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The 2021 ECSTEM Conference

Register and explore the ECSTEM 2021 Conference website. Browse the pages and be sure to click on the icons for fun surprises and resources.
Have fun and see you in February!
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For help registering, email or call (626) 395-6860 between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm PT, Monday to Friday.

ECSTEM 2021 Save the Date



Pacific oaks

Common Sense

Hua Gao



child 360

soft play





lab society



little tykes

tout bout


Tuesday, February 23rd, 2021 

9:00am – 11:00am

Keynote Speaker

Omo Moses

1:00pm – 3:00pm


"Exploring Sound with Infants and Toddlers."

Infants and toddlers delight in exploring interesting materials and figuring out how to "make things happen." Learn how physics of sound experiences can introduce our youngest learners to STEM.

Presenter: Sherri Peterson, M.A., M.S.

Iowa Regents' Center for Early Developmental Education University of Northern Iowa

Target Audience: I T

Content: S T E M


"Hands-On at a Distance: Adapting Tinkering in Early Childhood to an Online Environment"

Join us for a hands-on tinkering activity, and reflection on its design. Following, we will share an ECE tinkering project, our pivot to online learning during COVID, and current research findings.

Presenters: Luigi Anzivino, Ph.D. & Casey Federico, M.S.

The Exploratorium & Tinkering Studio

Target Audience: P

Content: S T

"STEM Learning for Each and Every Child During Story Time"

Come learn shared storybook reading strategies to engage young children in learning about STEM. Discuss book selection, prompt ideas, adaptation, and modification strategies to support children with and without disabilities.

Presenters: Chih-Ing Lim, Ph.D. & Hsiu-Wen Yang, Ph.D.

STEM Innovation for Inclusion In Early Education Center (STEMIE)

Target Audience: I T P

Content: S T E M


"3,2,1, Liftoff…with NASA STEM Engagement"

In this session you will be provided with an overview of how-to best guide STEM learning in the early grades (PreK-2) using literacy, and teacher expert tips and strategies.  We will explore the engineering design process and NASA's educational resources.  The session will end with step by step guidance of the many NASA websites that share wonderful and updated educational resources aligned with recent missions and efforts by their scientists and engineers.  Take advantage of NASA's free resources and encourage ALL you students to reach for the star.

Presenter: LaTina Taylor, M.Ed., & Susan Kohler, M.Ed.

NASA EPDC, NASA Glenn Research Center

Target Audience: I T P TK K FG SG

Content: S T E M


"Promoting Family Math at Home and in Classrooms"

Participants will discuss two family engagement models that empower parents, integrate caregivers into their children's learning community, and provide positive mathematics experiences so all children see themselves as mathematicians.

Presenters: Kristen E. Reed, M.Ed., M.A., & Susie Grimm, M.P.A., B.A., & Jessica M. Young, Ph.D.

Education Development Center, PBS SoCal

Target Audience:  P

Content: M


Wednesday, February 24th, 2021


9:00am – 11:00am

Panel Of Experts

Tali Horowitz, Melissa Cleaver, & Jamie Nunez

1:00pm – 3:00pm


"Co-Designing Family Math: Engaging Families to Grow a Love for Math at Home"

PBS SoCal shares effective practices and guidelines on how early childhood educators can co-design a family math engagement program with the families they serve to promote math learning at home.

Presenters: Tarana Khan, Ph.D. & Frances Zazueta, B.A.


Target Audience: T P TK

Content: M


"Early Math"

Supporting professional learning communities in early math: Learning and teaching with learning trajectories. 

Presenter: Douglas Clements, Ph.D. & Julie Sarama, Ph.D.

University of Denver

Target Audience: I T P TK K FG SG

Content:  M


"Children Can Code: Computational Thinking for Early Learners"

Discover how coding and computational thinking will develop young children's academic knowledge, determination, critical thinking and problem-solving skills.  Experience unplugged coding and strategies to implement simple robots with your children.

Presenters: Dan Shinneman, M.Ed.

Palm Beach State College, Institute of Excellence in Early Care and Education

Target Audience: P TK K FG SG

Content: S T E M


"Explore Thinking & Creating with a Line"

We will tour a new website – – to take a look at free STEAM lessons illustrated with video clips of teachers and children in action, try out a few explorations, and discuss how you might use the lessons within your own settings.

Presenter: Cathy W. Topal

Smith College

Target Audience:  P TK K FG SG

Content: S T E M


"Engaging ECSTEM with Children's Lived Experiences"

High quality STEM in early childhood settings is embedded in the experiential reality of children's life worlds. We are here to inquire approaches of engaging teachers, parents and children themselves in STEM programs to promote learning that leads to exploring and understanding of STEM related phenomenon from children's life.


Presenters: LU Jingchen, Ph.D., & Jiang Xiaoman, B.A., & JIN Rongrong, B.A.

Soong Ching Ling Kindergarten

Target Audience:  P

Content: S


Thursday, February 25th, 2021


9:00am – 11:00am


"STEM in Our Hands: Humanizing Technology for Organic Virtual Learning Experiences""

In the pandemic, educators got creative at using technology for teaching everything virtually.  Explore how teachers became scientists, engineers, and mathematicians to make learning and wonder happen organically on screen.

Presenter: Tommaso Lana, M.A.

Embodied Learning

Target Audience:  P TK K FG SG 

Content: S T E M


"Experiencing SEL (Social, Emotional Learning) Concepts Through Virtual Music and Movement Sessions."

Experiencing both SEL (Social, Emotional Learning) STEM concepts through Virtual Music & Movement sessions during this unprecedented time, which will enhance the necessary skills for young children to both understand and manage emotions, attain problem solving, critical thinking, creativity, curiosity, and entrepreneurship.

Presenter: Dayita Datta, B.A.

The Children's Center at Caltech

Target Audience: I T P TK K FG SG

Content: S T E M


"Incorporating Culture and Caregivers into STEM"

A NAEYC Accredited Family Child Interaction Learning (FCIL) Preschool will share how they implement a culturally relevant STEM curriculum to an at-risk population while addressing their mental and emotional needs through a trauma-informed approach.

Presenter: June "Pua" Aquino, B.A., & Kasey Galariada, B.A.

Ka Pa'alana Homeless Family Education Program

Target Audience:  T P TK K FG

Content: S T E M


"Exploring Mathematics Through Literacy"

What's the connection between math and literacy?  What books best support mathematics learning?  How did learning continue from home following safer at home orders?  Join us for an interactive workshop and see how a toddler room used books as a foundation for math learning to investigate concepts, such as, number, operations, measurements, geometry, and more!

Presenter: Melissa Samples, M.A.

The Children's Center at Caltech

Target Audience:   T  

Content:  M


"Engaging Preschoolers in Data Collection and Analysis with Manipulatives, Body Movement, and Digital Technology"

This workshop will present a set of investigations designed for preschoolers that allow teacher and children to engage in data collection an analysis, including an app to facilitate the process.

Presenters: Ashley Lewis Presser Ph.D., & Jessica Young, Ph.D.

Education Development Center

Target Audience: P TK K

Content: S T


"STEM for One, STEM for All: Strategies to Ensure All Children have STEM Learning Opportunities"

Come learn about why and how to include young children with disabilities in early STEM.  Discover environmental, materials, and instructional modifications to integrate STEM for each and every child.

Presenters: Megan Vin, Ph.D., & Jessica Amsbary, Ph.D.


Target Audience: I T P

Content: S T E M


1:00pm – 3:00pm


"Adapting to Our New Normal"

This workshop will look closely at the Children's Center at Caltech's approach to and transition to distant learning, as well as plans for reopening, safety guidelines, and the creation of a new classroom geared toward Kindergarten aged children because of COVID-19.

Presenter: Jose Osorio, B.A. & Silvia Reano Gonzales, M.A.

The Children's Center at Caltech

Target Audience:  P TK K FG 

Content: S T E M


"Early Childhood Mathematical Interventions: A Literature Review"

This study reports the findings of literature review about mathematical interventions for young children with special needs.  This session will share the effect of sizes, demographic information, interventions, and implications.

Presenter: Bonnie Ingelin, Ph.D. & Nanette Hammons, Ph.D.

University of St. Thomas and Florida State University

Target Audience:  I T P 

Content: M


"What Sound Does a Space Chicken Make: Using Technology to Strengthen Human Connections"

This session will follow the story of a class of four-and five-year-old children who explored a variety of technologies with a goal of creating, constructing, and connecting.

Presenter: Greg Morgan, M.A., & Alex Morgan, M.A.

Boulder Journey School

Target Audience:   P TK 

Content: T

"Whole Body Math"

Whole Body Math fosters math learning through kinesthetic and sensory engagement.  In this interactive workshop, participants will learn how to use guiding questions to modify lessons and design activities.  

Presenters: Yvonne Liu-Constant, Ph.D., & Julia Philips, M.Ed.

Lesley University and King Elementary School

Target Audience:  TK FG SG

Content: M


"Creative Movement and Creative Drama Adventures to Promote STEAM"

This presentation will engage participants in thoughtful examination of movement and drama in preschool and primary classes and how they can have strong connection to STEM.  Participants will move near their screens and use their movement and drama activities to extend their knowledge of STEM concepts in Physical, Earth, and Life Sciences. 

Presenters: Mary Jo Pollman, Ph.D.

Metropolitan State University of Denver

Target Audience: P TK K FG SG

Content: S T E M


Friday, February 26th, 2021


9:00am – 11:00am


The children were introduced to a small robot named Ozobot. During this exploration, the children were able to strengthen their knowledge of lines, coding, empathy, early literacy, engineering and film production. 

Presenter: Elise Wellington, A.A. & Michelle Lagunas, A.A.

Bright Start Child Development Center

Target Audience:  P TK K FG

Content: S T


"Math Is…Toddlers' Studies of Mathematics Through Line and Trajectory"

This session examines a year-long investigation, researched by a group of 2-year-old children and their teachers, around line, trajectory, and toddler joy

Presenter: Kirsten Zimbelman, M.A. & Alex Morgan, M.A.

Boulder Journey School

Target Audience:  T

Content: M


"Zooming into 2020"

Zoom into this interactive session on developing a distance learning curriculum for young children. Understand the importance of the environment, discover experiences best suited for online, and avoid being an entertainer.

Presenter: Shelley Anderson, M.A. & Tatiana Zargarian, M.A.

Glendale Community College

Target Audience: P

Content:  T


"Sustainable Engineering Ideas for Little Engineers"

Let us give the next generation the chance to figure out how to make a sustainable world for a better future. Be ready for a hands-on workshop with simple and practical sustainable engineering ideas for little engineers that can be implemented at home or school.

Presenter: Debora Qiu, B.A.

Kiddie Academy

Target Audience: P

Content:  E


"Promoting Science Inquiry Skills, Imagination, and Literacy"

Participants will discover links between children's imagination, storybooks, and children's science inquiry skills that promote exploration of science content. Participants will brainstorm curriculum ideas to use in their own classrooms.

Presenter: Maureen Smith, Ph.D., & Maria Fusaro, Ed.D.

San Jose State University

Target Audience: P TK

Content: S


"Discover, Experiment, Explore: Science Activities for Young Children"

Prepare to Explore!  This interactive workshop includes a variety of experiences to utilize in early childhood classrooms.  Join us as we work together as co-researchers, discovering the wonder of science. 

Presenters: Judy Krause, Ed.D.

Pacific Oaks College and Children's School

Target Audience:  P

Content: S


1:00pm – 3:00pm


"Form and Function: How To with Infants and Toddlers"

Children are born with natural curiosity to explore the world around them.  In the Bunny room, we nurture their inquisitive minds with a developmentally appropriate curriculum: Form and Function.  What is it? Why is it important? Join us as we discuss different approaches and activity modifications with our young children.  Get inspired!  Take with a variety of curriculum possibilities that you can apply with your infants and toddlers. 

Presenter: Eloisa McGah, B.A.

The Children's Center at Caltech

Target Audience:  I T  

Content: S T E M


"STEM Learning for Infants & Toddlers"

Learn strategies to promote infant toddler learning of STEM concepts during family routines.  Primary Strategies include adult-facilitated interactions about STEM concepts and various adaptations to support children's engagement, participation, and learning.

Presenter: Philippa Campbell, Ph.D., & Christine Harradine, Ph.D.

STEMIE, Frank Porter Graham Canter, UNC

Target Audience:  I T

Content: S T E M

"Light and Shadow"

Under the framework of STEM curriculum, our kindergarten organizes children to carry out scientific exploration, observation and recording of "light and shadow". Children learn different light sources, understand the origin of shadow and the factors causing changes of shadow. Guide children to make their own shadow puppet characters, create stories, and perform shadow puppets on the self-made shadow puppet stage. Children explore the principle and color of light through various activities, and find the relationship between light and shadow.

Presenter: Denny Deng

Fuzhou Yale Jinhui Fengshang Kindergarten

Target Audience: P PK   

Content: S T E M


"Ramps & Pathways – A Developmentally Appropriate Integrative STEM Experience"

Ramps & Pathways nurture STEM identities as children design and build systems to

move marbles in interesting ways. Learn how Ramps & Pathways is the perfect

context for developmental engineering.

Presenter: Beth VanMeeteren, Ed.D.

Iowa Regents' Center for Early Developmental Education/University of Northern Iowa

Target Audience:  P TK K FG SG

Content: S T E M


"How Technology Supports Fantasy, Friendship, and Connection"

A journey of our steep learning curve to form continuity of connection with children and families, develop curriculum imbedded in our values, establish joy of being together in new ways and refine our reflective practices.  Even upon returning to campus. 

Presenters: Christine Richard, M.A. Educational Psychology, ECE

The Growing Place

Target Audience: I T P TK

Content: S T


"Setting Up Your ZOOM STEM Environments for Success: Through Meaningful Experiences"

Attendees will explore targeted, meaningful, and innovative experiences and methods of setting up their Zoom environment as a learning tool for intentional teaching and implementation of a STEM environment.

Presenters: Joshua Alvarez, M.A.

Kaplan Early Learning

Target Audience: I T P TK K FG SG

Content: S T E M