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2019 Early Learning Institute: Session Topics

While our final program is still a couple of weeks away from being complete, here is a sneak peek at the topics we are busy preparing to share this summer. We hope you will join us at the Early Learning Institute!

Thursday Pre-Conference

This year’s pre-conference will be a day-long exploration of documentation practices in early childhood settings. We will discuss content and methods of different forms of documentation and examine many examples of approaches and styles of documentation from both the ELC and other Reggio-inspired programs.

Content will cover:

  • Purposes of documentation
  • Planning for documentation
  • Collecting documentation
  • Interpreting and reflecting using documentation

Friday Session Topics

Explore a variety of topics with ELC educators and our keynote speaker Will Parnell. Sessions will take place at the Student Union campus at the University of Tennessee and on-site at the ELC centers. ELC educators are excited to welcome you into their classrooms and learn more about you and your context while also sharing about their experiences this year.

General topics include:

  • Gardening with young children (preschool and kindergarten)
  • Natural playscapes (all ages)
  • In-depth project work (preschool)
  • Risk-assessment (toddlers)
  • Documentation practices (all ages)
  • Understanding the infant experience (infants)
  • Writer’s Workshop (preschool)
  • Emotional intelligence (toddlers)
  • Light play in the infant classroom (infants)
  • Projection and relational spaces (infants and toddlers)
  • Launching studio work (toddlers)

Saturday Session Topics

Join us for a series of sessions sure to get us all thinking deeply about our work with young children. These sessions will all take place at our conference hub in the Student Union on the University of Tennessee Campus. 

General topics include:

  • Wonder, delight, and connection (toddlers)
  • Games and cross-classroom project work (preschool)
  • Developing empathy through project work (kindergarten)
  • Hidden curriculum of games (preschool)
  • Individualizing professional development (leadership)
  • Negotiating gender (preschool)
  • Messing about (all ages)
  • Provocations for professional development (leadership)
  • Forest school experience (preschool)

Foundations Track

Our practice as educators grows from a strong foundation in early childhood education concepts, skills, and practices. This track is perfect for educators just beginning in the field or looking to brush up on their skills in teacher-child interactions, classroom routines, and positive guidance techniques. 3.5 hours of training will be earned.

General topics include:

  • Classroom Routines
  • Teacher-Child Interactions
  • Positive Guidance Techniques


Ready to register?

We have options for everyone so head over to read more about how to design your days at the ELI this June or click the links below to begin registration.