Thursday, October 25, 2012

Festive Autumn Parent Workshop at Cedar Ridge Academy Therapeutic Boarding School

In late Autumn, the Cedar Ridge Academy Therapeutic Boarding School campus is transformed by students into a decorative seasonal delight designed for their parent's enjoyment during the annual October parent workshop.  While maintaining their academics, both boys and girls hone their crafting skills as they create Halloween decorations they hope will amuse, and even astonish, their parents! (This was evidenced by a staff member overhearing the comment "My mom is just going to die when she sees that huge spider!")  During the week prior to workshop, anticipation builds as students prepare for their parent's arrival. The greatest excitement stems from the upcoming opportunity to greet family, but there's also the fun of pointing out which decorations they created. Once such initial greetings are taken care of, students settle in with their parents to attend two full days of seminars designed to assist both the troubled teens and their parents. Subjects such as communication, effective parenting and lasting behavioral changes are addressed.

Spider Halloween decoration at Cedar Ridge Academy Therapeutic Boarding School

Workshops are usually scheduled to occur on a Thursday and Friday, allowing extra time for high trust-level students to leave campus in company of their parents for most of the weekend. The October workshop was planned accordingly, but this year, it was ushered in by a larger surprise than the witches, spiders and stuffed straw men awaiting parents on campus...

girls students with Halloween straw men at Cedar Ridge Academy Therapeutic Boarding

Snow! Not unusual during late Autumn for the campus tucked into the foothills of the scenic Uintah Mountains of Utah, but nonetheless quite unexpected - mainly due to warm weather enjoyed just the day previous!

First snowfall at Cedar Ridge Academy Therapeutic Boarding School

Changing Utah weather is no surprise for parents who travel from across the nation to both visit their children and participate in seminars taught by the licensed therapists who daily provide students with group and/or one-on-one therapy sessions. Coats, boots and gloves are shed as parents accompany their teens to seminars designed specifically for each student's level of advancement within the school's therapeutic program. Following seminars, parent-teacher interviews are conducted by licensed teachers who help keep each parent abreast of their student's academic progress.

Parents at Cedar Ridge Academy Autumn Workshop

The four annual workshops at Cedar Ridge Academy consist of three "tracks" to accommodate group instruction: the Introductory track for students and parents who have recently joined the program, the Intermediate track for those midway through, and the Advanced track for students and parents who have made significant progress over time. Parents are required to attend three workshops during their student's stay at Cedar Ridge Academy. It is the goal of program administrators to help each student work through the program in approximately nine months (a variable time frame dependent upon the student's level of engagement), so it is easy for parents to ensure that they receive the valuable education provided within each track offered.

Snow falls during Autumn parent workshop at Cedar Ridge Academy

Though the snow was a surprise, it didn't dampen the enthusiasm of staff, parents or students as they cheerfully engaged in workshop activities! The next workshop at Cedar Ridge Academy is planned for early March...hmmm...springtime in the mountains...  Stay posted - there could well be another "snow story" on the way!

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