Week of the Young Child Banner

VTAEYC News: Week of the Young Child – and eclipse – and ECDL!

By Sharron Harrington

Dear colleagues,

One of our favorite celebrations is around the corner, April 6-12: Week of the Young Child!

#WOYC is a great opportunity to connect the theory and practice of what we do: child-centered, developmentally appropriate, interdisciplinary early learning – with why we do it: because we just absolutely love young children and being in their company.

The school week starts with Music Monday, but here in Vermont, I imagine most of you have once-in-a-lifetime eclipse programming planned instead.

What an amazing opportunity to connect children’s curiosity and wonder with scientific inquiry, outdoor exploration, reading, art, and so many other skills. I’ve even heard a plan for eclipse-themed snacks (hello, Tasty Tuesday!).

We’d love to see and share how Vermont’s early childhood education programs celebrate #WOYC24 – and this special celestial event – all week long. Tag us on Facebook and Instagram @VTAEYC!

To continue a packed week of activity, Early Childhood Day at the Legislature is Wednesday, April 10. VTAEYC is proud to continue our strong support of this event. Early childhood advocates, we will see you in Montpelier!

Looking ahead: We are thrilled to preview our theme and keynote speaker for the 2024 Annual Conference, scheduled for October 28 +29 in Killington. Read on for details. There will be much more conference news to come, and you’ll read it first in updates from VTAEYC.


Week of the Young Child is April 6-12

The annual Week of the Young Child celebrates early learning, young children, and their teachers, families, and communities. Themed days connect joyful learning with lifelong skill building and connection.

Here’s a very quick selection on Vermont programs’ ideas, activities, and actions:

  • Saturday (April 6): Springfield Area Parent Child Center hosts a Family Festival
  • Saxton’s River Montessori School is partnering with the local library for a seed-planting activity (funded through a VTAEYC #WOYC mini-grant)
  • Music Monday is Eclipse Day! The Family Place recommends picking a special song to listen to while you 😎 watch the eclipse, using music to help seal memories of this event
  • To spark community-wide education and celebration of early childhood education, Addison County educators collaborated on a special insert to run in the Addison Independent
  • Wednesday is ECDL! Advocates from across Vermont head to Montpelier for Early Childhood Day at the Legislature
  •  ABC&LOL Child Care Center host a community resource fair for children and families (funded through a VTAEYC #WOYC mini-grant)
  • Saturday (April 13): Maple Leaf Children’s Center and collaborators host a family picnic (funded through a VTAEYC #WOYC mini-grant)

Tag @VTAEYC and #WOYC2024 with your actions and celebrations!

Find #WOYC2024 resources at naeyc.org and see VTAEYC’s playlist of Week of the Young Child videos on Youtube.

Annual Conference Keynote Speakers:
Ron Shuali and Ant Toombs

Theme: Pathways to Wellness: Nurturing Play and Leadership
Killington, Vermont
October 28 + 29, 2024

VTAEYC’s 2024 conference will focus on embedding wellness for children and their caregivers in our practices. We are excited to welcome keynote speakers Ron Shuali and Ant Toombs!

Ron Shuali, M.Ed, is the creator of the internationally acclaimed Yogarate and Behavior Mastery systems. His laughter filled keynotes, workshops and assemblies are always full of eye-opening experiences as audiences have multiple “Ah-HA!” moments.

Ant Toombs is Senior Playmaker Guide and Outreach Specialist for The Life is Good Playmaker Project (LiGPP), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a mission to spread the power of optimism to help kids heal.

Visit our conference website, and stay tuned for a special conference email update with a request for workshop proposals and other information.


April 10: Early Childhood Day at the Legislature

VTAEYC joins the Vermont Early Childhood Advocacy Alliance and many others at the Statehouse to meet with legislators about early childhood issues.

Come visit our table and attend our 1:30 PM session on the progress of our core initiative Advancing Early Childhood Education as a Profession.

Learn more about ECDL and register

VTAEYC Exchange: Action Through Advocacy

The VTAEYC Exchange is adding a new intersection this year: “Early Childhood X Creative Arts.” VTAEYC will accept up to eight Fellows. This cycle will focus on action through advocacy.

Because of our shift to an advocacy focus, we have changed the Exchange timeline to accommodate legislative session: Fellowships will run from October 2024 to June 2025

Stay tuned! Exchange Fellowship applications will come out in May.

Upcoming Dates from VTAEYC and Partners

Registration open: Early Childhood Day at the Legislature, April 10

Registration open: NAEYC Professional Learning Institute, New Orleans, June 2-5

Save the Date: Vermont Child Care Providers Association Annual Conference, September 21

Save the Date: Vermont Afterschool Annual Conference, October 24+25

Save the Date: VTAEYC Annual Conference, October 28+29