Parents Go To Summer Camp Too

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“Tell your kids to let you know when you are being cranky,” advised Myrna Torres, deputy director of the School Age Division for Community Schools to a room full of parents on Tuesday, July 30. The parents, participants in the parent summer camp at Salome Ureña de Henríquez middle schools campus in Washington Heights, were in attendance for their last “Communication 101” workshop with Ms. Torres and to celebrate the culmination of the summer camp. In this last meeting, Ms. Torres shared a few tactics that she uses to not bring outside stress into the home and what her children say to let her know she is not communicating effectively.

The parents were recruited to join their own summer camp while signing up their children for summer activities at the SU Campus. The month-long camp offered workshops on keeping children safe on the Internet, special education services and advocating for your child’s academic needs, and the college application and admissions process, as well as honing their own communication skills. One dad commented that he has found success in sparking conversations with his two daughters with topics that interest them. “A Justin Bieber poster was hanging on their wall so I asked them to tell me about him,” he said. “We spent twenty minutes talking about Justin Bieber and it was great.”

The parents also received training on Aris, a SU Campus Intranet that connects parents and students to their teachers and classwork. On Aris, the parents can communicate with school staff, stay up to date on assignments and view grades. These parents now have more self-confidence and a sharpened skill set to put into use as they gear up for the new school year.