INVESTIGATE, DISCOVER, LEARN!
Focus on Family Child Care Conference 2014
Research examining the benefits of attending workshops clearly shows that participants do not retain the information nor put it into practice. So, why attend a conference? Isn't it just a bunch of workshops all concentrated in one space? Well, yes, but..... Research also shows that being part of a professional network impacts caregivers in positive ways. For example, self-worth, professionalism, leadership, and intentionality have been shown to increase when caregivers are part of professional development programs and networks. Conference participants get a different sense of connectedness and involvement when attending sessions in this larger venue.
Often preschool educators are limited to the same-old-same-old when it comes to getting those required training hours. Conferences provide opportunities to network with a more diverse group of people with common work environments, exposure to new ideas, and access to new resources. Conferences also provide opportunities for professional growth. Not only can you attend a conference, perhaps you would like to present at one! Here are some of the benefits of attending a professional conference.
Wide Variety of Workshop Topics
|Creative Movement & Active Play|
|Natural Science on a Shoestring Budget|
|Building a Creative Curriculum|
Meet New People
Opportunities for Professional Advancement (be a presenter)
High Quality Keynote Speakers
(You never know who you might make a life-long professional relationship with!)
Win a Prize
Be Recognized for Achievements
|Debbie Clement & Alabama provider Patricia Frederick|
Win a Prize
|DCI gifted $500 to a state association at NAFCC's conference this year. Alabama won!|
|50-50 Raffle winner!|
|Alabama's accredited providers at the Accreditation Celebration June 2014|
Have Fun and Be Happy!
There are several conferences that happen each year that you might consider attending:
Zero to Three
National Head Start Association
Your Regional or State NAEYC Affiliate
I encourage you to seek out and actively participate in conference experiences. You can google child care or education conferences or the an acronyms listed above to find a conference near you. NAFCC even has a new "sponsor me" program to help you get funding to attend! What conferences have you attended and what benefits have you received from participating?
Dr. Ellaine B. Miller, PhD, is the Managing Director for the Family Child Care Partnerships program at Auburn University. www.humsci.auburn.edu/fccp