. This Pre-Conference session introduces key messages to approach learning with a Reggio Inspired mindset. 
  1. Relationships form the core of the work. 
  2. Children and adults make meaning with competence. 
  3. The learning environment teaches. 
  4. Documentation provides avenues for shared reflection and critical thinking.
  5. Democratic participation requires dialogue, exchange and collaboration. 
Workshops will be offered throughout the conference to further explore the Reggio philosophy and how it foster's children creativity and cognitive expression.
5 hours
Memorial Student Center Ballroom B
Handout 1 [pdf]
Handout 2 [pdf]

PC4 Resiliency Training- Working in your Classroom with ADHD, LD, and Asperger's Students
Ruth Harris, Director, Northwest Reading Clinic, Ltd.

This workshop will present insights, methods, materials, accommodations, and specific language that enhance self-concept and promote strategies thinking. Resiliency will be presented as a crucial element for emotionally health children and a healthy learning community.
5 hours
Resiliency training, ADHD, LD and Asperger's
Memorial Student Center Northwoods


Early Bird Sessions

EB1 Simply Spring: Make and Take Fun
Tina Sand, Preschool Teacher, Lewiston-Altura Elementary School

Come relax, create, and enjoy a night of new ideas! We will explore the pond, flower fun, wind &  weather, feathered friends, ABC's, super star students, sea life and many extras. You will have time to make a variety of items and leave with a handout filled with fun patterns. Please bring glue scissors and markers all other supplies will be provided.
Creative Activities, Art
2 hours
Memorial Student Center Ballroom A

EB2 BrainDance: Making Connections through Music and Movement
Marcia Wolf, Senior Instructional Specialist, Child and Family Study Center, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Margaret Nelson, Associate Professor, University of Wisconsin-Stout

Recent research has shown the importance of early brain development as well as the connection between brain development and movement with music. BrainDance is a series of movements to music that specifically targets brain development in young children. This session will share the eight basic movements of BrainDance and how BrainDance can be incorporated into an Infant/toddler or preschool curriculum.
2 hours
Memorial Student Center Ballroom C

EB3 Let's Talk Technology
Judy Gifford, Director, Child and Family Study Center, University of Wisconsin-Stout

As early childhood education directors and teachers our digital life is here to stay.  In 2013 and beyond, Technology will continue to change our administrative responsibilities and classrooms.  There is a tidal wave of powerful mobile devices and applications which will allow us new opportunities for teaching, communicating, collaborating and connecting with parents and other professionals to build professional opportunities.  Come and learn the most recent advances impacting early childhood classrooms and centers.
2 hours
Memorial Student Center Northwoods