Training FAQs

Training FAQs

Here’s a collection of training FAQs that should answer most questions about our in-person, live on-line, and on-demand professional development opportunities.

Overview Of Training FAQs

Some frequently asked questions about what’s going on here at Explorations Early Learning:

I’m Jeff A Johnson. I’m an early learning trainer, podcaster, author, advocate, and former toy maker–you’ll find details on the site’s About page.

What’s going on here at explorationsearlylearning.com is mostly on-line but sometimes in person early learning professional development. Check out our other site–playvolutionhq.com–for early learning podcasts, free forms and handouts, an early learning glossary, DIY ideas, and much more.

Sure thing. You’ll find PDF versions of my bio, resume, and publication’s list at the below links:

My professional development sessions focus on three general areas–although there’s a lot of overlap. Those categories are Play And Early Learning, Self-Care And Relationships, and Do It Yourself Learning Ideas. You’ll find a full list of session titles, descriptions, learning goals and more here.

I’ve provided live and pre-recorded on-line early learning professional development since 2006 via a number of platforms and have made it a focus since 2018. In 2020, I started inviting other trainers to present sessions on this platform. This year, We’ll offer over 50 live on-line sessions via the Explorations Early Learning site, and I’ll do a few dozen more events booked by other organizations. Our on-line trainings are pre-approved or accepted in at least 9 US states and a couple of Canadian provinces–and we plan to add more in the year to come.

I did my first presentation in the fall of 2000 at the Iowa AEYC annual conference. That went well, and gigs as an unpaid speaker led to paid speaking gigs. Since then, thanks to word-of-mouth promotion from satisfied attendees, I’ve presented across the United States, Canada, and Australia (more on that in the next FAQ). Attendees described my sessions as heartfelt, inspirational, high-energy, and humorous.

Exhausted and homesick from spending up to six months a year on the road, in late 2017 I decided to cut back on live and in-person events and focus on online trainings.

Since starting out way back in 2000, I’ve presented across the United States, Canada, and Australia. I’ve lost track of all the events, but here’s an overview:

A few highlights:

  • I’ve keynoted the NAFCC national conference
  • I’ve keynoted many state AEYC conferences
  • I’ve keynoted the IFDCA International Conference in Cork, Ireland
  • I’ve presented at the NAEYC national conference

Here’s a fairly current list of the states, provinces, and territories where I have keynoted in-person events:

United States

  • Alabama
  • Alaska
  • Arkansas
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Hawaii
  • Idaho
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Maryland
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Mississippi
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Dakota
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Dakota
  • Tennessee
  • Vermont
  • Washington
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming 

Canada

  • Alberta
  • British Columbia 
  • Manitoba
  • New Brunswick
  • Nova Scotia
  • Ontario
  • Prince Edward Island
  • Saskatchewan

Australia

  • New South Wales
  • Queensland
  • South Australia
  • Victoria
  • Western Australia
  • Northern Territory

Sure. You’ll find helpful tips for navigating our live and on-demand on-line trainings here.

Sure. Contact us and we’ll find you an answer.

Yes, please! Contact us with details, and we will get it fixed.

Training Registration

Frequently asked questions about registering for one of our online trainings:

You’ll find our currently available trainings here:

After registering, you’ll receive a confirmation email containing a link to the session’s landing page. When logged in to the Explorations Early Learning site, you can also access trainings for which you have registered via the Training Dashboard. Simply visit the training dashboard and select Enrolled Course from the dashboard menu–that’ll take you to a list of sessions you have enrolled in. Click a session, and you’ll be taken to its landing page. This post offers basic training navigation tips.

Contact us and we’ll resend the information. To avoid this problem, we recommend double-checking your email address during checkout to catch typos. We also recommend whitelisting this email address: jeff@explorationsearlylearning.com. Adding that address to your safe sender list helps assure emails make it to your inbox.

Not through the regular checkout process. Our shopping cart requires that the information and payment method entered during checkout match the person attending the training.

But there is a workaround if you need to pay someone else’s registration. Just contact us–we can invoice you via PayPal and manual register the attendee.

You can only register one person at a time through the shopping cart.
If you contact us, we can invoice you via PayPal and register as many people as you like for a session. We’ll need the following information:

  • Email address to send the invoice to
  • First name of each attendee
  • Last name of each attendee
  • Email address of each attendee

Once we have this information, we’ll send an invoice, manually register each attendee, and send them logon information.

We share discount coupons via our mailing lists from time to time. Free and paid members also get automatic discounts on training. These discounts start at 10% for free members and go up to 50% for Benefactor level paid members.

Booking A Live On-line Or In-Person Training

Information about booking a live on-line or in-person training:

Just contact us to start the booking process.

Sure. Just ask when you contact us about booking the event. We’re happy to pencil in your date while you make a decision.

The cost for live online trainings varies based on session length, time, and demand. A session up to one hour in length scheduled Monday-Friday starts at $600.

Contact us if you have questions.

VERY rarely, but there may be an additional service charge if I’m required to complete a bunch of paperwork from your end. I hate doing paperwork.

We did for years, but no longer do. That said, we’re happy to pull together a contract or memo of understanding if you need one–or use a document you generate.

My current rate for an in-person training is $5500. That includes all expenses and covers up to six hours of training.

As far in advance as possible is always best for both live on-line and in-person events. The farther in advance that you reach out, the more likely I will be available.

That said, on-line events are simple to set up and require no travel arrangements, so if I have an opening in my schedule we can usually make short-notice bookings work.

Reach out at least 60 days in advance for in-person events. I only do a handful of them a year.

There is no deposit required for live on-line sessions. I require a 50% deposit due 30 days before the event for in-person sessions.

I accept payment by check, online with any major credit/debit card via PayPal, or in cryptocurrency via a Coinbase transaction.

Just ask. I invoice through PayPal and just need to know where to email the invoice.

Sure. I’m happy to share info about events via my training email list. I’ll just need links and images to share. I can also make a short promo video you can share to help promote the event.

Sure, I can provide coupon codes for free access to online trainings available here at Explorations Early Learning or some one-on-one consulting time that can be given away as door prizes. I can also put you in touch with my publisher if you’re interested in bulk ordering any of my books as door prizes.

Please do! You can reach out to them via contact information you’ll find here.

In-Person Trainings

Frequently asked questions about in-person events:

In 2018, after years of running the roads and spending 6 months a year away from home, I decided to shift my focus to on-line trainings. I was burning out.

Nope. I’m always in favor of whatever makes attendees most comfortable and works best for the space.

Not really. I prefer a wireless headset mic if the room requires the use of a microphone, but can work with whatever is available. I rarely use a projector and will let you know if you select a topic that requires one.

Not usually. Although, a heads-up about delightful restaurants or coffee shops near the venue is always appreciated.

Live On-Line Trainings

Frequently asked questions about live on-line trainings:

Our live on-line professional development sessions take place on the ZOOM meeting platform. We’ve used lots of platforms and find ZOOM to be the most versatile, user-friendly, and reliable option.

Yes, all our live on-line sessions are recorded.

After registering for a session, you will receive a confirmation email with a link to the session’s landing page. You can also find your session’s landing page when signed in to the Explorations Early Learning website by clicking Training Dashboard on the main menu and then selecting Enrolled Courses. This will display all the sessions you’ve enrolled in. Select a session to access its landing page.

This session landing page includes:

  • A Getting Started section with basic info about the session
  • A Pre-Training Survey
  • The session’s ZOOM link
  • The Training Evaluation
  • A link to the session Resource Page

The session’s ZOOM link displays a countdown timer until the session’s start time. When it is time, you have two options for joining the session. You can either click Start Meeting to open the ZOOM session on the Explorations Early Learning site, or click Join In ZOOM App to leave our site and join via ZOOM’s app.

If you select the second option and have not already installed the ZOOM app, you will be asked to do so before you can access the training.

It’s best to sign in 5-10 minutes before the session’s scheduled start time, so you can adjust your audio and video settings and settle in for the session. This also provides time to manage any technical problems you may have.

It’s not mandatory, but it is appreciated. And it helps us tailor sessions to best meet the needs of the people attending.

Only if:

  • You want/need a certificate of completion
  • You have feedback–good or bad–you want to share about the training

We know some trainers require attendees to “sign in” with their name or training registry ID number in the meeting platform’s chat room as a way of tracking attendance. We don’t do that because the ZOOM platform tracks when people log on and how long they are present in the meeting. We find these automated logs more accurate than any other method of tracking session attendance.

Yes, you can register, and we can share a recording a day or two after the session takes place, but we are generally unable to issue certificates if you do not attend the live event.

If your internet goes out, your battery dies, or some other act of God keeps you from completing a session, we can usually make a video of the session available, so you can see what you missed. In some cases, we are unable to issue training certificates when this happens.

If the technology fails on our end, we will reschedule the session as soon as possible and/or make a recording of the session available to all registered attendees. In years of providing live on-line trainings, this has only happened a couple of times.

On-Demand Trainings

After registering for a session, you will receive a confirmation email with a link to the session’s landing page. You can also find your session’s landing page when signed in to the Explorations Early Learning website by clicking Training Dashboard on the main menu and then selecting Enrolled Courses. This will display all the sessions you’ve enrolled in. Select a session to access its landing page.

The training consists of a series of lessons and short quizzes that you can work through at your own pace.

A score of at least 80% is required to pass a quiz. Quizzes can be re-taken if you fail to reach 80%.

Quizzes get reviewed and graded within 24 hours of submission, in most cases.

We want to assure you have a quality training experience and are here to help at any time. You can reach out directly from your session’s landing page by clicking Browse Q&A tab and then submitting your question.

Alternatively, you can reach out via this contact form.

After all your quizzes have been evaluated, we’ll email a password that allows you to access the session’s evaluation.

You’ll need to complete and submit the evaluation if you want a training certificate. After submitting the evaluation, a personalized PDF certificate will be emailed.

The session’s resource page is also available after completing the session. It has links to additional content related to the session–things like books, articles, and other resources related to the session.

Professional Development Certificates

Here are answers to frequently asked questions about professional development certificates:

Yes, we make certificates of completion available for all on-demand and live on-line professional development trainings we host.

To receive a certificate, you must complete and submit a short evaluation after the session ends. Upon submission, we automatically generate a personalized PDF certificate and email it to you.

For live on-line trainings, the link to the evaluation appears on the session’s landing page and can be accessed after the training ends.

For on-demand trainings, we email a password that allows access to the session evaluation after all quizzes have been reviewed.

If your personalized certificate has not hit your email inbox within 24 hours of submitting a session evaluation, please reach out and let us know.

Sure. While the design may change a bit from year to year, the certificates we issue contain the same basic information:

training certificate sample
Sample Training Certificate

Training oversight organizations have differing requirements for what must appear on creditable certificates. Our certificates include the following information:

  • Title Of Training
  • Training Description
  • Learning Objectives
  • Attendees Name
  • Attendee Address
  • Date Of Training
  • Name Of Trainer
  • Trainer Signature
  • Total Training Contact Hours
  • Organization Name
  • Organization Logo
  • Content Area
  • State Organization or trainer ID for states we work with
  • State Event ID for states we work with
  • Attendee Registry ID for states we work with
  • User IP Address
  • Unique Certificate Identifier

You’ll find details about where our trainings are approved here.
You may reach out to discuss the topic more, if you like.

We expect that they can be–nefarious people can be very creative and talented. That said, we’ve taken the following steps to reduce counterfeiting and keep our certificating process secure.

  • Access to session evaluation is restricted to verified users
  • Each certificate includes the IP address of the person submitting the evaluation
  • Each certificate has a unique identifier
  • We archive all valid certificates so that fakes can be easily identified
  • We upload attendance information to the state training registries with which we work

Using The ZOOM Meeting Platform

Here are frequently asked questions about using ZOOM to attend our live on-line trainings:

You sure can. Visit http://zoom.us/test and follow the prompts to join a test meeting, where you can test your systems audio and video and familiarize yourself with the ZOOM platform. You can also check this link to learn more about how ZOOM works on your device. The test meeting link is also a good way to test your internet connection with ZOOM.

After registering for a session, you will receive a confirmation email with a link to the session’s landing page. You can also find your session’s landing page when signed in to the Explorations Early Learning website by clicking Training Dashboard on the main menu and then selecting Enrolled Courses. This will display all the sessions you’ve enrolled in. Select a session to access its landing page.

This session landing page includes:

  • A Getting Started section with basic info about the session
  • A Pre-Training Survey
  • The session’s ZOOM link
  • The Training Evaluation
  • A link to the session Resource Page

The session’s ZOOM link displays a countdown timer until the session’s start time. When it is time, you have two options for joining the session. You can either click Start Meeting to open the ZOOM session on the Explorations Early Learning site, or click Join In ZOOM App to leave our site and join via ZOOM’s app.

If you select the second option and have not already installed the ZOOM app, you will be asked to do so before you can access the training.

You can join a ZOOM meeting via the most popular web browsers without downloading the ZOOM software, but the ZOOM software does offer enhanced viewing and participation options.

If you’re only attending one ZOOM meeting, there’s probably no reason to download the software, but if you plan to attend multiple events it is probably worth the time and effort.

You can find the ZOOM app via your mobile device’s app store or check these links:

Please contact us, and we will do our best to help.

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