Photo: Courtesy of MassAEYC

Last month, the Massachusetts Association for the Education of Young Children (MassAEYC) held its 13thAnnual Spring Conference for early educators and administrators in Westford, Mass. More than 300 people attended.

The very popular keynote speaker was Richard Cohen who is known online for his list “Top Ten Signs You’re an Early Childhood Educator.” The first two items are:

#10 You find yourself humming “The Wheels on the Bus” in the shower

#9 Every time you turn around, someone tells you that you have a piece of glitter on your face

An early educator for 30 years, Cohen is a professional speaker and a professor of Early Care and Learning at St. Louis Community College in Ferguson, Miss. A short version of his presentation is posted here. A longer version is here.

Tom Weber, commissioner of the Department of Early Education and Care also spoke at the conference. 

Conference workshops covered a wide range of topics, including:

• the positive and negative influences of technology upon the developing child

• the insights that current brain research provides about the critical role of early education and care providers

• integrating music and art with reading and writing to create stories that teach new vocabulary and expand students’ worlds

• building resiliency as a center director, and

• helping children develop their mathematical minds

The event also included the Annual Excellence in Education Awards Reception, where three awards, which were given to:

• Jeff Robbins, the director of the Dartmouth Child Care Center, received the Steve Shuman award from MenTeach-New England. The award recognizes the work of men in early care and education, and

• Valora Washington, founder of the Cayl Institute and CEO of the Council for Professional Recognition, won the Gwen Morgan Leadership Award.

 To find out more, check out the conference brochure, which is online here.