Fenn Speaks is a speaker and film series hosted by The Fenn School every year. We hope that you will join us to hear about and discuss these important topics.
Lynn Lyons, "Interrupting the Worry Cycle: Managing Anxiety at School and at Home"
Untreated anxiety in children is one of the top predictors of depression in adolescence and young adulthood. The good news? Research proves that teaching children certain cognitive and social skills makes a big difference in preventing the development of these struggles. Lynn Lyons, licensed clinical social worker, psychotherapist, author, and international speaker and trainer, will describe the most common anxiety-enhancing patterns – including reassurance, accommodation, avoidance, and poor problem solving — and then introduce concrete skills that can change children's (and adults') ingrained patterns of thinking and behaving. The goal? Helping kids move toward autonomy and flexibility throughout the life cycle.
PREVIOUS FENN SPEAKS EVENTS
Dr. Jill Walsh, "A Digital Coming of Age"
Digital and social media create many opportunities and challenges for children and adolescents. The same is true for parents and caregivers who are tasked with guiding them through adolescence in a mediated world- a world most of us never experienced until adulthood. We cannot pretend that digital technology does not impact our children, but in what ways and to what effects? Why are they always on their phones? And exactly what is going on with Fortnite?
Dr. Walsh's talk will outline the landscape of tween/teen digital media use and provide insights for caregivers trying to navigate this world with them. Emphasis will be placed on what draws them to the digital space and how to engage in positive and productive conversations about their technology consumption. Using examples from her research, she will discuss the good, the bad, and the just plain confusing in their mediated experiences.
Dr. Michael Thompson, "It's a Boy! Understanding Your Son's Development from Birth to Eighteen"
Parents of boys often find themselves bewildered or frustrated by certain aspects of boy development: their little-boy anger, their inattentiveness in elementary school, their lack of motivation in middle school or their reluctance to talk to their parents during the high school years. Join us for a funny and reassuring talk by Dr. Michael Thompson-consultant, author, and psychologist specializing in children and families-that addresses the greatest worries that parents of boys have from infancy through high school, distinguishing between normal boy development and behaviors that are worrisome.
Coffee with Katie Greer, Internet Safety
Dr. David Gleason, "At what cost?: Defending adolescent development in fiercely competitive schools"
Anxiety, depression, and their dangerous manifestations– substance abuse, eating disorders, self-injury and suicide – are increasing student conditions in competitive schools throughout the US and around the world. Paradoxically, most of these schools promote themselves as educational communities committed to students’ holistic development in academics, athletics and the arts, as well as in their personal, social and emotional growth. So why are so many students still struggling?
Dr. David Gleason, a former Fenn parent and author of the new book At What Cost?, has investigated these concerns in schools around the world, and has found almost complete unanimity in how educators and parents have responded to his interviews.
In sum, these caring and dedicated adults fully admit to overscheduling, overworking and, at times, overwhelming their students and teenaged children. It is this conflict - adults wanting to educate and parent adolescents in healthy and balanced ways, but simultaneously overloading them – that is at the heart of Dr. Gleason’s book and of this presentation.
ScreenagersAre you watching kids scroll through life, with their rapid-fire thumbs and a six-second attention span? Physician and filmmaker Delaney Ruston saw that with her own kids and learned that the average kid spends 6.5 hours a day looking at screens. She wondered about the impact of all this time and about the friction occurring in homes and schools around negotiating screen time—friction she knew all too well.
In SCREENAGERS, as with her award-winning documentaries on mental health, Delaney takes a deeply personal approach as she probes into the vulnerable corners of family life, including her own, to explore struggles over social media, video games, academics and internet addiction. Through poignant, and unexpectedly funny stories, along with surprising insights from authors, psychologists, and brain scientists, SCREENAGERS reveals how tech time impacts kids’ development and offers solutions on how adults can empower kids to best navigate the digital world and find balance.
Micheal Thompson, Ph.D., "How to Raise Responsible Children"
Screenagers, screening and discussion
Race to Nowhere, screening and discussion
Beyond Measure, (a sequel to Race to Nowhere), screening and discussion
Luba Feigenberg, "Children and Moral Development"
David McCullough, Jr. "You Are Not Special and Other Encouragements"
Bruce Feiler, "The Secrets of a Happy Family"
Michael Thompson, Ph.D., "Best Friends, Worst Enemies"
Dr. Adam Cox, "Helping boys communicate and connect"
Dr. Anthony Rao, "The Way of Boys: Promoting Social and Emotional Development of Young Boys"