MOAPPP Adolescent Parent eNews

MOAPPP Adolescent Parent eNews

May/June 2011

It means a great deal to those who are oppressed to know that they are not alone. And never let anyone tell you that what you are doing is insignificant.

-Bishop Desmond Tutu


Have You Heard the News? MOAPPP Has Changed Its Name to Teenwise Minnesota

Our new website address is Sue Fust, Teenwise Minnesota Adolescent Program Manager’s new email address is [email protected].

The Rights of Pregnant and Parenting Teens in School

Teenwise Minnesota and the ACLU-MN have joined forces to develop a handy card for teen parent students delineating their rights in school. We’ve got thousands of them and would like to see them distributed. We’d especially like every secondary school in the state to have some on hand. If you would like some cards, please send your name, organization and mailing address along with the quantity needed to [email protected]. If you have any questions, please contact Sue Fust at [email protected].

Groups Planning for Teen Parent Programming

If you have a group working to plan for teen parent programming in your community, we’d like to hear about it. We are aware of groups meeting in the following counties: Washington, Ramsey, Hennepin and Dakota. If there are others, please contact [email protected].

Teen Parent Connection Meetings Scheduled in June:

Minneapolis/Hennepin County June 20 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Lutheran Social Service
NW Hennepin County June 21 1:00 – 2:30 p.m.
Brooklyn Center ALC
Ramsey County June 21 3:30 – 5:00 p.m.
Resources for Child Caring
Dakota County Not meeting in June

For more information on any of the Teen Parent Connection groups, please contact [email protected].


Urban Adolescent Mothers Exposed to Community, Family and Partner Violence

Using a risk and resilience perspective, the study authors assessed 120 urban adolescent mothers regarding their violence exposure, school performance and participation, positive attitude toward school and social support. Results indicate very high rates of lifetime exposure to violence. Analyses indicate that as violence exposure increases, school outcomes tend to worsen, with positive attitude toward school found to be a significant moderator of the effects of exposure to community violence on behavior problems in school. Implications for researchers, practitioners, school policies and programs, and welfare policies and programs conclude the article.

Child Trends: Early Childhood Highlights – Child Abuse and Neglect Statistics

This report (PDF) from Child Trends gives information on child abuse and neglect in children 0 to five for the country as a whole and all 50 states.

Despite Record National Low, State Teen Birth Rates Vary Widely, as do Repeat Teen Births Across Cities

Nationally, birth rates for all teens decreased in 2009 to 39.1 births per 1,000 young women between the ages of 15 and 19. However, the latest state data on teen birth rates (from 2008) show wide variation. The report (PDF), which is based primarily on Child Trends’ analyses of data from the National Center for Health Statistics, also includes teen birth data for large cities, as well as data on repeat teen births—births that occur to teens who have already had a baby.

Adolescent Thriving: The Role of Sparks, Relationships, and Empowerment

Although most social science research on adolescence emphasizes risks and challenges, an emergent field of study focuses on adolescent thriving. The current study in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence of 1,817 15-year-olds completed an online survey that investigated their deep passions or interests (their “sparks”), the opportunities and relationships they have to support pursuing those sparks, and how empowered they feel to make civic contributions (their “voice”). Results consistently supported the hypothesis that linking one’s spark with a sense of voice and supportive opportunities and relationships strengthens concurrent outcomes, particularly those reflecting prosociality, during a key developmental transition period. The three developmental strengths also predicted most outcomes to a greater degree than did demographics. However, less than ten percent of 15-year-olds reported experiencing high levels of all three strengths. The results demonstrate the value of focusing on thriving in adolescence, both to reframe our understanding of this age group and to highlight the urgency of providing adolescents the opportunities and relationships they need to thrive.

Maternal Depression and Early Childhood Policy Report

The policy options presented in this report (PDF) from Children’s Defense Fund Minnesota provide several opportunities to reduce the prevalence of maternal depression and its impact on children. They build on the momentum that already exists in Minnesota to improve the current and future well-being of our youngest residents. While the task may seem large, it can be broken down into doable activities implemented over time. Ultimately, all Minnesotans will benefit from progress made toward ensuring children are born to healthy mothers in strong families living in vibrant communities able to help them on their path to well-being in adulthood.


Some Fun Activities for Little Ones from Zero to Three

Birth to 12 Months:
Do You Hear It? Show your baby a bell and then gently ring it so he can hear. “Do you hear it? Do you hear it, baby dear, baby dear? Listen to the bell ring; Listen to the bell ring; Ding, dong, ding; Ding, dong, ding” (to the tune of “Frere Jacques”). At the end of the song, show baby how you hide it behind your back. Slowly bring it out once more, to jingle and sing again. This activity enriches your baby’s auditory awareness.

12 to 24 Months:
Loud/Quiet Fill-n-Dump. Find two plastic buckets. With the children, fill one of the buckets with plastic balls and the other with washcloths, scarves or foam balls. As you fill, talk about how each one is loud or quiet. Now dump them! Which one is loud? Which one is quiet? How do the children tell you which they prefer? Follow their lead and fill and dump that bucket again.

24 to 36 Months:
Pattern Music. Practice making patterns with sound and movement. For example, clap, wave, clap, wave. Can your toddler copy you? How about hitting a drum three times and shaking a bell once—can your toddler copy you? Give your little one a turn to make a pattern with sounds or body movements. Playing with sound and body patterns teaches coordination, listening skills and early math skills.

Also from Zero to Three – From Baby to Big Kid: Month 28

Learn about how a child’s development unfolds from 24 to 30 months and what parents and professionals can do to support learning and growing.

Upcoming Teenwise Minnesota Trainings

June 21, 2011
Teen Pregnancy Prevention 101

9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Center for Performing Arts
3754 Pleasant Avenue, Minneapolis

This training is offered twice a year at various locations across Minnesota.

This training is intended for professionals new to the field of adolescent pregnancy prevention. Participants review the basics of adolescent pregnancy prevention including pregnancy, birth and STI statistics; trends in adolescent pregnancy and sexual behaviors; basics of adolescent growth and development; risk and protective factors associated with adolescent pregnancy; and prevention strategies that work. Each participant will leave with a basic understanding of current research and resources, what to do to promote adolescent sexual health and where to go for more information and support. Click here to register online. Questions? Contact Jocelyn at 651-644-1447 x19, [email protected].

For more resources and information about adolescent parents, visit the Adolescent Parent Program page on the Teenwise Minnesota website.