A Reflection On Camp Firefly

We remember our first day of camp as if it was yesterday. Bashful glances and giggles from the children; watchful eyes and tearful goodbyes from parents. The sounds of luggage and legs climbing into bunk beds; counselors chatting and smiling ear to ear.

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Just Keep Moving!

by Mark Lecker, Pre-Doctoral Clinical Psychology Extern, Psychological Services

While a nutritious diet is an important facet to a healthy lifestyle, it is also important to exercise your body. Many people seem to think that exercise must happen within the walls of a gym or along a track. However, you can get exercise nearly anywhere there is room and it is safe. Sometimes it’s easiest to have a workout partner or a physical trainer to help with motivation, encouragement and to prevent injuries.

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Gender Stereotypes – What’s A Parent to Do?

By Tracey Lipsig Kite, LCSW, Educator and Trainer, Jewish Child & Family Services

“Do girls abandon our bodies because that’s where we’re shamed and boys abandon their emotions because that’s where they’re shamed? Little boys: Don’t feel. Little girls: Don’t hunger.” Glennon Doyle Melton in Love Warrior

Our culture today (often unconsciously) pushes girls and boys into separate boxes, and handicaps them emotionally. Despite our efforts to the contrary, we continue to tell girls, in subtle and not-so-subtle ways, that being nice, beautiful, smart and successful are expected; expressing anger is not OK. We tell boys that being tough, strong and a leader are important, and the only emotion that is OK for them to express is anger. To further complicate things, most people aren’t aware of having taken in those messages, so we may be passing them on to our kids without meaning to. Two JCFS parenting sessions of particular interest over the past two years are: Girl Drama and Raising Emotionally Healthy Boys.

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Promoting Self-Care for New Mothers

by Elizabeth DiMaggio, Pre-Doctoral Clinical Psychology Extern, Psychological Services

Having a new baby is an exciting time in a caregiver’s life. There is a brand new person to love and care for. While it can be an exciting time, becoming a new mother can be difficult and potentially draining. Focusing on a new infant might lead to the mother putting her own needs aside. While focusing attention on a new infant is extremely important, it might cause a mother to ignore her own self-care and signs from her body to take time for herself.

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Keep Your Child Happy and Healthy This Winter

The colder air and gloomy winter skies can sometimes cause children to be temperamental.  An inconsistent schedule due to holidays, weather delays and school closings may also spike anxiety and onset challenging behaviors. Occupational therapists can help create tools such as social stories and visual supports to help children understand these changes. Here are some simple ways to keep your child happy and healthy this winter season.

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Sibling Relationships

Although parents are typically a child's first source of human connection, sibling relationships are also an important factor in development. As of 2010, 82.22% of youth lived with at least one sibling(1). Sibling bonds are unique in that they often last a lifetime and are typically people’s longest relationships in life(2). Sibling relationships are influential in many ways.

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Tips for a Sensory Friendly Holiday

The holiday season can be frustrating and confusing for a child with common sensory sensitivities.  Bright lights, loud music, new foods, crowded rooms, gift giving and different expectations can cause meltdowns and other disruptive behaviors.

We have some tips to help prepare your child for the excitement of the season, and a joyful December!

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