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December 2020

 
 
Support Young Children into the New Year
 
 
 Woman, child building gingerbread house
 

We can probably all agree that 2020 didn’t happen as we expected. When the year began in January, life was normal, but by the time spring arrived, we had adjusted our work, school, and personal lives because of the pandemic. As the year draws to a close, we are hopeful for a brighter tomorrow but still managing the stress of COVID-19. Young children feel this stress as well, which may be especially challenging during a season that is often festive, fun, and social. Our latest blog, Helping Children Understand Changing Holiday Traditions, provides helpful suggestions for parents of young children during this time.

 
 
New Tool Kit Offers Resources to Help with Uncertain Times
 
 
Child holding teddy bear 
 

The changes brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic sometimes seem endless. During these uncertain times, families may have experienced childcare changes, loss of a job or income, illness or death of a family member or friend, and/or time spent apart from family members and friends. If any of these circumstances have impacted the young children in your life, we have a new Uncertain Times tool kit, that provides helpful insights and suggestions related to these situations.

 
 
 
New Additions to Our Curriculum Modifications Series
 
 
 Child drawing on table
 

The successful inclusion of young children with disabilities is a top priority for teachers and caregivers in early childhood settings. To support that goal, IEL continues to add to our Curriculum Modifications blog series, offering helpful tips and suggestions for making environments more accessible for all students. Check out the two latest additions to this series: Curriculum Modifications: Materials Adaptation and Which to Choose? Universal Design for Learning or Accommodations.

 
 
 
Course Focuses on Family Advocacy in Early Intervention
 
 
 MFLN logo
 

The Military Families Learning Network (MFLN) early intervention team has launched its second asynchronous learning module, Field Guide to Family Advocacy: Knowledge, Resources, and Supports for Military Families of Children with Disabilities. The four-part interactive course focuses on the rights of children with disabilities in military families, eligibility for special education programs and services for children with disabilities available within military systems, and strategies to support military families as they navigate these systems. While the course content focuses on the military, information and resources relevant to civilians are also shared. This module qualifies for Illinois State Board of Education-approved professional development hours through the Council of Teacher Education and offers 4.5 continuing education credits through the Early Intervention Training Program.

 
 
We Want to Hear from You!
 
 

Are you new to Illinois Early Learning or have you been visiting our site and reading our materials for years? We want to hear from you! We have updated our user survey and would love for you to let us know your thoughts.

 
 
Upcoming Conferences
 
 

Division for Early Childhood, January 21–29, virtual event

Association of Illinois Montessori Schools (AIMS), February 19–20, a virtual event

ESSA/Multilingual Illinois Combined Conference, February 23–26, a virtual event

ILASCD Pre-K & Kindergarten, March 4–5, a virtual event

Sharing A Vision, October 6–8, a virtual event

Given the implications of COVID-19, many conferences and professional development offerings have been canceled or moved to a virtual format. It is best to check with the sponsor before making plans to attend any event in the near future.

 
 
Tell a Friend!
 
 

Please forward our e-newsletter to your friends to help spread Illinois Early Learning News throughout the state!

 
 
We'd Like to Hear From You
 
 

For more information about the Illinois Early Learning Project, contact us at (877) 275-3227 or iel@illinois.edu.

 
 
Check Out Past Newsletters
 
 

Missed a previous newsletter within the past year? Find one here.

 
 
 
 
 

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