Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Homework: method or myth?

Organizations partner to present annual fall conference

Alfie Kohn Photo by

Alfie Kohn's book "The Homework Myth" so impressed Sarah Hedrick, owner of Iconoclast Books, that two years ago she began e-mailing him about one day coming to the Wood River Valley to speak.

The author of 11 books, Kohn writes and speaks widely on human behavior, education and parenting. He addresses the ways that parents and educators can work with children to help them grow into strong, vital adults.

Kohn will be the keynote speaker at St. Luke's Center for Community Health's 16th annual fall conference, "Creating a Healthy Community."

"He believes that kids already work a full-time job when they go to school," said Hedrick, who is also a Community School parent. "Homework is a second shift. It's busy work. They could be outside kicking a soccer ball, reading or baking or playing music. Then they'd return to school hungry for knowledge."

Kohn will conduct a free in-service presentation open to all educators on Friday, Nov. 7, from 1-3 p.m. The event is sponsored by The Community School Parent Association and speaker committee. Held at The Community School in Sun Valley, the session is called "Overhauling the Transmission Model."

At 6:30 p.m. he will present "The Homework Myth—Why Our Kids Get Too Much of a Bad Thing" at the Presbyterian Church of the Big Wood. The free presentation is open to the public.

On Saturday, Nov. 8, St. Luke's Center for Community Health in partnership with the Community Drug Coalition will host its annual conference all day at the Community Campus in Hailey.

At 9:30 a.m. Kohn will present his lecture, "Unconditional Parenting—Beyond Bribes and Threats," to be followed in the afternoon by a variety of learning sessions focused on parenting and youth. Throughout the day, participants will be able to shop at the book fair, hosted by Iconoclast Books, and get information about youth and families at the Community Resource Fair.

The conference is free and includes free childcare with required pre-registration, at or 727-8733.

Saturday's learning sessions include several talks about adolescent issues, including several that focus on emotional and academic growth.

Unsung Hero Awards

What: Second annual Unsung Hero Community Awards

When: 11:45 a.m. to noon, Saturday Nov. 8

Where: Community Campus in Hailey


· Outstanding Youth Peer Role Model: Lucy Velasquez, WRHS student.

· Outstanding Adult Peer Role Model: Shari Kunz.

· Outstanding Youth Mentor: Jill Bailey and Barge Levy, Silver Creek Alternative School.

· Outstanding Commitment to Diversity by a Youth: Danielle Wilkerson, Wood River High School student.

· Outstanding Commitment to Diversity by an Adult: Penny Thayer.

· Outstanding Youth Neighbor Award: Jose Ruiz.

· Outstanding Adult Neighbor Award: Kathryn Graves.

· Youth Zone Award: Blaine County Recreation District's Aquatic Center.

· Prevention/Healthy Choices Award: DD McCarthy, Wood River High School student.

Contact: St. Luke's Center for Community Health at 727-8733.

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