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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

Tips for Helping Your Child Navigate Changes in Learning Environment

Posted by Laura Perillo on Jan 13, 2021 11:15:39 AM

With the New Year here (finally!) and school back underway after the holidays, the toggle between children learning in-person (full or half-day) to learning virtually from home can be stressful and confusing for families. 

While we’d all like to get back to pre-COVID days, unfortunately, the virus is still hanging around. As a result, it has caused many schools to pivot back-and-forth between teaching children in the classroom and virtually at home with little notice. 

With the school juggle this year still very volatile, we have some helpful tips for families to help ease your children into this new way of learning.

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Topics: high school, elementary school, parenting, middle school, tips, COVID-19, virtual learning

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

How to Help Your Child Understand Politics Respectfully

Posted by Laura Perillo on Oct 11, 2020 8:25:36 AM

Undoubtedly, there has never been a more turbulent election year. As the country still wades through the lasting effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and amid racial and ethnic inequities still piling onto structural racism, this election runs deep – and differently – for everyone. 

Children, in fact, can pick up on political banter and news soundbites, often leaving them unsure about what they are hearing or about what it means. 

It is important that parents and educators provide children the tools they need to understand politics respectfully, and age appropriately. 

Here are some helpful tips on how to help your children understand politics respectfully. 

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Topics: election, teaching, high school, elementary school, parenting, middle school, politics

How to Instill Empathy and Compassion in Children

Posted by Laura Perillo on Sep 21, 2020 11:00:00 AM

Raising kind and compassionate children is inevitably one of the most – arguably the most – important tasks that parents and caregivers are responsible for. Of course, parents want their children to do well in school, get involved in activities and make friends, but the foundation to raising a kind human being all boils down to the basic of principals – teach your children to become empathetic and compassionate toward others. 

This, however, does not happen overnight. In fact, it takes a lot of practice. But the process can start when children are young. Between the ages of 6-9 months, infants focus on parents’ reactions to social events and mimic them to learn how to operate in a social world. Between 18-24 months, toddlers begin to develop their own theories about the way the world works by attributing thoughts, feelings and intention to others and themselves. 

So, how can you instill empathy and compassion in children? Melissa Nelson, Oak Knoll's Lower School Guidance Counselor, says there are several ways parents and caregivers can model and guide, starting when they are very young: 

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Topics: elementary school, lower school, parenting, social and emotional learning

5 COVID-19 Back to School Tips

Posted by Laura Perillo on Sep 15, 2020 11:00:00 AM

In September, as the air gets cooler, kids load their new notebooks, folders, and pencils into their new backpacks. When the first day of school finally arrives, parents shuttle their children out the door and cross their fingers for smiles and a great first day. This year, however, back-to-school looks vastly different as the country is still dodging COVID-19 minus a vaccine.

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Topics: back-to-school, parenting, tips, Coronavirus, 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

Is Your Child Ready for Preschool?

Posted by Laura Perillo on Jun 29, 2020 11:35:08 AM

For years, experts from different specialty areas have proven multiple benefits of a pre-K learning experience. From being better prepared for kindergarten to increasing high school graduation rates by 11 percent, there is no doubt that children who are exposed to a preschool experience reap advantages from this form of early education. 

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Topics: parenting, separation anxiety, pre-kindergarten, pre-K, preschool, preschool ready

Helping Kids Live with Prolonged Uncertainty During COVID-19

Posted by Laura Perillo on May 28, 2020 5:51:06 PM

Since COVID-19 began to spread across the globe and states began to mandate stay-at-home orders, the light at the end of the tunnel has become clouded for many. Although some questions have been answered by state and local health officials over the past few months, some things – such as when students can return to classes and sports – are still up-in-the-air. 

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Topics: parenting, Coronavirus, COVID-19

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