SELECTED Presentations, Publications, WORKSHOPS, AND Awards

Collective Impact Strategies to Foster Strong Schools, an Engaged Community, and Thriving Children. Co-presenter at the National Community Schools and Family Engagement Conference, Los Angeles, CA, June 1, 2022.


Family Liaison Program: from Translation to Building an ELL Family Engagement Foundation.
Co-presenter at the National Community Schools and Family Engagement Conference, Reno, NV, July 11, 2019.


Ready For Success Network: A Roadmap for Early Childhood Collaboration.
Co-presenter at Illinois Birth-3 Continuity Conference, Bloomington, IL, June 13, 2019.


The Alliance for Early Childhood’s Response to the 21
st Century Challenges of Overscheduled Children, Too Much Media, and Too Little Play. Co-presenter at NAEYC’s Annual Conference, Atlanta, GA, Nov. 16, 2017.


Let’s Play Initiative: The Alliance for Childhood. Co-authored book chapter for Playing It Up With Loose Parts, Playpods, and Adventure Playgrounds, The Alliance for Childhood, Joan Almon (Editor), 2017, pages 31-38.


Teacher Tribute Award,
April 2014. Nominated by a parent and honored by The Alliance for Early Childhood as an educator who has made a special difference in the lives of young children.


Promoting Play in a “Race to Nowhere” World: The Alliance for Early Childhood’s Successful Initiative to Encourage Child-Directed Free Play.
Co-presenter at NAEYC’s Annual Conferences: Orlando, FL, Nov. 19, 2015; Dallas, TX, Nov. 6, 2014; Washington, D.C., Nov. 21, 2013; Atlanta, GA, Nov. 7, 2012.


Connecting Technology with Parents and Families: A Family Use of Technology to Support Informal Learning.
Panelist at Erikson Institute’s 2nd Annual Tech for the Early Years Conference, Chicago, IL, Oct. 18, 2013.


Nowhere to Go and All Day to Get There.
Speaker at Family Action Network event, Winnetka, IL, April 11, 2013.


Nowhere to Go and All Day to Get There: Engaging Parents in Unstructured Play in Chicago Parks.
Speaker at United States Play Coalition Conference on the Value of Play, Clemson University, Clemson, SC, Feb. 18, 2013.


The Benefits of Parenting in Nature.
Speaker at Chicago Wilderness Congress, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, Nov. 15, 2012.


The Benefits of Family Time in Chicago Wilderness
and One Family's Approach to Days in Chicago Wilderness. Two guest blog postings for the Chicago Wilderness website published in June 2012.


2012 U.S. President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition Community Leadership Award.


Nowhere to Go and All Day to Get There Days. Article about the benefits of children’s play for caregivers, published in the Spring-Summer 2012 issue of Early Childhood.


Family Play, Family Well-Being. One of six play advocates featured in KaBOOM!'s video addressing why family play is important and sharing ideas for making family play a priority, May 2, 2012.


Children’s Play is for Parents, Too. Article about the benefits of children’s play for caregivers, published in the Fall/Winter 2011-12 issue of Early Childhood.


Articulating the Power of Play.
Co-facilitator and speaker at Chicago Public Library Early Literacy Training programs for 120 early childhood librarians, Harold Washington Library, Chicago, IL, Oct. 3 and 4, 2011.


World Leaders & Thinkers "In Their Own Words."
Interviewed by Dr. Alvin Jones on CBS Radio, concerning my activities in promoting early childhood play in the Chicago area, Aug. 16, 2011.


My Family's Park-A-Day Summer Challenge. Article about the benefits of outdoor free play for children, published in the Spring-Summer 2011 issue of Early Childhood.


Power Players: Advocating for Play on the Local Level.
Speaker at United States Play Coalition Conference on the Value of Play, Clemson University, Clemson, SC, Feb. 7, 2011.


KaBOOM! Playmaker of the Month Award,
Nov. 2010.