We are so excited to welcome 200+ early childhood educators to Building Joyful Classrooms 2019. Registration details were sent by email, but are accessible here, too:
Presenters have been confirmed for Building Joyful Classrooms 2019, which will be held at ECC South Campus on Saturday, October 19. Check out this line up:
Our keynote address, CHOOSING JOY: WE WERE MADE TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE, will be presented by Dr. Lynn Lubecki (NYS Pyramid Model Master Cadre Trainer and Research Associate at the Rochester Children’s Institute). Dr. Lubecki won the first Pyramid Model Champion Award at the Pyramid Model National Meeting in 2018 and has worked in early childhood education for more than 20 years.
When I ask training participants to detail their typical classroom routine, most teachers have a list of 15+ transitions before lunch. In fact, many teachers realize that their schedule includes about 10 transitions every two hours. Multiply that by the 8-10 hours that many children spend in our care and whoa.
That’s A LOT of time spent in transitions… which can often mean A LOT of time spent waiting.
Most adults struggle with waiting — just thinking about the long lines at the DMV or sitting in a doctor’s waiting room makes me twitch! — so why do we expect children to wait patiently and compliantly, every single day?
The bad news? Transitions can be troubling — noisy, hectic, and a breeding ground for challenging behaviors.
The good news? With purposeful planning, teachers can reduce wait times and transform transitions into engaging learning opportunities.
3 Strategies for Smoother Transitions:
Want to learn more?
3YO: “I love the card with the princess.”
♠️ How old were you when you realized the Ace of Spades (Bicycle brand) card has a “princess” in the middle? I was “today years old” 😂
This made me laugh, of course, but it also reminded me of two important things.
✅ Young children are *so* observant. They notice everything — whether you want them to or not! As I discussed with a group of teachers last night: when you choose to spend time with children, you’re choosing to be a role model.
✅ You see what you are looking for. It’s not a coincidence that my ‘3YO-always in a dress-tiara loving-princess obsessed’ niece noticed the “princess” in the deck of cards. Human beings are hardwired to look for familiarity and for confirmation…which is why it’s so important to “think about what you think.”
👎🏻 If you’re a teacher who believes that a child is challenging, you’re more likely to find evidence of challenging behavior.
👎🏻 If you’re a coworker who believes that your colleague is lazy/not hardworking, you’re more likely to find evidence of subpar performance … and so on.
Fortunately, the opposite also holds true.
❤️ If you’re a person who believes in positive intent, you’re more likely to find evidence of generous, thoughtful behavior.
❤️ If you’re a person who believes in optimism (the “that glass is refillable!” kind), you’re more likely to find evidence of second chances, resilience, and kindness.
You can see the princess… but you have to look for it first. ❤️
Wow! What a day!
Our first annual conference came together beautifully on Saturday, October 20th at the Cantalician Center, when 150 early childhood educators and 20 dedicated volunteers (also ECE professionals!) shared in the “beautiful mess” of building joyful classrooms.
Joe Cozzo, CEO of Buffalo Hearing & Speech Center, set the tone for the day with his powerful reminder to remain hopeful, to connect, and to be an instrument of inspiration. It was the perfect message to carry with us throughout the day — and always. (If you’re looking for a copy of the PowerPoint, you can find it in the Helpful Handouts tab.)
The entire agenda echoed the focus on attachment and interactions, reminding us that all learning happens within the context of relationships. Whether you were learning more about child development with Mary & Bridget, discussing routines and expectations with Kristin & Kim, or adding teaching strategies to your toolbox with Denise & Gerald, the recurring themes were warm, positive interactions, meaningful relationships, and the benefits of choosing joy.
And that culminating session? It was the frosting on the cake! Every option was a powerful opportunity to assure that you could apply what you had learned:
Thank you to everyone who shared this day with us, including the tireless committee members and volunteers, and to our generous sponsors. It’s a truly a pleasure to be “hope builders” with all of you.
It’s always a pleasure to share words of inspiration, tips & tricks, and other “tools of the trade” that others have so graciously crafted for us. As Bill Nye said, “everyone you will ever meet knows something you don’t.”
(See also: I sat down to write a blog post and realized that a simple list might be all that my end-of-the-school-year brain can pull together today.)
With that in mind, enjoy this curated list of five recent faves:
Three things happened today to give me a very clear message that it’s time to talk about trauma.
Truth, just as trauma,
so is healing.
Trauma-informed care is arguably an essential training topic for every early childhood educator. The core principles of a trauma-informed approach include safety, trust, and collaboration; not surprisingly, those same principles drive early childhood best practices overall. We are in the business of nurturing little hearts and minds, so we have an obligation to nurture them with love and kindness.
Not sure where to start? Knowledge is power – and knowledge guides practice.
Access the PDF here:
Access the report here:
Learn more about a film screening and panel discussion here: