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Extension > Healthy Bodies, Healthy Minds, Healthy Learners > December 2016

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On this blog, we share regular updates about the Healthy Bodies, Healthy Minds, Healthy Learners partnership between Extension's Children, Youth & Family Consortium and Bruce Vento Elementary School.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

All Good Things Must Come to an End


By Maks Luthra and Sara Langworthy
With the beginning of a new year come changes. CYFC staff has always embraced change and seen it as the most powerful development tool for them. All good things must come to an end, and for Maks Luthra and Sara Langworthy, it’s time to move on.

Monday, December 5, 2016

A Step Toward Teacher Well-Being


By Mina Blyly-Strauss, Graduate Research Assistant — Childen, Youth & Family Consortium
We at the Children, Youth & Family Consortium (CYFC) started our work at Bruce Vento Elementary School with two projects: redesign a calming room and create a community garden. These efforts have been aimed at making a healthier environment for students. We are now adding to our projects an effort to redesign the school’s staff lounge. The goals is to make it more attractive and better able to meet the needs of the busy teachers, paraprofessionals, and other support staff who spend their days working to meet students’ varied needs.

Having places for staff to congregate for meals and conversations can offer important benefits to both students and staff. For example, Mawhinney (2010) found that such gathering spaces in a K–8 school were used for sharing professional knowledge between veteran and novice teachers and that spontaneous collaborations around student learning took place there. Teachers’ lounges have also been posited as enhancing school climate by strengthening links between different units (such as grade level teams) that may not otherwise interact much, creating stronger professional communities and cohesion that is helpful for school improvement (Ben-Peretz, Schonmann, & Kupermintz, 2005).
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