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Early Childhood Family Education (ECFE)

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. 

Winter/Spring ECFE Registration

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 Winter/Spring 2023 CATALOG PDF

Drop-In Play Sessions

Drop-In Play sessions provide the opportunity for you and your child(ren) to pop in for some parent/child ECFE fun. Most sessions are weekly and run from September through May based on the ECFE program calendar. Registration is not required and sessions are free. Space is limited to 14 children per session. For ages birth - 5 years old.

LIBERTY RIDGE SITE 2 - 11283 EAGLE VIEW BLVD., WOODBURY, MN

  • Mondays 11:30 a.m. - 12:45 p.m. 
  • Wednesdays 11:30 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.
  • Fridays 11:30 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.

DROP-IN PLAY AND ECFE CLASSES WILL NOT OCCUR ON THE FOLLOWING DATES:
Dec. 23-30; Jan. 2, Jan. 16, Jan. 23-30; Feb. 20; March 6-13; April 7, April 21, May 29

New Parent Connection Drop-In

In this free, drop-in style class, you will be able to connect with other new parents, ask questions and share ideas related to adjusting to a new baby, feeding, sleeping and more.  For more information or the link to join the virtual class, please call the Early Learning office at 641-452-7181.

LIBERTY RIDGE SITE 2 - 11283 EAGLE VIEW BLVD., WOODBURY, MN

  • Mondays 12:30-2:00 p.m. - ages birth - 4 months
  • Mondays 4:15-5:30 p.m. - ages 3-12 months

VIRTUAL

  • Tuesdays 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. - ages birth - 4 months
  • Tuesdays 4:15-5:15 p.m. - ages 3-12 months

Special Events

Maybe - Stages Theatre Company
Graphic of Play Title

When: Wednesday, January 25, 2023 at 8:45 a.m. - 12:00 p.m

Where: Stages Theatre Co., Hopkins, MN

Cost: $20 per person (includes transportation and ticket)

Who: For all ages!

Deadline to Register:  December 21, 2022      Register

An expansive portrayal of the endless potential in us all! A dance-inspired, original musical about the magical immeasurable possibilities that make up who we are and what we can do.  From the award-winning author of What Do You Do with An Idea?, comes the story of everything that makes us unique.  In collaboration with Escalate Theatre and Dance Studio.  Everyone must have a ticket and an adult must accompany a child.

Bus departs from the District Program Center (DPC) at 8:45 am Address: 8400 E. Pt. Douglas Rd. S., Cottage Grove. Bus returns to the District Program Center (DPC) at 12:00 pm

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
651-425-7169

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