Grow, laugh and learn at the sixth annual Child Development Conference |

Grow, laugh and learn at the sixth annual Child Development Conference

Ruth Hall, Early Learning, TTUSD
Special to the Sun
Courtesy Adela Gonzalez del ValleBarrett Brown, 18 months and Lola Barta, 15 months, feel the groove at Music and Me, and early learning class at the Family Resource Center in Truckee.

The role of play in the lives of young children will be one of the themes of the 6th Annual “Growing, Laughing and Learning” Child Development Conference that will be held May 2, at Sierra Mountain Community Education Center (Old Middle School) in Truckee.

Sponsored by First 5 Nevada County, this conference provides a day of inspiration and education for parents and educators of children birth through 5. Back by popular demand will be Bev Bos, an internationally known Early Childhood Educator. Bos has been a powerful advocate for the importance of play in children’s lives. She notes: “There is something profound about play. What do most Nobel Laureates, historically renowned creative artists, successful multi-career entrepreneurs and animals of superior intelligence have in common? They are full of play throughout their lives.” Bev will also provide a keynote and two workshops during the day that will inspire your thinking and provide you with practical applications for the nurture and education of young children.

There will be an array of talented presenters and exciting workshops throughout the day. New this year is a workshop just for dads! Dads will learn the Big Picture of successful parenting and get research, data and practical application techniques that are keys to being a great Dad. In an article about Fathers, Lindsay Dunckel, Ph.D., Executive Director of First 5 Nevada County, describes “research that showed, how close babies stayed to their fathers in a laboratory play session was related to how many diapers the father changed each week! Dads have an impact on almost everything: Cognitive ability, social interaction, eating patterns, school achievement and gender identity.”

Another workshop, “Fostering Empathy in Our Children,” will be facilitated by a panel of child development experts who will discuss ways to foster kindness and positive interactions among children to prevent bullying and victimization as children grow. The workshop, “Smart, Successful and Sensitive,” encourages creativity in children through movement and song. Two workshops will be presented in Spanish: “Enjoy Your Children! Take Home Activities for Parents and Providers” and “The Most Important Teachers: You the Parents.”

Conference participants will also enjoy continental breakfast, lunch, “goody-bags,” and “Idea Tables,” with exciting take-home project ideas.

The conference takes place at Sierra Mountain Community Education Center. The cost is $45. Scholarships and limited child care are available. Call 582-2583 or e-mail for info on conference and other First Five activities.

” Benjamin Spock, American pediatrician, 1903-1998

Baby and Me: These popular classes provide education, support, informal discussion and interactive fun for parents and non-ambulatory infants, 3 months to 1 year old. New series of seven classes begins May 8.

Music Together: For parents and children birth to 4 years. Enjoy this research-based program that includes songs, instrument play and movement in a relaxed and playful setting. Next series of eight classes begins April 23.

Toddler Gymtime Toddlers: Parents and 1 to 3 years old. Free play in the big gym with an exciting array of developmental equipment. Have fun, meet new friends and build new skills. Fridays, 10 to noon.

” Carl Jung, Swiss psychoanalyst

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