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  • The Teddy Bear Clinic Reimagined: Enhancing Graduate Student Education

    Contains 3 Component(s), 1 credit offered

    ​As the field of child life grows more competitive, academic programs desire to establish innovative, collaborative partnerships in an effort to address student educational needs.

    As the field of child life grows more competitive, academic programs desire to establish innovative, collaborative partnerships in an effort to address student educational needs. Graduate child life students had the opportunity to plan, facilitate and evaluate a teddy bear clinic for typically developing children enrolled in a preschool program. This project was embedded in a graduate play course. 

    Objectives:
    Discuss the learning benefits of a graduate student facilitated teddy bear clinic from a graduate student perspective and from a child participant perspective.
    Explore the fundamental components of a well-organized and facilitated teddy bear clinic.
    Explore community partners for field based experiential learning opportunities.

    Emily Margolis

    Clinical Assistant Professor

    Towson University

    Lisa A. Martinelli Beasley

    Clinical Associate Professor

    Lisa Martinelli Beasley joined the Department of Family Studies and Community Development in 2006. Prior to her appointment at Towson University, she worked clinically as a Certified Child Life Specialist and Board Certified Art Therapist in children’s hospitals located in New York and Ohio. Much of her clinical experience centered on providing child life and art therapy interventions for pediatric hematology/oncology patients and their families.

    Since joining the Department of Family Studies and Community Development, she has taught undergraduate and graduate child life and related courses. She serves as the graduate program director for the M.S. in Child Life, Administration, and Family Collaboration and provides student advising for both undergraduate introduction to child life track students and graduate child life students.

  • Yours, Mine or OURS? The Shared Responsibility of Providing Disability Competent Care

    Contains 3 Component(s), 1 credit offered

    All child life specialists will encounter patients and families with disabilities. As with any other cultural group, child life specialists need to be prepared to provide culturally-competent care individualized to the needs of these patients and families

    All child life specialists will encounter patients and families with disabilities. As with any other cultural group, child life specialists need to be prepared to provide culturally-competent care individualized to the needs of these patients and families. This interactive presentation will provide a brief history of disability culture along with concrete strategies to equip and empower child life clinicians to provide disability-competent care. 

    Objectives:
    Discuss culturally competent care and identify how this translates into caring for individuals with disabilities.
    the current state of disability in the U.S. and the importance of disability competence.
    Explore several disability-competent care strategies to their work as child life specialists.

    Emily Jones

    CCLS

    Emily Jones works as a Child Life Specialist III with the Adaptive Care Team at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Her work includes providing individualized education, preparation, procedural support, and therapeutic play to meet the psychosocial needs of patients with specific developmental and behavioral needs and their families in the health care setting. She collaborates with the interdisciplinary team to adapt health care encounters to meet the unique needs of patients with developmental and behavioral challenges. She is also part of Cincinnati Children’s Bioethics Committee, which provides help with resolving ethical issues following a bioethics consult requested by patient families, medical center staff, or community-based caregivers. Emily earned her master’s of science in psychology at Lipscomb University and her master’s of education in child studies from Vanderbilt University and has been working as a Certified Child Life Specialist for over four years. 

  • Early Identification and Screening Program Improves Care for Traumatically Injured Patients

    Contains 3 Component(s), 1.5 credits offered

    ​Children who have experienced trauma are at risk for developing traumatic stress symptoms and post-traumatic stress disorder. To address this concern, we created a tool for identifying and assessing at-risk patients and implemented a trauma-informed care protocol.

    Children who have experienced trauma are at risk for developing traumatic stress symptoms and post-traumatic stress disorder. To address this concern, we created a tool for identifying and assessing at-risk patients and implemented a trauma-informed care protocol. The creation and implementation of this tool has improved early identification of at-risk patients and access to appropriate psychosocial services and resources. 

    Objectives:
    Discuss the impact of trauma and trauma-informed care on children.
    Discuss how to implement a program to address the needs of patients who have experienced a traumatic injury using quality improvement methodology.
    Discuss how screening tool assists child life specialists in creating treatment plan during admission.

    Devin Devlin

    CCLS

    Child Life Specialist at Children's Hospital Of Colorado on the Surgical, Rehabilitation, Trauma, Orthopedics, Neurology, and Burn inpatient unit.

    BS in Psychology from St. Edwards University
    MS in Child Life and Family Centered Care from Wheelock College.

    Previously Child Life Specialist II at Shriners Hospital for Children Houston.

    Jenaya Gordon

    Manager, Child Life Department

    Jenaya Gordon is the Manager of the Child Life Department at Children's Hospital Colorado. Prior to becoming manager, she worked clinically on the inpatient trauma unit, in the emergency department, and in the pediatric intensive care unit. Jenaya uses her expertise to train child life specialists in providing trauma support to patients and families and on educating medical caregivers on trauma-informed care and emotional safety. She is a contributing author in the Handbook of Medical Play Therapy and Child Life, focusing her chapter on trauma-focused medical play. Jenaya currently serves as secretary for the ACLP Board of Directors.

    Jennifer H Staab

    CCLS

    Jennifer Staab is a certified child life specialist. Jennifer has worked as a child life specialist for 10 years in a variety of areas. Currently, Jennifer works at Children’s Hospital Colorado as a Supervisor and Research and Quality Improvement Specialist for the Child Life Department. She served as the chair of the Evidenced-Based Practice Committee for the Association for Child Life Professionals (ACLP) (2011-2013), the Research and Scholarship Committee for the ACLP (2015-2016), and the Proposal Subcommittee for the ACLP’s Scientific Advancement of Professional Practice (2016-2018). Jennifer has given numerous professional presentations. She has presented at ACLP’s Annual Conference for Professional Issues (2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, & 2017) and the Children’s Hospital Associations Annual Conference (2013 & 2018). Her research interests include identifying the factors associated with children experiencing elevated distress in a healthcare setting and evaluating the efficacy of child life services. She has published two studies. One on assessing pediatric patients for psychosocial risk and one on the efficacy of child life preparation and support in the Emergency Department

  • Embracing the Gray: Understanding and Celebrating Differences in Ethical Decision Making

    Contains 3 Component(s), 1.5 credits offered

    In a world consumed by ethical strife, this session provides an advanced approach to applying ethics within the healthcare environment.

    In a world consumed by ethical strife, this session provides an advanced approach to applying ethics within the healthcare environment. Utilizing new evidence that moral decision making is driven equally by biological impulses and culturally instilled ideals, the session explores how ethical foundations influence values and the decision making process. The session will include an exercise allowing attendees to apply perspectives to ethical dilemmas. 

    Objectives:
    Discuss how ethical frameworks are impacted by both biologically driven instincts and culturally instilled ideals.
    Discuss specific ethical frameworks and explain their philosophical differences.
    Explore specific ethical perspectives to ethical decision making, and theorize how these fictional examples might manifest in the workplace.

    Bethany Fisackerly

    CCLS

    Bethany Fisackerly holds a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Florida and an M.S. in Child Development and Family Relations from East Carolina University. After internship, she worked clinically at Baptist Children’s Hospital (Miami, FL), and as a full-time faculty member at Columbia College (Columbia, SC), before returning to Gainesville, FL in early 2017 as an inpatient CCLS for the Immunocompromised Unit at UFHealth Shands Children’s Hospital. Bethany Fisackerly is an avid bookworm with a passion for education, who recognizes the need for strong ethical foundations at every professional stage of life. Within the ACLP, she has previously served with the Bulletin Editorial Committee; was an invited attendee for the 2016 Academic and Clinical Summit; and currently sits on the Practicum Task Force. When not at work, she enjoys painting, cheering on her Florida Gators, and dressing her cat, Rascal, up in all kinds of ridiculous attire.

  • From PICO to Publication: The Importance of Research for Practice

    Contains 3 Component(s), 1.5 credits offered

    ​Evidence based practice is strongly emphasized in healthcare. However, initiating research in child life practice can feel overwhelming when resources are already stretched.

    Evidence based practice is strongly emphasized in healthcare. However, initiating research in child life practice can feel overwhelming when resources are already stretched. Learn about tips and tools needed to get started on the path to being a researcher in clinical practice and see how one program supported child life specialists in completing original research.

    Objectives:
    Explore the PICO format to identify a current research topic.
    Discuss what the steps are of an effective literature review.
    Discuss research study options to determine an effective design for answering the PICO question.

    Jenni L. Davis

    CCLS

    Sidra Medical

    Deirdrea A. Goltz

    Child Life Supervisor

    CCLS with experience in NICU, cardiology, and radiology. Passionate about research and evidenced based practice. Currently residing in Qatar and practicing child life abroad.

  • Keeping Play in the Forefront of Child Life Services in Critical Care Settings

    Contains 3 Component(s), 1.5 credits offered

    Modern child life practice, though rooted in play, is often focused on acute patient needs such as procedural preparation, support and diagnosis education.

    Modern child life practice, though rooted in play, is often focused on acute patient needs such as procedural preparation, support and diagnosis education. Child life specialists who work in NICU, CCU and PICU collaborate to illuminate the importance of keeping play in the forefront of interventions. Current research on play will be discussed as it relates to trends in healthcare, job satisfaction and multidisciplinary collaboration.

    Objectives:
    Develop play focused interventions for infants and toddlers that improve coping in critical care settings.
    Describe prioritizing play in the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit through daily practice of staff, play groups, utilization of unit specific playroom.
    Critique common approaches to play with critically ill children and develop strategies for infusing play into daily care practices in the Pediatric Critical Care Unit.

    Megan R. O'Connell

    CCLS

    Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hosp of Chicago

    Lauren Thompson

    CCLS

    Katelyn E. Zilles

    CCLS

    Katelyn is currently the CCLS in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago. Her primary clinical interests include infant development in the critical care setting, sibling support at end of life, multidisciplinary collaboration within a NICU team and intern curriculum during a NICU rotation

  • Look for the Helpers: Child Life Specialists as Champions for Children After Disasters

    Contains 3 Component(s), 1.5 credits offered

    ​Fred Rogers famously reflected that after something bad happened, his mother encouraged him to look for the helpers.

    Fred Rogers famously reflected that after something bad happened, his mother encouraged him to look for the helpers. This presentation will examine the work of child life specialists as helpers in two settings: a disaster-relief shelter following a category 4 hurricane, and a shelter during the family separation crisis at the United States-Mexico border. Focus will be given to the challenges of this work and the emotional impact on child life specialists. 

    Objectives:
    Discuss both natural and man-made disasters that impacted families in one region of the country over the course of a year.
    Explore the psychosocial needs of children and families immediately following the strike of disaster.
    Discuss the role of child life specialists in supporting children in non-hospital related disasters, while recognizing ways to get involved in disaster relief.
    Identify the opportunities for and challenges associated with child advocacy after disasters.
    Discuss the emotional impact of disaster relief work on child life specialists, as well as the need for formal opportunities for debriefing and support

    Kizzy Marco

    Facility Dog Program Coordinator

    Kizzy Marco was raised in Chicago and is a two-time graduate of the University of Iowa. She began her child life career at Cook Children's Medical Center where she worked for 6 years. Outside of child life, Kizzy has extensive experience in children's theatre, coaching youth sports, and facilitating grief support for kids. Her other interests include professional mentorship, public speaking, and social justice. Currently, Kizzy proudly serves as Facility Dog Program Coordinator at Children's Hospital Colorado, alongside her very best friend, Ralph Lauren the dog.

    Whitney L. Brosey

    CCLS

    Cook Children's Medical Center

  • After They've Gone: Child Life Collaboration with a Medical Examiner's Office

    Contains 3 Component(s), 1.5 credits offered

    ​Due to legal and policy requirements, medical examiner cases are not eligible to receive bereavement materials while in the hospital

    Due to legal and policy requirements, medical examiner cases are not eligible to receive bereavement materials while in the hospital. Through a collaboration with our county medical examine's office, we are now able to provide materials to any family who experiences a pediatric death, whether in or out of the hospital. Come learn about our collaboration and take home ideas for your own facility. 

    Objectives:
    Discuss the importance of providing bereavement materials to all pediatric patients, and explain potential barriers to equitable inclusion of all families.
    Discuss community partners and resources to reach goals to provide legacy materials for unmet populations.
    Explore necessary steps for providing bereavement materials to a previously unreached population.
    Evaluate their existing bereavement processes and make changes to reach their institutional goals for legacy making.

    Rachel Stinson

    CCLS

    Brielle L. Swerdlin

    CCLS

    Brielle Swerdlin, MS, CCLS earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Utica College, where she majored in Psychology- Child Life. After working in the field of child life for a few years she completed her Master of Science degree in Healthcare Administration from Colorado State University- Global. Brielle joined the child life team at Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital in Syracuse, NY four years ago after working as a one-person program at Edinburg Children’s Hospital in Edinburg, TX for three years.

    Currently Brielle provides services to patients in the Pediatric Emergency department at a Level One Trauma Center in New York that serves in patients 17 counties from the Pennsylvania border to the Canadian border. Professionally, Brielle’s interests include bereavement, trauma, children with special needs, child abuse and trauma-informed care.

  • Collaborative Partnership to Optimize Care: The Creation of an Interprofessional Autism Spectrum Disorder Professional Development Program

    Contains 3 Component(s), 1 credit offered

    Healthcare clinicians have a wide variety of knowledge, skill, and attitudes when caring for patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

    Healthcare clinicians have a wide variety of knowledge, skill, and attitudes when caring for patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).  The authors will describe the collaboration led by child life and nursing to assess practice gaps, develop and roll out an educational initiative aimed at improving care for patients with ASD and their families. 

    Objectives:
    Describe the process and outcomes of assessing learning needs for caring for patient with ASD.
    Identify three teaching strategies used in this ASD professional development program.
    Discuss the ASD program outcomes.
    Describe fostering the development of collaborative partnerships.

    Kristin Coffey

    Certified Child Life Specialist- Autism Spectrum Center

    Kristin Coffey is a Certified Child Life Specialist in the Autism Spectrum Center at Boston Children’s Hospital. Kristin specializes in supporting children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) through medical experiences and hospitalization by ensuring that the sensory experiences of a child are taken into consideration as she tries to normalize the potentially stressful hospital experience for each child.

    With a strong background in child development, child life, ASD, and applied behavior analysis, Kristin became the child life specialist for the Autism Spectrum Center at Boston Children’s Hospital in December of 2015.

    In addition to supporting patients she has worked with the Autism Spectrum Center training committee to help increase the awareness of Autism Spectrum Disorder and how to best support those with autism in the healthcare setting. As a member of the training committee Kristin has helped to plan, develop, implement, and evaluate the Autism education programs aimed at interprofessional staff, including the recent pilot of an autism-based interprofessional simulation program.

    Dennis P Doherty

    Nurse

    Dennis Doherty is a Registered Nurse and board-certified Professional Development Specialist in the Department of Clinical Education, Informatics, Practice, and Quality at Boston Children’s Hospital. Dennis oversees the enterprise’s nursing orientation programming, facilitates role development workshops, and consults with department leaders to develop and implement competency programs. Since 2017 Dennis has worked with the Boston Children’s Hospital Autism Spectrum Center training committee to plan, develop, implement, and evaluate the Autism education programs aimed at interprofessional staff, including recent piloting of autism-based interprofessional simulation program. In his spare time, he is pursuing a Ph.D. in Nursing at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

  • Emotional Labor: The Role of Your Emotions in the Workplace

    Contains 3 Component(s), 1 credit offered

    ​This presentation focuses on the role of emotions at work, including how emotions are generated or concealed in order to meet patient needs or to satisfy organizational values of an employer.

    This presentation focuses on the role of emotions at work, including how emotions are generated or concealed in order to meet patient needs or to satisfy organizational values of an employer. Attendees will learn about theoretical frameworks of emotion, emotional labor, and personal and professional consequences of emotional labor. The presentation will conclude by reviewing coping strategies to combat the negative side effects of emotional labor. 

    Objectives:
    Describe theoretical models of emotion and explain advances in social theory of emotion that demonstrate how emotions, whether authentic, generated, or concealed, are often managed by employers to satisfy organizational values and meet patient needs/expectations.
    Define components of emotional labor, such as deep acting, surface acting, and emotional dissonance, and identify how these components impact child life professionals personally and professionally. Explore five appropriate emotional regulation strategies that can be used in the workplace to combat the negative effects of workplace emotional labor.

    Jennifer A. Guilliams

    CCLS

    Jennifer graduated from Auburn University in 1995, earning a Bachelor’s of Science in Family and Child Development with an emphasis in Child Life. Jennifer received her child life certification in 1998 from the Association of Child Life Professionals. Throughout her career, Jennifer has worked as a child life specialist at University of Missouri Children’s Hospital in Columbia, MO and the Willett Children's Hospital in Savannah, GA. Jennifer served as the course instructor for the “Child Life Administration” course at the University of Missouri. In 2009, Jennifer became the manager for the child life department at the Dwayne and Cynthia Willett Children’s Hospital in Savannah. Most recently, Jennifer is the Child and Family Life Coordinator for Kentucky Children’s Hospital managing a growing department of 10 child life specialists who cover the entire Kentucky Children’s Hospital as well as UK Healthcare.
    Jennifer has been an active member of the Association of Child Life Professionals, serving as chair and committee member for several student focused task forces and professional committees. Jennifer has provided several presentations at regional child life conferences as well as the annual Association of Child Life Professionals conference on child life related topics and student program development.

    Kristina M. Richetts

    CCLS

    Kristina has worked as a Certified Child Life Specialist since 2012. She has experience in a variety of settings, including an inpatient psychiatry unit, an acute care unit, and she currently works with the pediatric hematology/oncology population. She is currently pursing a master's degree at the University of Kentucky in Family Sciences, focusing on adolescent development.