Mothers and daughters were treated to an all-day retreat at the Parents as Partners Academic Center over this past month. This year’s theme of “I am because you are” focused on a variety of exercises, including “Diggin’ the Skin I’m In; “Health & Beauty Tips; “Can You Hear Me Now”; “Effective Communication”; “United We Stand”; and “Trust Building.” With more than 50 participants, the day was full of laughter and learning. Participants were engaged in rigorous activities that challenged the mind, body and soul but left them with a feeling of growth and accomplishment.
The events were created in order to give parents and students an opportunity to share and learn more about the roles they play in their relationships and ways to improve them, according to Emily Holland, Family Involvement Liaison, Parents as Partners Academic Center. “While many APS schools and organizations host many parental involvement activities such as Massages with Moms and Doughnuts and Dads, I’m not sure whether or not they’ve held a day retreat for parents and students to attend,” Holland said.
“The mission of the retreats is to promote and support the mission of the district’s ‘Be There’ campaign and PAPAC through hands-on activities designed to encourage parent and child interaction beyond the educational realm,” Holland explained. “Several workshops were incorporated into this day to make up for the sessions parents are unable to attend throughout the week. The Mother and Daughter Retreat had over 50 participants while the Fathers and Sons (held this past weekend) had a little over 10 participants. However, one of the more vocal participants reminded me that it is better to have quality than quantity and he felt that the retreat reigned supreme in meeting that goal.”
The feedback from the parents has been phenomenal, Holland said. When asked what she liked most about the program, in a survey questionnaire, one parent replied, “Being able to spend that time with my daughter and just hearing things from other moms and daughters that made me think more about my relationship with my daughters. It was very interesting to see the input from the daughter survey and how differently we view our relationship.”