Early Childhood Education Professional Development Programs

2021 - 2022 Professional Development Dates

Nebraska Extension’s Early Childhood Team is pleased to be able to offer a variety of on-line classes to meet the needs of the Early Childhood Workforce. If you have any questions, please contact tlc@unl.edu.


Date | Time Topic Description Cost | Hours
2021 Dates TBD Cultivating Healthy Intentional Mindful Educators (CHIME) 8-week CHIME sessions will be offered virtually in Winter and Spring as part of an exciting research opportunity. Participants will be able to take CHIME FREE of charge, earn 16 NDE approved DHHS in-service hours and will also be eligible for up to $300 for participating in the research study. If you are interested in CHIME, please contact Katie Krause at katie.krause@unl.edu for more information.
December 2nd
6:30 – 8:30 pm
Helping Children Cope with Crises and Helping Caregiver Recover This training includes 2 parts - 1) Helping Children Cope with Crises and 2) Helping Caregivers Recover: Self-Care. These trainings are linked because children’s reactions are linked to how their caregivers respond and recover from a crisis. Teachers, childcare providers and volunteers working with children following a disaster can be overwhelmed by the emotional toll that a disaster takes on the children they serve, their staff, as well as their own personal lives. While many of those who work with children on a daily basis are experts in supporting children through stressful times, it can be very challenging to support children after a community-wide emergency. This course was designed to help equip child-serving professionals with tools to take care of children and themselves.

No cost to participants | 2 in-service hours
December 6th
7:00 – 8:00 pm
Creative Cooking with Young Children Cooking can help young children learn about food, practice basic math concepts as well as build language skills and self-confidence. In this presentation we will learn strategies to successfully incorporate cooking experiences into early childhood care.

No cost to participants | 1 in-service hours
December 8th
7:00 – 8:30 pm
Risk and Challenge in Outdoor play settings Adults comfort levels with risky play outdoors has a huge influence in how much time children spend outdoors and what types of activities they engage in during that time. During this class we will discuss the difference between risk and hazard (and how to identify them), talk about the benefits of children challenging themselves and taking risks, and learn how to assess outdoor spaces and activities for risk.

No Cost | 1.5 in-service hours
December 13th
1:00 – 2:30 pm
7:00 – 8:30 pm
Family Engagement Series - Celebrating with Families During the final class in our family engagement series, we will explore the variety of ways you can engage and celebrate with families through a multitude of events and activities. We hope you were able to take our other classes, but if not, you are still welcome to attend just this class!

No cost to participants | 1.5 in-service hours
January 10th
7:00 – 8:00 pm
Strategies to Enhance Transitions and Routines Transitioning from one activity to the next can be a very challenging time for children and their providers. In this presentation, we will explore how to best support children with effective strategies for transitions and routines in their environment.

No cost to participants | 1.0 in-service hour
February 7th
7:00 – 8:00 pm
Storybooks that Teach Children love reading books and what a better way to form relationships and have children learn than through a good book. This session will focus on three different resources that you can use as a jumpstart to several weeks' worth of lessons for the children in your care.

No cost to participants | 1.0 in-service hour
March 7th
7:00 – 8:00 pm
Let’s Go Outside Spending time outside with children in natural environments can increase physical activity, connect families with one another, and connect children with nature.  Join us to gain ways to integrate all curriculum areas during outdoor time.

No cost to participants | 1.0 in-service hour
April 4th
7:00 – 8:00 pm
Neurological features of Autism Spectrum Disorder An overview of neurochemistry, genetics and common neurodevelopmental manifestations associated with autism spectrum disorder.

  • Class Length: 1.0 hour, live or recording up to a week after class
  • Cost: Complimentary Class
  • Presenters: Dr. Shaguna Marthur, MD, working at Boystown National Research Hospital specializing in Child Neurology and Neurodevelopmental Disabilities
  • Register Here: https://fitandhealthykids.unl.edu/one-hour-once-month-trainings
No cost to participants | 1.0 in-service hour
May 2nd
7:00 – 8:00 pm
Helping You Children Flourish and Grow Amidst Trauma During this session, caretakers will learn how our youngest learners develop and grow.  Participants will discover how we can meet the diverse needs of all preschoolers.  We will also discuss how trauma plays an impact on stunting young children's growth.  We will also discover and seek strategies that support our youngest learners to flourish and be resilient.

No cost to participants | 1.0 in-service hour
Upcoming classes in 2022! Reggio Series – Winter 2022

  • January 18th – Intro to the Reggio Approach
  • February 1st – Emergent Curriculum
  • February 15th – Showing Children’s Learning through Documentation
  • March 1st – Environment as the 3rd Teacher
  • March 15th – Loose Parts
  • March 29th - Smashing, crashing and dumping: Understanding young children’s behavior through concept of Schemas.
February 23rd – Look Who’s Hatching

March 21st – Read for Resilience

A wide variety of Nature-based learning classes are in the works!

Complete this quick interest form and we will email you when registration is available –

Class Registration and Information Request Form