EMSPTA is thrilled to introduce

"The Amazing Tween Years".


As parents we see our middle school tweens go through a significant cognitive, physiological, and socio-emotional journey between the ages of 12-15. To help us understand, support, and celebrate our tweens during these important years, we are offering a community platform of support on this journey.


"The Amazing Tween Years" is an EMS community platform with speaker series, parent roundtable discussions, and resources such as research findings and parenting tools. Our panel of experts, including child psychologists, educators, and experienced parents, cover a wide range of relevant and timely topics including cognitive development, socio-emotional development intelligence, executive functioning, social media impact, and much more. The parent roundtables led by school counselors, administrators, and EMS parents are a chance to share your experiences, strategies, and questions (more information to come).


This is an opportunity for us, as a community, to come together and engage in meaningful discussions about parenting, development, and the unique needs of our tweens.


Your participation is what will make these events truly impactful. Please RSVP for each event individually. Together, we aim to build a stronger, collaborative, and supportive educational environment for our children. 



We are inviting volunteers for The Amazing Tween Years Parent Program Coordinator (2 positions) for 2024-2025
We invite you to join us in creating a successful and impactful platform for the EMS community. Together, we can enhance this space with speaker series, parent roundtable discussions, and valuable resources, including research findings and parenting tools.

Past Events 


Parent Roundtable: Social Media in Large Cafeteria

25th April 2024 at 9 a.m. in Large Cafeteria

Our third Parent Roundtable will further discuss the topics raised about Social Media and our Tweens and develop a personalized summary of your own key takeaways and any actions you may want to implement with your tweens. Coffee will be provided. 


The parent roundtable will be moderated by Mr. Marc Guarino, Principal & Mr. Anthony Duncan, Assistant Principal, and Loren Rubino of Sasco River Center.



Speaker Presentation: Social Media and Our Tweens on 9th April 2024 at 9 a.m. in Large Cafeteria


Our fourth presentation in the series for this school year will be a presentation by Dr. Christopher Bogart, PhD Co-Executive Director of Sasco River Center. This time we will be digging into Social Media questions in depth.


This presentation will focus on the cognitive and affective impacts of screen time, and research findings on the impact/effects of alternative reality, cyberbullying, and addiction to social media on our children's development and parenting tools.



Parent Roundtable -Continuing the Conversation about Never Enough 27th February 2024 at 9 a.m. in Large Cafeteria
Parent Roundtable -Continuing the Conversation about the presentation with Jennifer B. Wallace about her book “Never Enough: When Achievement Culture Becomes Toxic – and What We Can Do About It”. Ms. Meghan Moore, School Counselor, Ms. Stacy Slater, School Psychologist and Mr. Marc Guarino, Principal facilitated and participated in the parent roundtable.


Speaker Presentation: Executive Functioning -Skills for Life and Learning on 6th February 2024 at 9 a.m


Our third presentation in the series was a presentation by Dr. Christopher Bogart, Ph.D. Co-Executive Director of Sasco River Center.


This presentation provided parents with an overview of what executive functions are, their developmental progression and impact on our children's affective and cognitive growth, skills needed to "execute", parent strategies and tools to support and develop executive functions, parenting tools, and research and literature for further reading.


Parent Roundtable: Executive Functioning led by Mr. Anthony Pavia, our seventh-grade counselor. Mr Pavia discussed the tips and activities to promote executive functioning skills in our tweens and the measures taken at EMS. It included a fun game and helpful tips! Here is his presentation.




Speaker Presentation:  A Conversation with Jennifer B. WallaceAuthor of -Never Enough: When Achievement Culture Becomes Toxic–and What We Can Do About It on January 30th at 1 pm




Jennifer Wallace is an award-winning journalist and author. Today's students face unprecedented pressure to succeed in the ever-more-competitive race to secure the best possible future. Through deep research and interviews with today’s leading child psychologists, Wallace shows what kids need from adults is not more pressure, but to feel like they matter, that they have intrinsic self-worth not contingent upon external achievements. Parents and educators who adopt the language and values of mattering help children see themselves as a valuable contributor to a larger community. And in an ironic twist, kids who receive consistent feedback that they matter, no matter what, are more likely to have the resilience, self-confidence, and psychological security to thrive



Understanding and Supporting Your Tween Development, on the 14th of November at 9 a.m. 
This was the first in this series. A presentation by Dr. Christopher Bogart, PhD Co-Executive Director of Sasco River Center provided parents with thoughtful research and knowledge on tween development backed by research and practical tools for more effective parenting to allow our children to grow into resilient, independent, balanced people. It centered around the biological, cognitive, and social development in tweens, the three most important brain pathways, the parent's role in modeling healthy examples and sowing healthy seeds for a nurturing environment, allowing for some healthy bumps in the road and many resources for further reading and discussion.
The presentation was very well received. Below are some of the feedback from the attendees.
It was useful to hear the science behind the tween changes in our kids - I need to practice more of ...the right time to talk to my tween is not in the moment but instead to circle back when everything is calm
... conversations with parents on social media for tweens, how to avoid bad role modeling habits and generally good tips and advice to 'reset' how we tackle some of the challenging times with our tweens
It was helpful to hear an expert describe what goes on with our kid's brain development and to have a chance to ask questions and talk with other parents