Presenters and Workshops

45th Annual ECE Conference
In this Section

2024 Early Childhood Education Conference 

Friday, and Saturday, April 19th and 20th, 2024

The 45th Annual Early Childhood Education Conference is back on the campus of the University of Wisconsin-Stout with all the great presentations and exhibitors! Hope you can join us!

Registration is Open!

Register today!

Here is the link to the 2024 Room Grid spreadsheet, where you can find all the presentation times and locations. Additionally, if you need to locate any of the presentation venues, you can use this link to access the UW-Stout campus map. All presentations will be held at Heritage Hall (#10), Memorial Student Center (#45), and the Child and Family Study Center (#8).

Session time frames for both Friday, April 19 and Saturday, April 20:

Session 1 - 9:00 to 10:15 a.m. - Keynote only
Session 2 - 10:30 to 11:45 a.m.
Session 3 - 1:15 to 2:30 p.m. 
Session 4 - 2:45 to 4:00 p.m.

Routines Rule!

Linda Armas01  Routines Rule!

Linda Armas, Educational Trainer, and Consultant
Prepare Parents, LLC

Encourage joyful noise by utilizing the ROUTINES RULE! framework in your classroom and/or home. It promotes positive behavior, stimulates responsibility, and enhances classroom & family harmony. Explore the tried-and-true process of creating effective routines for your professional and/or personal applications. All children, even those with difficulties, disabilities, and disorders thrive. Automatized routines make way for more time, attention, and focus for unfamiliar and challenging tasks. Create and implement ROUTINES RULE! strategies in your role to help the children in your life to live and learn to their fullest. (2-year-olds to adults)

Friday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Badger Room
Saturday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Badger Room

Belonging Together: How Read-Alouds Shape Identities in Clas
Jeanette Armstrong

02  Belonging Together: How Read-Alouds Shape Identities in Classroom Communities

Jeannette Armstrong, Educator/Research/Author
Indiana University - Bloomington; Western Technical College - 
La Crosse, WI

As early childhood educators, we hold in our hands the power to shape the minds and hearts of young students. Every choice we make in the classroom resonates deeply, influencing students' sense of belonging and their comprehension of self and world. This presentation delves into the transformative potential of read-alouds in nurturing belonging and initiating dialogues about identity. It explores: How early childhood educators utilize read-alouds to encourage students to engage in meaningful dialogues about their understanding of self and others, Strategies for using read-alouds to cultivate a sense of belonging among students, and Utilizing read-alouds to help young learners comprehend how identities influence classroom communities. Participants will gain fresh insights and practical strategies for fostering belonging through read-alouds. Together, we will embark on a journey to reshape our early childhood classrooms into inclusive environments, recognizing the profound influence of identities and intersections of identities on our classroom communities. Let's create spaces where every student experiences genuine belonging. (Three-year-olds to Middle School)

Saturday Session 3 and 4 - Heritage Hall 176 

Back to the Basics - Using Play to Support the Whole Child

03  Back to the Basics - Using Play to Support the Whole Child

Dr. Lindsay Barnhart, 
University of Wisconsin-Stout

Play is the foundation for supporting children's growth, development, and learning. While we live in a world with an academic focus and meeting standards, using what is best and developmentally appropriate for children should be our focus. This session will share brief information on research and then share ways in which we can utilize play to support the whole child and still meet the expected standards. (Four-year-olds to Elementary)

Saturday Session 2 - Heritage Hall 182                  

Every Interaction Counts: Improving Language Environments

04  Every Interaction Counts: Improving Language Environments Equitably in Early Childhood Education

Luis Bernal, Regional Director
Lena, Inc.

Andrea Mueller, Quality Consultant/Trainer
Childcaring - Central WI Early Education Resources

It is well established that educator-child interactions are an essential element for quality, with a large and growing body of research connecting early language environments to childhood outcomes. We will share research on how programs incorporating an increased focus on early language have seen not only more equitable interaction in the classroom but increased job satisfaction and confidence among early educators as well. Participants will have an opportunity to participate in hands-on learning using LENA's 14 Talking Tips. Participants will:

1. Be able to explain what a conversational turn is and how it impacts brain development and later life outcomes. 

2. Build awareness about the state of educator-child interactions in early childhood settings.

3. Further their conceptual knowledge on conversational turns and how those relate to quality early learning experiences and children's later life outcomes.

4. Reflect on how this research and data apply to their communities and their practices and identify concrete ways that they can increase interaction in early care settings. (Infants to five-year-olds)

Friday Session 2 - Heritage Hall 153
Saturday Session 3 - Heritage Hall 153

Supporting Diverse Needs in the Classroom
Boomer, Ayuko
      Ayuko
Locast, Peter
     Peter

05  Supporting Diverse Needs in the Classroom

Ayuko Boomer, Early Childhood Specialist
University of Minnesota Child Development Lab School

Peter Locast, Early Childhood Specialist
University of Minnesota Child Development Lab School

Alyssa Wilt, Early Childhood Specialist
University of Minnesota Child Development Lab School

As educators, we encounter a diverse range of needs in our classrooms. From children with IEPs to those who a bit of extra support during transitions, each child requires a unique approach to provide them with the best learning opportunities. We will share strategies and ideas on how to navigate the varying needs in your classroom and discuss how to individualize instruction in a manageable way. (Two-year-olds to Five-year-olds)

Saturday Session 3 and 4 - Memorial Student Center - Birch

Let's Learn with Loose Parts!

Annette Calhoun06  Let's Learn with Loose Parts!

Annette Calhoun, Lead Teacher
Aspen Academy

What are loose parts and why are they important in Early Childhood Education? Loose parts play a crucial role in Early Childhood Education because they encourage open-ended play and creativity in young children. These versatile materials like blocks, shells, and fabric scraps can be used in countless ways, allowing children to learn through hands-on exploration and imagination. By attending this presentation, educators will learn how to promote problem-solving skills, collaboration, and fine motor development as children build, stack, and manipulate the materials. Additionally, I will showcase how loose parts can be cost-effective, environmentally friendly, and easily accessible, making them valuable resources for enhancing the learning experience in early childhood settings. This is a hands-on presentation that will allow time for educators to create their loose-part masterpieces. (Three-year-olds to Middle School)

Friday Session 3 and 4 - Heritage Hall 182 

Budgeting at its Best: When Your Heart and Brain Meet Head-o

07  Budgeting at its Best: When Your Heart and Brain Meeting Head-on

Dan Eckhardt, WEESSN Financial Team Coordinator
Wisconsin Early Childhood Association
Holly Eckhardt, Program Coach
Wisconsin Early Childhood Association

Budgeting is both a science and an art. Come and investigate some of the technical aspects of budgets, like computing your cost-per-child, while also exploring how your budget is a document of your program’s values. By having a balanced view of your budget and its purpose, you’ll be ready to implement financial decisions from a meaningful foundation. (Adults)

Friday Session 3 - Heritage Hall 182

Use Your Program's Protective Gear: Policies, Contracts, and

08  Use Your Program's Protective Gear: Policies, Contracts, and Risk Management

Dan Eckhardt, Financial Team Coordinator
Wisconsin Early Childhood Association
Holly Eckhardt, Program Coach
Wisconsin Early Childhood Association

Childcare programs can be put in difficult situations if they don’t have some of the proper tools in place to proactively attend to those situations before they become problems. Join us for this interactive session where we will examine important questions including What makes a contract legally binding? How does being a Mandatory Reporter reduce my risk for doing business? and why do handbooks need to have policies and procedures? Learn more about risk management and the tools you have at hand to protect your program! (Adults)

Saturday Session 4 - Memorial Student Center - Northwoods

Brain Development Basics: Enhancing Early Literacy and Life-
Jeannie Erickson

09  Brain Development Basics: Enhancing Early Literacy and Life-Long Lovers of Books

Jeannie Erickson, Director
Project Babies

The human brain is an amazing and complex organ that allows each of us to think, feel, and act. The brain systems that regulate these activities are largely shaped by experience. This workshop will highlight how those early experiences set the foundation for years to come - from relationships to a love of books. Participants will focus on the biology of brain development, including the critical and sensitive windows of development; practical applications for early literacy skills, and the ten things every child needs for healthy development which includes reading, reading, and reading. (Infants to four year olds)

Friday Session 4 - Memorial Student Center - Badger

Making Connections: Sugar and Spice vs. Puppy Dog Tails

Jeannie Erickson 10  Making Connections: Sugar and Spice vs. Puppy Dog Tails

Jeannie Erickson, Director
Project Babies

Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice….Frogs and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails. Even the writers of the early nineteenth-century nursery rhyme knew there were differences in the brain and “make-up” of boys and girls. This workshop will look at early brain development basics, highlighting gender differences. Participants will explore such questions as Why do boys generally fidget more or prefer different colors than girls? Why do girls seem to pay attention more readily than boys? to name only a couple. Workshop participants will learn key brain gender differences, which will lead to a greater understanding of their students and their behaviors in the classroom. The workshop will also encourage participants to look at how they set up their classrooms and organize activities. (Infant to Four-year olds) 

Friday Session 3 - Memorial Student Center - Badger

Race and Culture: What does this have to do with me?

Jeannie Erickson 11  Race and Culture: What does this have to do with me?

Jeannie Erickson, Director
Project Babies

This reflective and interactive workshop is centered on the perspective that individuals come from a variety of backgrounds with a variety of values and valid perspectives. Participants will be asked to consider how their biases impact how they view children’s cultural identities. Literacy is important to development but do we consider the racial overtones of children's literacy? and what do our classrooms / shared spaces say to our children/families about race and culture? (Infant to Four-year-olds)

Saturday Session 3 - Memorial Student Center - Ballroom C

The Joyful Sounds of Play without Expense!

Jeannie Erickson12  The Joyful Sounds of Play without Expense!

Jeannie Erickson, Director
Project Babies

As a Director of a Family Resource Center, there is nothing that warms my heart more than the sounds little ones play! Play is the work of the child. We are presented with many options for toys to” build IQ” and enhance our baby’s brains, but so many come with a high price tag! But are they really needed? This interactive workshop will provide many examples of toys and play experiences that can be accomplished from basic items, many of which are found in a home and most likely considered trash!  The participants will also have playtime! When was the last time you gave yourself to play? or made a mud pie? (Infants to four-year-olds)

Saturday Session 4 - Memorial Student Center - Ballroom C

Providing Support for Preschoolers

Sue Erickson13  Providing Support for Preschoolers

Sue Erickson, EL TAI Grant Consultant
CESA #12

Are you finding it difficult to help your preschoolers with challenging behavior engage with their peers in the learning environment? We have just the session for you! Join us to learn about evidence-based practices that will ensure your preschoolers get the support they need to participate in their learning environment. We'll provide you with resources to further your learning, and you'll have the opportunity to collaborate with your peers and plan how to implement these practices in your daily work. This will be an action-packed learning session, so come and join us! (Three to Four-year-olds)

Saturday Session 2 - Heritage Hall 153

Get Lost in Books - Activities and Fun for Everyday Books!

Michelle Espelien14  Get Lost in Books - Activities and Fun for Everyday Books!

Michelle Espelien, Preschool Director
Kids of Peace Preschool

Come and see many fresh and fun ideas for many popular as well as new children's books. See activities presented for all the centers of the classroom including science, art, math, reading, and more. Ideas shown can work in any classroom and are specially created for children ages 3-5 years old. Be ready to share ideas with others as well! (Three to Five-year-olds)

Friday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Walnut/Willow

Hands on Learning and Everyday Adventures!

15  Michelle EspelienHands-on Learning and Everyday Adventures!

Michelle Espelien, Preschool Director
Kids of Peace Preschool

Children need to be able to touch, smell, hear, and experience every activity in their world. This class will show many activities for children ages 2-5 years old in all the areas of development in an early childhood classroom. Activities in art, math, science, and cooking, children's books, and social-emotional development will be presented and shared. New ideas are always welcome as we all learn so much from each other. (Three to Five-year-olds)

Saturday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Walnut/Willow

UW-Stout's Child and Family Study Center Lab Tours

16  UW-Stout's Child and Family Study Center Lab Tours

Infant/Toddler Education Lab Staff
Allison Feller, Director
Debbie Davis, Early Childhood Education Teacher
Kristen Korkowski, Early Childhood Education Teacher
Rebecca Lee, Early Childhood Education Teacher
Kara Olson, Early Childhood Education Teacher
Rachael Stuart, Early Childhood Education Teacher

Preschool Education Lab Staff
Allison Feller, Director
Maggie Keenan, 4K/Early Childhood Education Teacher
Brittney LeBarron, Early Childhood Education Teacher
Laura Pitt, Early Childhood Education Teacher
Marcia Wolf, Early Childhood Education Teacher

Tour the Infant/Toddler and Child and Family Study Centers (Preschool) labs at UW-Stout. There will be a short informational session and the rooms will be open so you can explore and take pictures. The head teachers will be available to answer any questions. (Infants to Four-year-olds)

Friday Session 3 - Heritage Hall 165 and Child and Family Study Center, 811 6th Street East
Saturday Session 3 - Heritage Hall 165 and Child and Family Study Center, 811 6th Street East

Behavior Interventions in the Classroom

17  Behavior Interventions in the Classroom

Maggie Keenan, 4K/Early Childhood Education Teacher
Child & Family Study Center UW-Stout

Allison Feller, Director
Child & Family Study Center UW-Stout

Join us for an insightful session that explores behavior interventions in a preschool setting. Learn and discuss how teacher’s responses to behaviors can play a crucial role in fostering a positive learning environment. This session will explore a range of strategies and techniques, including check-in, check-out programs, reward systems, parent communication, natural consequences, limit setting, and emotional regulation, all designed to cultivate executive functioning skills in young learners. (Three to five-year-olds, teachers, directors, administrators, SPED)

Friday Session 4 - Heritage Hall 182

Recreation & Rejuvenation: Participate in Play & Learn to En

18  Recreation & Rejuvenation: Participate in Play and learn to Engage

Dr. Andy Felton, Associate Professor
University of Wisconsin-Stout

University of Wisconsin-Stout Students

In this open forum members can engage in playful activities to relax, rejuvenate, and remember the value of play for everyone. This will be a space in which attendees can freely come and explore the powerful and joyful aspects of play. Attendees will also be exposed to basic ways of engagement that can foster connection, encouragement, and boundaries to assist in child development and relationships. (Adults)

Friday Session 3 and 4 - Memorial Student Center - White Pine
Saturday Sessions 2, 3 and 4 - Memorial Student Center - White Pine 

The Word Involved in Playing

19  Dr. Dawnita GalloThe Word Involved in Playing

Dr. Dawnita Gallo
Minnesota State University Moorhead

During this interactive presentation, participants will explore the work that goes into helping children play effectively to gain a solid foundation from which to become a life-long learner. Many of the children in our classrooms today do not have the same skill set as children in our classrooms pre-pandemic. Their life experiences are quite different. These differences require teachers to shift their expectations and then how they interact with the children. Participants will be guided through a process of intentionally noticing teachable moments and then implementing guided play strategies to help young children gain some very important play skills. (Two to Five-year-olds)

Friday Session 4 - Memorial Student Center - Birch
Saturday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Northwoods 

Using Guided Play (without Co-Opting the Play) to Enhance De

20  Dr. Dawnita GalloUsing Guided Play (without co-opting the Play) to Enhance Development

Dr. Dawnita Gallo, Minnesota State University Moorhead

The presenters will illustrate how to use guided play in a mixed-age preschool classroom to enhance a child's growth and development, particularly social interaction skills. A characteristic of play is that it is child-led. Guided play allows for child-led play, while the teacher, through intentional statements and questions, can guide the child to use higher-level thinking skills without co-opting the play itself. (Three to Five-year-olds)

Saturday Session 3 - Memorial Student Center - Northwoods

Music Play with Purpose

21  Play with Purpose

Jim Gill, Inc.
Musician and Author

This session is a great follow-up to Jim’s keynote address. It is filled with the musical inspiration you’ll need to keep energized! 

In this lively session, Jim Gill shares additional musical games and explains, in greater detail,  the purpose behind his play. His active music play provides a context for children to develop abilities, such as self-regulation, essential to school success. Jim’s clever wordplay and rhymes in the context of active movement games also provide broad opportunities for literacy development. 

You’ll bring some inspiration, useful in the morning and afternoon, back to your work with young children! (Infant to five-year-olds).

Friday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Ballroom C

Finger Plays: Playing with Words

Colleen Hannafin 22  Finger Plays and Movement Songs Using Props to Make Them Pop!

Colleen Hannafin, Early Childhood Music
North Side Music

Music and movement from fingers to the whole body! Finger-plays develop a rhythm of words (language development) while introducing new vocabulary, and math concepts, following directions, and developing listening skills. Traditional and original finger-plays and action rhymes to use with your hands, puppets, flannel boards, and props that will make your songs pop!  (Two and a half to Four-years-old)

Friday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Birch
Saturday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Birch

Intentional Play in the Kindergarten Classroom

23  Intentional Play in the Kindergarten Classroom

Dr. Paula Harms, Reading Specialist, Augusta School District
Adjunct Teacher, UW-Stout

Joe Zawacki, Kindergarten Teacher
Augusta School District

Students need instruction in social skills. We all know that this is something that can be taught through play - a very age-appropriate way to provide opportunities to practice social skills. See how the Augusta school district has envisioned play to address many of the Wisconsin Early Learning Strategies at the Kindergarten level without great expense. (Four to Five-year-olds)

Friday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Northwoods 

Little Learners Big Hearts: Advancing Empathy and Equity in

24  Little Learners Big Hearts: Advancing Empathy and Equity in Early Childhood Education

Orinthia Harris, Executive Director
STEMearly

Embark on a transformative exploration of the profound impact early conversations on racial equity and cultural awareness can have on the development of young minds. Join us for an inspiring session with "Little Learners, Big Hearts," a heartwarming teacher's guide designed to cultivate empathy and equity in the early childhood classroom. Rooted in the principles of heart-centered learning, this session will guide participants through a seamless integration of hope, self-education, acknowledgment, resolution, and responsive teaching. Discover how these elements come together to create an empowering antiracist foundation that shapes compassionate futures. By delving into the power of intentional and nurturing conversations, educators will gain valuable insights into fostering a positive and inclusive environment for our little learners. Be prepared to explore practical strategies and approaches that promote cultural awareness and contribute to building a more equitable and empathetic early childhood education community. Join us as we collectively take the first steps toward shaping compassionate futures. Let's create a learning environment where every child feels seen, valued, and empowered to thrive. (Adults)

Friday Session 3 - Memorial Student Center - Northwoods
Saturday Session 3 and 4 - Memorial Student Center - Badger

Enlivening Engagement with PBS Kids

25  Enlivening Engagement with PBS Kids

Jami Hoekstra Collins, Early Learning Engagement Specialist
PBS Wisconsin - Education

Mouna Algahaithi, Early Learning Engagement Specialist
PBS Wisconsin - Education

Learn the PBS KIDS family and community learning workshop model and framework to facilitate multi-generational hands-on family engagement. Activate creative and collaborative learning with playful science and literacy experiences. (Infants to Elementary)

Friday Session 3 - Memorial Student Center - Oakwood

Play-FULL Planning with PBS

26  Play-FULL Planning with PBS

Jami Hoekstra Collins, Early Learning Engagement Specialist
PBS Wisconsin - Education

Mouna Algahaithi, Early Learning Engagement Specialist
PBS Wisconsin - Education

Learn about a simple planning tool for early childhood educators that “bundles” playful learning, hands-on activities, and PBS KIDS content within curated thematic resource lists or “menus.” This session will be full of fabulous bilingual ideas and activities to integrate creativity, imagination, and play-based experiences in your learning spaces. (Infant to Elementary)

Friday Session 4 - Memorial Student Center - Oakwood

Finger Puppet Mania for all Seasons

27  Finger Puppet Mania for all Seasons

Julie Hume, Family Child Care Provider
Kind Hearts Day Care

Julia Risland, Family Child Care Provider
Little Birdie Childcare 

Finger puppets are an engaging toy that can help support oral language skills, communication, and social/emotional development, and help the children learn and understand the world around them through safe imaginative play. In this session, you will walk away with lots of new finger play ideas to help children engage their imagination play and enhance your circle time routine. Please come with one glove to make a finger puppet to bring back to your program. (Infant to Elementary)

Friday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - White Pine

Flannel Board/Game Mania

28  Flannel Board/Game Mania

Julie Hume, Family Child Care Provider
Kind Hearts Day Care

Julia Risland, Family Child Care Provider
Little Birdie Childcare

Flannel boards are a great way for children to learn to retell stories that they have heard and this also gets their brains to process this story. Homemade games are a great way to help spark creative thinking and problem-solving in new and challenging environments. In this session, you will walk away with many new ideas for flannel boards and games to bring back to your program. There will be stencils to trace at the end of the session to create new and fun things. (Infants to Elementary)

Saturday Session 4 - Memorial Student Center - Walnut/Willow

Why Read-Alouds Matter: Building Background Knowledge to Sup
Terry
Kim

29  Why Read-Alouds Matter: Building Background Knowledge to Support Children's Reading Development

Terry Kohlmeier, Associate Professor
University of Wisconsin-Stout

Dr. Kimberly Martinez, Professor
University of Wisconsin-Stout

Read-alouds are not only important for building foundational reading skills, but they can also provide the background knowledge that plays an enormous role in reading comprehension. Learn the importance of using daily read-alouds to encourage children to learn about the world around them and gain important vocabulary that aids children in understanding and retaining what they read. Ideas for book choices and strategies for building background and vocabulary will be shared. (Four-year-olds to Elementary).

Friday Session 3 - Heritage Hall 208

Back to Basics: Building Context and Connection in the Early

30  Kristen KorkowskiBack to Basics: Building Context and Connection in the Early Childhood Classroom 

Kristen Korkowski, Infant Teacher
UW-Stout Child and Family Study Center

The world of early childhood education is a busy one! Daily stressors can pull our minds in different directions and make it a challenge to recall some of the foundational truths of teaching. In this presentation, we will shift our perspective to better understand the importance of creating context and connection in the minds of young children and what that looks like in the classroom. With visuals, examples, and maybe even a song or two, you will hopefully leave this presentation with a few new teacher tools that you can immediately put to use! (Infants to three year olds)

Friday Session 2 - Heritage Hall 313

Dramatic Play and More!

31  Dramatic Play and More!

Becky Lee, Early Childhood Education Teacher
Child & Family Study Center, UW-Stout

Rachael Stuart, Early Childhood Education Teacher
Child & Family Study Center, UW-Stout

Need new, fun, and exciting ways to spice up the dramatic play areas in your classroom? Look no further! Come join us to hear about some of the dramatic play setups we use within our toddler classrooms throughout the year. On top of that, we will share our favorite circles and the lessons that go with them. We hope to see you there! (One year-olds to three-year-olds)

Friday Session 2 - Heritage Hall 182 

Amplify Joyful Learning and Reduce Challenging Behaviors

32  Amplify Joyful Learning and Reduce Challenging Behaviors

Samantha Moe, Certified Parent Coach
Samantha Moe and Associates

Do you often find yourself wishing for more 'joyful noise' in the classroom and fewer challenging behaviors? If so, you're in good company. As educators working with children who often have big emotions and reactions, it can be a puzzle to make learning enjoyable. In this interactive workshop, you'll uncover practical, brain-based strategies that harness the Power of Play, all while effectively preventing challenging behaviors, following the principles of the Mad to Glad Blueprint. Join us to explore essential tools that enhance listening skills and self-control, and create positive connections among students. Together, we'll infuse more fun and laughter into your classroom while effectively reducing challenging behaviors. Now that's an enjoyable experience for everyone! (Two-years-old to Middle School)

Friday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Maplewood/Cedarwood 

Music to the Max!

33  Music to the Max!

Angela Naeve, Music Teacher/Songwriter
Angela Naeve Music Ministry

Great action songs as powerful teaching tools plus memorization of scripture made quick and easy with Bible Bops. Ideas and songs to use rights away with students to teach big concepts like obedience, forgiving, being thankful, and being loved and special! Be prepared to sing, move, and have fun! (Infants to Adults)

Friday Session 3- Memorial Student Center - Maplewood/Cedarwood
Saturday Session 2 and 3 - Memorial Student Center Maplewood/Cedarwood

The Power of the Outdoor Classroom

34  The Power of the Outdoor Classroom

Oksana Norwig, Director
Smart Start CC & LC

Bring back the power of the outdoors. Spending time outdoors can increase your immune system, create better nap times, lessen big behaviors seen indoors, and so much more that bring countless value to your program. Let's cultivate an outdoor classroom and bring the inside...OUT! (Infants to Five-year-olds)

Saturday Session 4- Memorial Student Center - Maplewood/Cedarwood

Make Circle Time Magical!

35  Make Circle Time Magical!

Kara Olson, Early Childhood Education Teacher
Child & Family Study Center, UW-Stout

Debbie Davis, Early Childhood Education Teacher
Child & Family Study Center, UW-Stout


Come learn new, different, and creative ways to engage and teach toddler-age children and older! We'll share some of our more unique and engaging circle times and discuss how to adapt them for younger and older children. Let's make circle time magical! (One-year-old to four-year-olds)

Friday Session 2 - Heritage Hall 208 

Taming those Terrific Toddlers: Evidence-Based Strategies to

Ostberg, Raelene36  Taming those Terrific Toddlers: Evidence-Based Strategies to set Effective Limits and Getting Toddlers to Follow Them!

Raelene Ostberg, Education Specialist
Thriving Together, LLC

Gain insight into what drives toddlers’ challenging behaviors and the culprits fueling the fires. Collect strategies and hands-on tools to teach toddlers limits and boundaries. Identify positive communication techniques that work to get them to stop negative behaviors and follow your direction. Have fun and get inspired by listening to entertaining, real-life stories that show the strategies in action. You will increase your joy and decrease your stress while caring for these wonderful humans! (Two to four-year-olds)

Friday Session 4 - Memorial Student Center - Maplewood/Cedarwood

Love and Logic 101: Taking the Stress out of Teaching and Pa

37  Chris Peterson Love and Logic 101: Taking the Stress out of Teaching and Parenting

Chris Peterson, Owner
The Parenting Professor

Who should be tired at the end of the day? The kids! How can we alter our classrooms in a way that limits the stress for educators? Let’s start with the basics. Love allows children to grow through their mistakes. Logic allows children to live with the consequences of their choices. Love and Logic is a way of working with children that put teachers back in control, teaches children to be responsible, and prepares young people to live in the real world, with its many choices and consequences. We will take teachers through an interactive high-energy thrill ride teaching about the techniques and importance of being an empathetic and effective teacher. (Infants to Middle School)

Friday Session 3 - Memorial Student Center - Ballroom C

Supporting Kids with Challenging Pasts (trauma)

38  Chris PetersonSupporting Kids with Challenging Pasts (trauma)

Chris Peterson, Owner
The Parenting Professor

Let’s explore the monumental task of working with kids who have challenging pasts. We’ll balance theory, research, and strategies to up the odds that we handle the toughest of situations without breaking a sweat. You will learn powerful insights into How trauma affects the brain. Why do the intense and extremely upsetting behaviors seen in some kids represent attempts to self-protect and survive? The science behind healthy attachment relationships. How to apply Love and Logic strategies so that adults can take good care of themselves while addressing root causes to teach their content. (1-year-olds to Secondary School) 

Saturday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Ballroom C

Taking the Stress out of Parent Conferences...even the conte

Chris Peterson 39  Taking the Stress out of Parent Conferences...even the contentious ones

Chris Peterson, Owner
The Parenting Professor

Have you ever dreaded a phone call or conference because you just weren’t sure how it would turn out? Today, we’ll build the skills and framework to handle the toughest of situations without breaking a sweat and building better relationships at the same time. Explore some ideas and principles that can limit stressful interactions with parents. Develop an understanding of why a parent might be upset. Discover a 5-step generic plan that you can utilize when upset parents do not give you time to plan. Examine more ideas about how to take good care of yourself. (Adults)

Friday Session 4 - Memorial Student Center - Ballroom C

Intentional Teaching-Meeting Standards Through Play

40  Intentional Teaching-Meeting Standards Through Play

Laura Pitt, Early Childhood Education Teacher
Child & Family Study Center, UW-Stout

Brittney LeBarron, Early Childhood Education Teacher
Child & Family Study Center, UW-Stout

Using items you may already have in your classroom, plan engaging activities that promote early literacy skills, mathematical thinking, small & large motor development, language & communication development as well as social & emotional development. We will show you hands-on, developmentally appropriate activities that you can use in your classroom on Monday! (Three to four-year-olds)

Friday Session 4 - Heritage Hall 208

Making Good Choices at School and Classroom Management Skill

41  Making Good Choices at School and Classroom Management Skills

Hilary Podritz, Early Childhood Educator

In this workshop, Hillary will discuss her recently published children's book "Making Good Choices at School", how she uses it as a teaching tool throughout the day, and why she uses this particular language "Good Choice/Poor Choice". We will also discuss some helpful classroom management tools to use during clean-up time, the difference between sharing and taking turns, as well as the proper use of the word "can" in your classroom. (Three to five-year-olds)
 

Friday Session 3 - Heritage Hall 153
Saturday Session 3 - Memorial Student Center - Walnut/Willow 

Bubbles 101

Terrie Schmoldt42  Bubbles 101

Terrie Schmoldt, Teacher, and Presenter
Oregon School District

Marissa Schmoldt, Coach

 Are you ready to get your hands wet and participate in bubble experiments? This is a hands-on, hands wet, participatory session of fun and exploration as we conduct a plethora of bubble experiments. (Four-year-olds to Elementary)

 Saturday Session 3 - Memorial Student Center - Oakwood

Rocks, Soil, and Sand Galore, Come Explore, Read, Write & Mo

43  Terrie SchmoldtRocks, Soil, and Sand Galore, Come Explore, Read, Write & More

Terrie Schmoldt, Teacher, and Presenter
Oregon School District

Marissa Schmoldt, Coach
 
Have you ever had a rock collection or made mud pies? Examine, explore, and discuss rocks and soil through a variety of hands-on math and science activities, then journal about it! Children will be able to make discoveries and continue the fun on the playground or in their backyard. (Three-year-olds to elementary)

 Saturday Session 4 - Memorial Student Center - Oakwood

Large Motor Bilateral Body Awareness to Promote Academic Lea

44  Large Motor Bilateral Body Awareness to Promote Academic Learning 

Jody Shong, Adjunct Professor
University of Wisconsin-Stout

Pairing purposeful body movements with academic content provides a highly efficient way to build pathways and solidify learning in children. During this session we will be exploring different body movements, how to incorporate academics within the movements, and how to support body awareness in children. Come and explore how the movement will unleash the power of the brain and create opportunities to learn within a space. (Three to five-year-olds)

Friday Session 2 - Heritage Hall 176
Saturday Session 2 - Heritage Hall 176

Learning to Use Puppets - a Make-and-Take Class

45  Silkey Pets Learning to Use Puppets - a Make-and-Take Class

Shelley Silkey, Owner
Silkey Pets

This is a make-and-take class using easily found household items. I provide hands-on instructions on how to make simple puppets with your kids. Using finger plays, songs, and books, we will bring them to life. Exploring colors, numbers, the alphabet, math, and science are more engaging for children using puppets. (Two to Five years old) 

Friday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Oakwood
Saturday Session 2 - Memorial Student Center - Oakwood

Breathe, Stretch and Restore

46  Breathe, Stretch, and Restore

Tina Tharp, Community Engagement Specialist
Mayo Clinic Health System

This session will demonstrate how effective breathing techniques, gentle seated and standing yoga postures, and guided meditation can help people calm their minds and focus their thoughts.  Participants will also leave with ideas and activities to incorporate yoga into their early childhood classroom. (Adults)  

Friday Session 4 - Memorial Student Center - Northwoods

Empowering Parents to Support Early Childhood Learning

47  Dr. Megan ThornburghEmpowering Parents to Support Early Childhood Learning

Dr. Megan Thornburgh, Head of Early Childhood and Director of Student Services
Madison Country Day School

Dr. Megan Thornburgh will talk about how to support and teach parents how to best support and teach their early learners. This workshop is specifically crafted for educators who recognize the pivotal role parents play in a child's early education. The goal is to equip teachers with effective strategies and communication techniques to guide and empower parents in supporting their early childhood children at home. By fostering a strong partnership between teachers and parents, this workshop seeks to enhance the overall learning experience for young students. (Adults, Directors)

Friday Session 3 - Memorial Student Center - Birch

Application of Multicultural Literature in the Early Childho

Deborah Wheeler48  Application of Multicultural Literature in the Early Childhood Classroom

Dr. Deborah Wheeler, Assistant Professor
St. Cloud State University

Dr. Jenny Hill, Assistant Professor
St. Cloud State University

Culture equates to identity; therefore, the implementation of multicultural literature in the early childhood curriculum is an essential method for securing children’s concepts of self and cultural identity. A qualitative study was conducted to explore the implementation of multicultural literature in the early childhood classroom and instructional methods. The research included questions about multicultural literature training, instructional methods, and barriers encountered. The purpose of the study was to answer questions regarding teachers' use of multicultural literature in the classroom, how often teachers read multicultural literature, and how teachers integrated multicultural literature into instruction. An additional question inquired about what multicultural book titles were teachers reading to students. This session will include a review of our research findings, followed by research-informed best practices for early educators and recommended multicultural book titles. (Two years old to elementary) 

Friday Session 3 and 4 - Memorial Student Center - Walnut/Willow

What did they hear? Storytimes and Beyond for Preschoolers

49  Marcia WolfWhat did they hear? Storytimes and Beyond for Preschoolers

Marcia Wolf, Early Childhood Education Teacher
University of Wisconsin-Stout

Marcia will share some of her favorite stories, story hooks, and activities from the 13 different themes that are used in the 4K preschool classroom at UW Stout’s Child & Family Study Center. (Four and five-year-olds)

Friday Session 4 - Heritage Hall 153
Saturday Session 4 - Heritage Hall 153

Beyond Bandages and Life Jackets

50  Beyond Bandages and Life Jackets

Tamara Yttrie, Business Owner/Trainer
Education for All

Jennifer Yttrie, Business Owner/Trainer
Education for all Squid School

We are trusted with keeping other people’s children safe in a complicated world. This class will share advanced first aid, safety, and drowning prevention knowledge and equipment. (Infant to Adults)

Friday Session 4 - Heritage Hall 176

Using Guided Play (without Co-Opting the Play) to Enhance De

51  Kids in the Kitchen Cooking Class

Tamara Yttrie, Business Owner
Education for All

Learning to cook is a critical life skill. Teaching young kids to cook creates a healthier kid as kids who cook typically eat healthier. Cooking with kids is fun when the adults are prepared with knowledge and skills to guide and support the kids as they learn. This class will teach you to teach them. Complete with pint-size recipes and kitchen gadget recommendations. (One-year-old to Elementary)

Friday Session 3 - Heritage Hall 176