News

December 9, 2020

Open-Ended Questions Are For Everyone!

Are you interested in learning about using open-ended STEM questions with early learners of all ages and abilities? Join Trying Together on December 9 for our online session, “Connections and Conversations: Open-Ended Questions Are For Everyone!”

About

Connections and Conversations Virtual Check-Ins are biweekly interactive sessions that highlight topics of interest to the field of early childhood education. Participants engage in virtual discussions with child development experts while interacting with early learning practitioners to share questions, experiences, and expertise about the highlighted topic. Sessions offer one hour of PQAS credit. Act 48 credit will not be provided.

In this session, participants will engage in virtual discussions via Zoom with child development experts while interacting with early learning practitioners to share questions, experiences, and expertise about using open-ended Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) questioning with early learners of all ages and abilities.

Session Details

    • Session Date: Wednesday, December 9  |  6 – 7 p.m.
    • Instructors: Jasmine Davis and Wendy Brenneman
    • CKC: Curriculum and Learning Experiences
    • CDA Subject Area: Safe, Healthy Learning Environment
    • Registration Deadline: Monday, December 7, 2020

Registration

To register, visit the course PD Registry page. Space is limited. Participants will receive the course Zoom link via email within 24 hours before the start date for the course. PQAS credit is available.

If you do not have a PD Registry account, please complete this online form to create one. If you are unable to create an account, please contact pdregistry@pakeys.org for more information.

Session Rules and Guidelines

These virtual discussions are designed to provide educators the opportunity to grow professionally and share knowledge on early childhood topics. During the meeting, participants should follow the guidelines below to ensure a successful virtual meeting for all participants.

    • Please allow all participants a chance to speak. Listen respectfully and actively.
    • Commit to learning about each other, not to debating the topic.
    • Embrace differences of opinion as healthy and support each person’s authentic self-expression.
    • Participants will be muted for the beginning portion of the session.
    • Participants may use the “Raise Hand” feature in Zoom to request an opportunity to comment or ask a question. Individuals will be temporarily unmuted by the moderator.
    • Participants may type a comment or question in the Chat or may send comments or questions directly to the moderator for them to share.
    • To receive PQAS credit, you must complete an evaluation at the end of the session and include your PD Registry number.
    • Have fun, make connections, and engage in the conversations!

More Information

For questions or more information, please contact Jasmine Davis at jasmine@tryingtogether.org.

News

November 20, 2020

Tuition-Free Courses Available for ECE Professionals

Are you an early learning professional who is interested in earning an Associate’s Degree, Bachelor’s Degree, or Child Development Certificate? No- and low-cost options are available for eligible professionals in Pennsylvania through the Professional Development Organization (PDO).

Professional Development Organization

The Professional Development Organization (PDO) is a grant-funded educational collaboration among four universities in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) and numerous partner universities, colleges, and community programs across the state to advance the career pathways of the early childhood workforce. PDO funding covers tuition, expenses, and other supports to help eligible early childhood educators earn credit-bearing credentials and degrees.

Tuition-Free Courses

Tuition-free courses are eligible for early childhood professionals who:

    • are Pennsylvania residents,
    • work in a Keystone STARS program, and
    • work a minimum average of 25 hours per week over an entire work year (during non-COVID times).

To determine your eligibility, complete the online application. Once your eligibility is confirmed, a PDO Liaison from your region will contact you to discuss your professional development options.

Available Pathways

The following pathways are available to advance your academic and professional development:

    • Child Development Associate Certificate (CDA)
    • Associate’s Degree, Early Childhood Education
    • Bachelor’s Degree, Early Childhood Education

Steps To Take

If you are interested in taking advantage of this limited-time opportunity, complete these three steps:

    • Apply for Tuition Assistance 

      Complete the application. Once submitted, an ECE Liaison will contact you to confirm your eligibility for tuition assistance, guide you through the application at a PDO partner university, college, or program, and help you register for classes. Be sure to check your spam folder as it may contain an email from your ECE Liaison.

    • Register for Classes 

      Class offerings at all schools and programs may change each semester. Check with an ECE Liaison or the school for details. View this document for examples of available classes.

More Information

For more information, contact Mimi Loughead at mimi@tryingtogether.org.

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News

October 28, 2020

The Ins and Outs of the PD Registry

Want to use the PD Registry to maximize your professional growth? Join Trying Together on October 28 for our free virtual workshop, “Connections and Conversations: The Ins and Outs of the PD Registry.”

About

In this Connections and Conversations Virtual Check-In session, participants will engage in virtual discussions with an Early Learning Resource Center (ELRC) Region 5 Quality Coach and interact with early learning practitioners to share questions, experiences, and expertise about the Pennsylvania Professional Development (PD) Registry. This session will offer one hour of PQAS credit. Act 48 credit will not be provided.

Join us to learn how to use the PD Registry as an asset for individual growth and as a springboard for collaborative discussion on professionals development between practitioners and leadership. This course will overview the general use of navigating an individual account, as well as the benefits leadership members can utilize as an organization administrator.

Session Details

    • Session Date: Wednesday, October 28, 2020  |  6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
    • Instructor: Katie Streiff
    • Core Knowledge Area: Organization and Administration
    • CDA Content Area: Effective Program Operation
    • Registration Deadline: Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Registration

To register, visit the course PD Registry page. Space is limited. Participants will receive the course Zoom link via email within 24 hours before the start date for the course. PQAS and Act 48 credit available.

If you do not have a PD Registry account, please complete this online form to create one. If you are unable to create an account, please contact pdregistry@pakeys.org for more information.

Session Rules and Guidelines

These virtual discussions are designed to provide educators the opportunity to grow professionally and share knowledge on early childhood topics. During the meeting, participants should follow the guidelines below to ensure a successful virtual meeting for all participants.

    • Please allow all participants a chance to speak. Listen respectfully and actively.
    • Commit to learning about each other, not to debating the topic.
    • Embrace differences of opinion as healthy and support each person’s authentic self-expression.
    • Participants will be muted for the beginning portion of the session.
    • Participants may use the “Raise Hand” feature in Zoom to request an opportunity to comment or ask a question. Individuals will be temporarily unmuted by the moderator.
    • Participants may type a comment or question in the Chat or may send comments or questions directly to the moderator for them to share.
    • To receive PQAS credit, you must complete an evaluation at the end of the session and include your PD Registry number.
    • Have fun, make connections, and engage in the conversations!

More Information

For questions or more information, contact Jasmine Davis at jasmine@tryingtogether.org.

News

August 5, 2020

Connections and Conversations: The Power of Self-Compassion

Are you interested in learning about the important role authentic relationships play in the early learning and development of young children? Join Trying Together on August 5 at 6 p.m. for our online session, “Connections and Conversations: The Power of Self-Compassion.”

About

Connections and Conversations Virtual Check-Ins are interactive sessions that highlight topics of interest to the field of early childhood education. Participants will engage in virtual discussions via Zoom with child development experts while interacting with early learning practitioners to share questions, experiences, and expertise about the highlighted topic.

This session will highlight how children benefit greatly from authentic relationships with the adults in their lives. It will explore how the critical messages we learned from our childhood affect our interactions and relationships with children in our care. We will utilize self-reflection as a tool to develop self-compassion to build our intentional use of compassion in early learning environments.

Participants will receive the course Zoom link via email within 24 hours before the start date for the course. For questions, contact Rosie Hogan at rosie@tryingtogether.org or Sarah Grubb at sarah.elrc5@alleghenycounty.us.

Session Details

    • Session Date: Wednesday, August 5 | 6 – 7 p.m
    • Instructors: Mimi Loughead
    • CKC: K6.4 C2
    • CDA Subject Area: Supporting children’s social and emotional development.
    • Registrations must be submitted by Monday, August 3. Space is limited.
    • Sessions will be offered biweekly and will offer one hour of PQAS credit. Act 48 credit will not be offered.

Registration

To register and learn more, visit the course webpage.

Session Rules and Guidelines

These virtual discussions are designed to provide educators the opportunity to grow professionally and share knowledge on early childhood topics. During the meeting, participants should follow the guidelines below to ensure a successful virtual meeting for all participants.

    • Please allow all participants a chance to speak. Listen respectfully and actively.
    • Commit to learning about each other, not to debating the topic.
    • Embrace differences of opinion as healthy and support each person’s authentic self-expression.
    • Participants will be muted for the beginning portion of the session.
    • Participants may use the “Raise Hand” feature in Zoom to request an opportunity to comment or ask a question. Individuals will be temporarily unmuted by the moderator.
    • Participants may type a comment or question in the Chat or may send comments or questions directly to the moderator for them to share.
    • To receive PQAS credit, you must complete an evaluation at the end of the session and include your PD Registry number.
    • Have fun, make connections, and engage in the conversations!

More Information

For questions or more information, please contact Rosie Hogan at rosie@tryingtogether.org.

News

July 22, 2020

Connections and Conversations: Advocacy 101

Are you interested in learning about the budget process and state government in Pennsylvania? Join Trying Together on July 22 at 6 p.m. for our online session, “Connections and Conversations: Advocacy 101.”

About

Connections and Conversations Virtual Check-Ins are interactive sessions that highlight topics of interest to the field of early childhood education. Participants will engage in virtual discussions via Zoom with child development experts while interacting with early learning practitioners to share questions, experiences, and expertise about the highlighted topic.

This session will highlight the budget process and state government in Pennsylvania. Participants will receive an overview of the Early Learning Pennsylvania (ELPA) campaigns, how early childhood education programs are impacted by the budget process, and ways professionals and families can use their experiences and knowledge to advocate. This session will also identify advocacy actions attendees can participate in or lead to advocate for early childhood.

Participants will receive the course Zoom link via email within 24 hours before the start date for the course. For questions, contact Rosie Hogan at rosie@tryingtogether.org or Sarah Grubb at sarah.elrc5@alleghenycounty.us.

Session Details

    • Session Date: Wednesday, July 22 | 6 – 7 p.m
    • Instructors: Emily Neff, Cristina Codario, and Lindsey Ramsey
    • CKC: K6.10 C1
    • CDA Subject Area: Maintaining a commitment to professionalism.
    • Registrations must be submitted by Monday, July 20. Space is limited.
    • Sessions will be offered biweekly and will offer one hour of PQAS credit. Act 48 credit will not be offered.

Registration

To register and learn more, visit the course webpage.

Session Rules and Guidelines

These virtual discussions are designed to provide educators the opportunity to grow professionally and share knowledge on early childhood topics. During the meeting, participants should follow the guidelines below to ensure a successful virtual meeting for all participants.

    • Please allow all participants a chance to speak. Listen respectfully and actively.
    • Commit to learning about each other, not to debating the topic.
    • Embrace differences of opinion as healthy and support each person’s authentic self-expression.
    • Participants will be muted for the beginning portion of the session.
    • Participants may use the “Raise Hand” feature in Zoom to request an opportunity to comment or ask a question. Individuals will be temporarily unmuted by the moderator.
    • Participants may type a comment or question in the Chat or may send comments or questions directly to the moderator for them to share.
    • To receive PQAS credit, you must complete an evaluation at the end of the session and include your PD Registry number.
    • Have fun, make connections, and engage in the conversations!

More Information

For questions or more information, please contact Rosie Hogan at rosie@tryingtogether.org.

News

July 20, 2020

The Mindful Mindset

Are you interested in learning how to incorporate mindful practices into your early learning classroom? Join Trying Together for our three-week, self-paced course, “The Mindful Mindset.”

About

Through this three-week online course, participants will learn about incorporating mindful practices into their early learning classrooms. Mindfulness has been shown to improve children’s attention spans, social skills, and emotional coping skills. It is also an imperative tool for educators to improve their practice by being more present and understanding with their learners. Even as we face the everyday onslaught of stimuli and emotion, we all possess the capacity for mindfulness.

All registrations must be submitted by Wednesday, July 15. Space is limited.

Course Details

  • Timeline: July 20 – August 10, 2020 (Three Weeks, Self-Guided)
  • Instructor: Sarah Byrne-Houser and Mimi Loughead
  • CKC: K6.4 C2
  • CDA Subject Area: Maintaining a commitment to professionalism.
  • Three PQAS and ACT 48 hours available.

Registration

To register and learn more, visit the course webpage.

Please note that participants will not have to attend the virtual course every day during the three-week period. Rather, participants can log on to the virtual course platform at any time during the three-week period to complete the session.

More Information

For more information, contact Community Engagement Assistant Rosie Hogan at rosie@tryingtogether.org.

News

July 15, 2020

Creativity Concepts

Are you interested in learning about the role creativity plays in your early learning program? Join Trying Together on July 15 for our online course, “Creativity Concepts.”

About

This course will serve as an introduction to creativity and children’s developmental stages with arts learning. The course instructor will share ideas for visual art, music, movement prompts, and activities. A supply list will be shared before class for those interested in participating in hands-on artmaking.

All registrations must be submitted by Monday, July 13. Space is limited.

Course Details

  • Session Date: Wednesday, July 15 | 6 – 8 p.m.
  • Instructor: Alison Babusci
  • CKC: K11.C2
  • CDA Subject Area: Advancing children’s physical and intellectual development.
  • Two PQAS and ACT 48 hours available.

Registration

To register and learn more, visit the course webpage.

More Information

For more information, contact Community Engagement Assistant Rosie Hogan at rosie@tryingtogether.org.

News

May 18, 2020

From the Inside Out: The Power of Reflection and Self-Awareness

From the Inside Out: The Power of Reflection and Self-Awareness brings to participants the quest for professional contentment and success. Beginning with an inner quest to discover who we are–our passions, values, talents, personal resources, and even those foibles and annoying habits we might prefer not to acknowledge. Having a better understanding and reflection of our self-awareness is the first step toward achieving a better relationship with others.

 

This free online course is an invitation to self-discovery. The Power of Reflection and Self-Awareness will provide thought-provoking discussion forums and engaging activities, participants will have the opportunity to reflect on their personal and professional journeys as well as envision new possibilities for decades ahead.

Course Information

    • Timeline: May 18 – June 8, 2020
    • Trainer: Mimi Loughead
    • CKC: K6.9.C2
    • Keystone STARS Alignment: LM.3.4.3
    • CDA Subject Area: Maintaining a commitment to professionalism.
    • Three PQAS and Act 48 hours available.

Register for From the Inside Out: The Power of Reflection and Self-Awareness

To register for this course, please visit the event registration page. All registrations must be submitted by May 14, 2020 at 5 p.m. Limited spaces are available.

More Information

For more information, contact Jasmine Davis at 412.567.3933 or jasmine@tryingtogether.org.

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May 1, 2020

Learning to Play, Playing to Learn: Encouraging Play Within Early Childhood Classrooms

“Play acts as a mechanism into courageous, creative, and rigorous thinking in adulthood.” (T. Bruce,., 2013)

The benefits of children’s play can be life-lasting, as long as the experiences are developmentally appropriate, positive, and engaging. This free online course focuses on children’s play and the role of play in early education settings. Participants will take part in varied individual and group activities that pertain to the definitions, developmental mechanics, and functions of play as well as new strategies for encouraging play within children’s earliest classrooms.

Course Information

    • Timeline: May 1 – 22, 2020
    • Trainers: Rachelle Duffy and Jasmine Davis
    • CKC: K2.14.C1
    • Keystone STARS Alignment: EC.3.4.1
    • CDA Subject Area: Advancing children’s physical and intellectual development.
    • Three PQAS and Act 48 hours available.

Registration

To register for this course, please visit the event registration page. All registrations must be submitted by April 29 at 5 p.m. Limited spaces are available.

More Information

For more information, contact Jasmine Davis at 412.567.3933 or jasmine@tryingtogether.org.

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News

March 12, 2020

Using Ages and Stages Questionnaires as a Screening Tool

Are you interested in learning how to use Ages and Stages Questionnaires®, including Ages and Stages Questionnaires: Social-Emotional, as a screening tool for children ages three months to five years old? Join Trying Together for a three-hour professional growth session that provides information on how to administer, score, and share the results of the screener with families.

Directed by Carlow University’s Coordinator of Undergraduate Education Programs, Pamela Zimmerman, this course session will include resources for making referrals to additional services. Three hours of PQAS and/or Act 48 credits will be offered.

    • Core Knowledge Competency (CKC): K4
    • Keystone STARS Alignment: SQ.3.4.7, EC.3.4.3

Registration

To register for this course, complete the form below.

 

More Information

For questions or more information, contact Jasmine Davis, Professional Learning Program Manager, at 412.567.3933 or jasmine@tryingtogether.org.

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