Staff Reflections | 2013 NAEYC National Institute for Early Childhood Professional Development

by McCormick Center Team

June 21, 2013

June 9 – 12, staff from the McCormick Center attended and presented at the 2013 NAEYC National Institute for Early Childhood Professional Development in San Francisco. Below you will find reflections on the conference from a few of those who attended. 

One of the most inspiring sessions I attended at the National Institute for Early Childhood Professional Development was Educating America About the Value of the Early Childhood Teacher: A national campaign. Sue Russell from Child Care Services Association shared a toolkit of resources to educate parents, friends, community leaders, and elected officials about the importance of early care and education and the impact an educated and highly skilled early childhood teacher has for our children. “I Make a Difference. Ask Me How!” includes templates for buttons, stickers, talking points, and Facebook banners. Here’s the link to access all of these materials:

LINDA BUTKOVICH | Director of Evaluation


I attended several good sessions, met a lot of new people, made some great connections for Aim4Excellence™, but what stands out for me is the session Resolving tough Conversations Using Strengths-based Strategies.  Joy Humbarger from Metropolitan Community College presented an interactive, dynamic session on how to handle difficult conversations. Her handouts were user friendly and we talked with a partner about handling our own tough conversations. Joy’s approach is practical and ready to go!  I would be glad to share this information with others who may be having to face a tough or difficult conversation.

KATHRYN GRAVER | Aim4Excellence™ Project Supervisor


Great presenters, new and interesting exhibitors, the opportunity to extend conversations with some of our sponsors and network with participants from around the country, all made the NAEYC Institute a wonderful experience. I came away with great ideas for Leadership Connections presenters, new exhibitors for our Marketplace, as well as new and renewed relationships to help further our work.

DONNA JONAS | Communications/Conference Coordinator


“It’s always such a joy to attend the NAEYC Institute. This year’s conference did not disappoint.  As in the past, I was able to reconnect with colleagues from around the country and meet new folks engaged in similar work. I always love to hear through the sessions offered how other states and projects are approaching professional development and systems-building….We can certainly learn from others who have paved the way! That was my biggest take-away from this year’s event: We all have similar goals for building quality programing for young children. How can we collaborate and build off the work of one another?”

KARA LEHNHARDT | Director of Technology Initiatives



One Response to “Staff Reflections | 2013 NAEYC National Institute for Early Childhood Professional Development”

  1. We were thrilled to read Linda Butkovich’s post above about Sue Russell’s NAEYC PDI presentation which featured the I Make a Difference for Young Children campaign toolkit.

    These open source tools are available at the link LInda shared above and shown below.

    Every day knowledgeable and well-prepared early childhood teachers are making a difference in the lifelong futures of our young children. The IMD materials were designed to help our field educate others about how each of us makes a difference for young children served in early childhood settings, what we know from the research about the why and how, and more!

    So please click, download, post, pass on and use these tools. The one pagers, poster, sticker/button and notecard templates posted on the IMD website are all free.

    Do you have ideas for new tools? All are welcome and invited to send me an email to share suggestions!

    Thanks for participating in the PDI session and passing this on, Linda!

    Debra Torrence
    T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood National Technical Assistance & Quality Assurance Center