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Early Childhood Programming

Early Childhood Family Education is a MN State funded educational program for families with children from birth to 5 (not yet in kindergarten). ECFE helps parents support their child's growth and development. Classes are taught by licensed early childhood teachers and licensed parent educators. 

Fall ECFE Registration

Registration for fall classes has ended. The winter/spring 2023 catalog will be posted soon. The lottery for registration for winter/spring 2023 classes takes place November 28 - December 9. Lottery placement will be conducted on Monday, December 12. After that time, we will continue to take registrations on a first-come, first-served basis.

Register  View Catalog EARLY LEARNING FALL 2022 CATALOG PDF

Contact

Katie Van Overmieren
Enrollment
651-425-7181

kvanover@sowashco.org

Beth Quist
Site Coordinator
Liberty Ridge Site 2
651-425-7163

bquist@sowashco.org

Ann Mockenhaupt
Site Coordinator
District Program Center
651-425-6636

amockenh@sowashco.org

Joyce Beaird
Early Learning Family
Services Manager
651-425-6625

jbeaird@sowashco.org

Office Hours:
7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

ECFE Classes and Activities

Early Learning Blog

Along with the joy of becoming a parent comes a lot of questions about raising a child. It can be hard to find answers and information. Our Early Learning blog can provide the information you seek. Written by one of our own ECFE Licensed Parent Educators, each blog offers insight into child development, parenting strategies, and other important topics that can support parents during their parenting journey. View our extensive blog library of topics as well as our most recent post below:

Young children encounter problems on a daily basis. This starts even in infancy. Your baby wants a toy that is out of reach. Your toddler wants a turn with a toy. Your preschooler is trying to build with blocks, but it isn’t working the way they want. A friend takes your child’s toy. Maybe you have observed your child experience one of these problems or something similar. How did they respond to their problem? The reality is that young children often let us know they have a problem by melting down. They haven’t yet developed the skills necessary to solve their problem themselves. Parents need to step in and help their child practice problem-solving skills.

He never listens. She doesn’t share. My kids always fight. If these thoughts sound familiar to you, you may be experiencing the effects of your negativity bias. The human brain is designed to notice and focus on negative stimuli more than positive stimuli. This negativity bias is also why we tend to dwell on negative experiences for longer than we revel in our positive experiences. As you can imagine this negativity bias has a tremendous impact in all areas of our lives, including our relationship with our children.

He never listens. She doesn’t share. My kids always fight. If these thoughts sound familiar to you, you may be experiencing the effects of your negativity bias. The human brain is designed to notice and focus on negative stimuli more than positive stimuli. This negativity bias is also why we tend to dwell on negative experiences for longer than we revel in our positive experiences. As you can imagine this negativity bias has a tremendous impact in all areas of our lives, including our relationship with our children.

Raising kids is hard. Probably one of the hardest things we do. Having people beyond you and your parenting partner who are actively involved in your child’s life can go a long way to lightening that load. For my children, this list included grandparents, aunts, and uncles who cheer them on in school or sports, show up at the games, drive them to practice, take them for the weekend, provide guidance and a safe place to fall, and so much more. Our list of people who have helped us raise our children also includes my three best friends. So, this is my thank you to them. The women who have been an integral part of helping my children become who they are not because they are family, but because they have chosen to love my children.

Parent Resources