Connection and love

Connection and love

Ideas for Celebrating the Season!

It was far from normal, and this school year marked the first time since 2018-2019 that most kids were in real classrooms, in person, together. So, when they leave their classrooms and say goodbye to their teachers this month, it will be truly transitional. Celebrating all that they accomplished this school year can help with the transition. And there is a great deal to celebrate! Celebrations during childhood help our kids apply structure to the world and create memories that will stay with them into adulthood. Here are some suggestions and ideas for how to mark these end-of-the-school year days [...]

2023-05-17T18:26:50+00:00June 14, 2022|

Developing Firmness Tools for Educators

When we can respond to students in ways that are both connected and firm, both adults and students benefit. But how do we do that? Children need compassion and boundaries, connection and high expectations - at the same time. But most of us did not grow up with this model or learn it in our teacher training. The good news is that this is something we can learn, practice, and get better at until it’s second nature. During COVID, we have been refining our course on this topic --- our new online workshop Reimagining Resilience 2: Developing Firmness Tools offers [...]

2023-05-17T18:26:28+00:00March 18, 2022|

Developing Firmness Tools for Parents

Kind compassion and grounded firmness are critical to effective parenting. If we can do both, our parenting takes on a strong even keel, so that in stormy times or calm, we know we are getting where we want to go with our children in a way that has direction and purpose. Both parents and kids feel the stability. We call this parenting with connected firmness. How do we do this, when many of us were not brought up with this modeled in our own families? Ask More Questions: Instead of telling kids what to do all of the time, begin [...]

2023-05-17T18:26:27+00:00March 18, 2022|

Routines, Rituals & Traditions in Families

Routines provide consistency and predictability. They help our kids feel safe, and we as adults feel more organized and less chaotic. Specifics of routines tend to be unique to each family. Rituals and tradition provide comfort for kids and more than that, tend to be the foundation of our childhood memories as we grow. They provide markers for our passing years, establishing our identities and values, and a deep sense of belonging within our families.  Many traditions and rituals are religious.  December contains twelve religious celebrations from around the world. Each has a set of rituals shared by people who celebrate [...]

2023-05-17T18:26:26+00:00December 10, 2021|

In the Classroom, Kindness = Connection + Caring

  Many of us entered teaching believing in our abilities to be consistently kind. In reality, vacillating between kindness and being authoritarian is a common cycle, especially when class sizes and challenging students make the job feel overwhelming.  Kindness and compassion from a teacher are a powerful model for our students. Kindness does not have to mean being wishy-washy and letting the classroom descend into chaos or being overly sweet and positive. It means respecting the student AND the routines, expectations, and agreements of the well as ourselves.  How can we as teachers do this...maintaining a firmness that allows [...]

2020-02-07T07:03:57+00:00February 7, 2020|

For Parents, a New Look at Kindness

Is it possible to be a kind parent while also holding fast to family agreements, values and expectations?  It is. Sometimes we go back and forth between being kind OR firm with our kids. Actually, being kind is being connected to your children, while holding them accountable to the expectations of the family. In this month celebrating love, we invite you to look at ways to practice  kindness and connection. Here are some ideas to get you started: Being present is an act of kindness: 15 minutes of scheduled one-on-one time every day. Children need to feel a sense of [...]

2020-02-07T06:55:48+00:00February 7, 2020|

PCEs and ACEs

There is a lot of information now on the impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and how they change the brain in ways that make learning more challenging. Emerging also are studies which show how, combined with Positive Childhood Experiences (PCEs), children can grow to be sensitive, strong, and capable adults. Building PCEs for the students in your classroom can be done with intentional small shifts in thinking and practice. Myths about PCEs: It is about happiness. Of course, we feel better when our students feel better. That leads us to wanting to make them happy. It turns out though, [...]

2019-10-04T09:36:17+00:00October 4, 2019|

Building Family Connections

Relationships matter. As human beings, we have a deep pull toward being connected to each other. We learn about who we are in the context of social connections. There is clear data that shows that these positive childhood experiences have long term benefits. Those connections change the way our brain grows which influence the way we interpret and respond to the world around us. Families play a big role in how we make meaning of ourselves and the world. Children who hold the belief and experience that there is another person in the world to whom they really matter are [...]

2019-10-04T09:26:32+00:00October 4, 2019|

Memories Matter

August is the time of year for most of us that we are holding on to the last weeks of time with our families while are brain is increasingly thinking about the coming school year. There are so many details to think about – and a deep sense of curiosity and anticipation in getting to know our “new” students. If you think back to your own years as a student, what memories stand out that helped you know you belonged or you mattered at school. Was there one particular teacher? A set of friends? An event or some particularly interesting [...]

2019-08-06T09:53:32+00:00August 6, 2019|

Making Memories

What are your memories of your family growing up? Some of us have treasured memories of joy and connection. Others have memories of challenges or stressful experiences. Most of us have some mixture. It turns out that childhood memories become the foundation for our adulthood. They influence how we relate to our parents or caregivers and also how we relate to the young people we care for; be they our own children, nieces or nephews or children of other people we love. You can think about how you decided to be “like” your parent and recreate some of the memories [...]

2019-08-06T09:38:27+00:00August 6, 2019|


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