Early Childhood Conference 2010

Early Childhood Conference 2010 - ArtI attended my first Valley AEYC Mini-Conference in 2000. I ejoyed it so much I offered to help plan the next one, and have been co-chair of the conference since.

This year our theme was “Creating the Future,” which was a really fun theme to plan.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Dorothy with CoffeeThe day started on a positive note – Dorothy, the director of director of Young Child Development Center brought Starbucks for the committee members.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Nicole with BagelsUsually we put a committee member in charge of the food but this year Nicole – the other co-chair – decided to do it herself.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Colored PencilsWe covered the tables with rolls of paper and put out colored pencils so conference attendees could doodle during the sessions.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Door PrizesOne of our goals is to have enough door prizes so one in four attendees wins something and we try to have most of the door prizes fit the theme.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - More Door PrizesThis year it was so easy to find things to fit the theme we had to rein ourselves in so we wouldn’t go over budget.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Even More PrizesThe “grand prize” was free registration for one day at the statewide conference – worth over $100!


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - WECA PresidentUsually we have one keynote presentation in the middle of the conference and several workshop choices scheduled before and after, but this year we decided to do something different. We were fortunate to have Julia, the president of the Wisconsin Early Childhood Association, as our keynote speaker, and she was gracious enough do two keynote presentations for us which filled the entire morning.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Audience ListeningJulia’s first presentation was about process art vs product art. Books have been written about the subject but to explain it briefly, process art emphasizes the creative process over the finished product while product art expects a certain result. For instance, finger painting is process art – unless you ask the child to paint something specific. The easy way to tell the difference is to ask yourself if there was a specific end result – if there is you’ve got product art but if not you’ve got process art.

Sorry, I’m passionate about process art and tend to get carried away…


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Paint and BrushDuring part of her workshop we each had paint and a different tool to create with.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Painting with Fly SwatterJulia encouraged us to “paint like a child” without an end result in mind.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Attendee PaintingEveryone got right to work and started creating.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - ArtSome attendees got into the painting – literally!


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - More ArtEven though the emphasis was on the creative process, the end product was beautiful too.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Another Piece of Art


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Still More Art


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Last Piece for Now

Julia’s second workshop was an overview of the new YoungStar quality rating program. I haven’t decided if I’m going to participate in the program or not; it’s only mandatory for centers serving children who receive tuition assistance from the state. I’ve got several months yet before I have to decide so I’ll continue to do research on the pros and cons.

The mini-conference officially ends at noon, but we offer an optional afternoon session for people who want to stay and get an additional hour of continuing education.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - John Z.One of the afternoon options was “Customer Service in Child Care” by the director of 4Kids Childcare and Learning Center. He did a great job making a rather dry subject interesting, and applying it to our everyday lives at work.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Cassie Reading with a PuppetThe other afternoon option was “Puppetry and Literature” by Hands 2 Grow.


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Mardi Gras Mask PuppetsThey are a lot of fun and VERY creative – they see puppets in everything around them.

I couldn’t believe how quickly the day went by; before I knew it, the conference was over!


Early Childhood Conference 2010 - Happy Attendee I think everyone had a good time and hopefully took at least one idea home with them.

Amy Sue


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