May 14, 2020

Virtual UnConference: Re-Opening to Our ‘New Normal’


Virtual UnConference: Re-Opening to Our ‘New Normal’

Join Trying Together on May 26 for our first virtual UnConference as we dive into topics that are relevant to child care centers as they begin to re-open to a ‘new normal’ due to the effects of COVID-19. A recording of this event will be available for those who are unable to attend.

UnConference Details

We are facing a “new normal” in our field that has never been envisioned before. COVID-19 has taken our state, our country, and our world on a tumultuous journey, invoking fear, anxiety, reflection, and change-making at unprecedented levels. As an early childhood educator, you are most likely thinking about how to continue supporting children and families while maintaining high-quality programming, business operations, and personal health for both you and your colleagues.

This free three-hour online UnConference will help you virtually connect with other educators while gaining information about the steps you can take to prepare for and respond to the effects of COVID-19 on early childhood programming. Three PQAS and Act 48 hours available.


UnConference: Re-Opening to Our ‘New Normal’ will be hosted via Zoom. It begins with a “rapid-fire” keynote by four speakers, featuring Michelle Figlar of The Heinz Endowments, LaTrenda Leonard Sherrill of LaTrenda Consulting (and Board Member of Trying Together), Muffy Mendoza of Brown Mamas, and mental health expert Diana Schwab.

The keynote is followed by two workshops. Participants can choose from the following:

    • Coping with COVID – HR Thoughts and Tips for Child Care Centers,
    • Building Community and Connection with Digital Technologies,
    • How to Stay Healthy and Provide Safe Child Care During COVID-19, and
    • Everyday Interactions Matter: Noticing the Simple and Ordinary

Course Objectives

Through successful participation and completion of the UnConference, participants will:

    • become familiar with regional, state, and national resources to support child care programs in response to COVID-19;
    • gain appropriate strategies recommended for caring for young children and families in response to COVID-19, including health and safety practices and innovative ECE practices (social-emotional learning);
    • discuss appropriate strategies for supporting the early education workforce in response to COVID-19; and
    • learn how to create authentic connections with families and community members using digital tools.


Each session will have its own Zoom link which will be provided to you upon registration. Upon completion of the UnConference, three hours of accredited professional development will be given.

1:00 – 1:30 p.m.: “Rapid Fire” Keynote featuring Michelle Figlar, LaTrenda Leonard Sherrill, Muffy Mendoza, and Diana Schwab

1:45 – 3:00 p.m.: Workshop #1 (choose between two options)

3:15 – 4:30 p.m.: Workshop #2 (choose between two options)

Available Workshops

There are four workshops provided for this UnConference. Two options are available between 1:45 – 3:00 p.m. and two other options are available between 3:15 – 4:30 p.m. View the list of workshops for the Virtual UnConference: Re-Opening to Our ‘New Normal’.


This virtual UnConference is free. Participants must pre-register for the UnConference by 3 p.m. on Monday, May 25 in order to receive links to each session via email. Visit the event page to register and learn more.

How to Virtually Attend

The sessions will be hosted using the web-based video conferencing platform Zoom. Please download Zoom prior to the UnConference to your device of choice. We will send you a Zoom link for the keynote as well as a Zoom link for each workshop based on what you select. A recording of this event will be available for those who are unable to attend.

How to Receive Credit

Three PQAS and Act 48 hours will be available. Participants must attend the UnConference and complete the survey at the end of each session (keynote and two workshops) in order to receive credit. Once completed, Jasmine Davis, Professional Learning Program Manager at Trying Together, will process your credit. If you have questions specific to receiving credit for coursework, please email Jasmine at

More Information

For questions, please contact UnConference Director, Yu-Ling Cheng, at