2018 Conference

Keynote One

Barbara Colorso

The Bully, the Bullied, and the Not-So-Innocent Bystanders

It takes much more than slogans, posters, and anti-bullying programs to break the cycle of violence and to create more deeply caring communities. Brave-hearted kids willing to step up and step in to stop these attacks can't do it alone; we all need to pitch in to make a difference. In this session, we will discuss verbal, physical, relational, and cyber bullying violence and its effect on the bully, the bullied, the not-so-innocent bystanders and the entire school community. Participants will receive tips, tools, strategies, and handouts to bring back to their educational communities to help enact positive change.


Keynote Two

Jennifer Kolari

Connected Parenting

Using anecdotes, humor, and sample dialogue, the audience will be introduced to the Connected Parenting model. Both theory and practice will be explained step-by-step. Participants will leave inspired with practical and useful strategies to try as soon as they get home.


Session Descriptions

Dr. Kristen Buhr

1. Strategies and Resources for Helping Your Child Manage Anxiety

Is your child struggling with anxiety?  Worrying about everything?  Avoiding things?  

Develop a better understanding of anxiety and anxiety problems in children and youth.  Learn about helpful resources and effective cognitive-behavioural (CBT) strategies for managing anxiety, which include relaxation exercises for “dialling down” physical symptoms of anxiety; healthy thinking strategies to combat worries; and tools for facing feared or challenging situations.  Get tips on helping your child develop a healthy foundation and manage excessive worry, panic, perfectionism, test anxiety, and social anxiety.  


Barbara Coloroso

2.  Kids Are Worth It

This session is packed with solid practical advice for parents of children from toddlers to teenagers, that shows how to utilize the very stuff of family life—chores, mealtime, sibling rivalry, toilet training, bedtime, allowances and more—to create a home environment in which children can become self-disciplined, compassionate, responsible, resourceful, resilient human beings who can act in their own best interest, stand up for themselves and exercise their own rights while respecting the rights and legitimate needs of others. Barbara will discuss the keys to good parenting: treating kids with respect; giving them a sense of positive power in their own lives; giving them opportunities to make decisions, take responsibility for their actions and learn from their successes and mistakes.


Gerald Fussell

3.  Empowering Your Child’s Creativity and Innovation

We are about to enter the third decade of the 21st Century, what are we doing to help our children meet the increasingly dynamic demands that will be placed on them? In this presentation Gerald will review the case for teaching collaboration, creativity, critical thinking, innovation, communication, resilience and project management; and, introduce a program with an internationally proven track record for helping youth develop these necessary skills.


Jennifer Gibson

4.  Beyond the Talk

Join Jennifer Gibson, a local sexual health educator, and two SD 62 Youth Sexual Health Ambassadors, to explore the current issues and topics and develop strategies to the support the youth in your lives in the most respectful and comfortable ways.  Our families deserve to thrive physically, emotionally and socially as we all move towards and through adolescence. Participants are encouraged to bring their tough and awkward questions/scenarios to this session!


Jennifer Kolari

5.  You're Ruining My Life

Imagine that there is a medication you could administer to your teens that would help regulate their moods, increase their sense of trust, and improve their overall brain function. Imagine, moreover, that it’s free, has no negative side effects, and helps to boost the immune system. And it’s available in an unlimited supply. This is the emotional nutrition that they need. Staying connected with your teen is as important as food.

This session will focus on how to keep that loving bond right at the time your teen wants to pull away.


Jesse Miller

6.  Parenting Social Media and Mobile Technologies: Setting Standards, Understanding the Trends, Evaluating the Connections, and Communicating Expectations of Use.

Youth today are connected to one another, and to the world via digital technology, more than any previous generation. For kids, social media is an essential part of their lives, and the use of mobile technology to tether a child to real-time information and content sharing is a concern for many parents and community leaders in schools.

While youth may seem to be more digitally savvy than their parents, a lack of life experience and assessment ability can quickly get a young person into trouble with social media communications at their fingertips. It is imperative that parents talk with their children of all ages about social media use and trends, opening dialogues that promote safe communication spaces that help children navigate digital communications and associated internet use.

Learning more about social media trends and communications can help parents talk with their kids about social media concerns and how to source avenues that are mutually beneficial for the online communications topics or concerns discussed


Katherine Paxton

7.  Self Regulation: A Tool for Life

One of the essential skills for success in life is the ability to self-regulate, to stay calm when needed, and to match your level of emotion to the situation. This workshop will explain the importance of self-regulation and provide attendees practical tools to use for all ages.


Robin Schooley

8.  Parenting to Empower: What Should You Tell Your Child to Expect (and Not Put Up With) at Work

Your kids may or may not have jobs yet. But they will in the future – and probably for most of their adult lives. Help prepare your children for their working years by empowering them with attitudes and behaviours that will help them when they do start a job. Learning about situational awareness, bullying and harassment and potential safety threats now will help them to transition into their working years and steer clear of hazards that could put them at risk of injury in their future jobs. By helping your children to recognize how to identify and mitigate hazards now, they will have a greater understanding of what to expect at work – and how to speak up for themselves when they encounter something that doesn’t seem safe.