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31st Infancy Institute — 2018

Tuesday, June 19

1. Block Building with Toddlers

Judi Gentry, Education Coordinator, Bank Street Family Center

In this workshop, we will look at the exploration of the material as well as the developmental stages through which children progress as they work toward representational structures. We will also discuss block building and its connection to social development, early language, early math and literacy skills and problem solving skills.

2. Cómo Entender y Apoyar el Desarrollo de Dos Idiomas: La Primera y Segunda Lengua en los Niños Pequeños

Carmen Colón, Course Instructor, Supervised Fieldwork Advisor, Consultant, Early Childhood Education/Special/Bilingual/Dual Language Program, Bank Street College of Education

En este taller exploraremos conceptos clave en la adquisición de la primera y segunda lengua en los niños pequeños. Juntos exploraremos estrategias para apoyar el desarrollo lingüístico de la primera y segunda lengua.

3. The Earlier the Better: The NYC Early Intervention Program and Current Quality Initiatives

Jeanette Gong, Ph.D., & Raisa Alam, M.ED.,
New York City Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene Bureau of Early Intervention

This workshop will explain the mission of the NYC Early Intervention Program; the process from referral to transition out of the program for a family; and the current quality initiatives that the Bureau of Early Intervention is doing to raise the quality of services.

4. Engaging with Families Through Thick and Thin

Amy Flynn, Early Childhood Education Specialists

This interactive session will explore strategies for developing positive and supportive relationships with families. Participants will be given time to practice using research based engagement strategies that will help when families are struggling with difficult child and family experiences.

5. Including Families in the Curriculum in Toddler Classrooms

Carolyn E. Tebbetts, Teacher, Ben Samuels Children’s Center at Montclair State University

Children get their sense of identity and belonging from their families. Including families in the curriculum strengthens the bond between families, children and teachers and enriches the experience for everyone. We will explore ways to invite, welcome, encourage and implement family participation.

6. Partners In The Work: Community Engagement in Service to Family Childcare Providers in East New York

Dr. Robin Hancock, Director, The Guttman Center for Early Care and Education at Bank Street College

The Center for Early Care and Education provides a five-month cost-free professional development program to caregivers of infants and toddlers and leaders of early care programs in neighborhoods historically defined as low-income. The community engagement strategy utilized for this work was a multi-faceted initiative that utilized existing relationships between Bank Street college and the community, historical grass roots organizing techniques (among them storytelling, mapping and family engagement) and community advisory feedback/critique to engage the community. This session will outline these strategies as well as the successes and challenges we experienced along the way. Participants will learn effective techniques for engaging in community-based work serving early childhood educators. They will also have the opportunity to examine their own privilege, assumptions and biases regarding community engagement work with marginalized communities.

7. Sensory Smart Strategies for Young Children

Lindsey Biel

This workshop will enable attendees to recognize sensory processing challenges in young children and understand how they impact behavior, learning, and daily function. Attendees will learn practical strategies for managing sensitivities to noise, touch, movement, visuals, taste and smell as well as ways to avoid overstimulation and activities that help children maintain the optimal state of arousal needed to learn.

8. Designing Individual Professional Development Plans for Teachers

Barbara Smith

Workshop description coming soon!

9. Light, Dark and Shadow: The Illumination of Infant and Toddler Development

Krista Wilbur, M.S.Ed., Special Educator

This workshop will discuss a light, dark and shadow curriculum with infants and toddlers. There will be a discussion on how the study of light, dark and shadow touches on all developmental areas. Participants will also have hands on experiences to make and manipulate different light, dark and shadow tools.

Wednesday, June 20 >>

Tuesday Afternoon Presentation

Trauma, Empathy and Learning

Tonia M. Spence, LCSW, MSEd

As teachers and home visitors you are being asked to understand trauma, be empathetic and ensure children are learning. Is it possible to do it all? How do you decide what to prioritize so that you are not overwhelmed? This session will begin to explore how trauma manifests itself in behavior and strategies we can use to help children who are struggling.

Speaker Tonia M. SpenceTonia M. Spence, LCSW, MSEd, believes in the power of healthy relationships in shaping young children’s lives. She is a clinician, educator, presenter and advocate who has served children and families for 15+ years. As a new clinician, Tonia’s passion to learn led her to a Fellowship program at Yale’s Child Development Center Outpatient Clinic in New Haven, where she was able to strengthen her clinical understanding of young children. Being in New Haven, where the dichotomy of wealth and poverty was so evident, Tonia began to develop an understanding that without the lens of race, class and privilege she could never truly serve children and families well. She began to recognize how racial tension and stress added an additional layer to the trauma of the children and families she was serving.

Tonia is a leader in the field of zero to three, who has worked tirelessly to integrate her knowledge as a social worker and educator into an interdisciplinary approach to teaching clinicians, educators and students how to assess, diagnosis and treat young children who have experienced trauma through the lens of racial stress. She is passionate about supporting families through challenges and firmly believes that engagement is the foundation of social work.

Tonia holds a Masters in Special Education from Bank Street College of Education and a Master in Social Work from Columbia School of Social Work. She is currently the Senior Director of Early Childhood Services at The Jewish Board (JB). Her work at JBFCS expands to her role as the co-leader of the Administrators of Color where she, along with colleagues, works to impact all staff’s racial literacy.