Cheryl Whitney, master teacher for Trenton Community Music School, dances at Child Care Connection’s 2014 conference. Whitney’s workshop, Music-Making in Your Teaching Toolbox, demonstrated how early educators can more effectively integrate music into daily classroom routines.

Child Care Connection held its 26th Annual Conference for Early Care & Education on Sept. 13 at the Hyatt Regency Princeton.

Each year, the event provides an opportunity for child care providers and all those working in the field of early care and education to unite for a day of learning, networking and celebrating the positive role they play in the lives of young children.

“Child Care Connection is honored to work collaboratively to host over 200 early care and education practitioners from central New Jersey for a day of creative learning provided by experts,” said Nancy Thomson, Child Care Connection’s executive director. “The opportunity to network with colleagues while learning new teaching techniques is a great way for early educators to being the school year.”

This year’s keynote speaker was Holly Elissa Bruno, radio host, best-selling author, and leadership course instructor for The McCormick Center for Early Childhood Leadership and Wheelock College. Bruno’s books include the best-selling, “What You Need to Lead an Early Childhood Program: Emotional Intelligence in Practice,” “Managing Legal Risks in Early Childhood Programs” and “Learning from the Bumps in the Road.”

Bruno led one of 16 workshops offered throughout the morning and afternoon sessions. Workshop topics included language and social development, the importance of play and fitness for preschoolers.

Guests also enjoyed a luncheon, resource table, and vendor area where purveyors of early childhood books and materials displayed their wares.

The Child Care Connection, Inc. is a private, non-profit child care resource and referral organization located in Ewing Township that offers educational opportunities, child care referrals and applications for child care financial assistance programs to providers. For more information or to donate or volunteer, visit ccc-nj.org, call 989-7770, or e-mail mail@ccc-nj.org.