"No Such Thing as a Bad Kid" workshops, April 13
There’s No Such Thing as a Bad Kid. That’s the title of a book by author and youth care specialist Charlie Appelstein. Appelstein will be in Grand Marais on Wednesday, April 13 to lead a series of workshops on strength-based approaches in parenting, teaching, and working with troubled youth.
“Strength-based practice is an emerging approach to helping kids and adults that’s exceptionally positive and inspiring,” says Appelstein. “It focuses on what people do right versus what they do wrong. It starts with the belief that everyone has or can develop strengths that can be used to enhance functioning and lead happier lives.”
Appelstein says there are many reasons that people respond to a positive, strength-based approach.
“One, when you’re incredibly positive with people it makes them feel good,” says Appelstein. “And who in life functions well when you don’t feel good? Many people who are acting out, making bad decisions, they’re depressed. They don’t feel good about themselves. So when the people around them are constantly pumping them up and saying and doing things that inspire them, they feel better and they tap their strengths better. Also, a lot of people who act out, or have trouble in life are riddled with self-doubt. And when the people around such folks are positive and inspiring, it attacks self-doubt. It’s been said that self-doubt kills ability. And so when we can get people to be really positive with at-risk kids, or adults, it attacks the self-doubt that many of these kids harbor, and they start making great decisions. And when you really get pumped up and believe in tough kids, it gives them hope. And I like to say hope is humanity’s fuel.”
Appelstein says that just looking at things from a different angle, or reframing something, can make a big difference.
“One of the greatest techniques in strength-based practice is what we call re-framing," he says. "Where you take a negative behavior and you turn it positive. I could give you case example after case example of adults and kids who literally changed their behavior for the better, almost on a dime, when we reframed their negative behavior. And really what we’re doing by reframing negative behavior is getting people to see the goodness in themselves.”
Another way to empower kids, says Appelstein, is by giving them a chance to succeed every day.
“We really talk about making sure that every troubled kid in the world, from the moment he or she gets up in the morning, to the moment he or she goes to bed, has multiple opportunities for success,” says Appelstein. “When kids feel successful in one area, it generalizes to the others.”
For more information about the April 13 workshops with Charlie Appelstein, call Diane Booth at 387-3015. The workshops are free of charge and are brought to the community with support from Cook County Extension and the Cook County PTA.
• No Such Thing As a Bad Kid will be an all-day workshop on the value of using a positive, strength-based approach with at-risk children & youth. This includes a free school cafeteria lunch and CEU’s for teachers and other youth workers. This workshop will be held in the Jane Mianowski Conference Room from 8:30 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. Pre-register only for this workshop by calling Community Education at 387-2000.
• Strength-Based Training and the Power of Positive Thinking will be a 2 hour workshop offered after school for teachers, youth workers, parents, etc. CEU’s for teachers and youth workers will be provided. This will take place in the Jane Mianowski Conference Room from 3:30 – 5:30 p.m. No pre-registration required.
• What is Strength-Based Parenting? Join Charlie in this 2 hour spirited workshop to learn more about raising your kids from the inside out by employing a positive and empowering strength-based approach. Charlie will also address self-esteem building, key verbal skills and strategies for parents to keep their cool! This will take place at the Arrowhead Center for the Arts Auditorium from 6:30-8:30 p.m.
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