Northwest AEA Preschool Newsletter

November 2022

What are YOU thankful for?

Research shows that when we practice gratefulness, we are happier and have a better sense of well-being. This month, let's start or end each day with a list of things we are grateful for. If we want to change the world, let it begin with us.

EnJOY! ~Joyce, Brenda & Shelley

GOLD & IGDIs checkpoint dates

Screening windows and checkpoint dates

GOLD Fall Checkpoint coming soon

For those of you taking advantage of the Fall Checkpoint, you might notice the process is different. It will be beneficial for you to take the Checkpoint Tour and watch the Checkpoint video. You will find both resources once you click on "Checkpoint" in the Assess area. This article from TS GOLD called "10 Tips for Successfully Completing Your GOLD Checkpoint" might also be helpful.

Creative Curriculum Cloud

Are you considering purchasing the Creative Curriculum Cloud and want to know more about it? Are you a new Cloud user and want to learn more from others using it? Are you a Cloud veteran and want to share tips? If so, join one or all of the three CC Cloud Zooms and connect with others like you.

MTSS; It's a preschool thing too!

Learn more about MTSS in early childhood

As the value of early education becomes more widely known, preschool staff are finding themselves becoming more included in frameworks that previously were thought to be only K-12 focused. Multi-tiered Systems of Supports, better known as MTSS is one of these frameworks that many preschool teachers have received little if any training on.

Our state, along with Northwest AEA recognizes this and offer training to support you as you explore and learn about multi-tiered systems of support in early childhood settings. See the opportunities below.

Webinar: myIGDIs and Panorama Student Success

Panorama will host a webinar dedicated to navigating the preschool data contained within Student Success on Wed., Nov. 9. from 2-3 p.m. Learn how to find and drill down into preschool data.

Additional opportunity After the myIGDIs & Panorama webinar

After registering for the myIGDI's & Panorama Student Success webinar to be held on Nov. 9th, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Immediately following, at 3:00pm, Renaissance will host a professional learning session to answer the question "myIGDIs Fall Data...Now What?" Teams and teachers administering myIGDIs are encouraged to attend. The webinar is scheduled to last 90 minutes.

Click here for the link to register or to join on November 9 for the additional webinar.

MTSS Coach Day- Dec. 15th

This course is open to anyone whose role is to support MTSS implementation in their building and/or district. The day will be filled with new learning and collaboration across content areas. Click HERE to register or here to view the flyer.

Note: In addition to all of the great learning & connecting opportunities, there will be an early childhood breakout session titled, "MTSS & The Path to Intervention in EC Classrooms."

MTSS in Early Childhood Settings Course in the works

Beginning in February of 2023, Northwest AEA will be offering a 1 credit MTSS in Early Childhood Settings course. Resources we'll be using include the Multi-tiered Systems of Support for Young Children book and the Position Statement on Multitiered System of Support Framework from the Division of Early Childhood, better known as DEC.

The course will be open from February through May; participants will work at their own pace as they do the required work. More to come in the next newsletter!

Administrators: Take Note

Nov. 1, 2022

If you haven't already, please put on your calendars "Preschool Administrators' Zoom," November 1, 2022 from 9 to 10 a.m. We will be discussing supports available to you for the Preschool Desk audit and MTSS in Preschool Settings. Click HERE to view the flyer, register, and add questions you'd like discussed.

In the meantime, you may wish to view the Iowa Department of Education's webinar recordings on each of the 10 preschool desk audit submissions. They can be found on the Iowa Dept. of Education's Differentiated Accountability page or HERE (copied & pasted).

Pyramid Model Information

From Iowa's EC-PBIS State Leadership Team

Our EC-PBIS Leadership Team wants us to be aware of the following:

  • NTI registration will open on 11/1/22. Register early as it fills up FAST!!
  • Our team continues to build infrastructure to support the social emotional behavior health of children, families and providers across the state through strategic planning.
  • This document is shared with stakeholders as needed to support IQ4K.
  • This document lists celebrations with you as stakeholders.
  • The state training calendar and Community of Practice (CoP) opportunities lists training & support available to you.

Calming Corners & Sensory Rooms

As you continue to implement Pyramid Model strategies, having a calming corner is a necessity. It is NOT time out, but rather a "time in," a place children can go when they might be a bit dysregulated; a place where a caring adult is present to co-regulate and help them get to a calmer state. Sensory materials are always included in a calming corner.

Sensory rooms have also gained recent attention as they too are designed to bring a person into a calmer state of being. Some districts have taken advantage of local or county grants to help bring a sensory room to their buildings. You might want to check and see what grants are available in your county.

This month we'd like to feature Rylie Zyzda, a Sergeant Bluff preschool teacher at Bluff's Little Thinkers. Watch the video below as Rylie gives us a tour of their recently installed Sensory Room and explains all the room has to offer.

Sioux City's LaunchPAD Children's Museum offers Sensory Friendly Night!

From Shelby Schroeder, "I would like to invite you and your families to our Sensory Friendly Night. It is on Friday November 11 from 5:30-7pm. LaunchPAD encourages play for all abilities. During sensory friendly nights LaunchPAD offers a play experience that is customized for children of all needs and abilities by transforming the museum into a sensory focused play space. It really is a night for making memories! We will also provide families with a meal. There is no cost for this event.

Registration is on our website under the Education tab or follow this link: I have attached a flyer to this email that you may give out to other families as well. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Thank you and have a great day! "

Training that includes early childhood

Fun Links

Have you ever read "The Scarecrow?"

The Scarecrow by Beth Ferry. Here's a read-aloud. It's not your typical Thanksgiving book, however it's about friendship, loneliness, & giving of yourself. You could have students build scarecrows of their own or a classroom scarecrow to put outside your window or on the playground. You could incorporate a crow study (crows are so amazing... they recognize human faces!!), tie it in with a harvest study, talk about different kinds of birds we see in the fall such as turkeys, crows, etc.,. There are so many different directions you could go!
Dr. Jean & Friends: STEM with Blocks

Dr. Jean shares simple & meaningful ways to get STEM into your blocks center, or use blocks as you integrate STEM throughout your day!

Barton Lab Resources for Practitioners

On this page you will find resources you can use to support the children you care for. Click on each link to be taken to a page that provides more information on each topic.

Upcoming Northwest AEA Early Childhood Professional Development Opportunities

Intentional Teacher 2022!

The face-to-face sessions have been completed, however you can still join us in the three Zoom sessions as we go into further learning regarding aspects of literacy in preschool settings. Click HERE or on the flyer to learn more.

The Power of GOLD, Tiers 2 & 3

Beginning with a Zoom session on January, 3, 2023 participants will work on their own through the assignments associated with this course, culminating with a final Zoom on May 25th. Click HERE or on the flyer to learn more about the course and to register.

Unpacking the Pyramid Model- Second Semester

Due to popular demand, Unpacking the Pyramid Model will be offered again for the second semester. Beginning January 9th through May 19th, participants will work at their own pace as they have a deeper understanding of all three tiers of the Pyramid Mode. Click HERE or on the flyer for details.

Observation & Assessment of Young Children

Teachers and para educators, reserve your seats! This foundational course begins January 10th of 2023. We will look at writing good anecdotal notes, developing an assessment system & assessment plan, teaming within an early childhood classroom and more. Participants may attend the five 1 1/2 hour Zoom sessions from the comforts of their own homes. Click HERE to register or on the flyer for more information. Licensure renewal credit is available.

Centering on Centers 2023

Registration has opened for our 28th Annual Centering on Centers Conference! It will be held at the Sioux City Convention Center. This year features Cari Ebert, a nationally known speech & language pathologist. Topics include:

  • Building Executive Function Skills Through Play- Based Learning
  • The Power of Play in a High Tech World
  • The Digital Dilemma: How Screen Time Affects Early Childhood Development
  • Making Sense of Sensory

Click on HERE or on the flyer for details. You will want to register early as there is a $10 late registration fee.

Northwest AEA Early Childhood PD Plan 2022-23

Here you have access to professional development designed specifically for early childhood staff for the 2022-23 school year.

Early Childhood State Coordinating Team Notes

The Iowa Department of Education has regular meetings with early childhood representatives from across the state as a way of sharing information from the DE, listening to our voices and concerns, and collaborating with each other to create solutions.

Additional Info

Hot Topics

Sometimes questions are asked to us that we can't find answers to, so we ask. This is our current "hot topics" list. You'll find a Q&A on IGDIs, Panorama, family-style meals, and exiting a child from OSEP.

Iowa State Extension & Outreach

Check out the September through November newsletter shared by ISU Extension & Outreach. There is online training called "ACT Raising Safe Kids," Childcare Provider trainings, and more. The ACT Raising Safe Kids program teaches positive parenting skills to parents and caregivers of children birth to age 8.
Want more preschool newsletters?

Visit our Northwest AEA website where you'll find not only previous EC Newsletters, but a wealth of other resources as well!

Northwest AEA Early Childhood Consultants

We hope to be your first contact for timely and ongoing early childhood support. We want to assist you in improving the performance outcomes and well-being of your young learners.

Joyce, Brenda & Shelley