Child Care Provider Training

Learn about healthy, affordable food choices and physical activities you can offer for children in your care. Topics available related to nutrition, finance, and family life.

Intended audience: Early childhood professionals
Format: One 2-hour class; several topics available
Certification: Iowa Department of Human Services (DHS) and Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) approved

Workshop Titles


Certification: Iowa Department of Human Services (DHS) and Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) approved

  • Actions Speak Louder Than Words
    Children are great imitators. They observe and imitate adults’ nutrition and physical activity practices. Explore ways you can be a positive role model for children in your care. Write an action plan for helping children develop healthy eating habits for life.
  • Color Me Healthy – Food Colors and Health
    You can’t actually “eat the rainbow,” but you can eat foods the colors of the rainbow for better health. You’ll learn the health benefits of fruit and vegetable color groups and fun activities to increase children’s recognition and acceptance of fruits and vegetables.
  • Food Safety Escape Challenge
    Are you up for the challenge? Explore topics like potentially hazardous foods, cross contamination, cleaning, and temperature to help your team solve the food safety puzzle.
  • Gardening with Children
    Can digging in the dirt be good for children? Yes, when it encourages children to taste new vegetables that they’ve helped to grow. Gardening with children promotes a healthy lifestyle, early learning experiences, social development, and environmental stewardship. You’ll engage in experiential-learning gardening activities through crafts, literacy, container gardening, and taste testing.
  • I Only Want a Peanut Butter Sandwich!
    Worried about the child who only wants to eat one food? Is this healthy? It can be frustrating when all a child wants to eat is a peanut butter sandwich. You’ll learn about eating habits that are normal for young children, strategies that promote healthy eating habits, and how to foster pleasant mealtime experiences — all while taste testing new foods.
  • Infant Feeding 101
    Whether babies are breast fed or formula fed, their health and wellbeing depends on your support of their mothers and families. In this interactive workshop, you’ll learn the best practices for food safety and infant feeding regulations, along with important ways to support both moms and babies.
  • Just a Bite—Managing Food Allergies in Child Care
    Just a bite may be all it takes to cause a severe reaction to a food allergen. You’ll learn the common food allergens for children and the signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction. Join us to learn strategies and practical skills to provide an allergen-safe and healthy environment for the children in your care.
  • Linking Literacy with Food: Read, Learn, Eat!
    Mix books with food experiences to introduce literacy to children. Early reading and language development help children be “school ready,” which increases their opportunities for academic success. You’ll experience new ways to connect with children as you incorporate food-related activities in lessons with well-loved children’s books.
  • Meal Planning Magic
    If only we could wave a wand and nutritious, convenient meals would suddenly appear! Since that won’t happen, instead you’ll learn best practices for planning and serving meals, physical activity, and health and safety for children under your care. Meal and snack planning will be discussed and demonstrated, and you’ll enjoy samples.
  • Move for Thought
    On your mark, get set … move! Did you know movement activities can help children improve thinking skills? You’ll practice activities in the Move for Thought Pre-K kit, which describes physical activities integrated with pre-academic concepts, self-regulation skills, books, and music for use in early childhood classrooms.
  • MyPlate in My Child Care: Four Easy Steps
    With four easy steps, you will be on your way to help lay the foundation for lifelong dietary habits in children. We’ll explain four specific MyPlate recommendations you can implement as you plan meals and snacks in your childcare setting. You’ll practice revising menus to follow these four steps.
  • Safe Food for a Healthy Future
    How do we protect children from foodborne illnesses? Assess your current food safety practices and develop action plans to improve using the FightBac! messages to fight foodborne illness.
  • Spend Smart and Eat Smart in the Child Care Business
    Good nutrition does not have to be expensive. Children in your care can “eat smart” when you practice strategies to save money while incorporating new ideas into menu planning and food shopping.
  • Who Leads, Who Follows: Feeding and Physical Activity Division of Responsibility in Child Care
    Who leads and who follows? That is the question! You’ll find the answers in this workshop as you identify who is responsible for what, when, where, and whether a child eats and is physically active. Learn which responsibilities belong to the provider and which belong to the child.


  • Cent$ible: Getting What You Want
    It’s simple math — if you spend less than your income, you’ll have savings. If not, you’ll have debt. In this session, you’ll learn how to get what you want by setting financial goals and then creating a plan for your spending and saving.
  • Cent$ible: Retirement First Steps
    Time is money and the sooner you begin saving for retirement, the better. You’ll identify reasons that early planning is important and examine ways you can begin saving for retirement.
  • Cent$ible: Retirement Next Steps
    Step by step, as you follow your saving and spending plan, you’ll be headed in the right direction for your destination: retirement! You’ll consider how to invest for your retirement years.
  • Preschoolers and Pennies: Read, Talk, Learn, and Play
    Children love to pretend they run a grocery store or a restaurant. Build on that interest with activities for preschoolers that practice money and literacy skills. You’ll explore ways to introduce and reinforce money-related words and concepts throughout the day as children learn and play.

Family Life

  • Flora, Fauna, and Family Engagement
    Looking for ways to engage children and families with outdoor nature-based play experiences? Learn how to incorporate nature-based best practices to improve the quality of your child care program.
  • Eliminating the Barriers of Difficult Interactions with Parents