Linda Murray: I Love Being a Trainer

Monday, April 16, 2018 - 15:41

I love being a trainer. I train teachers and administrators in high quality practices for early childhood classrooms based on highly researched assessment tools. Observing and using assessment tools in classrooms is an honor, but to have teachers take extra time out of their day to come to training, in pursuit of enhancing the quality of education in their classroom, is a thrill.

Within Children’s Institute I have the opportunity to train both new and experienced teachers as well as administrators. I train locally and throughout New York State. There is a common thread. Everyone I meet who works to educate young children cares about what they do. They honestly believe that their role is important, and I consider it my job to support them in that effort.

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Community Feature: Dr. Charles Infurna on Physical Activity for Student Development

Tuesday, April 10, 2018 - 13:40

As both a Research Associate for Children's Institute and a Track and Field Coach for Nazareth College, Dr. Charles Infurna lives at an interesting crosspoint of data-driven adolescent interaction. Having worked in middle and high school environments as a teacher for years before coming to work at Children's Insitute, Dr. Infurna has a unique perspective about how physical activity and physical play can help students develop resilience in the face of disappointment as well as an understanding of process vs. outcome goals.

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A Note From Our SEL Center Director: When Hands-On Experiences Lead to Learning

Friday, April 6, 2018 - 10:55

A few days ago the sun was shining and my family decided it was finally safe to set up the trampoline the kids had received for Christmas (never mind that there is now a coating of snow on my driveway!).  So we all trucked out together and hauled the pieces to the spot we had selected.  Everyone played a role in setting it up. My oldest (11) read the instructions with my husband.  The youngest (4) handed out screws and tools.  My 8 year old fit parts together and wielded the special tool they gave us to get the springs to connect the mat to the frame.  It was a rare team effort. No one (well, mostly) got frustrated, everyone got their hands on the project, and in the end we had a completed trampoline that we got to use all afternoon. The kids were even more excited about the end result because they had helped create it.  In reflecting on the whole experience, I tried to figure out why it was such a success, as it could have easily ended in frustration, yelling, and a half built trampoline. I realize what worked were three things: 1) my husband and I did a better than usual job of allowing everyone to choose an authentic and important role to play; 2) it was a hands on project that got us all using our bodies and our minds; and 3) there was a tangible end result that offered some value to each person.

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Marjorie Allan and the Research Behind Play

Friday, April 6, 2018 - 10:41

Can you describe your role at Children’s Institute and how the work that you do supports the whole child – socially, emotionally, and physically?

I’ve had several roles at Children’s Institute starting way back in the early 1990s when we were still Primary Mental Health Project and housed on Mt. Hope Avenue. Over the years I have been part of study teams investigating the long term efficacy of prevention programs and the impact of a wide range of interventions. I spent about 10 years as a researcher in the Department of Pediatrics at Golisano Children’s Hospital where I broadened my understanding of community health and how it affects children's well-being.

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Getting Started with Mindfulness

Thursday, March 8, 2018 - 09:03



Although many of us hear about March Madness, here at CI we are focusing instead on March Mindfulness!   Although to some mindfulness may seem more fad than focus, research continues to show that being able to focus your mind, your physical being, and your emotions may help you achieve in many different areas of your life.  How can we, as people who work with children of all ages, develop our own mindfulness routines in order to better teach and model the practice to the youth we work with?


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On Mindfulness with Erica Ebert

Thursday, March 1, 2018 - 13:10

Erica Ebert MindfulnessErica Ebert is the Webster Central School District's newly added Instructional Specialist focusing on student wellness and mindfulness across K-12 classrooms. Students rave about the difference mindfulness can make in their day, whether it's prepping for an exam, tackling a big project, or getting centered in the midst of a hectic semester. Erica also owns and operates Balance Fitness, a yoga and meditation studio in Webster. In our pursuit of mindfulness experts, we were able to get her insight on impactful practice and how to get started.


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Beating the Winter Doldrums

Thursday, February 8, 2018 - 14:32

Why does it seem like the shortest month of the year is actually the longest? It could be because of those cold, short winter days that encourage us to cocoon in our homes. However, the best ways to fight off the winter blues involve getting out!

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Community Profile: Jennifer Perry - Program Manager for Reinvesting in Youth

Wednesday, February 7, 2018 - 10:25

Building the social emotional skills of our youth is an essential part in what we do, from intake to discharge. Whether we complete formal assessments or engage in teachable moments via daily interactions, our goal is to support youth and families in increasing self-awareness, and empowering them to take control over their lives. A secondary goal, no less critical, is supporting staff in understanding their own needs and triggers so as a team we can provide better service to families by developing better understanding of ourselves and our communities.

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Children's Institute In The News

Wednesday, January 31, 2018 - 10:11

A collection of news articles, publications and videos that Children’s Institute staff have created, contributed to or were written about CI programs. We’re proud of all the great work done by our organization and its employees, working hard every day to support the success of children.

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“The Person On Your Right…”

Friday, January 12, 2018 - 10:42

At our staff meetings, it’s not atypical for there to be some kind of activity or conversation. We talk about the work we do, our families, projects to come. Often, though, we like to talk about each other and the appreciation we have for our coworkers – whether it’s how they bring SEL programming to hundreds of children in New York, or the yummy cookies they baked and left in the kitchen for everyone to enjoy. At our December staff meeting, we were asked to look to the person to our right and say what we appreciate the most about them.

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