Past Programs

Below are some of the programs we've offered in the past. If you have thoughts on programming you'd like to see, please contact us. [Back to Featured Programs]

Dancing with Porcupines: Solving Our People Problems
Jeanine Fitzgerald, The Fitzgerald Institute
Have other people’s behaviors ever left you feeling annoyed or frustrated? Have you ever wondered why some people talk things out while others think things through? Or perhaps, you have experienced misunderstandings because of differences in communication styles. If so, you are not alone. We have been there ourselves, but we have found a way to create a collaborative team by making sense of the “people puzzles” in our lives. This
session applies an empowering model that leads to a deeper understanding and appreciation of ourselves and others. This model can be used to reduce tension, minimize confrontation and conflict, restore relationships, enhance communication and manage team dynamics.

Four Essential EQ Competencies for Educational Leaders
If You Can Keep Your Head When Others Are Losing Theirs & Blaming You
Holly Elissa Bruno, MA, JD
According to research reported in Harvard Business Review, our most successful leaders are skilled managers of people who inspire employees to greatness. Eighty percent of crucial life decisions require emotional intelligence (the ability to read people as well as we read books). What competencies do we need to keep everyone’s eyes on the prize especially when those around us are losing their cool and blaming us? You’ll leave this workshop with some powerful answers and useful tools.

Strengthening Teacher Parent Partnerships: Strategies for Bringing Out the Best In Each Other, So You Can Bring Out the Best In Your Students
Christine Guthery, President, SPARK Kindness
Strong parent teacher communication and collaboration is key to student success. This is especially true in early childhood when students are less able to advocate for themselves. In this program, you will learn:
- How early childhood educators and parents can work together to create the best environment for students.
- Specific language, communication and collaboration techniques to strengthen the parent-school partnership.
- Common mistakes and hidden challenges to the partnership and how to minimize or avoid them.
Further, resources (for both parents and teachers) on how to strengthen this important partnership will be offered.

Anaphylaxis and Food Allergies
John and Nancy Muglia
Food Allergies in children in the western world are increasing at an alarming rate. Even if we currently do not have a child in our care who has a food allergy the chances that we someday will are very high. Any child at any time can have their first reaction.  According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation, 25% of first time reaction will happen at school.   Keeping a child who has food allergies safe has become a larger challenge and all child care providers need to know how to keep our children safe if they do have a reaction. All providers need to know which signs and symptoms may present. They need to know what to be aware of, to look for and how to respond.

For children with diagnosed food allergies the staff must know how essential it is to have correct, complete and concise information from both the parent and the physician. This module meets and exceeds Massachusetts Licensing Regulations and NAEYC Accreditation Criteria for Basic Medication Administration. It also meets DPH and QRIS criteria for Allergy Awareness.

The Montessori Method: What it Has to Offer to All Educators
Karen Riccardi, Head of School at Riverbend School in South Natick
Maria Montessori was an Italian physician and educator who is best known for the philosophy of education that bears her name. Long since her death in 1952, her educational methods are still widely used today in private and public school setting worldwide. But many educators who are not trained in her methodology know little about her approach or its efforts to support children’s play as their work. Join us for a program to demystify the Montessori Method and learn what it can teach anyone who works with and loves children about how they learn and grow.

Exploring Science with Young Children
Rita Rzezuski, MS
Early literacy—check.  Beginning math skills—check.  What about science?  Do you feel like you could use some new ideas for incorporating science with young students?  This training will help educators develop & implement science curriculum using the Massachusetts Guidelines & Standards with an emphasis on physical science, life science, and earth/space science, along with providing ideas and strategies for documentation.  Start the new school year off with some spark in your science curriculum!

Nurturing Self-Esteem in Children
Anastasia Galanopoulos, PhD, Instructor
Examine the development of self-esteem in children's emotional growth and its role in fostering happy, self-reliant and resilient children. In recent decades, many educators and parents have focused on creating an atmosphere of general praise for children, even in the absence of true accomplishment. Such efforts to protect children's psyches can produce young people who are more self-centered and empathy-deficient, yet more stressed and less happy. This program reviews the latest research indicating the importance of early nurturance of self-control and self-discipline as better predictors of children's positive emotional health as they grow. It explores the importance of nature and nurture in the development of emotional well-being, focusing on the framing and re-framing of daily experience by involved adults as key to children's reflection on how well they are doing and feeling. It provides strategies for supporting children in identifying their talents and feeling successful, even in the midst of disappointment or failure.

Pediatric First Aid & CPR
Juanita Allen, Century Health Systems
The credentialed Heartsaver Pediatric First Aid course is designed for lay persons who because of their occupation may need to respond to a first-aid emergency. This course teaches participants on how to handle injuries and manage illness in the first few minutes until help arrives. There are six modules covered in this course which include:

  • First Aid Basics
  • Medical Emergencies
  • Injury Emergencies
  • Environmental Emergencies
  • Adult CPR
  • Pediatric CPR

This course meets the requirements of the child care providers, teachers, foster care workers, camp counselors, Scout leader, youth organizations, coaches, children’s sports organizations, babysitters and parents. Certification is good for 2 years.

Licensor Cam
Penny Kaczyk
We’ll take you on a tour of a childcare center as seen through a licensor’s eyes. What you and your staff see… may not be what the Licensor sees! You see a star chart recognizing children’s appropriate behavior. I see Jimmy looking at his complete row of stars and comparing them to Billy’s row with one.

A Night with The Nit-Picker
Helen Hadley
Finally, some answers to one of your toughest dilemmas—an outbreak of head lice!  Learn from Helen Hadley, The Nit-Picker herself (who has treated over 5,000 individuals, ages 2-92), about managing an infestation: lice identification, treatment options, tips and shortcuts for the care of the home, the laundry and the classroom. She will demonstrate how to effectively conduct a head check and address all your questions and concerns about this increasingly difficult and common issue. Helen’s shared knowledge has calmed and empowered thousands of distressed families to successfully take charge of a lice infestation in their home and has shed light on ways that teachers, administrators and child care providers can sensitively manage an infestation of lice in their school community.

Ready or Not...The life and development of boys in and out of school
Ben Russell, Sr. Program Director, Literacy & Curriculum Design (PK-5), Boston Public Schools
Have you ever thought that the way we attempt to educate our young boys may be the cause of their academic and social frustration? Together we’ll engage in a conversation about the development of boys and how we can better support them in our classrooms. If you’ve ever had a boy that left you guessing, then this is the program for you!

American Sign Language in the Early Childhood Setting
Lane Rebelo, LCSW, Founder & Instructor of Tiny Signs of Metrowest Boston
Want to incorporate American Sign Language (ASL) into your early childhood program but don’t know where to start? This fun and interactive workshop for early childhood professionals will provide all you need to get started signing in your classroom the very next day! Participants learned:

  • Benefits of signing for infants, toddlers and preschool-aged children
  • How signing & speech work together to enhance early communication and learning
  • How to get started
  • Tips & strategies for success
  • Songs & activities for your classroom
  • Lots & lots of signs!!!

Preschool Pie: A Slice of This, A Piece of That - Blending different philosophies into your own delicious teaching style
Melodie Hanson, M.Ed. E2C2 Consultants
Come explore how to blend a variety of educational philosophies and best practice main ingredients;  High Scope, Montessori, Reggio, Waldorf, Creative Curriculum, and of course, your own style; into one that works best for you and for the children you serve.  This eclectic approach toward curriculum for preschoolers makes for a truly ‘delicious’ day.  Bring your appetite for a smorgasbord of great ideas.

Understanding Depression and Suicide and How Bullying Relates
Jon Mattleman, Director, Needham Youth Services
While depression and suicide are well known and mentioned frequently by professionals and the media, most people know very little about what these issues and/or maybe be confused by what are myths and what are facts. 

This presentation will uncover the truth behind depression and suicide as they relate to children, youth, parents, and grandparents and how bullying relates to both. If you work with children or youth it is critical to be aware of the signs and symptoms of depression and suicide --- and remember, these children/youth go home at the end of the day and may be exposed to a parent or grandparents’ depression and/ or suicide.

Speech and Language Development in Young Children & Red Flags for Support
Meghan G. Graham, M.S. CCC-SLP, Children's Therapy Associates
This program will focus on typical speech and language development in young children, including the areas of speech production, receptive and expressive language, and social communication. ‘Red Flags’ in development will be addressed, as well as ways to promote improved communication skills in children. Our speakers will also provide information regarding the role of the Speech and Language Pathologist in various settings.  This will be a great opportunity to learn about current speech and language issues, explore when to think about encouraging families to look to outside support for these areas, and learn about the resources available.

Gender Identity Issues in Young Children
Adam Mintz, LMHC
Join us as we examine how boys and girls are socialized and look at the stereotypic behaviors often seen in young children. Our speaker will discuss children who do not seem to fall within the norm and our role in supporting them.  We will also seek to understand young children’s behavior as it relates to gender identity issues.

Positive Behaviorial Supports for Young Children
Barbara Natoli, MA, LMHC, BCBA, Executive Dir. of Applied Behavioral Associates, LLC
Young children can present with many challenging social, behavioral and emotional issues. A behavioral approach can be helpful in managing behavior and for teaching new skills in home, school and community settings. Training teachers, parents and caregivers in utilizing behavioral strategies and positive behavioral supports provides tools for effective interventions and management through daily routines.

Transitions: Children's Crises or Opportunities
Dr. Deborah E. Weinstock-Savoy, Licensed Psychologist
Life is full of changes and change can be stressful for children. This workshop aims to help teachers, parents, and other caregivers learn to best support children as they cope with life transitions such as starting school, changing daycare providers or classrooms, or moving to a new neighborhood. We will discuss children’s reactions to transitions, and what adults can do to help children learn to cope most effectively.

Using Your Brain to Stay Cool Under Pressure
Holly Bruno
Can you imagine not being rushed? Not stressing over controversial decisions you have to make? New knowledge of adult brain functioning can calm your worries: just let your brain and your heart work together naturally. You are likely smarter than you think you are. Are you ready?

An Overview on Autism Spectrum Disorders
Dr. Karen Levine
With one in 110 children diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum there is an increasing need for understanding of this population. Karen Levine, Ph.D., Psychologist, will provide an introduction to the challenges, strengths and needs of children with Autism, PDD-NOS and Asperger's Disorder.  The presentation will include video clip examples of children, as well as resources for parents, educators and therapists.

Executive Function & Executive Functioning Disorders in Young Children
Dr. Joseph Moldover, Clinical Psychologist & Developmental Neuropsychologist
Executive functioning can be broadly defined as those elements of human cognition that allow for self-regulation and self-direction in our day-to-day and long term functioning.  Research into executive functioning represents an exciting area of growth for education and psychology.  In this seminar the term “executive functioning” is defined and discussed as it relates to ADHD, autism spectrum disorders, and to learning disabilities. The neurological basis of executive functioning is identified. Supports for children with challenges in executive functioning will also be discussed.

Individualized Healthcare Plans for Young Children
John and Nancy Muglia, Community Health Training Solutions
Massachusetts Child Care regulations now require that we have an Individual Health Care Plan (IHCP) for each child with a chronic medical condition. The purpose of the IHCP is to assist child care staff to provide appropriate medical care for those children with special medical needs. Since every child is an individual, each plan needs to be geared to the specific needs of the child for whom it is written. Individual health care forms have been developed for children with Life-threatening allergies, Type 1 diabetes, asthma and seizures, as well as other chronic health concerns. Best practice would dictate that each Individual Health Care Plan should be developed by a team which should include the program health consultant, the child’s health care practitioner, the parent or guardian and the director or designated staff member from the child care facility. This workshop will discuss these new IHCP’s, how best to comply with these new guidelines and other issues related to maintaining children’s health records, understanding these new requirements, and more.

Everyday Spanish for Teachers
Carolina Gomez-Kramer
Everyday Spanish for Teachers was designed for teachers who have little or no experience with the Spanish language. During the workshop, participants will play, sing, dance and enjoy puppet shows! At the end of the session, you will have a bag full of ideas ready to use with your students. All participants will receive a CD with songs and games to play in class and a CD with sentences that can be used in your daily routine.

Thinking About Social Thinking
Tracey Stoll, M.Ed.
As educators and parents, we instinctively know the importance of supporting social emotional learning with our children. Being able to problem solve, understanding the impact of one’s own behavior on others, thinking flexibly, learning what is expected behavior and what is not—all of these skills have a powerful impact on how a child progresses through school and in life. This program focuses on “Social Thinking”, an approach to teaching these crucial skills to all children—both those with social deficits and their typical peers.

Children with Special Health Needs: Asthma, Diabetes, Seizure Disorders and More
John and Nancy Muglia, Community Health Training Solutions
It is no longer uncommon to have children in your program that have special health concerns. But do you feel prepared in how to handle these complex issues? Noted health training experts, Nancy and John Muglia, helped us understand the special medical needs of children with asthma, diabetes, seizure disorders, and other issues. Our speakers also discussed the new Dept. of Early Education and Care regulations regarding Individualized Health Care Plan for children with chronic conditions.

Understanding the Link Between Children’s Behavior and Vision Problems
Dr. John Abbondanza, OD, FCOVD
Learn all the ways that vision issues affect a child’s learning and behavior. Find out about the growing field of behavioral optometry. Learn to identify red flag behaviors which might provide clues to a child’s unidentified vision problem. TECPA is honored to have Dr. Abbondanza bring his wealth of experience to answer these and all your questions related to children’s vision and its link to learning and behavior.

What We Really Need to Know About Autism
Nanette Ohman, The Autism Alliance of Metrowest
Explore the subject of Autism Spectrum Disorders. We are honored to have representatives from the Autism Alliance of Metrowest with us for this interactive presentation to teach us what we need to know about this all-to-common diagnosis. Come learn the facts vs. the myths, and hear about autism from a medical, social and educational perspective. Find about the many resources available for those in need and find out how to look for the early signs of autism in young children. This promises to be a very worthwhile program for all who work with and care about young children.


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