Early Childhood Australia-A voice for young children
Early Childhood Australia National Conference 2018-Be the Difference for children and families. 19-22 September 2018 International Convention Centre Sydney

Early bird extension—register now!

After receiving feedback from service providers wishing to use funds from next financial year’s budget for professional development, we have decided to announce a special extension to the early bird registration until 13 July 2018! There will be no further extensions after this date, so please take advantage of the early bird prices and book your place today.

Register now

Speaker spotlight

Professor Paul Ramchandani is LEGO® Professor of Play in Education, Development and Learning (PEDAL) at Cambridge University, United Kingdom (UK). He leads a research team investigating the role of play in children’s early development, and works as a Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist in the UK National Health Service.

Paul’s research is focused on early child development, with a particular interest in the prevention of emotional and behavioural problems in the early years of life. 

Prof Paul Ramchandani

This research has been supported by Fellowships awarded by the Medical Research Council and Wellcome Trust, and more recently by substantive grant funding from the National Institute of Health Research.

Paul works with a multi-disciplinary team, which includes expertise in psychology, neuroscience, education and psychiatry. Details of the team’s current work and recent publications can be found on the PEDAL and pPOD websites.

Listen to Paul share his wisdom as a keynote speaker on Saturday 22 September.

Travel subsidies

Applications for a travel subsidy to attend the ECA National Conference are closing soon. It’s your last chance to apply to receive $1850 towards your ECA National Conference experience. Applications close Friday 29 June 2018.

Apply now

Travel Subsidy Sponsors

Top three tips to get the most out of the ECA National Conference

ECA CEO Samantha Page shares her top tips for making the most of the ECA National Conference.

1. Have an open mind

Think about attending sessions on topics you haven’t engaged with before, or speakers you are not already familiar with. It is nice to leave a conference feeling that you have heard something new, or looked at something from a new angle.

It is also important to be open to different viewpoints, as sometimes speakers will present different sides of an argument—there isn’t one right way of understanding. If they extend your existing thinking or challenge you in a way that clarifies your own beliefs, it can spark new thoughts and innovation, and may help you develop and grow when you return to work.

2. Use the ECA National Conference as thinking time, and leverage the experience

One of the great benefits of attending an event like the ECA National Conference is the opportunity to spend time working on and thinking about your practice while being surrounded by some of the best early childhood practitioners and experts in the world.

It’s a chance to step back and reflect—often we are so caught up each day and rarely get a chance to stop and have some thinking time. Some considerations of how you can make the most of the conference include engaging with the program content (try not to get distracted by emails or texting during sessions); visiting exhibitors; studying the program ahead of time and thinking about what you want to achieve (or your employer wants you to achieve) from the conference—engage and learn.

3. Connect and network

Networks are key to you achieving goals both professionally and personally. While it can be lovely to catch up with colleagues you haven’t seen for a while and spend quality time with your ‘crew’, it is also valuable to extend your network. Try to strike up a conversation with at least one person that you haven’t met before. For example, you might ask, ‘Which sessions are you most excited about attending?’ or ‘What types of practice are you hoping to work on?’

You might also pluck up the courage to introduce yourself to someone you admire—it could be a speaker or a sector leader. Most people would feel flattered to be approached and happy to hear how their work has influenced your work. As a result of being at the conference, making new connections can help you to expand and evolve your professional network.

While technology means we can communicate online, face-to-face interaction with your peers and people outside of your usual networks is really valuable. The people you’ll attend sessions with are as important as the sessions themselves.

Don’t forget social media! The ECA National Conference has a Facebook event page and a Twitter hashtag (#ECA2018)—they’re a great way to connect with others before the event.

HESTA Early Childhood Education & Care Awards

If you know an outstanding early childhood professional who deserves recognition, now is the time to nominate them for the 2018 HESTA Early Childhood Education & Care Awards.

The awards recognise early childhood educators and carers—working with children from birth to eight years of age—who demonstrate innovation, quality improvement and enhanced learning outcomes for young children in a variety of settings including preschool, long day care, primary school or outside school hours care.

Nominations for the awards are being sought from employers, colleagues and families, and are open until Saturday 30 June.

Nominate now

ME—the bank for you, a longstanding awards sponsor, are generously providing the $30 000 prize pool to be divided among the winners in the three award categories: Advancing Pedagogy and Practice, Outstanding Graduate and Building Inclusion. Winners will receive $10 000 each in a ME Everyday Transaction account towards further education or team development.

 Proudly presented by:

In partnership with:

Proudly sponsored by:

 HESTA Awards Dinner


Accommodation has been secured at a range of hotels and apartments in Sydney at competitive and flexible rates. In some cases, rates are up to $100 per night cheaper than what is being sold publicly.

These rates are only available for a limited time, so be sure to book online during the registration process to secure a great deal. Click here to see what’s available.


Contact information

E: conference@earlychildhood.org.au
T: 1800 356 900 (free call in Australia)
T: +61 2 6242 1800


Early Childhood Australia-A voice for young children

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