Falling into the New Year At The Meeting House

We are grateful to have so much on the horizon this year. Exciting projects, new curriculum, plenty of returning and new students plus fresh young faces for the kids to play with and learn from.  Stay tuned, it’s going to be another special year of Fun, Friendship & Community at The Meeting House!

As our Founder, I couldn’t be more excited to begin the new fall semester in collaboration with our team of energetic professionals and the added perspective from new talented hires.

We’ve fine-tuned our model as both recreational and therapeutic and have many exciting curriculum opportunities to present to students that will grow and deepen our connection with them all. The Meeting House is now ready to socially-spark our full roster of elementary school children as well as welcome teens to our after school roster of offerings. After a summer retreat that sharpened our skills, the addition of two new teaching artists, and time spent with family and friends honing our own social skills we are rested and rejuvenated.

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In July, our program and administrative teams, led by our amazing Clinical Directors, met for a full day of social/emotional exploration and development.  We covered diagnostic categories, effective listening and dialogue skills, conflict resolution, personal development and enjoyed outdoor meditative yoga with a mindfulness focus. Everyone agreed the day was both revitalizing and gratifying, and will hopefully be the first of many stimulating annual retreats to come.  This experience reminded us how the tenets of SEL help inform all of the work we do on a continuing daily basis.

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One of my favorite things that sets The Meeting House approach apart from every other after school is the contribution of our talented clinical team. The three therapists who direct our daily work across different populations of children provide the astute insight that elevates our stature as an after school program. Last fall we also welcomed our first full-time social worker. His contributions have grown beyond his position and play an increasingly important role in what we can do. You can find him teaching one of our many electives, leading a dance party in the gym or speaking compassionately one-on-one to any of our kids.  He has quickly become a “fan” favorite and we can’t wait to see what new experiences he brings to the children this year.

Recruiting new team members is like finding a needle in a haystack for TMH and we are fortunate to be adding two new teaching artists who will expand the depth of SEL integration into our art and mindfulness programs.  Performing arts extraordinaire, McCailey Contreras, and yoga/mindfulness guru Colin Lieu, will bring their experience from all over the globe to the children at The Meeting House. We are grateful to have their energy and insight especially since they come to us from AHA! in Santa Barbara and TMALS in Harlem—two partnership organizations.

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We are grateful to have so much on the horizon this year. Exciting projects, new curriculum, plenty of returning and new students plus fresh young faces for the kids to play with and learn from.  Stay tuned, it’s going to be another special year of Fun, Friendship and Community at The Meeting House!