Essentials Child Care Preservice

The Essentials Child Care Preservice Series provides helpful information for creating safe and healthy early childhood environments.

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This is an online, self-paced course. And it’s free!

  • Participate online at any time, 24/7
  • Choose to complete only one module or all modules in the entire series.
  • Complete the modules in any order.
  • Receive a professional development certificate for each module completed.



essentials module images

For more information, view a complete description of each module.

1 Essentials for Safety in Your Child Care Environment 1 hour
2 Essentials for Emergency Preparedness 1 hour
3 Essentials for Transportation in Child Care 1 hour
4 Essentials for Prevention and Control of Infectious Disease 1.5 hours
5 Essentials for Handling and Storage of Hazardous Materials 1 hour
6 Essentials for Medication in Child Care 1.5 hours
7 Essentials for Managing Food Allergies 1 hour
8 Essentials for Infant Safe Sleep 1 hour
9 Essentials for Prevention of Shaken Baby Syndrome 30 minutes
10 Essentials for Supporting Cultural Diversity 30 minutes
11 Essentials for Understanding Homelessness 30 minutes
12 Essentials for Understanding Child Development 1.5 hours
  DHS Approved Professional Development Credit TOTAL: 12 hours


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To participate in the online training...

  1. Read the detailed login instructions.
  2. Go to the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Moodle™ login page.
  3. Create a Moodle™ account. You will need your DHS Registry ID.
  4. HINT -- it looks like this:


Need help?

  • Essentials Help Desk: (515) 294-8754 (Monday - Friday, 8am - 3pm) or email
  • Technical (computer) questions: (515) 294-1725 (Monday - Friday, 8am - 5pm) 

Classes are also available in face-to-face workshops. To locate a workshop near you, go to the Iowa Child Care Training Registry.

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