Small Talks features leaders who share key insights on early childhood education and discuss innovative solutions to early learning issues in Minnesota.
By Kristie Thorson
Text Me: Turning Everyday Moments into Early Learning Experiences was the topic of the second Small Talks event which took place October 10, 2017, at the Wilder Center in St. Paul. The panel presentation and discussion focused on leveraging the simplicity of text messaging to engage parents and boost a child’s learning.
Ben York, Ph.D., Founder of ParentPowered Public Benefit Corporation, made the trip from California to talk about the research behind Think Small ParentPowered Texts. This free program is offered to parents of children ages birth to five.
“We sought to develop an approach to complement existing programs by breaking down the complexity of engaged parenting into small steps that are easy to achieve,” York said.
Think Small ParentPowered Texts provide Minnesota parents with three text messages per week.
“On Mondays, we send facts, which include factual information on why the skill of the week is important,” said York. “On Wednesdays, we send tip messages with recommendations for activities that build on existing family routines, and on Fridays, we send growth messages which reiterate the skill and provide encouragement and follow-up.”
Click below to watch some video highlights from the Small Talks event.
Small Talks features leaders who will share key insights on early childhood education and discuss innovative solutions to early learning issues in Minnesota.
By Kristie Thorson
Talk to Me: How Early Conversations Impact a Child’s Life was the topic of the first Think Small Small Talks event which took place August 15, 2017, at the University of Minnesota’s Robert J. Jones Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center in Minneapolis. The panel presentation and discussion focused on closing the word gap in Minnesota through simple practices, strategic partnerships, and innovative research.
Scott McConnell, Educational Psychology professor at the University of Minnesota was one of the presenters. His research focuses primarily on preschool-aged children, and the skills and competencies that will enable them to learn and participate in school and other settings. His work includes implementation and evaluation of LENA Start, a program which focuses on increasing interactive talk with children because it has been proven to be a key factor in early brain development.
Legislative Task Force on Child Care Access and Affordability
Senator Melissa Wiklund, DFL-Bloomington, was one of the presenters at the February Policy Hour organized by Minnesota’s Future and hosted by Think Small. Sen. Wiklund talked about a report by the Legislative Task Force on Child Care Access and Affordability.
This month marks one year since the start of the Think Small blog. To celebrate, we’re using January to highlight information and initiatives from Think Small and our partners about infants and toddlers and their caregivers in Minnesota. This post is part of our series on children 0-3.
By: Representative Dave Pinto, District 64B
Since the very beginning, my top priority as a legislator has been to make sure that every child in Minnesota gets off to a great start. The disparities that our state sees in education, economics, health, and the criminal justice system – some of the worst in the nation – are paralleled by disparities that begin with prenatal care and continue from birth and beyond.
Think Small is hosting an event to help child care directors welcome their newest staff members.During this two-hour, interactive session, participants will explore new employee orientation processes and systems that contribute to program quality. Additionally, participants will examine models for employee orientation and create a plan to incorporate research-based best practices for new employee orientation in their own program. Continue reading Come on In, the Water is Fine! Welcoming New Child Care Staff with a Purpose
Governor Mark Dayton has proclaimed today Think Small Day in Minnesota in honor of our 45th Anniversary. Now that’s something to celebrate!
It all started with a bus. As more women entered the workforce, families needed quality child care for their families. We started by creating a mobile toy lending library that visited family child care homes. While children enjoyed supervised play on the bus, providers participated in training sessions aimed at improving the quality of care.
Think Small’s 23rd Annual Family Child Care Business Seminar is coming up! It will be held November 5th at the Ramada Plaza Minneapolis. Use this opportunity to review 2016 tax forms and plan ahead for the coming tax season in this useful seminar led by family child care trainer and author, Tom Copeland, JD.
Earn six in-service hours (no partial credit given) and learn key record-keeping tips, new mileage and food reimbursement rates, new IRA (myRA), new $2,500 depreciation rule, common tax mistakes and more.