No Such Things as a Bad Kid: Using a Positive, Strength-Based Approach


Friday, February 15, 2019, 9:00 AM—4:00 PM
No Such Thing as a Bad Kid: Using a Positive, Strength-Based Approach
Charles Appelstein, MSW


Strength-based practice is an emerging approach to guiding at-risk children, youth, and families that is exceptionally positive and inspiring. Its focus is on strength-building rather than flaw-fixing. It begins with the belief that every young person has or can develop strengths and utilize past successes to mitigate problem behavior and enhance functioning. This full-day, comprehensive workshop will highlight many of the key principles and techniques of this transforming modality. Areas covered include: What is strength-based practice & the power of a positive attitude & culture; the effects of trauma and positive emotions on the brain; mindset bolstering, strength-based communication principles and techniques - including reframing, using solution-focused questions, positive-predicting and inspirational metaphors; self-esteem building & activities for at-risk children and youth; how to help cognitively inflexible young people; the importance of being family-friendly; why, how, and when to use incentive plans; the importance of controlling personal emotions (i.e. managing number-one first); core strength-based verbal interventions, respectful, relationship-based, limit setting; and a host of creative cognitive behavioral strategies.

Following this training, participants will be able to:

  1. Describe the major principles of a positive, trauma-informed, strength-based approach to guiding at-risk children, youth and families.
  2. Discuss the importance of personal self-awareness and self-management in working with challenging clients
  3. Cite specific strength-based verbal interventions  to better engage and guide at-risk clients.
  4. Describe specific cognitive-behavioral techniques that can help at-risk children, youth and their parents to better self-manage their actions.
  5.  Discuss the deleterious effects of pejorative labeling and be better equipped to decode and reframe problem behavior.

Charlie Appelstein, M.S.W. is a nationally prominent youth care specialist and author whose primary focus is on teaching positive, strength-based theories and techniques to professionals who guide at-risk children and youth. President of Appelstein Training Resources, LLC, Charlie trains and consults throughout the United States as well as internationally, with treatment facilities, foster care associations, parent groups, schools, and juvenile justice programs. He has authored three youth care books that are widely used within the field, including No Such Thing as a Bad Kid: Understanding and Responding to the challenging behavior of troubled Children and Youth. Charlie lives in southern New Hampshire with his wife and teenage daughter.

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