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Think Small Institute provides expert guidance and professional resources for early childhood educators.

We’re building on over fifty years of experience in the early childhood field to bring you high-quality, personalized services including professional development opportunities, individualized coaching support, and resources from experts on the cutting edge of child development. Together, we can ensure all children are ready to succeed in kindergarten and beyond.

About Think Small Institute

The Think Small Institute offers a wide range of learning opportunities which include options for both live-virtual training and self-paced eLearning. Our subject matter experts design and deliver high-quality professional development that meets the unique requirements of educators wherever they are.

Our courses stand out because they translate evidence-based theory into effective practice, using antiracist pedagogy and diversity-informed practice to equitably meet the diverse needs of the early childhood workforce.


Competency Areas

Our catalog of courses offers professional development in the following core knowledge competency areas:

  • Administration, Management, & Business Practices
  • Curriculum, & Teaching Practices
  • Developmental Learning Experiences
  • Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Social Justice
  • Family Child Care
  • Family Engagement & Relationships
  • Health, Safety, and Nutrition
  • Leadership, Professional Development, & Advocacy
  • Quality Improvement: Observation, Assessment, & Evaluation
  • Social and Emotional Competency
  • Trauma Sensitive Leadership & Care


Available on-demand, our eLearning courses are easily digestible and do not have to be completed in one sitting. Most eLearning courses come with IACET CEU credit included.

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In-Person Instructor-Led Training

Face-to-face training is held at Think Small as well as locations around the 7-county Metro Area in Minnesota. Trainings are available in English, Hmong, Somali, and Spanish.

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Online Instructor-Led Training

This form of training is a live, instructor-led event held online through our Learning Center platform.  

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Training Policies

We have protocols in place that are intended to keep the early childhood workforce safe, including trainers, educators, and Think Small/Child Care Aware of Minnesota staff. View our training policies for more information. 

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Think Small Institute FAQs
Help! Can I call you if I need urgent help?

Yes! The number is 651-233-2263. We try to answer every call as it comes in, but please be sure to leave a call-back number if leaving a message! 

Do I need an account to purchase publications from Redleaf Press?

No. You can create an account in the Redleaf Press Online Store, but an account is not required to make a purchase. You can check out as a guest. 

What is your course cancellation policy?

All registrations are final. We are unable to offer refunds or transfers. Please carefully review the date and title of your session for accuracy before registering.

Please refer to the rest of our training policy here.

Redleaf Press

Our resources for early childhood educators don’t end here. 

A division of Think Small, Redleaf Press is a leading nonprofit publisher of exceptional curriculum, management, and business resources for early childhood professionals. Our titles represent a broad range of topics designed to assist early childhood professionals in providing a stimulating, child-centered curriculum based on sound and accepted theory. 

Visit Redleaf Press


Services for Organizations and ECE Systems

Let our professional development coordinators take the headache out of selecting courses aligned to your organization’s mission and current areas of focus. 

We’re here to assist your organization with: 

→ Aligning credit options to your state’s professional development or credentialing system
→ Facilitating large group registrations and communities of practice models
→ Bulk pricing for Online CDA® or other eLearning course packages
→ Customized solutions that advance national, state, or regional quality initiatives 

To contact a professional development coordinator, please email