Safe Spaces

Posted: June 10, 2020

The risk-factors of homelessness, poverty and single-parent homes for students and their families are often overlooked, instead of taking them into consideration holistically in the classroom. According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, there are more than 560,000 homeless people in the United States on a given night. But homelessness is not just the obvious idea of being without a physical home; it also embodies certain aspects—such as the breaking up of families—that silently dehumanize a child’s psyche.

Read More

Thinking "Happy Thoughts"

Posted: May 20, 2020

I woke up recently to the film “Hook” playing on TV. Watching Robin Williams as Peter Pan gave me a warm reminder about the importance of thinking “happy thoughts” in order to be able “fly,” whether as an adult or a child. It prompted me to make a list of the thoughts and memories that make me happy. This list of joyful thoughts provided me with some relief and balance against the stress that I’ve been feeling recently. My list also made me reflect on the stresses that my students continue to undergo during this quarantine—like not being able to graduate on stage, missing their friends, and being away from school in general.

Read More

Resources for Parents

Posted: May 13, 2020

The Overcoming Obstacles Parent-Child Snapshots are a collection of activities parents can use to help their children cope with stress, stay positive, and develop critical skills, including study skills.  These handbooks are available in versions for both younger and older students and can be downloaded for free below in English and Spanish.

Read More

"Overcoming COVID-19"

Posted: May 11, 2020

It is said that 2020 means perfect vision, But this 2020 came with a cataract. A virus, paving its path with corpses; The world mourns.

Read More

Teaching Our Children to Resolve Conflicts

Posted: April 22, 2020

It is imperative that we take the time to teach young people the conflict resolution skills they need to see their way out of a conflict in a safe and healthy way, especially in this time of quarantine and social distancing. What they don’t always realize is that conflict often consists of several stages. The Overcoming Obstacles “Stages of Conflict” activity sheet, found in the Resolving Conflicts Module of the High School curricula, provides a visual map of how a conflict can escalate. Teaching young people the different stages of conflict can empower them with the knowledge and skills to prevent a problem from escalating. In some unfortunate circumstances, conflicts can spiral out of control in just seconds. Having this activity sheet visually available in their home as well as at school can help students pause, take a deep breath, and garner some self-control before anger takes over.

Read More