Association of Teachers of Young Adolescents

Resilience 101:  Class Is In


Friday, October 27, 2016 (9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.)
Riverside Education Centre, Milford Station, N.S.

Conference Agenda:  

8:00 a.m. - 8:45 a.m. Registration
8:45 a.m. - 9:00 a.m. Welcome, Introduction of Keynote
9:00 a.m. - 10:25 a.m. Keynote - Red Fish (Halifax Theatre for Young People) - A Comedy about Depression
10:25 a.m. - 10:45 a.m. Break
10:45 a.m. - 12:05 p.m. Workshop #A
12:05 p.m. - 1:05 p.m. Lunch - Roast Turkey Dinner
1:05 p.m. - 2:25 p.m. Workshop #B
2:30 p.m. AGM

Please note:  This location is a scent free site.

Note:  In an effort to be more ‘green’ and decrease our carbon footprint, the Conference will NOT be providing bottled water this year.  Please take your own reusable water container.

Bottled Water Facts

  • Toronto consumes an estimated 100 million plastic bottles a year, of which 35% are not recycled. Many plastic bottles still end up in landfills, or worse, as litter in forests, lakes and oceans. (source: CBC News)
  • Plastic bottles take 700 years to begin composting. (source:
  • It is estimated that one tenth of all plastic that is created every year eventually ends up in one of our oceans, including millions of plastic water bottles. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a huge swath of plastic and other discarded materials in the Pacific Ocean, and has been estimated to be as large, or larger than, the land mass of Canada. (source: The Independent Online)

How to Get There:

From Halifax

  • Drive from NS-102 to East Hants. Take exit 9 from NS-102
  • Follow NS-14 E and NS-2 S to Riverside Dr
  • At the roundabout, take the 1st exit onto NS-14 E
  • Turn right onto NS-2 S
  • Turn right onto Riverside Dr

From Truro

  • Follow NS-102 S to East Hants. Take exit 9 from NS-102 S
  • Take NS-14 E and NS-2 S to Riverside Dr
  • At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit onto NS-14 E
  • At the roundabout, continue straight to stay on NS-14 E
  • Turn right onto NS-2 S
  • Turn right onto Riverside Dr 

Click here to view a map and access additional directions

Registration Information

Registration is ONLINE ONLY
Registrar:  Starr Pettipas 902-925-2059 / 902-771-0972

Regular Conference fee:  $90.00 (includes lunch and membership)
Substitutes / Students / Retirees Conference fee:  $45.00 (includes lunch)

As per NSTU Operational Procedure 14(e)(iii): receipts of payment and attendance will not be distributed until the conference has concluded.


Red Fish (Halifax Theatre for Young People)

A Comedy about Depression

Liz and Ethan are navigating the pitfalls of being a teenager in 2016, while dealing with their own depression and anxiety. Along the way they meet the Superhero Red Fish who claims he's only here to help them… but what happens when our innermost voice becomes our worst enemy? Redfish is a playful, poignant play that will ring true for anyone who lives with depression or who knows someone who does.






Maximum participants per session – 25 (unless stated otherwise)

Full Day Workshops

FD1   Holding Your Center - In the Midst of Chaos (maximum participants - 18)
(Coleen Davidson, M.Ed., BFA, E-RYT, YACEP,Coach, Adult Educator, Facilitator, Artist, Yoga Teacher)
This interactive experiential Playshop will provide you with simple yet profound practices to learn to hold your center in the face of challenge.
Wear comfortable clothing, bring a yoga mat and painting shirt. Together we will engage in somatic movements, gentle yoga, mindful breathing, meditation, creative expression. You will leave feeling lighter, grounded and centered, with valuable practices to integrate into your daily life.

FD2   Paint Session
(Helen Boucher)
Be inspired to connect creatively with Artist Helen Boucher as she leads you in a step-by step painting of a beautiful sunset scene. You'll get blank canvasses, bright paint and the opportunity to paint and laugh with friends. Begin this adventure in the morning, complete your masterpiece in the afternoon and go home at the end of the day with a 16x20" acrylic painting you'll be proud to display.

Sessions offered AM and PM

A1/B1  Yoga in Schools
(Debbie Matheson, CCRSB)
Nova Scotia has become a leader in the quest to bring Yoga into the school system.  In this session participants will get an insight to the many areas of “wellness” which are being achieved by “yoga in the schools”.  This will include a brief presentation of some of the materials and projects which meet the provincial outcomes.  More importantly, you will be shown some of the concepts which will build a stronger physical, mental and spiritual understanding for students of all ages.  Following this introduction you will have an opportunity to experience a 45-60 minute physical yoga practice (suitable for all levels”).  So, come prepared.  Mats will be available

A2/B2  How to help families encourage and develop resiliency in children: What schools can do...
(Doreen Coady Shadbolt- R. Psych, Child and Youth Behavior Consultant, Aberdeen Mental Health Services)
Resiliency is often defined as the ability to bounce back from difficult situations and events and is described as both a skill and a character trait. Schools try very hard to instill resiliency in children but meet challenges when families and school cannot connect. This workshop will provide an understanding of the complicating family dynamics and interpersonal factors that drastically impact the development and maintenance of resiliency in children, with the focus on what schools can do to minimize miscommunication, develop partnerships and maintain positive relationships with their parents and community.

A3/B3  SchoolsPlus and School-based Mental Health Services
(Janah Fair, MSW RSW SchoolsPlus Clinical Therapist)
SchoolsPlus is a collaborative interagency approach supporting the whole child and their family with the school as the center of service delivery.  Every school board now has at least one SchoolsPlus site and the program is expanding.  This session will explain and answer questions about the SchoolsPlus Program.  This session will also provide information on pathways to services for children and families experiencing difficulties.

A4/B4  Building Resiliency
(Tracey Dominey-Comeau, Clinical Manager, Human Solutions)
Building Resilience: Understanding Challenges, Learning Strategies, and Accepting Change: Research shows that individuals can improve how well they adapt to challenges and adversity. This session will help break negative thought patterns and offer healthier ways of thinking and behaving. Participants will be introduced to a variety of effective, practical tools to improve physical health, respect mental/emotional health, and cultivate strong social support network.

A5/B5  Essential Oils
(Kim Currie, Teacher, Riverside Education Centre)
I have always been interested in natural, holistic healing and finding new and powerful wellness alternatives.  Please join me for an informative session on what essential oils are, and how they can be used to help you experience their life-enhancing benefits. The session will be hands-on, allowing you to smell and test various essential oils and hopefully see how you may benefit from them. ​
Disclaimer:  although the oils are 100% pure, and not synthetic in nature, the smells may bother some people.  

A6/B6   A holistic workshop on RESILIENCY and PROTECTION ~ focusing on Personal Energy Care and Protection around Technology
(Presented by professional instructors from the East River Meditation Healing Centre, New Glasgow - trained and certified by the world's leading authority on energy care".)

All technology gives off potentially harmful energy - one of the key reasons for becoming, depleted, drained and out-of-balance. We can also be adversely affected by the negative energy of others.
We teach advanced techniques on how to protect yourself, increase resiliency and prevent energy drain and also from technology-use by your students. 
- Come and learn how! 

A7/B7  Building Financial Resilience and developing a Personal Profit Plan:  Teachers Plus Credit Union
(Dale Roode, Teachers Plus Credit Union)
Financial resilience is the ability to overcome handle short-term financial “crises”. In a world in which half of Canadians would find it difficult to meet their financial obligations if their pay cheque was delayed by a week, financial resiliency is a big issue.
Our presentation will look at how you can improve your own financial resiliency and establish a Personal Profit Plan to put you on the road to becoming financially better-off.

A8/B8  How stress affects your body
(Dr. Allison Bernardi, DC BSc Kin, Attune Chiropractor Centre)
Life is stressful! There are many different types of stress than can have a negative impact on your body. Dr. Allison Bernardi is a chiropractor from Amherst, NS. She will go through Emotional stress, Chemical stress, and Physical stress along with some tips on how to relieve the pain that stress can cause. The anatomy of pain, common pains and myths about pain will also be discussed.

A9/B9  LGBTT*  Youth and How to Support Them
(Chris Weeks, Guidance)
This session will focus on first hand experiences and discussions on how to best be supportive of students in Junior/Senior High School that identify as LGBTT*. This includes but is not limited to the coming out process, parents, gender identity, what it's like to be LGBTT*.  General terms will be giving and discussed. Resources that youth and educators have found useful will be showcased. Then finishing with a Q&A session.

A10/B10  Music and Resiliency
(Heather Leeder, MTA)
Music is health food for the brain.  It can support learning in our schools and it can positively influence the health and wellbeing of our communities.  It involves playing, creating, discussing and or listening to music to achieve therapeutic goals. Topics to be covered include how to use music for your personal health and wellness; tools and techniques to use with your students; and an introduction to restorative and mindfulness practices using music.
No equipment or musical training required.

A11/B11  Zumba
(Cheryl Ponee)
A Latin inspired dance fitness class for all levels of fitness.  Please dress comfortably.

A12/B12  L'apprentissage en intéraction: Soyez prêtes à participer à nos activités!
(Lindsay Crossman Wheaton, French Mentor, CCRSB & Stephanie Burke, French Second Language Consultant, EECD)
Engaging students in the second language middle school classroom - Come ready to participate in our interactive activities!

While we encourage members to have an NSTU web account, one is NOT REQUIRED to register for a conference.
You may register utilizing any email account.

To register for the ATYA conference CLICK HERE

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