'Parent University' Takes on New Workshop Format for Clark Parents


CLARK, NJ – The Clark Public Schools’ parent outreach program, “Parent University,” will take on a workshop-style format this year, beginning with "Parental Support of Teaching and Learning at Home" on Thursday, Dec. 10 from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m. at the Arthur L. Johnson High School.  This is the first of several such evenings that will be held throughout the year.

“The evenings are designed to help us cement our already strong home/school connections,” Interim Superintendent Edward Grande said in an email to parents. Future evenings will focus on themes such as "Helping to Understand and Prepare for Testing," "Health and Safety" and "Summer Programs and Transitions."

“Our plan is to conclude the year with some type of graduation program for the participating parents,” Grande’s email said.

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Parents may choose up to three 30-minute sessions that will be held in various classrooms throughout the school.  Session times are 7 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., 7:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m., and 8:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.

The comprehensive course catalog (see below) provides both general study and subject-specific offerings.  It also provides information for parents of students in pre-kindergarten through high school. 

Parents are asked to register for classes by contacting Terri Rodrigues at the central office:, 732-574-9600 ext. 3337 by Monday, Nov. 30. The email or message should include the titles of the desired courses. Room assignments will be determined after registration.

CATALOG OF SESSIONS for Thursday, Dec. 10 (Choose Three)

Title: Keys to Helping Your Child With Organization and Study Skills

Presenters: FKH Teachers Nina Conner and Carol Iden and CHK Teacher Margo Rosenmeier

Target Audience: Parents/Guardians of Students in Grades K to 8

Description: Key topics to be addressed during this session will include the transition from school to home; tips for homework, long-term projects, and tests; the Remind communication tool; and study skills.  Teacher-created multisensory games will be explained and given out as raffle prizes for participants to leave with.


Title: The Importance of “Play” for Young Children

Presenter: Deborah Harris, Speech Language Pathologist

Target Audience: Parents/Guardians of Preschoolers and Students in Grades K and 1

Description: Research has shown a strong correlation between lack of learning readiness and difficulty in problem-solving skills/lack of play in the early years.  Preschool and kindergarten/first-grade students should be encouraged to play and there are many types of play children can engage in.  Learn these different types of play and ways to encourage these types at home with your children.  Discover what research says about children, technology, and how computer/screen games take up valuable “down time” leaving less time for children to engage in play at home.  Parents will leave with a new appreciation of playing with their children and different techniques to encourage them to play on their own. 


Title: Helping Your Child Become a Better Reader

Presenter: Marie McCarthy, CHK Teacher

Target Audience: Parents/Guardians of Upper Elementary and Middle School Students

Description: This session will be aimed at assisting parents with helping their children become better readers.  The following essential questions will be examined: What is reading?  Why do you read?  Why is vocabulary so important?  In addition, methods for improving vocabulary, strategies for and demonstrations of reading to and with children, content area reading and the associated types of questions, study strategies, and methods for talking to children about assignments and homework will be addressed.  


Title: License to “Drive” in the Cloud With Google

Presenter: Nicole Czarnecki, VRS Technology Teacher

Target Audience: Parents/Guardians of Students in Grades K to 12

Description: Participants will learn how to use Google Drive for collaboration and productivity.  This experience will allow parents to collaborate in a hands-on workshop.  During the session, parents will learn what Google Drive is and how it works in addition to what Google Documents are and how to share them.  Participants will also “peak” into a Google Classroom.


Title: Understanding the Computational Methods in the Everyday Math Program

Presenter: Janeen Allmendinger, FKH Teacher

Target Audience: Parents/Guardians of Students in Grades 2 to 5

Description: Participants will become familiar with the computational methods and various algorithms used in the Everyday Math program.  As a result, they will leave the session better equipped to assist their children with their mathematical studies while at home.


Title: World Languages at Home

Presenter: Jessica Lopez-Otalvaro, ALJ Spanish Teacher

Target Audience: Parents/Guardians of Students in Grades 6 to 12

Description: Participants will be given tips and tools for helping their children review and study for their world language classes.  Sometimes parents can feel helpless because "they don't speak the language," but techniques will be presented during this session that will equip them to provide this assistance. 

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