Interested in a topic not listed? Contact the instructor, Karen Rucker, regarding the possibility of customizing a session to address your center's specific professional development needs or to address a specific age group. For additional information, click the Contact tab or send an email to  or call 717-314-8368.

All Age Groups

​​​NEW!! 10 Strategies to Extend Learning for Young Children - Ages birth to 5 years.(2 hrs / C2 - Standard Area 4 & Standard Area 5) An intentional teacher becomes skilled in capturing opportunities to scaffold children's experiences in the early childhood classroom.  Based on the book Powerful Interactions: How to Connect with Children to Extend Their Learning, this session explores ten strategies to expand children's discovery while employing curriculum and capturing teachable moments.​

Using the Pennsylvania Early Learning Standards to Inform Curriculum Development​ (2 hrs / C2 - Standard Area 5) The Learning Standards reflect what research tells us children should be able to know and do at different ages to guide us in providing best practice in early care and education.  Equally as important, they provide a foundation and connection to future school success.  So, do you use this tool to its fullest?  Participants will dive into this valuable resource to explore and consider ways to increase its use in planning curriculum for young children. 

IMPORTANT NOTE:  This session is for birth through second grade utilizing the PA KEY Learning Standards and does not cover usage of the PDESAS website.

Another Note: Formerly titled "Using the Learning Standards to Inform Curriculum Development"

​​Creative Art Experiences 
(2 hrs / C1 - Standard Area 5
):  It's time to think outside the box! Art should provide an opportunity to experiment with different mediums, express emotions and bring joy.  This interactive session will explore various process oriented open-ended art activities that support creativity and self-expression.

NEW!!  STEM Experiences for Young Children: Ages 2-5 years (2 hrs / C2 - Standard Area 5 and STARS SQ.3.4.3): STEM - Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics are cornerstones of the toddler and preschool experience.  During this session we will explore a variety of activities to support STEM and reflect components of the Learning Standards across multiple content areas.

NOTE: Target audience is those who work with children ages 2-5 years.

Preschool Specific

NEW!!  Webbing as a Tool to Create Preschool Curriculum (2 hrs / C2 - Standard Area 4 & Standard Area 5): Webbing is a brainstorming method used to generate curriculum ideas in multiple categories, such as topic areas, learning centers or developmental domains.  It also provides multiple opportunities to individualize instruction.  This hands-on session will take a look at how to create webs and utilize them in activity planning.


Standard Area 5: 

Knowledge, Application, and Integration of Academic Content in the Early Childhood Curiculum

Early Childhood Professional Development

Karen Rucker, M.S.
ECE Master Trainer