Here is a playground where kids can connect with friends
How are you and your family coping? Nancy and I are OK, still finding humor in the fact that we moved our home to Florida to enjoy going outside every day but instead we find ourselves indoors 'sheltering in place'. I can only imagine how challenging staying at home is for parents of younger students. The classwork arrives through the computer but everyone must miss the playground more and more each day.    
I am writing to introduce a virtual playground that can make things a bit more fun for everyone. The new leaders of Adolescent Wellness (Penny Wells, Lila McCain, Ally Beard and Sue Hanly) let me write this issue of the AWI newsletter to encourage you to tell parents of 9 to 14 year olds about the virtual world of Whyville. Each player starts by creating an avatar for exploring and soon discovers that there are more topics or 'destinations' in Whyville than at Disney World here in Orlando.
Activity addressing the stress 
Game 7 - Stressed Avatar
Of course, my favorite destination is the Wellness Center. AWI helped pilot this resource in Whyville with William James College, which went on to add a full suite of activities that build coping skills.  These are the people skills and knowledge that help balance the weight of one's worries about family, friends, and the world. Like most Whyville destinations, Wellness Center activities are educational but the emphasis is on connecting friends and fun. Each player finds that their backpack contains a Wellness Journal that records the games won, creative problem solving plan, and much more. The Whyville home page is
You can see some of the activities listed on page 10 of the teacher tutorial download (  
If you are a teacher, you are invited to Whyville webinars - check out the Did you know... section below for details.


-Bob Anthony
Bob Anthony

Bob was in the tech industry for 20 years before founding Adolescent Wellness, Inc. in 2005. Today it remains an all volunteer organization dedicated to preventing anxiety, depression and suicide. Bob gratefully handed all AWI operatio
Bob with pompano
ns to the current directors in October when he moved with Nancy to Naples, Florida.
Bob stays in touch, especially with projects related to Rotary International. He has found that several resources piloted by AWI are helpful in other countries. The Rotary Foundation has brought 'Wellness in a Box' to Puerto Rico, India and Nigeria to facilitate a local protocol for referral, training, and the Boston Children's Hospital curriculum supplement titled Break Free From Depression.

Bob continues to volunteer in Florida and is Treasurer of the Rotary Action Group on Mental Health Initiatives (  
Webinars for teachers about Whyville start next week?
The Whyville leaders are reaching out to see how they can better serve teachers and students "...during these strange and stressful times we have all had to adjust quickly and find new ways to teach, learn, share and support each other. As such, we are putting on a special series of free webinars on Whyville's educational games, activities and classroom management features that could be useful distance learning tools for you and your 4th - 8th grade students. Our first webinar will take place next week,
the week of April 6.  Please help us schedule this event by letting us
know which time slots work well for you via this Doodle:

This first webinar will focus on our teacher tools and how Whyville can
be used for distance learning. We also look forward to hearing your
thoughts on how Whyville could better support you and your students." 
Support AWI 

Your donation to AWI is greatly appreciated.  AWI leverages
every dollar effectively, providing curricula and facilitation training to teen leaders.  The web link goes to credit card processing; c hecks may be made 
payable to Adolescent Wellness, Inc. and mailed to 13b Parley Avenue, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130. 
AWI is a 501c3 non-profit and gifts are tax deductible.
You can also select Adolescent Wellness, Inc. to support through purchases at
AWI Directors

The people who make it happen!
Ally Beard

Lila McCain, Chair
Penny Wells, Treasurer
Ally Beard, Director
Sue Hanly, Director

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