2020 LIVE and On-Demand Workshops

As an attendee, the 2020 WECA Virtual Conference provides you with access to both live and on-demand workshops on a variety of early childhood topics.

  • All of the live conference sessions will take place October 1-3. (see schedule below)
  • In addition to the live sessions, you will gain access to a variety of on-demand conference sessions, including the recordings from the keynote sessions. These sessions are available beginning October 1st. Additional sessions will be added throughout the month of October as well.
  • Certificates of Attendance (Registry credit) will be available for both live and on-demand sessions after attendance has been documented through a system called, TalentLMS. You should have received a link to the TalentLMS portal with your full account information prior to the start of the conference.

Thursday, October 1, 2020

K1 Live Session: Universal Preschool in Extraordinary Times: Reshaping Views of Power, Policy, and Equity

Time: Thursday, October 1 at 10:00 am
Presenter(s): Lucinda Heimer, Ph.D, author, Associate Professor, Early Childhood Education Assistant Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, and Ann Ramminger, MS, author and Founder of Early Childhood Solutions Consulting.

Description: As we face a global crisis with uncertainty given COVID-19 and economic, racial and civic unrest, our passion for equity in early education packs potential. It takes work to address assumptions as issues of power imbalances emerge, defined by culture, language, race and ability, among other factors. In this session we use research and stories to highlight perspectives from our book Reshaping Universal Preschool: Critical Perspectives on Power and Policy,  to consider equitable ways forward in early education. How do we recognize and honor each stakeholder as we craft the future of early education in the US (funding, structure, access, curriculum)?  How do we navigate collaborative community conversations to address issues of equity?  A lot is at stake.


A1 Live Session: Making Connections: Finding Power in Our Diversity

Time: Thursday, October 1 at 12:30-1:30 pm
Ann McClain Terrell, President of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)
Ann McClain Terrell is the President of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) governing board and a well-respected early childhood education leader with over 40 years of professional experience in the field. She has served in early childhood leadership positions from the classroom to the boardroom and is currently adjunct faculty at Concordia University-Wisconsin. Ann is the author of the recent publication “Graceful Leadership in Early Childhood Education”.  
During the keynote Ann will share some of the lessons learned on her leadership journey to becoming an award winning and inspiring leader and reflect upon leadership in these times of the COVID-19 pandemic and our nation grappling with systems of bias and privilege. The presentation will allow the participants to reflect upon their own leadership journeys and a vision for their future leadership opportunities. 

A2 Live Session: COVID-19 and Early Childhood: How to Approach a Pandemic

Time: Thursday, October 1 at 4:00-5:30 pm
Presenter: Dr. Dipesh Navsaria,  University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health
Description: Would you like a presentation on COVID-19 and Early Childhood that you get to help write? This is that session. Submit your questions in advance and Dr. Navsaria will tailor his presentation to address your learning needs.

A3 Live Session: Easy Music for Tough Times

Time: Thursday, October 1 at 7:00 pm
Presenter: Carole Stephens, music specialist

Description: COVID is confusing to many early learners.  New rules and different procedures to follow. Stressed-out parents (and sometimes teachers, too!)  Miss Carole’s got songs, fingerplays, sing-able books and active music for classrooms and one-on-ones.  Making music lifts spirits, encourages engagement and advances learning skills in any format: in-person or online.  Teach children songs that help them deal with their feelings, address curricular content and keep their brains and bodies growing.

Friday, October 2, 2020

K2 Live Session: Roll of Thunder, Hear my Cry: An Opening Discussion about Anti-Black Racism, #BLM, and What Early Childhood Professionals Can Do

Time: Friday, October 2 at 10:00 am
Presenter(s): Janean Dilworth-Bart, Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs; Phyllis Northway Faculty Fellow; Professor Human Development and Family Studies Department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison
Description: The purpose of this workshop is to introduce participants to some of the historical underpinnings leading up to protests stemming from the murders of Black people including (but not limited to) George Floyd, Amaud Arbery, Breonna Tayler, Tamir Rice, and Elijah McClain. I aim to make this a challenging, yet worthwhile, discussion that you will leave with the ability to describe what Black Lives Matter means as well as understand what is meant by terms like structural racism and social justice. We will also discuss the importance of differentiating the intent and the impact of our actions. We will end our time together with a discussion of what’s next; what can we do as individual members of society and professionals to promote equity and justice in early childhood spaces.

B1 Live Session: Intersection Between COVID-19  and the Black Lives Matter Movement: A Panel Discussion on Supporting Students and Educators of Color While They Navigate These Challenging Times. 

Time: Friday, October 2 at 1:00-2:30 pm
Presenters: Toshiba L. Adams, Ph.D., Latisha Spence-Brookens M.A., Rachel Noble, MSM, Xochitl Ortega, Owner, X’s and O’s Educational Child Care, Michele Turner, Ph.D.
Descriptions: These have been times like no others! Like most industries, early education and higher education institutions experienced unprecedented changes and hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, nationwide protests that resulted from the death of Mr. George Floyd and countless other black and brown human beings have brought much attention to the systemic racism that continues to rob black and brown people of their lives, peace, justice, and the pursuit of happiness.    
Join our panelists as we discuss the intersections between the pandemic and the movements to safeguard the health and well-being of students and educators of colors. 

B2 Live Session: Early Childhood Inclusion: It is Not Just a Good Thing; It is the Law

Time: Friday, October 2 at 3:00-4:00pm
Presenter: Michelle Ogorek, State of Early Childhood Coordinator, Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction
Description: Inclusion is not a one-size-fits-all approach. High quality inclusive services ensure equity and access for all students. Students are looked at individually and differentiation is provided based on each child’s unique learning. 

B3 Live Session: A Courage and Renewal Mini-Retreat: Working with a Compassionate Heart

Time: Friday, October 2 at 5:00-6:30 pm
Presenter: Mary Peters, facilitator by the Center for Courage & Renewal® and educational consultant
Description: Facilitated reflection and conversation will guide this 90-minute virtual retreat. You will explore ideas related to compassion with an emphasis on self-care, self-compassion and compassion and empathy for children, families and colleagues. (Pre-registration required: sign up coming soon. Limited to 24 attendees) 

B4 Live Session: Tiny Tunes for Toddlers!

Time: Friday, October 2 at 7:00 pm
Presenter: Carole Stephens, music specialist
Description: Toddlers develop critical skills by moving through their environment, exploring their bodies and vocal capabilities, and finding ways to interact with others.  Developmentally appropriate music and movement activities provide just what a toddler needs to promote brain growth, language skills, early socialization, and coordination. Let’s enlarge your repertoire of songs, dances, fingerplays and rhymes.


Saturday, October 3, 2020

K3 Live Session: Finding Joy with Todd and Rachel

Time: Saturday, October 3 at 10:00 am
Presenter(s): Todd Parr, children’s author and illustrator and Rachel Giannini, teacher, and early childhood specialist
Description: This keynote is all about joy! Yes…you can find joy in 2020! Join Todd Parr, author and Illustrator of more than 40 books for children, and Rachel Giannini, teacher, early childhood specialist, and star of No Small Matter, as they feature not only an exclusive look at Todd Parr’s newest masterpiece but a rich discussion filled with tips and tricks for how we can celebrate joy in our groups every day! 

C1 Live Session: No Small Matter Documentary Screening

Time: Saturday, October 3 at Noon-1:15 pm
Description: No Small Matter is the first feature documentary to explore the most overlooked, underestimated, and powerful force for change in America today: early childhood education. Through poignant stories and surprising humor, the film lays out the overwhelming evidence for the importance of the first five years, and reveals how our failure to act on that evidence has resulted in an everyday crisis for American families, and a slow-motion catastrophe for the country.

C2 Live Session: Panel Discussion on No Small Matter- Brown Bag Lunch with Rachel Giannini

Time: Saturday, October 3 at 1:15-2:00 pm
Presenter: Rachel Giannini, teacher, and early childhood specialist
Description: Coming Soon

C3 Live Session: Connecting Kids to Healthy Food

Time: Saturday, October 3 at 3:00-4:00 pm
Presenter: Daithi Wolfe, Early Education Analyst
Description: Farm to ECE promotes practices that many early educators are already doing such as gardening, cooking, learning about food in many cultures, taste tests of different apple varieties, etc. Stories, resources, and opportunities will be shared. 

C4 Live Session: Reclaiming Your Time: Getting Back the Leader You Were Meant to be!

Time: Saturday, October 3 at 5:00-6:00 pm
Presenter: Delechia Johnson, MS, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee School of Continuing Education
Decription: As leaders, there is so much that is required of us in our day to day work that we often do not stop to recharge. Michele Obama said it best: “We need to do a better job putting ourselves on our own ‘to do’ list.” We will discover ways to reclaim our time through laughter and reflection.

On-Demand Workshops

Ready to dive into some workshops that you can view at your own pace? Check out the listing of pre-recorded sessions! (Please note, the live keynotes and workshops will also be recorded and viewable by October 9.)  

D1 Processing Through Play

Presenter: Dr. Laura Froyen, Parenting Consultant
We all know that for young children, play is their natural language. In this workshop you will learn how to harness the power of play to create deeper bonds with your students and help them process emotions and cope with stress.

D2 Communicating with Families

Presenter: Dr. Laura Froyen, Parenting Consultant
The school/home partnership is a crucial piece of supporting a child’s development. In this presentation you will learn how to communicate with your students’ caregivers and family in a way that fosters trust, alignment, & mutual satisfaction.

D3 Architecture, Block Play, and the Hundred Languages of Children

Presenter: Ann Gadzikowski, Director of Early Learning, Encyclopedia Britannica
When children build with blocks, what are they telling us? Let’s explore the rich variety of learning and expression that takes place when children build structures out of blocks and other open-ended materials.

D4 Children’s Music for a Challenging, Changing World

Presenter: Susan Salidor, Singer/Songwriter, Music Specialist
Susan will present a carefully curated group of songs that support a values-driven classroom focusing on kindness, fairness, self-respect, connection and empathy. The songs can be easily learned and shared with young children.

D5 Leading Through Fear and Uncertainty

Presenter: Brian Gaumont, Principal at Wipfli Financial
During the current crisis, our teams and stakeholders are experiencing heightened levels of fear and uncertainty.  This is a normal, human response to change. As leaders, there are steps we can take to help them through this, and ultimately help them.

D6 Building a Culture for Reading

Presenter: Krissy Washington, Milwaukee Public Schools Coordinator
There are many benefits in building a love of reading. Learn why it is important to establish a strong culture for reading within young children and ways to build it in a home and school.

D7 Moved to Live Session

D8 Turning Anyscape into a Naturescape: Helping Transform Your Learning Environment Into A World of Nature Discovery

Presenter: Andrea Bierbrauer, Naturalist, Early Childhood Specialist
This workshop will empower teachers with the knowledge needed to introduce nature into their schools. It will focus on sensory and science and simple outdoor activities. Nature is fun, exciting, and accessible to all learning centers everywhere.

D9 Entender y guiar el comportamiento desafiante de los niños

Presenter: Olga Neira, Wisconsin Early Childhood Association
Esta sesión le ofrece estrategias para ayudarle con el trabajo que tanto ama: cuidar y apoyar el crecimiento de los niños a través de una guía infantil positiva.

D10 ECE Workplace Wellbeing

Presenter: Paula Drew, WEESSN Co-Director, WECA
Calling ECE program directors and administrators! Do you struggle to attract and retain quality staff? This session will help you to understand how early educator wellbeing impacts your overall programming and why it’s important.

D11 Have you Ever Said “But I Treat Everyone the Same”? Equality is not the same as Equity

Presenter: Dr. Tanya Johnson, Professional Development and Training Specialist, WECA
As educators, treating everyone the same is not being equitable.  How to look through an equity lens and implement best practices.

D12 Garden to Early Childhood Table

Presenter: Zakiya Courtney, Garden Chef
Grow you own vegetables or get them from a local farm, but join us for simple healthy ideas for using that powerhouse produce for simple, healthy meals/sides for your early childhood program.

D13 Cultivating Creative Minds: Inspiring Imaginative Learners

Presenter: Richard Cohen, Trainer/Consultant
Join Richard Cohen to discuss the relationship between art and science in early childhood, the importance of imagination-building in the early years, the value of creativity as “divergent or lateral thinking” and how teachers/caregivers can support the development of creativity in young children by designing appropriate schedules, play-based activities, and the environment!

D14 The Spirit of Play

Presenter: Richard Cohen, Trainer/Consultant
Filmed in Seattle, Richard keeps this workshop fun and engaging as he explores why young children need to play, how they are learning through play, the changing face of play in contemporary society and the role of the adult who facilitates children’s play. The workshop looks at children’s play from neurological, developmental, anthropological and cultural perspectives. As you may have already guessed, this interactive workshop includes audience games, songs and a healthy balance of intellectual and laughing matters.

D15 Room to Grow: Early Childhoood Environments

Presenter: Richard Cohen, Trainer/Consultant
Filmed in Seattle, Richard addresses the role of the room environment in shaping young children’s behaviors and capacities to learn. Participants are given seven key considerations to keep in mind when designing or reviewing their own classroom spaces. The workshop closes with a special guided imagery exercise in which participants, in the audience and at home, are invited to explore their own childhood environments to see the possible connections to their adult personalities and behaviors. 

D16 Moving Past Paper with ELV and WECA

Presenter: Michael Taylor, ELV Membership Development Supervisor
Early Learning Ventures (ELV) and the Wisconsin Early Childhood Association (WECA) are delighted to share this collaborative webinar on child care technologies – and specifically child care management systems. Both ELV and WECA are champions of the shared services mentality. WECA has several wonderful new programs and opportunities for Wisconsin providers – one of which involves ELV, who focuses on shared services from the technological level. In this presentation, you will learn about shared services, child care management systems, and other technologies that exist to ease providers’ administrative burdens.

D17 Fostering Creativity without Breaking the Bank

Presenter: Rachel Giannini, Early Childhood Specialist and star of the documentary “No Small Matter”

Come see Rachel and learn new ways to add simple and cheap (whoo-hoo) items to your class to encourage creativity! Her yearly classroom budget was $50.00. Yet it was stimulating, exciting, and always had an added surprise provocation. Did we mention she only had $50.00? Participants will learn tips to stock their classroom with creative pieces for FREE and low/no cost activities that will stimulate every little learner. 

D18 Repeat

D19 Healthy Food, Healthy Families

Presenter: Bridgette Wilder, Founder, PERSEVERANCE Health and Wellness Coaching
Nutrition is a key component to optimal brain development. Join Dietitian/wellness coach Bridgette Wilder in looking at simple tricks to increasing nutrition for children/ families. Watch as Bridgette prepares a few simple recipes you’ll want to try.

D20 Using the Registry to be Intentional About Your Professional Development

Presenter: Joshua Vick, The Registry, Director of Communications and Outreach
Being a lifelong learner is critical to the Childhood Care and Education field. Find out how to utilize your Registry Profile to not only track your continuing education, but also guide your professional development.

D21 Getting the Most out of Your Registry Program Profile

Presenter: Joshua Vick, The Registry, Director of Communications and Outreach
You will learn valuable strategies to maximize the benefits of your Program Profile. Find out how to effectively utilize Registry tools and reports and develop strategies to best guide and manage the professional development of your staff.

D22 Turbulence and Trauma: How to Build Resilience During Turbulent Times

Presenter: Synovia Moss, Trainer/Consultant
Our child care center staff, children and families are experiencing turbulent times at an unprecedented rate. Every day we are bombarded with pictures of protests, hear about loss of loved ones, and other forms of distress caused by the global pandemic. 

As child care providers and parents explore ways to increase building andbridging social capital to help staff and parents to deal with the daily challenges of turbulence with getting a (S.P.A.R.E – structure, patience, access, resources and empathy). The workshop will encourage social-emotional competencies and self-sustaining opportunities to build resilience in children and adults.

D23 Vaccination Conversation for Child Care Providers and Parents

Presenter: Synovia Moss, Trainer/Consultant
Many families and child care centers have been affected by COVID-19. The pandemic has caused providers and parents to change their operations and how we go about our everyday lives. Join statewide and national immunization advocates to discuss the importance of continued well-child visits and childhood vaccinations, vaccine safety and effectiveness, vaccine access and hesitancy, and equity issues. Learn about vaccine related information, outreach and engagement efforts to help parents and providers to make informed decisions for childhood vaccinations, influenza, and COVID-19 vaccine. Additional immunization information and free resources for child care center staff, providers and parents will be provided.

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