General Association News


Inland Empire Chapter

Our Inland Empire Chapter held our kickoff event on February 3, 2024. We had a variety of early childhood professionals. Our Chapter President Jessica Huffman provided the vision of our chapter about building partnerships and making connections with our local congressional leaders about early education public policy to impact the services that children and families in Riverside and San Bernadino counties have access to. Each one of our board members introduced themselves. Teaching strategies led a hands-on studies activity with the attendees to help foster creative studies with young children. We closed our kickoff by raffling off several prizes.

Upcoming Chapter Events

  • Our President Jessica Huffman and James Moses will be speaking this year's conference in Pasadena.
  • April 24: Inclusion Conference at San Bernardino Valley College
  • May 17: College of the Desert Career Fair

Southern California Chapter

The CAAEYC Southern California Chapter is delighted to have strong and committed leadership with the following board members: Dr. Ayanna Davis, President; Gloria Davis, Immediate Past President and Satellite Committees Coordinator; Julia Vasquez, Vice President Communications; Wendy Peel, Vice President, Membership; Scarlett Ramirez Holguin, Vice President Programs; Liliana Perez, Interim Secretary; and Felicia L. Torrence, Treasurer. To best serve the CAAEYC members in the Southern California Chapter, plans are now underway for an upcoming day-long meeting in July to finalize and fully calendar all activities and programs for the 2024-2025 program year. The Southern California Chapter Committees have professional development activities planned and some are still in the works. The Southern California Chapter's PlayMatters! Committee features two local school tours. The in-person school tours of play-based programs have proven to be quite popular with area educators, allowing the committee to highlight area schools that demonstrate exemplary play-based programs. The tours were held on Saturday, March 23.

The Southern California Chapter's PlayMatters! Committee is responsible for the Film Festival at the 2024 Annual Conference in Pasadena. There are three sessions on Saturday, April 20 in Room B, Exhibit Ballroom Building:

Title: "Come out and play..." The role of play in Early Learning
Starting at Square One is a short film depicting Bev Bos and her view on play and its value in early childhood education. In this session, participants will be invited to watch and reflect on how they currently apply these ideas or consider how they might apply them in their work with children. Through conversation, participants will consider current barriers to play and collaborate by connecting on how to become better play advocates for children.

Title: Play is not frivolous...
It enhances brain structure, and function and promotes executive function. Children also discover who they are through play. The materials that we provide for children should be carefully selected to optimize brain development and exploration. We will explore the idea of open-ended play materials for young children that allow them to use their creativity and develop critical thinking skills through the lens of Cas Holman. Cas Holman is an American toy designer. She is known for designing toys that emphasize creativity through unstructured play. A facilitated discussion will follow the two videos Cas Holman: Design for Play episode of Abstract the Art of Design and Identity in Play.

Title: The Importance of Play
In this session, participants will view and analyze video footage that shows children in different play scenarios intending to link play to child development across multiple domains. Participants will be encouraged to share their experience in facilitating play in their early childhood programs and how they have seen play impact child development in their programs. Finally, we will work together to equip each other with practical advocacy strategies that will help participants present the case for play with others (e.g., parents, and other educators) who may be skeptical of its value, particularly when considering the pressure that parents and educators feel regarding academic school readiness.