Breaking The Preschool to Prison Pipeline, Building The Preschool to Promise Pipeline

United 4 Children’s 2021 Fall Conference will focus on understanding the importance of children’s social emotional wellbeing. Our clock-hour approved training sessions will give you the skills you need to support children in the areas of social emotional language, trauma, and stress. Sessions will cover  subjects such as infant/toddler care, social-emotional wellbeing of children, healing and building relationships, fine and gross motor, the importance of healthy eating, and more.

Out of an abundance of caution, United 4 Children’s fall conference will be virtual again this year. You can join clock-hour approved training sessions from the comfort of your home!

The conference costs just $25 to attend and presents the opportunity for you to receive up to 17 clock hours.


What to Expect:

On Saturday Oct. 2, we will host a panel discussion from 9-11 a.m. Monday through Thursday (Oct. 4-7), there will be two training session options to choose from between 1 and 2 p.m., followed by a community partner spotlight from 2:15-2:45 pm. Then two more sessions to choose from between 6 and 8 p.m. On Friday, Oct. 8, we will have two training sessions between 1 and 2 p.m. with no evening session. Our keynote speaker will be from 9-11 a.m. on Saturday Oct. 9.

When you register for the conference, you are able to sign up to attend as many or as few sessions as you’d like. All sessions will be held via Zoom. You will receive Zoom links only for the sessions that you register to attend. We ask that you log on to Zoom a few minutes early to get settled and to alert our team to any technical issues that arise. All sessions are clock-hour approved.


Meet Our Keynote Speaker: Tango Walker-Jackson

On the surface Tango Walker-Jackson is a program manager that effectively articulates a program’s strategy and objectives and assesses how it will impact a business. In her current role she oversees a list of dependent projects needed to reach the adult daycare’s program’s overall goals. Tango has been a classroom teacher, early childhood specialist, associate director, and a director of center operations. Tango has exemplary communication skills and works to ensure programs are providing fair and unbiased services.

Dig a bit deeper and you will discover that Tango is a servant leader, an early childhood practitioner, and a social justice advocate. She is a highly educated and knowledgeable trailblazer with experience teaching a diverse population of learners; young and seasoned. She is passionate, thinks outside the box, and encourages others to have necessary conversations to dismantle unjust systems. She has a thirst for promoting equitable experiences for all children and families. Tango has a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education from Harris Stowe State University, a master’s degree in educational leadership (graduated Cum Laude) and is in her final semester of her doctoral program at the University of Missouri St. Louis. She is a certified parent educator, a Missouri certified B-3rd grade educator and a CDA PD specialist. In her most recent endeavor Tango has enjoyed being an independent contractor, with the Urban League, teaching an early childhood education initiative program for those interested in opening their own early childhood center.

Tango is an active community member. She is a part of The Ethic’s Project’s Mother2Mother speaker panel, a Bayer YMCA board member, committee member of the Ladue School District’s DEI and Curriculum and Instruction committees, Early Childhood Education Advisory Board Member with North/South County Technical High School. Tango recently became a Parent Advocate with a newly formed local organization called Bridge 2 Hope.

Tango was given both The Ambassador Andrew J. Young Award for Outstanding Ethics, Service, and Commitment to Family and Community award and the Outstanding Early Childhood Educator Award in 2018. She is a true champion for children and families.

Tango is married to Edwin Jackson. She is the mother of five children and the grandmother of three: Khalisia, Greyson and Jayci. Tango envisions for her grandchildren, and yours, a life of fairness and equity. In her spare time Tango enjoys playing Scrabble, coaching youth sports, spending time with family and friends and writing.

Join us on Saturday, October 9, 2021 to hear Tango’s keynote address.


United 4 Children’s Fall Conference Training Sessions

Training Session Title Presenter Additional Details
Promoting Social Emotional Competencies in Infants/Toddlers Lexi Blackwell, Inclusion Specialist, United 4 Children Participants will be able to define social emotional development and describe how it unfolds in the context of caregiving relationships; reflect on how culture (perceptions, beliefs, values) influences caregiving, parenting, and the social emotional development of infants and toddlers; and more.
Importance of Eating Healthy: Heathy Meals on a Budget United 4 Children’s Ann Cunningham, Christy Frazier, and Courtney Smith Participants will: Know and learn the nutrition needs for a child’s growth and development; Identify the 3 steps for healthy eating on a budget; and Identify 3 skills to plan meals and snacks ahead of time.
Mindfulness and Yoga in the Early Childhood Classroom Gail Wulff United 4 Children Director of Inclusion Services Participants will understand how mindfulness and yoga practices can improve children’s social-emotional health.  Participants will create an action plan to teach children mindfulness and yoga practices.
What’s Wrong with What’s Wrong with you? Gina Watkins, Nine PBS Wittcoff Community Fellow Participants will understand how to create a developmentally appropriate trauma informed learning environment.
Trauma Informed Strategies Becky Vogel, United 4 Children, Inclusion Specialist Participants will be able to identify the signs of trauma. Participants will understand the impact of trauma on child development. Participants will be able to identify strategies to provide trauma informed care.
Supporting Sensory Processing Needs in the Early Childhood Classroom Samantha Dugger U4C Inclusion Specialist Participants will learn about typical sensory integration in children. Participants will identify basic behavioral ‘red flags’ for sensory processing disorder. Participants will begin to explore strategies to enhance the sensory integration of all children.
The science experience- Making science fun in the early childhood classroom Tara DeVore- United 4 Children- Inclusion Specialist Central Northwest Participants will engage in STEM experiments and demonstrations. Participants will increase their knowledge of the scientific process and how to implement it in the early childhood classroom. Participants will increase their ability to build meaningful connections/relationships and promote engagement through science.
Addressing Stress and Trauma in Children. Christy Pogue, United 4 Children Inclusion Specialist Participants will be able to identify and describe the impact of trauma and stress on children. Participants will recognize the importance of relationships and resilience in young children that experience trauma or stress. Participants will understand signs and symptoms of stress and trauma in young children. Participants will understand strategies that support families and children to reduce the risk of stress or trauma.
Trauma Awareness Training; Shifting Your Lens MacKenzie Grayson, Manager of Programmatic Services This training will help home visitors and early childhood educators shift their lens from “What’s wrong with them?” to “What happened to them?” In doing this, participants will be able to effectively reach the families that they serve and identify solutions that will make the work we do more equitable and impactful. This presentation will take a broad approach to understanding trauma and its impact on the families we all serve.
Autism: Understanding the Spectrum Jill Smith United 4 Children Inclusion Specialist Participants will be able to: Define autism; Discuss characteristics common in children with autism; Understand how autism is diagnosed; Explain stimming and repetitive patterns; Understand the characteristics of families who have children on the autism spectrum. o Identify strategies to work with families who have children with autism; and Know how and when to make a referral.
Books, Breathing & Behavior: Using Emotional Literacy, Discussion & Breathing Techniques to Help Preschoolers Cope with Stress Sheila C. Oliveri, Early Literacy & Curriculum Coordinator, Ready Readers Make Storytime MAGIC with books, tips, and techniques to connect with your kids! Help children thrive sharing books about emotions, behaviors, and teamwork to build a classroom environment of empathy, respect, and support.
Supporting Social Emotional Skills with Infants and Toddlers Jennifer Saitz U4C ITSN Children are not born with the ability to regulate emotions, control impulses, or show empathy for others. Children need responsive adults to co-regulate, model, and practice these skills as they mature in their development, and we can lay the foundation for these skills with our infants and toddlers!
Using the Ages and Stages Questionnaire-Social Emotional (2ASQ SE2) Screening Brittney Wilson, United 4 Children Participants will become familiar with using the screening tool and learn how to interpret the results. This can be helpful when setting goals for children. It can also help in determining what specific strategies to use in your classroom.
  Brittany Mischeaux, United 4 Children  
Kids Give It Back!  It’s What They See and Hear from Others Tina Closson, Belle Children’s Services of St. Louis Arc, Early Learning Specialist  Our session will be interactive as well as instructional. We will share strategies, videos, concrete samples, and a focus on Whole Body Listening for all ages.
It’s Not About the Fruit Snacks Melissa Neverls Challenging Behaviors are increasing in even our youngest of children. This training covers the what and the why of challenging behaviors so adults can effectively teach and respond when a child has demonstrated a pattern of challenging behaviors. All participants will leave the training with resources they can implement immediately within their setting as well as resources to support in collaborative problem solving for these behaviors.