Early Childhood Education Conference

February 3, 2024
Central Community College
3134 W Highway 34, Grand Island, Nebraska

Registration is closed.

Conference Schedule

7:15 - 8:15 a.m. Check-in is located inside the main entrance. Entrances are available from the north and south parking lots. Vendors will be in the hallways and refreshments in the 500 Heath/Science wing

8:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. Presentations. Participants will attend all three presentations. The presentations will be randomly assigned during the following times: 8:30 to 10:30 a.m., 11 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. and 2 to 4 p.m. Every effort will be made to assign group registrations to the same presentation times.

Lunch: A boxed lunch is provided with choice of roast beef, chicken or grilled veggie sandwich. Lunch also includes chips, cookie and drink.

General Conference Information

All sessions are approved for licensing in-service requirements (all day = 6 hours). Every effort is made to provide programs as listed. On occasion some presenters cancel and cannot be replaced. We apologize for any inconvenience this may create.

Emergency phone number available the day of the conference is 308-398-7447. Out of consideration for all participants, no children are allowed at the conference. A lactation room is available on campus if needed.

Please dress in layers. Room temperatures my vary, and as personal preferences differ, it may be very difficult to keep everyone comfortable in a large group.


The Brain Game: Making Connections

Dr. Paula Thompson
Associate Professor
University of Nebraska-Kearney

The Brain Architecture Game is a tabletop game that builds understanding of the powerful role experiences have on early brain development. Participants will explore experiences that promote or derail early brain development, and the consequences communities/society faces. , , and consider strategies for increasing positive experiences and decreasing/eliminating negative experiences. Come play the brain game!

Tech in the Early Years: Becoming Media Mentors

Adam Vinter
Outreach Manager
Common Sense Education, Omaha Public Schools

Young children are exposed to more media and technology, and at earlier ages, than ever before. Explore with us how to support developmentally appropriate use of media and Learn how to become a media mentor to support children and families as we unpack free resources from Common Sense Media. Leave inspired with strategies and resources that help develop balanced, healthy digital habits that are foundational for today's emerging young digital citizens.

Exploring Nature with Young Children

Amy Sandeen and Shannon Faz
Outreach and Special Events, Crane Trust

Wherever you are, the natural world offers learning experiences to promote physical and cognitive development and social-emotional growth. So, take the kids outside and enjoy what nature has to offer! This interactive workshop will focus on activities for kids ages 1 - 6 from the nationally recognized environmental science program, "Project Learning Tree," to help you weave nature-based activities into your daily routines. Workshop participants will receive a curriculum guide full of additional lessons and activities, plus tips and tricks for leading guided nature play indoors and outdoors wherever you are.

Cancellations: No refund after January 26, 2024. Refunds will be given if the event is cancelled by the college. No alternate conference date is scheduled. For more information about the conference, please call 308-398-7447 or toll-free 1-877-222-0780, ext. 7447.


These and other exhibitors will be available the day of the conference.

  • Central Community College
  • Family Service
  • Lil' Kidz Pack 'n Play Sheets
  • Nebraska Association for the Education of Young Children
  • WMW Didactic Products

Sponsored by: Central Community College‐Grand Island in collaboration with

  • Central Region Early Learning Connection ESU 10
  • Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services
  • Nebraska Association for the Education of Young Children
  • Family Service Childcare Food Program-Lincoln
  • Step up to Quality
  • UNL in Hall, Hamilton and Merrick Counties

For questions regarding online registration, please call 308‐398‐7447.