The Frankfort Independent School District and the Franklin County Community Early Childhood Council is partnering to host a free online Kindergarten Readiness Summit for parents and early care and education providers from June 1-6.

Originally planned as an in-person one-day conference, the Summit was moved to online platform delivery due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The focus of the Summit is to create a common dialogue around the importance of brain development in the first five years of life.

The Summit will kick off on June 1 with a live, online keynote webinar at 6 p.m. The keynote, “How the Young Brain Learns,” will be presented by Nicki Patton Rowe, master early childhood trainer and daughter of former Gov. Paul Patton.

The webinar will set the stage for the Summit’s overall focus of supporting brain-building activities in the home and in early care settings. Online breakout sessions will be led by regional early childhood educators, credentialed trainers, and service providers.

Breakout sessions will include: Social Emotional Learning and Conscious Discipline Strategies, Mindfulness Strategies to Enhance Social Emotional Development, Math Make & Take Projects, Tips for Reading Aloud with Young Children, Strategies for Children with Sensory Needs, Using Visuals at Home and Brain Building with the Vroom app.

An online gallery of interview videos featuring community services will be available for parents to access for more information throughout the week of the Summit.

Organizations interviewed include Save the Children, HANDS, Child Care Aware, First Steps early intervention, The Sunshine Center, Head Start, public and private preschool programs, Paul Sawyier Public Library and local childcare centers. 

The Summit will also offer storytime videos read by local educators and community members for families to access with their children as well as four 30-minute live, online Parent Learning Circle discussion groups. Each of the four sessions will facilitate conversation between participating parents of young children around specific topics:

Parent Learning Circle 1: My Child’s Brain Development, June 2, 11 a.m.

Parent Learning Circle 2: My Child’s Language Development, June 2, 6 p.m.

Parent Learning Circle 3: My Child’s Literacy Development, June 6, 11 a.m.

Parent Learning Circle 4: My Child’s Social Emotional Development, June 6, 4 p.m.

The Franklin County Community Early Childhood Council’s Directors Cadre will also meet live via Zoom during the Summit on June 3 at 2 p.m. to discuss issues surrounding the upcoming re-opening of childcare centers in Kentucky.

The Kindergarten Readiness Summit is free for parents and early care and education providers to attend, but online registration is required and can be accessed at https://forms.gle/MVAVXh8Kre7zmjNk6

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