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Oak Knoll School Blog

How to Talk to Your Teenagers about Harmful Effects of Social Media

Posted by Laura Perillo on Oct 22, 2021 4:11:41 PM

The rumors are true – the teenage years are indeed filled with the inevitable messy rooms, empty kitchen cabinets, refrigerators and smelly shoes laying around the house. However, aside from the normal teenage happenings in households across the country, parents should be aware of recent statistics uncovered about teenagers and social media. 

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Topics: technology, parenting, social and emotional learning, mental health, social media

Lessons We Can Learn from Simone Biles and the Olympics

Posted by Laura Perillo on Jul 29, 2021 2:14:39 PM

The country was rocked on Tuesday, July 27, 2021, when U.S. gymnastics Olympian Simone Biles – the most decorated American gymnast with 30 Olympic and World Championship medals – withdrew from the Olympic gymnastics final. Since, she has also withdrawn from the individual and all-around gymnastic competitions – decisions Biles said were to protect her mental well-being, breaking open oftentimes the hidden stigma of mental health issues in our professional athletes.

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Topics: athletics, health, student advice, mental health

Prioritizing Mental Health in An Uncertain COVID World

Posted by Dr. Jennifer Butler-Sweeney, Ph.D. on May 21, 2021 1:46:16 PM

As we make progress moving forward during what has been an unprecedented year, we continue to see students struggle with so many facets of mental health and stress management. These concerns pre-existed the pandemic on many levels. However, as parents and educators, we are grappling with the multi-faceted impact of COVID-19 on various aspects of adolescent development and functioning – and as such – continue the need to see our students and their struggles through this complex lens. 

So, how do we help our students prioritize their mental health through this experience that is unique and eludes our understanding? While it is useful to engage in conversation that helps our teens understand the deleterious ways COVID-19 has exacerbated what was already a delicate balance of academic, social, and extracurricular pursuits, we are trying to move on from this discourse into a more future-oriented, affirming place. 

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Topics: parenting, mental health

Podcast: Addressing Social and Emotional Needs During COVID-19

Posted by Meghan Hodgin on Apr 22, 2021 4:46:08 PM

In episode 10 of the Academically Speaking podcast, Laura Perillo — Oak Knoll's Marketing Content Strategist — sat down with Dr. Jennifer Butler-Sweeney, Upper School psychologist, who talks about tactics parents can use to address the social and emotional impact of COVID-19 on middle and high school students. This is the second in Oak Knoll's special four-part parenting series, Parenting During the Pandemic.

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Topics: high school, elementary school, parenting, middle school, social and emotional learning, mental health, development, podcast

Podcast: Parenting During the Pandemic Part I - Mental Health

Posted by Meghan Hodgin on Mar 10, 2021 5:44:22 PM

In episode 9 of the Academically Speaking podcast, Laura Perillo — Oak Knoll's Marketing Content Strategist — sat down with Melissa Nelson, Oak Knoll's Lower School Guidance Counselor, who talks about the pandemic's impact on the mental health of our youngest learners and how parents can support their child during this time. This is the first in Oak Knoll's special four-part parenting series, Parenting During the Pandemic. 

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Topics: parenting, mental health, COVID-19

The Mental and Physical Health Benefits of Snow Days

Posted by Laura Perillo on Jan 28, 2021 9:34:39 AM

What would childhood be like if you’ve never put a spoon under your pillow, flushed ice cubes down the toilet or put on your pajamas inside out the night before a winter snowstorm?

A true milestone of growing up is the ever-so-coveted snow day – the gift that all children angst for each winter when that first hint of snow is detected in the forecast. 

While skipping school for the day is the most immediate and best part of a snow day for most children, there are many other hidden mental and physical health benefits associated with snow days. Considering our current pandemic situation, snow days are more important now than ever before.

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Topics: high school, elementary school, parenting, middle school, social and emotional learning, mental health

How to Stop 'COVID Shaming' and Why It Matters

Posted by Laura Perillo on Oct 30, 2020 11:00:00 AM

While social distancing, wearing masks and avoiding gatherings weakens the spread of COVID-19, something else is growing stronger among communities at an alarming rate.

COVID shaming – or the act of publicly embarrassing someone who either has COVID-19 or is quarantining as a precautionary measure while they wait for test results after possible exposure – is real and now weaving its way through the gossip circles in neighborhoods and on school campuses. It is especially on the rise on social media. 

While many schools in our state and throughout the country are seeing upticks of COVID-19 cases heading into the winter months, it is important to remind ourselves about keeping the shame at bay. 

Here are some helpful tips:

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Topics: parenting, student advice, social and emotional learning, mental health, COVID-19

Podcast: Understanding Re-Entry Anxiety in Children

Posted by Meghan Hodgin on Aug 24, 2020 5:19:34 PM

In our brand new podcast, Academically Speaking, Laura Perillo — Oak Knoll's Marketing Content Strategist in the Office of Marketing and Communications — sat down with new Lower School Guidance Counselor Melissa Nelson on re-entry anxiety in children as they return to campus this fall under COVID-19 restrictions.

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Topics: elementary school, parenting, separation anxiety, tips, mental health, Coronavirus, COVID-19

How to Mask Train Your Child Before Returning to the Classroom

Posted by Laura Perillo on Aug 19, 2020 1:34:06 PM

The COVID-19 pandemic has introduced countless changes since March. Absent of a vaccine, and with the start of the school year just weeks away, parents everywhere are wrestling with the fact that the return to the classroom is going to look very different this fall.

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Topics: education, students, student advice, social and emotional learning, mental health, Coronavirus, COVID-19

The Disguised Benefits of Losing

Posted by Laura Perillo on May 15, 2020 2:11:11 PM

Whether it be in the classroom, on the field or at home, everyone is most likely familiar with the “winning isn’t everything” phrase. If winning isn’t everything, however, how do most people generally feel about losing? 

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Topics: parenting, student advice, wellness, mental health

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