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Working with Young Children

  • National University 20 River Park Place West Fresno, CA, 93720 United States (map)

Working with Young Children

To Register:

Presented by Infant Family and Early Childhood Mental Health Specialists:

Debbie Duncan, LMFT, RPT-S

Julie Torok-Mangasarian, LMFT, RPT-S

Kathleen Romeiro, LCSW


Course Description: Part 1 of the workshop is designed as a brief introduction to the concepts and principles of infant-family and early childhood mental health, highlighting the complex and important role of relationships and attachments in early childhood. 
Who should attend: This workshop is essential for anyone working with young children and families including foster parents, educators, health professionals, mental health clinicians, case managers and parents.
Key Concepts: 
-Key concepts of infant and preschooler development.
-Importance of primary attachment relationships.
-Common infant, toddler and preschooler emotional/behavioral issues.
-Risk and resiliency. 
Learning Objectives: Upon completion of this course, you should be able to: 
1. Define and discuss the tenets of infant-preschooler mental health. 
2. Identify common risk and resiliency factors for children 0-5 years of age.  
3. Compare and contrast various attachment styles. 
4. Describe common observation, screening and assessment tools used in infant-preschooler mental health. 


Course Description: Part 2 of the workshop will introduce participants to basics of play therapy and its importance in addressing symptoms of stress in early childhood. 
Learning Objectives: Upon completion of this course, you should be able to identify: 
1. Effects of stress on the brain (risk). 
2. Symptoms of stress in young children.
3. The importance of relationships in play therapy. 
4. Developmental considerations in play therapy.
5. Basic skills in play therapy.
6. Hands-on interactive strategies to utilize in session. 

Who Should Attend: This workshop is intended for Master level therapists and counselors who currently work with or have a desire to work with young children. 

Program Schedule: 
8:30-9am: Sign-In/ Register for Part 1 (or all day)
9am-12pm Intro to Infant-Family and Early Childhood Mental Health
12-12:30pm: Break
12-30-1pm: Sign-In/ Register for Part 2
1pm-4:00pm: Basics of Play Therapy, addressing symptoms of stress, the importance of relationships, developmental considerations, basis skills in play therapy & hands on strategies.

Certificates of completion are available to all participants and will be hand delivered at time of training sign-out. Please bring your license number to the seminar; certificates of successful completion for CEU’s or APT Credit Hours will not be issued without your license number.

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CEU’s: Attendance of this training meets the qualifications for either 6 hours (Full Day) or 3 hours (Half Day) of continuing education credit for LMFT’s,
LCSW’s, LPCC’s and/or LEP’s as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. Prov. # 131780
IMH Hours: Workshop is aligned with the California Training Guidelines and Personnel Competencies for Infant-Family and Early Childhood Mental Health (2009). 2-hours in Area B; 1-hour in Area D; and 3-hours in Area F.
Registration fee includes light continental breakfast or afternoon refreshments (both for full day) and Certificate of Completion and/or Continuing Education Units and session handouts. Lunch will not be provided.      

APT: 3 Contact Play Therapy Credit Hours (1-4pm) APT Approved Prov. # 17-950. Play therapy credit won’t be awarded to Non-mental health professionals.                       


Debbie Duncan, LMFT, RPT-S has more than 20 years of experience working with children. She has taught, mentored, and consulted in areas of child therapy and early intervention. For more than eighteen years, she worked at Fresno County Children’s Mental Health, initially with court-ordered cases and later was co-located at the Assessment Center for Children. Debbie is a Registered Play Therapist/Supervisor, is endorsed as an Infant-Early Childhood Mental Health Specialist/Reflective Practice Mentor, and is a Circle of Security Parenting Facilitator. Currently, Debbie is transitioning into private practice and consults with individuals and groups regarding early childhood therapy and reflective practice.

Julie Torok-Mangasarian, LMFT RPT-S is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and the Clinical Director of the California Psychological Institute in Fresno, CA. Julie is a registered play therapist supervisor, reflective practice mentor and certified educator of infant massage (CEIM). Julie specializes in the treatment of complex and developmental trauma in young children. Julie has specialized training in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT), Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy (DDP), play therapy (Theraplay®, client-centered play therapy and Filial Therapy) and Reflective Practice Facilitation/Supervision.

Kathleen Romeiro, LCSW is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over 20 years of experience working with children and families. Kathleen has special training and experience in working with children and families in crisis and with children 0-5 and their families. Kathleen also has training in Theraplay®, child-centered play therapy, Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy. In addition to providing direct services to children and families, she is a clinical supervisor, CPI’s Infant Mental Health Coordinator, and conducts Bonding, Attachment and Sibling Studies for Dependency Court.

Cancelations/Grievances/ADA: Facilities and programs are accessible to persons with disabilities. If you have a special need and plan to attend the workshop, allow as much advance notice as is possible to ensure we have ample opportunity to meet your needs. Full Refunds will be provided with 2 day written notice of cancelation. Cancelations less than 2 days prior to event or in cases of Non-Attendance refunds will not be granted. If you have questions or to report grievances, please contact Cristina Rodriguez 559-256-09856 email: 

Later Event: March 2
Infant Massage