During a recent trip to New York (11-24th Sept 2009) I hired a car for the day and ventured 2 hours north to the University of Connecticut (UCONN) to meet with Dr Julie Aikins, an expert in the field of early adolescent friendships. Julie organized a forum for post graduate students and I presented my own PhD research on “Self Esteem and Social Relationships among Students in Transition from Primary to Secondary school”.
The outcome was an abundance of new ideas for the future direction of my thesis. Julie fearlessly devised a new model to further explore the impact of loneliness, self-esteem, belonging and friendship quality during school transition. She also suggested the introduction of two (2) new variables:
Stability of friendships
Reciprocity of friendships
Once again I would like to extend a huge thank you to Dr Julie Aikin and her team of research assistants for their generosity and wisdom. UCONN is also a place I would highly recommend as a well-resourced and service-oriented university – The library and the library staff were phenomenal!
Now back in Sydney, I have returned to the ‘writing-up’ stage of my project, aiming for 80 000 words by mid- 2010 with ongoing support and guidance from my long-distance supervisor, the amazing Dr. Helen Watt at Monash University. Helen selflessly shared the art of connecting with international experts and it was well worth the effort.
We are thrilled with our first Melbourne workshops! Kimberley O’Brien and Jacqui Olsson delivered the Quirky Kid children workshops in Melbourne for the first time on Saturday, 26th September 2009.
The ‘Best of Friends ™‘ and ‘Why Worry’ Workshops were held throughout the day at Northcote Town Hall, and were a great success. Children enthusiastically took part in a number of activities including painting, playdough, letter-writing and role play, while discussing issues surrounding friendship in the ‘Best of Friends’ workshop, and anxiety and worry in the “Why Worry” workshop.
Our Best of Friends and Why Worry workshops will next be in Melbourne in January 29th and 30th 2010, as well as our ‘Family Play Therapy’ workshop for parents. Please contact us on (02) 9362 9297 for more information or vist the Melbourbe workshops page.
Kimberley O’Brien, our principal child psychologist, presented our parenting workshop ‘Playful Approaches to Problem Solving’ to parents from St Philips Christian College, Port Stephens, and surrounding areas.
Participants and Kimberley discussed strategies such as the importance of family communication, and how to use media and play techniques to help children express themselves. The presentation was a great way to connect with parents and professionals outside Sydney.
Kimberley was invited to St Philips Christian College as part of their Centre of Gravity (COG) initiaitive. COG aims to provide free parenting and information seminars to parents and professionals in Port Stephens and surrounding areas.
The Quirky Kid Clinic now offers the Sensory Profile to all parents who believe their child may be experiencing sensory processing difficulties.
The Sensory Profile is a measure of children’s responses to sensory events in daily life. The assessment requires the Parent to assess the frequency of their child’s responses to certain sensory processing, modulation, and behavioral/emotional events. The Sensory Profile can help identify your child’s sensory processing patterns; then we can consider how these patterns might be contributing to or creating barriers to performance in their daily life.
The Sensory Profile is particularly helpful when developing an early intervention program for children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder.
To find out more about the Sensory Profile, or to book an assessment please contact our reception on (02) 9362 9297.
The NSW Psychologist’s Registration Board held a 2-day workshop in Sydney (3rd & 4th Sept 2009) to train registered psychologists with more than 3 years experience to supervise Intern Psychologists. It was a great chance to meet colleagues and bump into familiar faces from diverse organisations and private practices around NSW.
We listened intently and ploughed our way through legal and ethical aspects of supervising, as well as the practical new rules of ensure Interns have face-to-face client contact in the course of their 2-year placement. I came away feeling proud of the opportunities we offer Interns at Quirky Kid and with new inspiration for the continued growth of QK.
The Quirky Kid Clinic is committed to offering and participating in the highest standard of professional development (PD) to ensure we are doubling the required PD points for psychologists through the Australian Psychological Society (APS).