Ideas for Celebrating the Season!

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 …

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Rooted Relationships

Rooted Relationships

Connection, In the News, Relationships, Teachers

Everywhere I turn, now, I see the topics of trauma, restorative practice, and liberatory pedagogy, like mushrooms springing up in the deadwood and the decay of the factory model of education. I also see fear – of culturally responsive teaching, critical race theory, and even social emotional learning. The most neutral way to describe it is as a conversation about values. At Sound Discipline, we are in that conversation, about values, and about how to go deeper and be braver, how to show up with a vision that is big and powerful enough to meet this moment and accelerate change.…

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Specialists Find Special Time with Students

Specialists Find Special Time with Students

Connection, Inspiring Stories, Problem Solving, Relationships, Teachers

Imagine you’re a librarian at an elementary school. You have the unique opportunity of getting to interact with EVERY student in your school community and hopefully instill in them a lifelong love of reading. Cool, right? Here’s the catch: unlike a classroom educator, your time with students is limited and spread out. So, how do you develop those deeper relationships that support students to engage in learning?

The Specialist staff at Terminal Park Elementary in Auburn, Washington were feeling this struggle of not having enough time to get through their content while also getting to know their students as individuals. …

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Routines, Rituals & Traditions in Families

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 …

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For Healthier Kids, Flip the Script on Self-Care

For Healthier Kids, Flip the Script on Self-Care

One way to help kids who are struggling is to try flipping the script – talk less about self-care and more about care for others around us.

Research shows that kindness towards others is more beneficial for mental and physical health than self-care. Active kindness: helping others, volunteering, being generous and consciously kind, results in us feeling physically better, less depressed, and more energized. It just makes us happier.

Being actively kind has profound positive impacts for kids. An article in Psychology Today reports that kids who have life experience helping others are three times happier than those who …

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How Parents & Caregivers can move on from “What’s Wrong with Me?”

How Parents & Caregivers can move on from “What’s Wrong with Me?”

Our early experiences shape us in profound ways. If those experiences were persistently stressful or traumatic in your early life, you may suffer from the results of adversity, just like millions of other parents and caregivers.

Dr. Bruce Perry and Oprah Winfrey teamed up on a new book titled What Happened To You? that illuminates how early adversity affects human beings. Many of us are caught up in blame and shame, and the authors point out that rather than asking, “What is wrong with me?” or “What is wrong with you?” we should shift the question to ask instead, “What …

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How to Help Kids Rebuild Their Stamina for the New School Year

Masked up, many children have headed back to in-person learning. Though the academic load has not yet become heavy, the time in isolation has taken its toll in many ways.

Just like an athlete returning to training after post-injury recuperation, our kids need to slowly build back the stamina they once had.  We can help our kids steadily build it back over time and adjust stamina for social interaction, focus and study, and all that it takes to be an engaged student of today.  Here are some ideas to support your kids in this time:

Acknowledge the internal work of

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Rethinking Rewards: Focus on Finding Solutions

Rethinking Rewards: Focus on Finding Solutions

 

During stressful times, when we are challenged by our kids’ behavior, it is easy to fall into a punishment-reward cycle.  We may lose our calm, flip our lids, and lay down a punishment. Then we feel bad and come back instead with ideas for incentives and rewards. Research tells us that neither work for developing self-motivation or long-term success. Punishment and rewards are alluring because they often do show very short-term success. They are also familiar to us because most of us grew up with them. What other approaches can we use when faced with problems like unfinished school …

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Harnessing Hope (For Parents)

Harnessing Hope (For Parents)

Hope is the belief in a positive future. It is an optimistic, exciting sense of what is possible. In this time of global health crisis, economic uncertainty, racial reckoning, and physical disconnection from other human beings, the day to day challenges of doing everything differently make it difficult to hold onto hope. Yet hope is an antidote to despair. It can give us the energy to persevere and can offer a sense of purpose, calm and connection. Parents are children’s first hope builders. Your presence, connection, and attitude can help your child be more hopeful. They look to you to …

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Four Ideas for Stressed Parents

We are parenting more hours a day than ever before.  In-person school, in-person play dates and visits with family and friends are things we hope to resume in the near future, but they aren’t providing much relief for parents at the moment.

Have you noticed any of these issues coming up for your kids?

  • stressing out over seemingly small things, like tech issues during on-line school or having to ask the teacher a question
  • more disorganized than usual and having difficult time keeping up with assignments
  • less physically active
  • less social and more isolated
  • on screens much more than usual
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