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Engaging Indoor Classrooms: Natural Materials and Loose Parts

Wednesday, September 25, 2019 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm EDT

Engaging Indoor Classrooms: Natural Materials and Loose Parts

Presented by Cindy Gennarelli, M.Ed., Director, Early Childhood Education Innovation, William Paterson University

Sponsored by Kaplan Early Learning Company

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The goal of this edWebinar is to support the use of nature-based materials and loose parts in the indoor classroom. Common questions and concerns include: How will these materials change the indoor environment? Where do they go and how do I introduce the materials to the children? How will these materials support children’s learning? How do we integrate these materials without compromising the integrity of our curriculum and/or physical classroom space?

These questions and others are discussed and answered. Photos of classroom environments, children’s engagement in inquiry-based, hands-on, STEAM-related explorations and discoveries will be used as examples. Examples also highlight the use of combining indoor classroom tools, materials and equipment with outdoor materials to create richer learning experiences.

Examples of learning outcomes will be relevant and aligned with approved developmentally appropriate curricula, pedagogy, children’s learning styles and 21st century skills. Teacher engagement, promoting higher-order thinking skills through conversations and questions, and the use of developmentally appropriate literature to scaffold children’s learning will be embedded throughout the workshop. This recorded edWebinar will be of particular benefit to preK teachers.

About the Presenter

Cindy Gennarelli, M.Ed. holds a master’s degree and supervisor’s certificate in early childhood education. She is the director of Early Childhood Education Innovation at William Paterson University. She was the former director of the NAEYC accredited WPU Child Development Center. Cindy has received several state and national awards including the National Association of Early Childhood Teacher Educators – Early Childhood Practitioner award, and the Maxine Feischel NJ Association for the Education of Young Children Leadership Award. She served as a governing board member with New Jersey Educators Exploring the Practices of Reggio Emilia (NJEEPRE) and NJAEYC as the vice president of professional development. She has written and co-authored a number of curriculum articles for early childhood journals including Young Children, Teaching Young Children and Social Studies and the Young Learner. She is currently co-authoring a book for early childhood education practitioners. Cindy teaches early childhood undergraduate and graduate courses, and serves as a field supervisor for clinical experiences.


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Kaplan Early Learning Company is a leading international provider of products and services that enhance children’s learning.


Wednesday, September 25, 2019
2:00 pm - 3:00 pm EDT
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