Important Work of Play

Presented by Colleen Daly Martinez, Ph.D., LCSW
April 21, 2021, 7:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Play is fun, but it’s not frivolous. Play is a necessary and valuable contributor to children’s development. Unfortunately, in an atmosphere that prioritizes competition and achievement, play can become less of a priority. In this webinar, Dr. Martinez will discuss theories about the purpose of play, types of play, some of the relational, developmental and academic outcomes associated with play, and she will share ideas about how caring adults can encourage and promote play for children of all ages.

Dr. Colleen Daly Martinez is a licensed clinical social worker and a registered play therapist supervisor with 25 years of experience providing clinical services to children and their families. She has worked in hospital, correctional, outpatient mental health, private practice, summer camp, home based and school settings, and she specializes in play therapy and treating traumatized children. She is an Assistant Professor of Social Work at Ramapo College of New Jersey. In her private practice, she provides training, supervision and consultation to individuals, agencies, summer camps and schools to ensure that children and their families receive high quality services.


Nature Connection for Children’s Mental Health

Presented by Cathy Jordan, Ph.D.
May 26, 2021

Over the last couple of generations, children have become increasingly disconnected from nature, with worrisome implications for their physical and mental health, cognitive development and educational outcomes. In this webinar we will take a deeper dive into how nature supports children’s mental wellbeing including strengthened self-esteem and confidence, enhanced positive emotion and reduced negative emotion, stress reduction, restoration, social benefits, and resilience. We will share tips for getting the most out of nature activities to promote children’s mental health.

Cathy Jordan, Ph.D. is Professor of Pediatrics and the Director for Leadership & Education at the Institute on the Environment, University of Minnesota. Cathy also serves as the consulting Director of Research for the Children & Nature Network, a national nonprofit leading a global movement to increase equitable access to nature so that children – and natural places – can thrive. As a former pediatric neuropsychologist, Cathy has had a long-standing interest in the influence of environments on children’s health and development. Cathy believes that the establishment of a strong connection to the natural world is critical to children’s development, as well as development of concern for our land, water, and atmosphere, and it is important to establish that connection in childhood.


Save the Date!

08/18/21 – Trauma Informed Classroom

09/22/21 – Medical Marijuana

10/06/21 – Mental Health in Media/Stigma & Stereotypes

(Topics are subject to change.)


Our past webinars are available in our archive.


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