2015 Early Childhood Conference Logo


Pre-conference July 14th:

Using Your Outdoor Classroom and Arts and Nature: Presented by Susan Wirth, Outreach Director, Dimensions Educational Research, Nature Explore. This will be a full day session.

Literacy: Connections to Content, Concepts, and Thinking Processes: Presented by Kathryn Sharp, Ed.D. Associate Professor, Department of Teaching and Learning, ETSU. This will be a full day session.

Planful, Playful, and Purposeful: Presented by Dr. Jean Feldman. This session will be from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm.

Conference July 15-16:  Featured speakers include: Peggy Ashbrook , early childhood teacher and author Science and Young Children; Dr. Jean Feldman, early childhood author and professional development specialist; Deborah Rowe, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Teaching and Learning, Vanderbilt University; Maria Sargent, Ph.D. , Professor, Ashland  University; Andrew Stremmel, Ph.D., Professor College of Education and Human Sciences, South Dakota State University. Cheryl Smith Turner, Ed.S., REACH ;  Susan Wirth, Outreach Director, Nature Explore.



2015 Conference Highlights

The 2015 conference was filled with workshop sessions with new information, fun experiences, and opportunities to grow as professionals working with young children and their families.

documentaion room

attendees participate in workshops

session activities

class participation

movement activities


2014 Conference Highlights

Let's take a look back at Conference 2014. What did 2014 participants find to be the most helpful aspect of the conference? Here's a tiny sample of the comments:

  • Music, I liked musical interaction and practical suggestions.
  • Storytelling, Jim Weiss storytelling was very helpful and gave me many ideas for teaching content.
  • Emergency preparedness and administrative sessions.
  • Loved the Reggio track where I was able to learn a lot about various ideas/methods.
  • Tours of classrooms and the environment demonstration room.
  • I loved hearing Lella Gandini present! What a wonderful experience.
  • The session You Know more Science than you Think gave me lots of ideas and encouraged me to want to do more and be more excited about doing science, not to be afraid to try it.
  • Art Stoner was very interesting-Magformers are a great tool.
  • Christy Isbell knowledge of sensory issues.
  • Autism session and behavior challenges, really appreciated Dr. Wheelers information and style of teaching.
  • Beyond the Sandbox was the best session of both days that I attended, loved the hands-on.
  • Loved when emphasis was put on special needs.
  • Seeing early childhood professionals coming together in one place to learn how to better do our jobs.

 debbie clement 

Participants on stage having fun with Debbie Clement!

Art Stoner 

Art Stoner demonstrates Magformers,
hands-on geometry for young children.

Jack Hartmann 

Jack Hartmann keeps the crowd moving with his
songs and dances that both adults and young children love


Participants viewed environments that demonstrated
creative use of materials, lighting, color, and organization.

2013 Conference Highlights


Infant Toddler Institute

Joining together to think during the Harvest
Resources Infant Toddler Institute

performing arts 

Learning about diversity through performing arts.

Music and movement

Music and movement fun at the conference


teacher made materials  

Examples of teacher-made materials to promote
learning across the Common Core. 

2012 Conference Highlights:


 sensory integration

 What are they doing? Can you touch your nose with your eyes closed? Dr. Christy Isbell's session on sensory integration techniques.


Many vendors with books for teachers and children, classroom materials, science experiences, music, and much more.

swarm build 

Participants joined Rusty Keeler in a "swarm build" at the Child Study Center. In this photo they are creating a water play area.

hands on learning 

Shanna Kincheloe brought her critter friends to her session on bringing the natural world into the classroom.

Contact Information

Julia Herwig
Conference Coordinator
Phone: 423-439-7614
Fax: 423-439-7561

Payment Instructions

Early Bird
cut-off date is
May 9th, 2016.

Registration Site will be open February 1, 2016

Past Conference Highlights



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