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Friday FB Sessions - 1:30pm - 3:00pm


FB02: Hearing Parents in Every Language: Partnering with Families Unlike your Own, by Holly Elissa Bruno
Children bring a colorful kaleidoscope of cultures into early childhood programs each day. Their families may have child raising traditions, religious beliefs, and lifestyle choices that differ from our own. By using the “Ask & Listen” process, we can partner with every family by hearing their dreams and learning what’s at the heart of their values.
About the presenter: Holly Elissa Bruno, MA, JD, award-winning and best-selling author specializing in emotionally intelligent leadership and preventing legal risks, is an international keynote speaker. iTunes ranked her radio program, Heart to Heart Conversations on Leadership: Your Guide to Making a Difference in its top 200 k-12 podcasts.
An alumna of Harvard University’s Institute for Educational Management, she teaches leadership courses for Wheelock College, most recently in Singapore. Her first book, Leading on Purpose was published by McGraw-Hill in 2008. Its sequel, What You Need to Lead: Emotional Intelligence in Practice has been one of NAEYC’s best-sellers. Managing Legal Risks, Teachers College Press, is another best-seller. The Comfort of Little Things received the Living Now Award for books in any field that “uplift the quality of life”. Her current writing focuses on transforming childhood trauma into healing wisdom.
WA State Early Learning Core Competency:
Who Should Attend: ALL

FB03: From Blah To Hoorah! Using Innovative Training Strategies to Engage Learners from Start to Finish, by Miriam Dressler and Cassandra Ellis
Keeping your learners engaged during short or long workshops takes preparation and expertise. As trainers, we cannot only rely on the content alone to maintain the learner’s interest and participation, but should also consider using adult-appropriate and modern strategies to bring training to life. In this workshop, we will look at engaging the ‘whole’ learner by using lively techniques to stimulate physical, cognitive, and social learning to support the content being presented.
About the presenter: Miriam is the founder and co-owner of Bloom Early Education in Edmonds, WA. She has been teaching and training in the education field for the last 30 years. She is a WA MERIT trainer, as well as the co-author of “Prove It! Achieving Quality Recognition for Your Early Childhood Program”. Miriam is a current lead validator for the National Accreditation Commission (NAC) and has successfully guided many childcare programs through the accreditation and quality improvement process. Miriam has presented at many national conferences in the last few years including the NAEYC, the Washington Association of Child Care Professionals, and the WA State Family Child Care Association. She will be speaking at several conferences throughout the country this year.
Cassandra Ellis is a Washington state approved STARS Trainer, Lead Teacher at Bloom Early Education (Edmonds, WA) of the Kindergarten class, Co-op class, and starting in the Fall, co-Lead Teacher of the BEE Outdoors class. Cassandra has her BA in Education and Youth Studies (Beloit College), Basic and Advanced Early Childhood Education Certificate (UCLA), and is a holistic fitness teacher (Nia Technique) and Kidding Around Yoga certified children’s yoga teacher.
WA State Early Learning Core Competency: Professional Development and Leadership
Who Should Attend: Adult Educators

FB04: Resilience: Management Level Bounce, by Sue Ferguson
Discover methods that support your management role mentoring and coaching and developing staff professionalism while maintaining your capacity to recover from difficulties and reclaim your bounce. We often speak of children learning to succeed by overcoming obstacles but did you know that as adults, we too can build our resiliency? Learn about the three C’s (Confidence, Courage and Conviction) that help to build professionalism in your workplace. Establishing professionalism in the midst of staffing shortages, discipline in relationship to performance reviews, motivating staff to advancement opportunities and where do you fit in time to keep the pep in your step. Presenter will provide interactive opportunities for attendees to share and discuss methods they use, discover new ideas through group discussion and offer tips and ideas that may help you leave the conference with new buoyancy to keep your ship afloat! Combined with over thirty years of experience and the ability to always see the glass half full, your presenter will share words of wisdom, creative ideas, a few handouts (who does NOT want more stuff to file) and offer useful ideas for training topics for staff, how to establish professionalism from the beginning of a hire and renew your own stamina by building up and motivating you as management. Opportunities for attendees to ask questions, confer with one another and learn new ideas. Let’s leave feeling optimistic and with a positive attitude that YOU are worthy of.
About the presenter: Sue Ferguson has a Master’s in Early Childhood Education with over thirty years of experience. She is a Washington State Merit trainer and currently is employed with Kiddie Academy of Greater Seattle as their Regional Director of Training & Program Quality. She shares clever tips and creative ideas that reflect her enthusiasm for early learning professionals.
WA State Early Learning Core Competency: Professional Development and Leadership
Who Should Attend: Leadership/Administrators | Child Care Center | Interested Professionals

FB05: Mastering Change, by Paul Figueroa
Change happens in every organization and can lead to positive, or negative results. Participants in this course discover what the different responses are to change. You’ll see how you can actually choose your response rather than be a victim to the situation. Also, learn the indicators of people having difficulty with change and gain new skills in how to maximize their positive potential instead.
About the presenter: Paul Figueroa is an award winning and highly sought after inspirational speaker, trainer, facilitator and coach. He served as a police officer with the King County Sheriff’s Department in Seattle, Washington for over 12 years. He left law enforcement in 1998 and has been helping people young and old to live happier lives ever since. Paul travels all across the country providing workshops and keynotes at numerous conferences that support children and he’s also provided parent support workshops and staff, manager and leadership training for Head Start, Early Head Start, ECEAP, Public School, Preschool and Child Care organizations all over the United States. He’s received “The Governor’s Child Abuse Prevention Award” in recognition of his work with children and families and has appeared on Radio Disney along with the Today Show. His first book, “Listen, Your Life is Calling – The Journey Home” is now available on his website and at
WA State Early Learning Core Competency: Professional Development and Leadership
Who Should Attend: Leadership/Administrators | Child Care Center | Early Childhood Education & Assistance Program (ECEAP) | Family Resource Coordinators | Home Visitors | Interested Professionals

FB06: Handling Difficult Conversations Well, by Kathy Slattengren
How do you prepare for discussions where emotions are high, opinions differ and the stakes are important? Handling these situations well is challenging. Knowing how to approach the conversation in a constructive way will improve the results. We’ll explore ideas for clearly communicating, finding mutually acceptable decisions and responding if it starts getting off track.
About the presenter: Kathy Slattengren, M. Ed., has helped thousands of parents and teachers from across the United States to Australia through Priceless Parenting. Priceless Parenting offers online classes, presentations, coaching and books.  Participants love that they are able to immediately implement new ideas for calmly responding to children’s behavior.   When children’s behavior is pushing your buttons, you’ll discover ways to set effective limits, invite cooperation and have a lot more fun together!
WA State Early Learning Core Competency: Professional Development and Leadership
Who Should Attend: ALL

FB07: The Brain Architecture Game, by Darcie Donegan
This game is a hands-on experience developed by Harvard University’s Center for the Developing Child that builds understanding of the powerful role of experiences on early brain development– what promotes it, what derails it, and with what consequences for society. Small groups will work to build a model of a brain representing functionality and the ability to withstand stresses in the first 8 years of life. Come & have fun playing while learning more about the brain and a great method to share the info with others.
About the presenter: Darcie has been teaching ECE/ED at WCC since 1995, and has a BA from University of Washington, and an MA in Human Development from Pacific Oaks College, specializing in early childhood and adult education. She has worked with young children and their caregivers for more than 35 years in various capacities, including preschool teacher, center director, parent educator, trainer, and consultant. Darcie has also been an international consultant through the Soros Foundation and taught in many different countries. She is a Washington State DEL approved trainer, and the author of the ten Parenting Preschoolers modules for Washington State’s Organization of Parent Education Programs (OPEP),and helped write the STARS Basic 30 hour course. One of her special interests is in early brain development and she received two grants from DEL to teach and test executive functioning.
WA State Early Learning Core Competency: Child Growth and Development
Who Should Attend: ALL

FB08: Interactive Read Alouds: Making Magic Happen in the Classroom. by Kabre Richards
This presentation will focus on how to increase student engagement, participation and concept retention during shared reading experiences by utilizing an interactive reading tool in the early childhood special education setting. Presenters will demonstrate how this interactive reading tool can support students in all facets of development including speech and language skills, concept development, social-emotional learning, and executive functioning. Time will be given for professionals and parents to work with the materials and interactive tool to see how it can benefit all children in early childhood settings. Materials will be available to take back to your classrooms so you can get started right away!
About the presenter: Kabre was born and raised in Wyoming. She attended undergrad at the University of Black Hills State in Spearfish, South Dakota. For five years she taught special education preschool for the Mercer Island School District. In addition to working for the school district she was a home tutor for children with autism. She attended graduate school in 2007–2008 at the University of Washington and earned a Master’s degree in General Special Education with an emphasis in Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA). This year is her tenth year at Issaquah School District!
WA State Early Learning Core Competency: Curriculum and Learning Environment
Who Should Attend: Child Care Center | Early Childhood Education & Assistance Program (ECEAP) | Parents/Relatives | Family, Friend, Neighbor & Relative Care Giver | Family Resource Coordinators | Therapists - PTs, OTs, SLPs | Interested Professionals

FB09: Balanced Stimulation Builds the Foundation, Scott Liebler
In addition to nutrition and rest, we all need stimulation to survive and thrive. Learn the four most comprehensive strategies for providing children the balanced stimulation they need to build a foundation of strength, balance, endurance, character, confidence and coordination for developing optimal learning, performing and communication skills and abilities.
About the presenter: Scott Liebler is a teacher, writer, trainer and motor development specialist working primarily with early childhood and special needs populations since 1985. He developed his unique Funsical program to provide a fun and effective curriculum for developing children’s strength, balance, endurance and coordination using movement, music and vocalization activities. The activities are based on techniques used by professional educators, medical professionals and therapists to help children achieve optimal learning, communication and physical performing abilities.
WA State Early Learning Core Competency: Curriculum and Learning Environment
Who Should Attend: Interested Professionals