Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Students Inter-generational Art to Protect Nature

EDITOR’S NOTE: Each week, we feature intergenerational program ideas that were tried and successful. This series is a tool to highlight various age-optimized programs and practices. The program descriptions are provided by representatives of the programs. Inclusion in this series does not imply Generations United’s endorsement or recommendation, but rather encourages ideas to inspire other programs.

This week’s cool idea is the “Students Inter-generational Art to Protect Nature,” the result of more than 60 pieces of art from Sauk Trail fourth-grade students and older adults in Middleton, Wisconsin, who are concerned about the importance of preserving local nature.

(Check our archives for parts 1-41.)

The program began by observing and discussing nature, wildlife, and habitats seen at Pheasant Branch Conservancy.

The students then spent an afternoon interviewing senior citizens at Middleton Glen Retirement Community, Heritage Senior Living, and Middleton Senior Center to hear what the environment was like when the seniors were fourth-graders.

Back in the classroom, students discussed what they learned, along with what has changed in nature, the environment, and in life.

They agreed there is a strong need to protect natural resources for future generations.

Students in each of the three fourth-grade classrooms created a booklet, drawing a scene from nature for each letter of the alphabet and writing about it.

Got something cool you tried that was successful? Why not tweet your cool intergenerational ideas to #cooligideas? You can also post them to our Intergenerational Connections Facebook Group. We want to highlight innovative age-optimized programs and practices through our blog, social media and weekly e-newsletter! Share the inspiration.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Arizona Education Association - Retired's IMPACT Intergenerational Mentoring Program

(PHOTO: John Miller) Elizabeth Gonzales (right) say mentor
Juan Zúñiga guided her, but still let her find her own way.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Each week, we feature intergenerational program ideas that were tried and successful. This series is a tool to highlight various age-optimized programs and practices. The program descriptions are provided by representatives of the programs. Inclusion in this series does not imply Generations United’s endorsement or recommendation, but rather encourages ideas to inspire other programs.

This week’s cool idea is the Arizona Education Association- Retired’s IMPACT Intergenerational Mentoring Program, an intergenerational partnership that allows retired educators to mentor young teachers.

(Check our archives for parts 1-40.)

The intergenerational mentoring program is a collaborative project between the Arizona Education Association-Retired (AEA-Retired), and AEA-Student Program (AEA-SP) with the full support and cooperation of the National Education Association, the Arizona Education Association, Arizona State University, and the University of Arizona.

Their mission is to establish and maintain an ongoing mentorship program between the AEA-Retired and the AEA-SP that will continue through the student-teaching experience and first five years of teaching.

As a result, the program has utilized the knowledge and experience of retired teachers in the development and training of future teachers by providing no-cost professional development sessions.

Beginning teachers are also able to share real challenges they face and their mentors help address those challenges.

Got something cool you tried that was successful? Why not tweet your cool intergenerational ideas to #cooligideas? You can also post them to our Intergenerational Connections Facebook Group. We want to highlight innovative age-optimized programs and practices through our blog, social media and weekly e-newsletter! Share the inspiration.

Monday, April 06, 2015

Senior Design Factory

(PHOTO: Senior Factory Design) Benjamin Moser (2nd from left) and Debora Biffi
(2nd from right) founded the Senior Design Factory to bring old and young people together.


EDITOR’S NOTE: Each week, we feature intergenerational program ideas that were tried and successful. This series is a tool to highlight various age-optimized programs and practices. The program descriptions are provided by representatives of the programs. Inclusion in this series does not imply Generations United’s endorsement or recommendation, but rather encourages ideas to inspire other programs.

This week’s cool idea is the Senior Design Factory, based in Zurich, Switzerland. The company’s centerpiece is the ‘Atelier’, or studio, where young designers work together with older adults who have craft skills.

(Check our archives for parts 1-39.)

The Senior Design Factory, founded by Debora Biffi and Benjamin Moser, pursues the objective of bringing together old and young persons as partners of equal value, and encouraging communication between the generations through engagement in creative projects.

(PHOTO: Senior Factory Design) Click the image to enlarge.
It highlights new ways in which older people can be linked in with everyday living, and their resources and talents used intelligently.

(Read the March 23 New York Times article on the Senior Design Factory.)

Design plays a central part in this project, functioning as a mediator and building bridges between the generations on the social and creative planes.

The centerpiece is the 'Atelier' or studio, where young designers work together with senior citizens who have craft skills.

The 'Shop' then markets the products they have created.

The 'Kitchen' restaurant is designed to be a cross-generational meeting place, and the 'Workshops' serve for the exchange and transfer of knowledge between young and old. 

(PHOTO: Senior Factory Design)
Debora Biffi and Benjamin Moser studied Style & Design at the Zurich University of the Arts.

In 2008, they developed the Senior Design project as a diploma study, working with retired people and the young and linking up the ideas and abilities of the generations.

The project met with an enthusiastic response, and continues to do so. Senior Design is now established as a charitable organisation.

Got something cool you tried that was successful? Why not tweet your cool intergenerational ideas to #cooligideas? You can also post them to our Intergenerational Connections Facebook Group. We want to highlight innovative age-optimized programs and practices through our blog, social media and weekly e-newsletter! Share the inspiration.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Pinebelt Association for Families

EDITOR’S NOTE: Each week, we feature intergenerational program ideas that were tried and successful. This series is a tool to highlight various age-optimized programs and practices. The program descriptions are provided by representatives of the programs. Inclusion in this series does not imply Generations United’s endorsement or recommendation, but rather encourages ideas to inspire other programs.

This week’s cool idea is the Pinebelt Association for Families, a kinship care program that works with 75 families in southern Mississippi’s four counties.

(Check our archives for parts 1-38.)

For the past fifteen years, The Pinebelt Association for Families (PAFF) has worked with families across the lifespan.

Since its inception in 1999, PAFF has supported kinship families (grandparents and other relatives raising grandchildren) and now works with some 75 families in four counties in southern Mississippi (Covington, Forrest, Jones, and Smith). 

Services have been supported by monies from The National Family Caregiver Support Program administered through Area Agency on Aging of the Southern Mississippi Planning and Development District, United Way of Southeast Mississippi and private foundations.

PAFF also serves largely homebound senior adults through our S.O.S. Program (Serving Our Seniors) providing home visiting, commodities, safety kits and available fresh fruits and vegetables.

Got something cool you tried that was successful? Why not tweet your cool intergenerational ideas to #cooligideas? You can also post them to our Intergenerational Connections Facebook Group. We want to highlight innovative age-optimized programs and practices through our blog, social media and weekly e-newsletter! Share the inspiration.

Monday, March 23, 2015

RSVP BABES (Beginning Alcohol and Addictions Basic Education Studies)

EDITOR’S NOTE: Each week, we feature intergenerational program ideas that were tried and successful. This series is a tool to highlight various age-optimized programs and practices. The program descriptions are provided by representatives of the programs. Inclusion in this series does not imply Generations United’s endorsement or recommendation, but rather encourages ideas to inspire other programs.

This week’s cool idea is RSVP BABES, a Beloit, WI-based program that uses colorful puppets to encourage children to live happy, healthy lives free from abuse.

(Check our archives for parts 1-37.)

Trained RSVP volunteers using BABES (Beginning Alcohol and Addictions Basic Education Studies) puppets and a script present accurate, nonjudgmental and age-appropriate information to all second grade classes in Portage County. 

The program is designed to help children by promoting self-esteem, defining peer pressure and practicing good decision-making skills.

The program also helps the children understand and develop skills necessary to cope with unhappy situations and stresses the importance of asking for help.

Got something cool you tried that was successful? Why not tweet your cool intergenerational ideas to #cooligideas? You can also post them to our Intergenerational Connections Facebook Group. We want to highlight innovative age-optimized programs and practices through our blog, social media and weekly e-newsletter! Share the inspiration.