Session #7 Tuesday, July 30

Hi parents,

Here we are, at the final day of the summer session. Let me start off by saying “thanks” to all of you. Your consistency and consideration made this an especially enjoyable session.

Today, we’ll be introducing two “firsts,” starting with their choice of a Netflix movie, complete with popcorn and other snacks. Normally, I’d worry, but from what I’ve seen, teenagers will eat nearly anything, anytime. Right after, they be moving around a bit as we head next door to the Pilates Studio. We have a one hour appointment with a highly specialized trainer and he will be talking with them about proper breathing, posture (doing a far better job of explaining and showing them why it matters than I can). Plus he has prepared a gentle routine for them to practice. He has been briefed about the students and we won’t be “forcing” anyone to participate, as watching others can be instructive as well (we will, of course, encourage participation).

After our class, we’ll be heading down the street to Octopus, a Japanese restaurant, which has been pretty popular with our group. The weather is predicted to be a little warm, about 83 degrees, but that should be manageable. Of course, we’ll have water with us.

After we return, by 2:30pm, the teens will be completing self-report surveys that provide us with some indication of how they experienced the program and we’ll be having a brief discussion (remember those initial goals) along similar lines.

Finally, it will be time for our two raffles. Remember, everyone wins in the Blue Ticket raffle, but there are limited amounts of each kind of prize. Half of the student win the Hero Ticket Raffle and this usually favors those who have been trying to break out of their comfort zone and work harder on conversations, controlling impulses, or showing greater consideration for peers.

You will be receiving a survey later in the day after group ends. Please complete this at your first opportunity. Should you be interested in your child participating in the School Year program, you have first priority, provided you indicate your interest on the survey (it asks you at the end).

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Session #6 Thursday, July 25

Hi parents,

Today is a full-day outing to City Walk. We’ll be taking the bus to “the end of the line” and then it’s just a short walk across the street and a shuttle ride up the hill. Our first stop will be Voodoo Donuts and they’ll be able to get what they want, with a few exceptions.

Afterward, they will each be given $20 cash to spend, with a few conditions attached. Staff have the final say on their purchases, but they can get hats, keychains, t-shirts, and other items. We’ll visit a number of stores, but really, it’s just a “teens hanging out” day.

For lunch, we’ll be headed to Bubba Gumps Shrimp, heading out around 2:00pm to return to the office.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Session #5 Tuesday, July 23

Hi parents,

Today we’ll be playing Mini-Golf over at Castle Park in Sherman Oaks. It will involve traveling there by public bus to Ventura Blvd, then walking about 10 minutes to the location. Afterward, we’ll be heading to the Galleria to P.F. Chang’s where we have a private dining room reserved for lunch.

Returning around 2:30pm, we’ll be spending some time working on an animation although it is possible Dr. Mazor and I may alter this plan.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Session #4 Thursday, July 18

Hi parents,

We’re headed to the California Science Center via chartered bus. We’ll be getting an early snack then taking a 10am bus to 700 Exposition Park Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90037, arriving by 10:45 am. There’s quite a bit to see and we’re planning to take in the newest exhibit, Dogs! A Science Tail. We’ll have lunch there — there are a couple of choices we can consider. The food, actually, isn’t bad at all. This is a full-day outing and we’ll be heading back around arriving back around 3:30pm, just in time to finish the day.

Please feel free to be in touch if you have any questions.

Session #3 Tuesday, July 16

Hi parents,

The weather today is going to be warm, around 84. We’ll be taking public transportation bus to Ultra Zone, located in Sherman Oaks, for two hours of laser tag. First, however, we will be stopping and giving them a snack choice of Jamba Juice or Noah’s Bagels for snack.

At Ultra Zone they will have an opportunity to play as many games of laser tag as they wish during the time we are there. Also, they will have have drinks during that time, which may include sodas or lemonade. We limit how many refills they can have. In general, They are served water with their lunches rather than sugary drinks.

Following laser tag, we will go to nearby Marie Calendars for lunch. They have a variety of choices and we usually are able to reserve the back dining room for more privacy.

We’ll likely return between 2:30 - 3:00pm. It will be a light snack since lunch most likely lasted from 12:45 pm to 2 pm. Sometimes we will get a “credit” for the dishes that come with pie and serve that as one of the choices back in the office. Not our healthiest day. With the time remaining, we will either continue working on animation or play a group game, possibly both.

At this point, we’ve established our primary target areas for each child. If you haven’t completed an RSVP for this week, please click here to access the parent portal and complete your RSVP now. It only take a few seconds.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

Session #2: Thursday, July 11

The weather today is expected to be up to the mid to high 80’s. We are headed to a nice, cool, bowling alley, Pinz, in Studio City for 1-2 hours of play between bowling and the arcades. To get there, we will be boarding the 150 or 240 MTA bus around 9:20 am that stops right in front of Gelsons, next to our office. We’ll arrive at the bowling alley just before 10 am head in, get shoes, and start playing. There will be 2 lanes.

For a snack today, we’ll be ordering bagels with cream cheese and a pitcher of water. We typically start the group off with 1/2 and offer seconds to those who want it. After bowling, we’ll play in the arcade, but it’s much more limited than what teens are used to. The focus isn’t on game playing, but socialization. So we will encourage them to pair up with others or observe when they aren’t playing. Staff will have the access cards and the students need to find a staff and ask for them to provide access to the game. Manners count.. We do not permit use of the games where they receive candy or prizes. Once a teen has played a game, possibly two, they are encouraged to watch other kids play for a bit. Each group member will be able to play up to a maximum of three games.

Afterwards, we’ll head next door to Carneys (the Train) for lunch. It is expected to be about 86 at that time in Studio City, so we will plan to eat indoors. They can have hot dogs, hamburgers, thai wraps, tuna, and vegetarian choices, plus either a medium sized soda or a small shake. They can get fries too if they wish, sometimes we have then share them and divide them up.

Afterwards, if we’ll head back by bus to the office. Once we return to the office, we’ll begin an “improve animation” where they generate initial ideas and we begin to put something together in real time.

Remember, if you need to reach me during the day, just send an email or call and use the special code you were given during orientation. However, please do not attempt to contact your kids and, if they contact you, please remind them to speak to us instead.

Session #1: Tuesday, July 9

Today is our first day of Group 3 and everyone is just getting settled in. We’ll be heading over the the office and spending most of the morning there doing group orientation discussions and activities. We will head over to Gelsons around 10am for a morning snack. We call today a “Close to Home Group,” as we are getting to know your teens. Lunch will be at Maria’s Italian Kitchen where we have a large table reserved. We have a special surprise for the students at 2pm. “Critter Squad” will be showing up with about ten different animals to show, discuss, and possibly pass around for gentle handling.

Following this, we’ll have a quick afternoon snack at 3pm. At the end of the day. I will publish an audio podcast summarizing today’s events. You will be notified when this occurs.

You should have received information about the behavior course for this week tomorrow and there will be a webinar held Thursday at 7pm. You should have received a survey asking about the most convenient parent meeting times.

That’s it for now. Remember, you can reach us anytime via email or by calling our office and putting in the code you were given. We do not use text messaging.

Regards,

Dr. G.