Workshops for family and friends
Below are some of the workshops that I do with Families, Carers and Friends of young people. But there are many possibilities; so if you would like to speak with me about anything, then please get in touch. And the easiest way to do this is by clicking on ‘Contact me’ above, and we can go from there. Pete
Workshops by topic
Risk-taking and young people
This seminar looks at the nature of risk-taking from both a physiological and a sociological perspective and taking into account what’s different about our world of today.
Contact me for more information about the workshops.
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Topics in detail
Being a parent today…being a young person today
What does being a parent mean today? And what do young people expect of their parents? What do parents expect of their children? We hear a lot about the importance of boundaries, of clear communication and of the importance of listening, but what do parents do if the music is blaring, the world is beckoning and you feel kind of sidelined? And what do you do if as a young person you feel unheard or stifled? What do words like ‘communication’ and ‘boundaries’ mean at these times? And there is more and more research that helps us be clearer about:
- What’s the same and what’s different about how kids are these days?
- What is good, and what is not-so-good communication?
- How come we have doubts about ‘praising’ our kids these days?
- Where do things like reward, punishment, discipline fit in these days?
- What are the universals that have not changed and are still vital to kids growing up well?
Discrimination and its opposite
What sort of school, community, society, and world do we want to live in? And how do we create it? What do we do with those things which we think are wrong with our school or community or world? How do we encounter the views of others in a respectful way and how do we work out whether we really disagree with another person’s view or values, or if they are simply different from our own? And what do we do next?
Resilience, motivation and self-esteem
Is ‘resilience’ the new buzz word? Well yes, it probably is, which is a pity because it really is an important idea and it would be nice if it didn’t get lost. So this workshop will look at how parents can help their children become resilient, that is, how to help them grow strong as people and be able to bounce back from the hard times which they will inevitably encounter in life. Much of this is good common sense, and everyone will recognize ingredients like strong relationships and a strong sense of self as being important in developing resilience. Often a trickier ingredient is that of young people having some power, some control in their lives. When and where should they have it? How much? And how do parents be in charge as parents and still ensure their children have some personal power in their lives? And all this is what the workshop is about.
Risk-taking and young people
What do we know about young people and what is going on in their bodies? We know that being young means being able to do physical things you can do only at this time of your life, and never again. We know that thrill-seeking is part of growing up in a way unique to adolescence; we know that there is heightened sensitivity and we know there is lower impulse control. We know these things because we always kind of knew them, but we now know them through the latest brain research which confirms what parents really don’t need reminding of, although it’s resassuring to know what the research is confirming. So it’s not new, even though the ways of measuring it are. So what’s changed? Well, how would you answer this question: Are you grown up? And a second question: Are you an adult? Many of us are wary of saying ‘yes’ to the first of these, but most people past 30 are prepared to own up to being an ‘adult.’ So what does this mean for our young people? Ask young people and it quickly becomes clear that pathways to adulthood are uncertain. For many young people, they do not know how to grow up, nor when they are grown up. So with this as background, this seminar looks at the nature of risk-taking from both a physiological and a sociological perspective and taking into account what’s different about our world of today. And we shall explore these ideas with a focus on ‘what can we do?’ as individual parents, as a school, as a community and as a society. The seminar also looks at the up-side of risk-taking; the need for humans to risk so that they might learn and develop, and what young people in trouble need to risk to bring about important life-enhancing change in their lives. This seminar is research-based, interactive and practical.
Surviving – even ENJOYING – the HSC
Every year, towards the end of it, there is this disturbing/exciting event. And there are many websites to help you with lots of advice. And they are useful. So this workshop seeks to add something different to help you on this journey. Something about being clear about how your young people learn, how you learn, and the fit or not, between these styles. Something about planning (that works!) and something about being allies in this process. Something about the realities of diet and physical activity, about plans that work (and the only GOOD plan is one that works!) and something too about where to go and what to do when it all becomes TOO MUCH! Which it may. This workshop is serious fun and is for parents AND your young people.
Ten things you MUST know about young people
There’s physical stuff, social stuff…and the time is now. Things are different, and we know things about brains we didn’t know before. We have FACEBOOK (OMG!) and texting and the NET…and totally new things. Parents deal with this every day, and we sometimes just wander about bumping into new worries and new technology. This workshop/seminar will provide a few useful signposts, something of a roadmap, and some solid practical tips to help get you through the new maze.
Young people and drug use (and yes this includes alcohol)
This workshop is not about drugs. It’s about people. And it’s about making sense of young people’s action, and why they might do something dangerous or even harmful to themselves. So as important as pharmacology is, this is not the focus of this workshop. The focus is on understanding why young people might do what they do, and importantly it’s about what parents can do to help their children be safe and how to help them grow healthily and happily in a world where drugs legal and illegal, whether we like it or not, do exist and show no signs of going away.