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Better parent-child communication is Pembroke talk topic

Union Leader Correspondent

December 01. 2013 6:24PM

PEMBROKE — Pembroke Academy will host a forum for parents on Tuesday, Dec. 3, to help parents understand the challenges students face and to help them communicate better with their children.

Titled “How to Talk — and More Importantly Listen — To Your Child,” the event was put together by the by Resources and Education for Adolescent and Community Health (REACH) and is designed for parents of children ages 10 to 18.

“This is part of an ongoing series of events that Pembroke has been sponsoring, designed around strengthening parent-child relationships and talking about different topics that are geared toward educating parents about things like Facebook,” REACH member Tammy Boucher said.

Boucher said that REACH started at the Pembroke Academy but that it has expanded beyond the school.

“It has members of the police force and local churches along with parents and educators,” Boucher said.

Organizers say they hope that participants will take from the forum tangible skills and resources to better help parents understand the challenges their children face in a modern school environment. Boucher said that with demands on children’s time higher than ever and the need for quality one-on-one time between parents and children is more important than ever.

The keynote speaker will be Dr. Susan M. Smiga, a specialist in adolescent mental health and an associate professor of psychiatry at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth.

Smiga will address the topic of adolescent development and will detail ways to improve parent/teen communication, according to a news release.

“Strengthening and enhancing parent/child relationships and communication is critical to ensuring adolescent and community well-being, and we are thrilled to have Dr. Smiga’s expertise to guide us,” said Headmaster Michael Reardon in a prepared statement.

Admission to the event is free and open to the public and is scheduled for 6:30 to 8 p.m. at Pembroke Academy.

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