Presenters and Workshops

Early Registration 

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Early Registration Deadline:
April 1st, 2017

 Contact Information

Professional Education Programs and Services
221 10th Avenue East, Suite 140
Menomonie, WI 54751

Phone: 715.232.5022
Fax:      715.232.3385

ECE Conference logo

39th Annual Early Childhood Education Conference

April 28-29, 2017

Register Here

The Early Childhood Education Conference has been approved for 
.5 continuing education units (CEUs) per day of conference

An asterisk next to the presentation number indicates this presentation is appropriate for center directors and/or lead team staff as well as early childhood professionals.



2017 Workshops and Presenters - (Please check back for updates)

01 *
Stephanie Adrihan
Early Intervention and Special Education Teacher, Walworth County Birth to Three
Building Family Centered Practices Into Your Early Care and Education Programs
When families and early childhood professional are partners in education, outcomes improve for children.  This session will discuss the key principals of family centered care and provide strategies for building trusting relationships with families. While most early childhood professionals are comfortable working in classrooms with children, many are uncomfortable when it comes to their interactions with families. This session will offer tools that help build meaningful partnerships with the families of the children in our programs.

02 *
Stephanie Adrihan
Early Intervention and Special Education Teacher, Walworth County Birth to Three
The Effects of Trauma on Young Children and Their Families
Over 25% of American children have experienced or witnessed trauma by the age of 4.  Working with children and families who have experienced trauma can be challenging. In this workshop we will explore different types of trauma, how Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE's) can affect the long term health and social development of children and adults, and how to engage with families who are working through trauma.

03 *
Barb Andrus
Certified Parent Coach, Mad2Glad
Electronic Addiction in the Classroom: Strategies for a Healthy Balance
Do you struggle with behavior issues, disrespect,  inattention & mood swings in class?  These symptoms can be part of a larger issue. Electronic addiction can trigger chaos in the brain. Learn about the neurological impact of easy electronic  access. Discover how electronic access is helpful, how it's hurtful, and innovative alternatives so your classroom has a  healthy balance for students success. Participants will learn how daily usage impacts  the brain and the effect “Electronics Stress”  has on students’ behavior, learning, classroom  environment, and peer dynamics. They will learn warning  signs of Electronic Addiction, alternatives, and  guidelines for healthy usage.

04 *
Linda Armas
Educational Consultant, Prepare Parents LLC
Routines:  Essential For Some, Valuable For All
We do some things every day – wake up, get dressed, brush teeth, etc. To do things the same way, and in the same sequence is to create a routine. After a while, we don’t think about the routine; we just do it! Being on “automatic pilot” for part of our day frees us to give our best attention to unfamiliar, challenging, or more desirable things that surround us. Helping children to create routines will minimize nagging, and give them the focus necessary to optimally learn and experience everything else!

05 *
Linda Armas
Educational Consultant, Prepare Parents LLC
Invest in Lasting Influence
Since parents are the first responders to guide children/youth toward their aspirations and maximum potential, providing parental supports and guidance is a good investment. Early effort to educate parents can lead to short and long-term benefits for kids, families, and all of society.  Linda believes, "Early parent education programs are as valuable as well-baby medical check-ups." She offers training for school, municipal, and agency staff members who want to administer effective, proactive parenting initiatives in their communities. Program topics include: Behavior Management Strategies, Parenting Alliances, Setting-up Parents & Children for Success. There are funding avenues for schools to carry-out parent education initiatives.

06 *
Julie Bates-Maves
Clinical Mental Health Counseling faculty, UW-Stout
Kate Kramschuster, M. A., Educational Materials Center Librarian, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Childhood Trauma and Bibliotherapy: Using Books to Talk with Kids about Hard Things
This presentation will address two primary objectives. First, an understanding of the impact and expression of trauma in children aged 0-6. Secondly, how to identify and utilize age-appropriate children’s literature within the trauma context, including life stresses from children’s perspectives. Attendees will leave this presentation with multiple strategies and resources for initiating conversations with children.

07 *
Julie Bates-Maves
Clinical Mental Health Counseling faculty, UW-Stout
Keynote:  Infant & Toddler Mental Health: The Impact of Life, Trauma, and What to Look for in Early Childhood
This keynote presentation will discuss infant and toddler mental health. Attention will be paid to helping attendees understand the cornerstones of mental health in small children. Particular emphasis will be paid to defining distress and trauma in small children, symptoms that may be indicative of distress or trauma, and options for responding/helping.

Rebecca Bauer
Faculty, University of Minnesota
Melanie Pesarchick, M.Ed, Instructor, Echo Park Elementary School
English Learners in the Elementary Classroom
This session will focus on ways to support English Learners in the elementary classroom (K-5). Specifically focusing on literacy, English Learners' writing samples, strategies and diverse children's books will be discussed.

09 *
Brook Berg
Family Living Educator, Assistant Professor, UW-Extension
Resiliency Through the Face of ACE
Join us as we discuss Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) and the effects on brain development and behaviors in the classroom. As teachers, we play an important role in helping children reduce the effects of ACE and promoting learning and playing in a healthy way. We will focus on understanding toxic environments, the effects on children and our role in one of the most important ways to deal with ACE…resiliency!

10 *
Brenda Bonesteel
2nd Grade Teacher, School District of Mondovi
Communicating with Families
This presentation will outline some simple do's and don'ts when it comes to communicating with families.  Attendees will explore communication strategies for face to face, formal, and informal conferencing as well as communication using technology.  Participants will leave this session with some simple yet effective tips that are applicable in any early childhood setting.

Ayuko Boomer
Early Childhood Educator University of Minnesota Shirley G Moore Lab School
Creating a Successful Student and Teacher Relationship Through Home-School Connections
We will be exploring a variety of successful interactions and methods using home school connections to create a warm, safe, and nurturing climate where the children feel valued and accepted unconditionally as important members of their classroom community.

12 *
Ann Brand
Associate Lecturer, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Mindfulness Practices for Educators -  NOTE: This presentation will run over two sessions.
This presentation will run over two sessions.  Participants will learn mindfulness practices to support well-being as well as discuss opportunities and challenges to integrating mindfulness into daily life. This is your chance to ask questions, discuss with each other, and learn how mindfulness practice can be a part of your life, both personally and professionally.

Melody Brennan
Assistant Professor, Program Director for Early Childhood Education, University of Wis+C14:E14consin-Stout
Diverse Children's Literature  Note:  This presentation will be held over two sessions
This session will focus on diverse children’s literature for teachers and students to use in early childhood classrooms. Student and teacher perspectives will be shared based on research. Instructional practice suggestions for teachers will be provided using diverse literature. Diverse children’s literature will be displayed and shared for those attending to browse and discuss with others during the session.

Kristen Bruder
Family Living Agent, UW-Extension, Dunn County
Brook Berg, Family Living Eucator, UW-Extension in Eau Claire County
Digital Media and Our Little Ones
Technology is everywhere, including in the hands of our little ones. We know that relationships are key to working with young children, so understanding how to use digital media as a tool to strengthen relationships and guide children is important. Join us to learn how digital media can enhance your skills in working with children, how to support growth and development  through digital media and new programs to reach out to parents to share this information.

15 *
Kym Buchanan
Associate Dean, UW-Stevens Point
Happy Teachers, Happy Children
Teaching should be good for our soul, but sometimes our jobs take more than they give. Learning should be a joyful adventure, but sometimes children experience more anxiety and reluctance than courage and discovery. In this interactive workshop, we'll use a variety of playful activities to explore the alchemy of happy classrooms. We'll share promising strategies for rediscovering our happiness as teachers, and how to help students of any age find their bliss. Learn hot ideas from positive psychology and cool tools you can use immediately. We also welcome your wonderings and wisdom.

16 *
Greg Cleveland
Parent of and advocate for  children on the autism spectrum
Trusting Your Instincts: Seeing Early Onset of A Disability, and Knowing What to Do
What's the difference between "quirky," "weird," "normal," and "a little behind the others?" Many communicative disabilites like Autism Spectrum Disorders can start showing through a child's behaviors as early as 18-24 months. In this presentation, we will look at knowing what you see, trusting your training and instincs, and communicating with parents, fellow teachers and other professionals when you suspect early onset of a disability.

17 *
Lisa Coen
Children's Nature Academy Director, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire
Natural Playgrounds
The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Children’s Nature Academy is a nature inspired early learning program where children connect with the natural world through hands on experiences.  The program is located on 112 acres of property just outside of Eau Claire.  In this session, learn what activities you can do to teach and inspire early learners.

18 *
Laine Crump
Preschool Teacher, Children's Country Day School
Hillary Rausch and Laura Leckband, Preschool Teacher and Education Director, Children's Country Day School
UnSelfie: How to Promote Empathy-Building Skills with Young children
New research shows that empathy is a strong predictor of childrens' happiness and success. Based on the book UnSelfie by Michele Borba, you will learn strategies to help children become compassionate, empathetic and self-regulated learners.

19 *
Inna Dolzhenko
University of North Texas
Integration of Social and Emotional Learning Strategies into the Classroom Curriculum
This workshop focuses on social-emotional learning (SEL) strategies and mindfulness techniques. These techniques and strategies help children understand and regulate emotions, cope with stressful situations, care about others, build positive relationships, and model prosocial behaviors. The presenter will describe SEL curriculum and mindfulness techniques, and demonstrate sample instructional activities, guiding the audience through the steps of project-based lessons. Handouts will be distributed on social-emotional learning skills, strategies and techniques, lesson plan guidelines, and sample instructional activities. The audience will be engaged in sample lesson activities and interactive guided discussion in which participants share similar instructional interventions that they have experienced.

Janet Duening
Executive Director, New Beginnings Child Care
Circle Time Makes Us CRAZY!
Is your circle time chaos? Are the children misbehaving and not even listening anymore? Are you totally stressed out during group time? Attend this class to learn developmentally appropriate activites to get you through your circle time without losing your sanity. This class offers alternative ways to plan and implement our group times.

Michelle Espelien
Director, Elim Preschool
All In A Preschool Day
Welcome to a wonderful activity filled presentation of activities to do every day in your preschool classroom! Activities range form fine motor, art, alphabet learning, language, literature, math and science to large motor play and games. Ideas for child centered learning activities as well as teacher presented activities.  The ideas presented can be used on a daily basis as well as incorporated into theme learning. Come ready to share and learn!

Michelle Espelien
Director, Elim Preschool
The Process of Play and Learning
We all know how important play is in an Early Childhood classroom. We also are aware of what parents and administrators want to "see" happening in a preschool setting. Let's meet and talk about ways children learn and what they learn in the classroom centers that we set up. Focus will be on play and how important it is to a young child's development. Handouts will help teachers answer parents' questions, and asure them that learning with play is what children need.

Allison Feller
Instructional Specialist, Child and Family Study Center, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Toddler Two.....Look What We Can Do!
Enhance your curriculum by learning new songs, story time ideas, and small group activities.  You can use these next week in your toddler classroom!

24 *
Andy Felton
Assistant Professor, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Fostering Relationships Through Play - NOTE: Two Sessions Over Two Days
In this two day training, attendees will learn about child development and how play can be used to foster and strengthen relationship.  This training can be beneficial to parents, teachers, clinicians, and child care providers.  Day one will provide information about the needs of children and how we as adults can effectively communicate and meet their needs through play.  Members will be introduced to and begin practicing basic methods established in Child Centered Play Therapy (Landreth, 2012).  Day two will provide an opportunity for attendees to further engage in play and further implement training from day one.

Heidi Frankard
Associate Professor, Metropolitan State University
Carmen Cook, Assistant Professor, Metropolitan State University
Emergent Literacy on the Road to Reading
Literacy development begins very early. Children learn about reading and writing by observing and interacting with readers and writers and through their attempts to read and write. In this session, participants will learn the developmental sequence and key literacy skills preschoolers acquire on their journey to reading. Participants will leave this session with the tools they need to create literacy rich classroom environments that are aligned with state standards.

26 *
Judy Gifford
Director and Lecturer, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Spice Up Your Staff Meetings
School culture is the glue that helps people find passion and purpose in their work and unites the staff around shared values and beliefs.  Nurture your school culture as you add a little sparkle to staff meetings and gatherings—make it fun for everyone!  Intended for teacher-leaders as well as administrators, this interactive session is about getting people involved, sharing viewpoints, and building community.  Specific tips, techniques, and innovative ideas to enhance staff meetings & gatherings will be explored. Let’s have some fun!

Angela Gilbertson
Instructional Specialist, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Learning with Nature Inside and Out
Come explore the "ins" and "outs" with nature.  Discussion and activities will be shared on how you can take learning for preschoolers outdoors.  We also will talk about ways to bring nature inside the classroom!

28 *
Tamlynn Graupner
Co-founder and CEO of the Wisconsin Early Autism Project
Glen Sallows, Co-fonder and President of the Wisconsin Early Autism Project
Description of the session will be coming soon

Emily Guentner
4K Teacher, Manawa Elementary School
Title and description coming soon

Christy Haller
Massage Therapist, Rehabilitation Services, Mayo Clinic Health Services
Infant Massage
Learn basic infant massage techniques proven useful as calming communication between infant and caregiver. Infant massage supports one-on-one time with an infant, while reducing stress levels in the infant and encouraging relaxation, improving sensory awareness and relieving discomfort from colic and teething. Bring a doll or stuffed toy for practice.

Colleen Hanafin
Director, North Side Music
Finger Plays and Action Songs: Playing With Words
Learning with music and movement from fingers to whole body! Finger-plays develop rhythm of words (language development) while introducing new vocabulary, math concepts, following directions and develop listening skills. Traditional and original finger-plays and action rhymes to use with your hands, puppets, felt and magnet boards and props that will make your songs pop!

Jim Hanley
Professor, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Kingian Non-Violence: What Is Peace, and Is It Possible to Achieve Note: This presentation will be held over two sessions
This session will focus on kingian non-violence classroom practices for teachers and students to use in classrooms. As teachers seek intentional ways to manage their classrooms, they commonly draw upon established classroom and school rules, peer mediation, PBIS (Positive Behavior Intervention & Supports), and even classroom meetings. Often, these techniques fall short. By the time children are between the ages of 8-12 they should have well-developed values such as empathy and caring. If these values do not develop, as they should, then antisocial behavior such as bullying and aggression will be evident by third grade. Therefore, early grade intervention and teaching is imperative. Nonviolence education provides the necessary support and ideals that help children develop a sense of morality, justice, honesty, and kindness. It also allows teachers and students to provide a meaningful contribution to building peaceful communities.

33 *
Beth Hanna
Outreach Manager, Community GroundWorks
Shaping Healthy Children With Farm to Early Care and Education
What do visiting a farm, tasting local carrots, and planning a garden have in common?  They are all farm to early care and education activities!  Learn more about farm to early care and education and its benefits at this interactive session.  Leave with resources, strategies, and tips to bring the local farm to your early care and education activities and to your site.

34 *
Ruth Harris
Director, Northwest Reading Clinic
Resiliency Training for Emotionally Healthy Children
This workshop will present insights, methods, materials and specific language that will enhance self-concept and promote strategic thinking. Resiliency will be presented as a crucial element for emotionally healthy children and a healthy learning community.

35 *
Glenda Jones
Professor, University of Wisconsin-Stout
The Other Mother: An Intimate Look at a Non-traditional Family Consisting of a Single Mother an Adopted Children
In this presentation, I narrate and critique modern societal norms of motherhood through reflection on my own experience as a single parent of adopted children whose identity, due to race and diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder, is vastly different from my own. My interest in this topic was especially peaked by Andrew Solomon’s work in his new book Far From The Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity (2013). Solomon refers to vertical identity as that which is passed down through strands of DNA and horizontal identities as those traits that the child does not share with his/her parents.  I acknowledge both vertical and horizontal identities and discuss both the implications of my choice to parent and my choice to narrate my story. I argue that society can no longer afford to consider single parenting as an alternative life style. Nor can single female mothers afford to be demonized by politicians and controlled by the dominant white patriarchal hegemonic forces that silence us and marginalize our existence. I look at representations in the media that both problematize identity politics and celebrate single mothers of transracial families.

Maggie Keenan
Instructional Specialist, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Amber Eckert, Instructional Specialist, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Calming the Chaos
Come and see how chaos can be redirected in the 4 and 5 year old room at the Child and Family Student Center. From transition times, lining up, large group activities, individualized help for children, and much more.

Maggie Keenan
Instructional Specialist, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Angie Gilbertson, Amber Eckert, and Laura Pitt, Instructional Specialists at the University of Wisconsin-Stout
Preschool/4K Lab Tour
Join us for a tour of the UW-Stout Infant and Toddler Lab. There will be a short information session and then the rooms will be open for exploring and picture taking. The head teachers will be available to answer any questions.

38 *
Jill Klefstad
Faculty, Early Childhood Education, School of Education, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Brandon Belmont and Joe Raygor, UW-Stout Graduates of the Early Childhood Education Program
The Twelve Gifts of an ECE Male Teacher
This presentation is a collaborative effort between the presenter who is an ECE professor at a four-year institution and two male pre-service teachers enrolled in the early childhood education program.  These two pre-service male students attended the NAEYC conference in 2015, and were encouraged and affirmed in their choice of being early childhood educators. They were challenged to identify   some of the gifts that they, as men, bring to the classroom compared to women. A qualtric survey was sent to both men and women in the field of early childhood education, and the results identified and defined twelve gifts, which male early childhood men feel they bring to young children as teachers. The survey results comparing men responses to women will be shared.

39 *
Jill Klefstad
Faculty, Early Childhood Education, School of Education, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Tracy DeRusha, Coordinator of Field Experiences, School of Education, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Inspire and Support: Become a Cooperating Teacher!
At the University of Wisconsin-Stout, the ECE faculty and staff recognize that it takes a village to nurture, inspire, and support teacher candidates to become outstanding professionals. The purpose of this session is to introduce UW-Stout's conceptual framework and assessment system to future cooperating teachers. Topics covered will include expectations of the student teaching triad: (student teacher - cooperating teacher - university supervisor) and current licensure requirements. This workshop satisfies DPl's requirement of training in the supervision of student teachers. A certificate of completion will be issued to all who attend.

Kristen Korkowski
Child and Family Study Center, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Nicole Bobo, Universitiy of Wisconsin-Stout, Child and Family Study Center
Teacher-Made Materials On A Budget!
Participants will get new ideas and resources to create teacher-made materials on a budget.  Attendees will have the opportunity to creat their own ready-to-use craft during the seminar.

Melody Krouse
1st/2nd Grade Teacher in Wisconsin
Differentiation Strategies for the Preschool Classroom
Often differentiation starts with behavior in our young students. Do you have students who refuse to participate or run away from teachers? Maybe you have a student who blurts out or won’t sit still.  In this session, we will collaborate and discuss how behavior can guide differentiation in the early childhood classroom.  This session focuses on social-emotional behaviors and reminds teachers to think outside the box to help all students learn at their level.

42 *
Nancy Lawton Shirley
Occupational Therapist, Healing Waters Health Center
Sensory Processing: Impact on Behavior and Learning
Learn from an occupational therapist how the senses, touch, movement, vision, hearing, taste and joint movement impact on learning and behavior. Learn practical sensory strategies to set up a calm state.

Brenda Liermann
1st Grade Teacher, Eagle River Elementary
Kim Lewandowski, Kindergarten Teacher, Eagle River Elementary
Easy Letter and Literacy Activities
Easy letter and literacy activities for the kindergarten and first grade classroom. These activities will engage students at different learning abilities. The activities presented use free or low cost materials. Materials presented can be created easily and quickly to implement within your classroom on Monday.

Jeff Maas
Lead Teacher, Preschool at the Park
Kim Malone, Chid Care Teacher, Preschool at the Park and Dr. Fay Maas, Associate Dean and Associate Professor, University of Minnesota-Duluth,
What's in a Name: Creating a New Lens for Preschool Learning
Sometimes teaching isn’t about adding “more," it’s about doing the ”same” thing in a “different” way.  During this interactive presentation we will examine how children’s names are used in a variety of contexts.  We will describe how these simple “name play” activities evolve into complex learning experiences.   We will also examine the roles that teachers play in managing and understanding this complex, emergent learning environment.  It is our contention that teachers must reinvent the lens through which they view learning.  We will share the “lens” we are developing in the hopes that others may find it useful.

45 *
Lynn Markham
Land Use Specialst, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point
Pesticides: What Have Researchers Found About How They Affect Children?
Where are pesticides found? Do you know if there are pesticides in the food or water you serve? In this session, we'll discuss what scientific researchers have found about how pesticides affect children's learning. Then we'll explore tools to identify low/no pesticide food and design a menu.

46 *
Kevin Mason
Associate Professor, University of  Wisconsin-Stout
Advancing Science Learning: Teaching Elementary Earth Science Concepts
Learn how teachers used engineering problems to teach students about a wide variety of earth science concepts! Elementary teachers in northwestern Wisconsin are using engineering problems to deepen their students’ understanding of earth science concepts and the science and engineering practices of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). The Advancing Science Learning (ASL) project partnered 12 school districts in northwestern Wisconsin with faculty members from the University of Wisconsin-Stout.  This presentation will briefly share the background and goals of the ASL project and provide you with real tools to use in the classroom.

Jessica McFarland
Minnesota Learning Resource Center Assistant Director, A Chance to Grow
Movement Anchors Learning!
Educators will learn the physiological and neurological basis for "Movement Anchors Learning".  They will experience activities that can be taken directly into their classrooms hat will enhance attentiveness, learning, and retention. We empower teachers to effectively use movement to improve behavior and attention, allow for brain and body maturing, increase learning readiness, and anchor the learning they expect children to master.  Participants will understand how brain development and readiness skills directly impact childrens’ success or struggles with living and learning. This workshop will change how teachers think about children and learning readiness and understand how important movement is in learning.

Fran McKinney
Early Childhood Teacher and Music Specialist, Screen Porch Music
Moving into Spring and Summer with Music and Literacy
Movement, singing, instruments and books will fill your spring and summer learning when you participate in this energetic workshop. Seasonal activities will be expanded, such as trips to the farm, zoo and pond. Examples of dance and movement will be paired with songs and literacy to enrich your curriculum.  Invite all learners to engage and join the session and be ready for spring!

Deborah McNelis
CEO, Brain Insights
Brain Development: You ARE Making a Difference!
The human brain is an amazing and complex organ that allows each of us to think, feel and act. The brain systems that regulate those activities are largely shaped by experience. This presentation provides you with an easy to understand overview of brain basics from birth. You will be inspired by how much more you understand about how the brain impacts behavior and learning.

Deborah McNelis
CEO, Brain Insights
It Takes Attention to Change: The Brain, Behavior and Self Perception
ATTENTION! ATTENTION! The brain learns from what we pay attention to. This workshop looks at how experiences influence the brain and then affect behavior. With the realizations you gain through this presentation, you will better understand how you can have a positive impact on behavior and self perception.

51 *
Nancy Michael
Director, Amazeworks
Bias, Prejudice and Stereotypes - What Being Colorblind Prevents Us From Seeing
For the last couple of decades we have been told that being COLORBLIND is best practice in working with children across race/ethnicity.  With the best of intentions, our programs and schools have focused on what we have in common and all but ignored what makes us different.  We know today that these practices have failed communities of color.  We also know that anti-bias education should be a part of everyday practice. Without our help, young children can internalize stereotypes, bias and prejudice, causing lifelong damage to both children and communities. But just exactly how do we make it happen?  Sometimes we wait in vain for teachable moments that never arrive, because children are picking up on non-verbal cues that let them know that their teachers would prefer not to discuss race, gender, disabilities or other instances of systemic unfairness. This workshop will help teachers see what anti-bias education could look like and help them envision the steps they could take to build positive and developmentally appropriate anti-bias frameworks in their own programs.

52 *
Samantha Moe
Certified Parent Coach, Mad2Glad
Samantha Moe, Certified Parent Coach/Mad2Glad
Calm Challenging Behavior! Learn Eight Core Strategies
Discover why some children push the limits and feel the need to control the environment. Explore the eight core strategies that will transform chaos to calm in the learning environment.  Understand what causes children to act out and engage in power struggles and learn strategies to alleviate these issues.  Participants will examine strategies critical to creating a peaceful, positive learning environment.  Regain your confidence, appreciation, and motivation to better support children's development.

Vanessa Moessner
Owner, The Lily Pad Lab
Tiny Scientists
Learn easy, simple and super fun ways to bring science into your classroom.  We’ll discuss the need for teachers to encourage curiosity in children and how to break down big science ideas for your little ones.  You’ll leave with tons of ideas for hands-on science learning for your classroom or at home as well as a complete detailed Science unit lesson plan from the Lily Pad Lab to get you started.

54 *
Lisa Murphy
Early Childhood Specialist, CEO of Ooey Gooey, Inc.
The Important of Early Experiernces: How Playing IS Kindergarten Readiness!
During this session Lisa will identify the seven things we need to do with children each day. These seven things make up the foundation that supports the house of higher learning.  There is nothing wrong with the “academic” expectations within this house: reading, writing, math…  the trouble is that many early childhood educators are being pressured to build a house where there is no foundation.  And you do not need to be an architect to know that if you build where there is no foundation, the house will come crashing down!  Playing is “getting them ready” and through an investigation of each of the “seven things,” Lisa shows you how.  This session has become one of Lisa Murphy’s most popular and oft requested workshops. By making time to create, move, sing, discuss, observe, read and play we are getting children ready not just for kindergarten, but for life!

55 *
Lisa Murphy
Early Childhood Specialist, CEO of Ooey Gooey, Inc.
Keynote: What If Today Was Their Only Day?
In this motivational keynote address Lisa shares the powerful story of her first day of school.  Through active and engaging storytelling Lisa brings you back to her first day, taking you on a grand tour of Miss Mary’s Nursery School.  And, in the style she has become famous for, she shares observations, lessons, and anecdotes about how early childhood has changed along the way.  Lisa will share the sights sounds and smells of the place where, at the young age of three, she decided to become a teacher and identifies the how, and why, that one day solidified her decision to become an educator.  This inspiring keynote gets participants back in touch with their personal how and why.  It gets them excited and gets them thinking:  If it WAS their only day, what will they remember?

Amber Osterman
Kindergarten Teacher, Osseo-Fairchild School District
LuAnn Neuenschwander, Kindergarten Teacher, Gillett School District
My Teaching Brain is Full of Ideas
Brain Breaks, Attention Grabbers, Phonemic Awareness, Math Facts, Technology, Ready to Write, Hands-on Centers, Transition Tips . . .Oh My! Amber and LuAnn's quick and easy ideas, activities and teaching tips will add more time, energy, and enjoyment to your day. You'll take away ideas for tweaking your learning environment, too!

Laura Pitt
Instructional Specialist, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Hands on ABC's and 123's
Come and get ideas for hands-on preschool activities with items you may already have at your center. Feel free to bring ideas to share.

58 x
Kristy Prunty
YoungStar Technical Consultant, Child Care Partnership
Leslie Thomas, YoungStar Technical Consultant, Child Care Partnerhip
Organize for Success: Minimize Stress and Increase Productivity
Do you find your “to do” list is often longer than you’d like?  Do you find that there are just not enough hours in the day to get everything done?  Do you feel like you work, work, work, but never get ahead?  Join us as we explore ways to organize three key areas of your career: time, space and tasks.  We will discuss strategies, share samples and provide plenty of time to learn from each other.

Shelley Silkey
Owner, Silky Pets
Working with Puppets can be Fun!  Limited to 25 participants!
This class will familiarize early childhood educators with the history of puppets, the variety of homemade and commercial puppets available and the best practices for engaging young children in conversation with puppets in both one-on-one and group settings. We will use hands on instruction to create a puppet and practice using it as our voice. We will explore how you can improve your classroom curriculum by integrating puppets into your daily activities to promote language development and literacy and how these techniques can be extended to other areas of your curriculum.

60 *
Laura Simkin
Membership Services Coordinator, Wisconsin Early Childhood Association
Power to the Profession!
Moving Early Childhood Education forward as a professional field of practice will take ALL of our voices, most importantly the voices of those who do this critical work.  "Power to the Profssion" is an intiative of the National Association for the Education of  Young Children (NAEYC) along with 14 other national organizations, to establich a shared framework of career pathways, knowledge and competencies, qualifications, standards, and compensation that unifies the entire profession.  WECA staff is eager to facilitate this conversation.  Bring with you what tugs on your heartstrings or what keeps you up at night.  Let's talk!

Rachel Stuart
Instructional Specialist, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Make Your Lessons Pop Using Power Point
Creating engaging and practical lessons for todders using technology can be challenging.  Come and learn creative ways to use Power Point to create lessons that are practical, yet engaging for the toddler classroom.

Jeanne Styczinski
Author/Illustrator Educator/Jeanne Kay Publishing
Writing with Young Children
In this session you will learn new ideas of how to set up your classroom to promote successful writing and illustrating for all students. Jeanne will also share with you many creative ways to integrate art into the writting process. You will leave this session with enough ideas to fill your classroom all year.

63 *
Renee Surdick
University of Wisconsin-Stout
Leadership:  Leading By Example
Mastering leadership is about character and the behaviors you exemplify daily.  Embracing authentic leadership with universal leadership promises will positively change the culture of an organization. Learn how to set the direction, engage and hold stakeholders accountable, ensure processes that facilitate focus, and, most importantly, lead with character.

Sapna Thapa
Assistant Professor, Early Childhood Education, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Coming soon
Description will be coming soon

Julie Torkelson
Retired Early Childhood Teacher/Minneapolis Public Schools
Coming soon
Description will be coming soon

Charmaine Turpin
Educational Consultant, Zoo-phonics
Let's Get Physical with Zoo-phonics!
This session will provide an introduction to the Zoo-phonics Program and give attendees an opportunity to learn the basics of the program through a hands-on presentation. Participants will be given an opportunity to participate in the physical aspect of this unique methodology. The presenter will show how to teach children to lock the sounds and shapes of the alphabet into memory through a body movement that directly relates to the Zoo-phonics Animal/Letter, allowing them to utilize the alphabet immediately. Attendees will participate in physical activities that tie into language arts including traditional games, Zoo-Robics and the Jump Rope Rap.

67 *
Barb Wagner
Executive Director/Minnesota Licensed Family Child Care Association
Nutrition: Beyond the Basics
We are all aware of how important it is to eat healthy, but why is it so difficult to do?  We will discuss a variety of barriers and offer solutions such as ways to streamline your cooking, find fresh foods without breaking the bank and fun ways to get children involved and eating new foods!

Tami Weiss
Director, Arts Integration Menomonie, Faculty, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Arts Integration: Aesthetic Literacy in Early Childhood Education
Re-humanizing education through aesthetic literacy.  The greatest emphasis in education today is placed on literacy; a student’s ability to read and write print-text is considered the most essential learning component of his/her success in school and in life.  As a component of literacy, language is used as a means to convey, describe, interpret, analyze, etc.  Language can encompass the spoken and written word. But language can also be present without words. The language of lived experience expressed in painting, music, etc. can communicate and generate knowledge and understanding in ways that speaking and writing cannot.

Jennifer Wickham
Psychotherapist, Mayo Clinic Health System
Teaching Emotional Intelligence to Infants, Toddlers, and Young Children
Emotional intelligence is an essential skill  in the development of young children’s social emotional health.  Learn the five steps of emotion coaching and develop a practical strategy for encouraging the development of emotion regulation skills while building positive relationships.

70 *
Jennifer Wickham
Psychotherapist, Mayo Clinic Health System
YogaCalm For Social Emotional Health
Through regular practice of Yoga Calm, parents and patients are reporting that the children are talking more about how their body feels when they are emotional and have been able to use YogaCalm strategies to regulate strong emotions enabling them to return to a mental state conducive for learning.  Recent research indicates results of yoga calm implementation in schools has decreased behavior problems, classroom disruption and increased academic performance. Yoga Calm emphasizes social emotional learning. Emotion coaching is a strategy for teching and supporting emotional intelligence in children. This five step strategy blends well with YogaCalm and can be used with very young children through adulthood.

71 *
Marcia Wolf
Senior Instructional Specialist, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Allison Feller, Instructor, University of Wisconsin-Stout and Rachel Stuart, Cooperating Teacher, University of Wisconsin-Stout, Instructor/UW-Stout     Cooperating Teacher/UW-Stout
Infant/Toddler Lab Tour
Join us for a tour of the UW-Stout Infant and Toddler Lab.  There will be a short information session and then the rooms will be open for exploring and picture taking. The head teachers will be available to answer any questions you may have.

Marcia Wolf
Senior Instructional Specialist, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Amazing Babies! 101 Experiences For The Very Young
Young children are amazing! This presentation will inspire participants with new ideas for gathering times for infants and toddlers.  The participants will be inspired through videos, hands-on viewing of materials and active participation in the session.

Sherry Ann Wolfer
Early Childhood Consultant, Let's Dig In
Science Time
You don’t have to be a scientist to do or have science in your classroom. Explore this “hands-on” workshop that contains easy and inexpensive science experiments, science activities and science table top props that you can do with children from two years old through one hundred plus years old.

Jacqueline Woods
Middle School Teacher, Education Consultant
Mama Mia! Here I go Again!
You are a teacher.  You began with your ideals and a heart full of compassion for your kids.  What happened?  If you are like most teachers, you haven't lost your love for teaching, you just don't get to do it very often.  Instead you find yourself redirecting, cajoling, soothing, begging, and after a really long day...crying.  What if I told you there is a better way?  Learn how to implement classroom techniques that reduce 90% of the day-to-day interruptions and has children listening the first time.