C oncerned and taking action,
E ducators, parents and others….
A llied in a network of activists for children to be:
S afe from violence, poverty, pollution, and live in an
E nvironment which supports healthy growth, play, and peace.
CEASE is a network of parents, teachers and other concerned individuals who are dedicated to creating a safe world for our children. We seek to end the violence that permeates our society to an ever increasing degree and to remove the root causes of this violence by advocating for peace, justice, and economic opportunity, and sustainability.
Please, right now, contact your
CEASE is an action organization of volunteer members
CEASE is an action organization of volunteer members. We work with other organizations and individuals beyond the classroom door to help change policies so that the children we care for can grow up in a safer, friendlier world. We create, distribute, and recommend resources to further those purposes. In 2009 we celebrated our 30th year of this work.
CEASE Recent Activities
See our 2013 Fall Packet for information about CEASE activities at the 2013 NAEYC conference.
CEASE at the 2013 NAEYC Conference in Washington, D.C.
Interest Forum Sessions
Our CEASE session “Empowering children to cultivate peacemaking and democratic life skills” was well attended and warmly received. Having the conference at the capital, the seat of our country’s government, was inspiring to our presenters, Craig Simpson, Irene Lipshin and Sharon Davisson. Our power point demonstrated how Dan Gartrell’s ideas in Educating for a Civil Society align with our long-time peace education practices. We also shared stories and photographs related to empowering children at the very earliest age to be active participants, how to create a democratic learning community, and finally, examples of how these peacemaking skills and democratic values are demonstrated throughout individual’s lives.
CEASE sponsored the Defending the Early Years (DEY) presentation Finding Your Voice: Becoming a Teacher-Activist. The panel presentation and discussion sessions were well received. One of the panel members was a long-time CEASE member and current Peace Award Winner, Karel Kilimnick who shared her powerful and ongoing work with the Philadelphia Coalition Advocating for Public Schools organization.
CEASE also sponsored the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood (CCFC) session Nurturing early development in a commercialized world: What educators can do to prevent advertising and marketing harm by our recent Peace Award winner, Susan Linn. The participants were enthusiastic about Susan’s convincing presentation related to the harm commercialization can bring to children’s growth, development and creativity. Of course, Audrey Duck unsuccessfully argued against the points Susan was making.
CEASE member and Defending the Early Years (DEY) senior advisor, Diane Levin presented the NAEYC featured session, Beyond Remote-Controlled Childhood: Teaching Young Children in the Media Age. An estimated 1,000 educators attended and responded enthusiastically to Diane’s message about how to counter the adverse effects of popular culture and exposure to media on today’s young children.
CEASE Annual Peace Awards and a Legacy Peace Award
2013 CEASE Peace Awards to Karel Kilimnik and Fran Rozonowski
CEASE Annual Interest Forum Meeting
We began this year’s Interest Forum meeting with a time of silence in memory of those close to CEASE who have died in the past year: Chris Lamm, Heidi Smith’s husband, Frank Petrosino, and Craig Simpson’s brother, Jay. Lucy Stroock presented our Legacy Peace Award in honor of Chris Lamm and then presented the CEASE annual Peace Awards to Karel Kilimnik and Fran Rozonowski.
We agreed to have Joyce Daniels as the fourth member of our Executive Committee, replacing the late Chris Lamm. Our major topic of discussion centered on choosing a topic for next year’s Interest Forum seminar. The 2014 NAEYC Conference will be in Dallas from November 6-8. We decided to focus on how to communicate with children, other teachers, and parents about the uncomfortable realities in the children’s lives that emerge in the classroom. These realities can range from an incarcerated family member to abuse or a commonly experienced natural or human-caused disaster. Diane Levin and Fran Roznowski are willing to participate on the panel, but not take a lead on the presentation.
Finally, we decided that postcards and emails will be sent out to the full CEASE list indicating a two-year limit on paper communications for those who have email capability and do not express a preference for paper.
CEASE at the NAEYC Interest Forum Café
Once again, CEASE folks and those interested in CEASE activities gathered at the Interest Forum Café. Those of us who staffed our table enjoyed conversing with other Interest Forum members. Many of the NAEYC Interest Forums are made up of activists that engage in “nudging” NAEYC to remain aware of issues of social justice.
CEASE demonstrated at the US Capitol
|Several members of CEASE braved the below-freezing temperatures to demonstrate at the Capitol on Saturday. We hoisted our custom-made banner while handing out the CEASE current FYI on budget priorities. We had an interesting experience as a large group of tourists passed by and we got to hear the tour guide translate our signs and banner into German. Lots of “kinder” this and “kinder” that.|
CEASE promoted and celebrated Universal Children’s Day
With support from CEASE and several other organizations, John Surr initiated a celebration of Universal Children’s Day, November 20, at the NAEYC conference. Universal Children’s Day was established by the UN General Assembly in 1954, to recognize, appreciate, cherish and celebrate the children among us everywhere in the world. Thanks to John’s perseverance and energy, over 2,200 handouts with ideas for celebrations involving young children and 700 stickers were distributed to educators who, in turn, may bring the celebration to their own communities.
Spring 2013 CEASE News
Articles from the Spring 2013 CEASE newsletter by title;
June 2013 CEASE Annual Leadership Retreat.
Truro, MA. June 21-25.
The leadership of CEASE held its annual retreat in Truro, Massachusetts hosted by our CEASE East members. We welcomed four new members to the leadership team who brought new energy and skills to our group. To introduce the newcomers to the culture of CEASE and to remind us all of our roots, we began our retreat with inspiring stories of our founder Peggy Schirmer and her husband Boone.
Our first discussion session pertained to the collaborative model that CEASE uses in all that we do. We reviewed our collaborative writing process, our networking with other organizations and the workshop format we use at conferences.
We then reassessed our priorities and discussed what actions we wished to take in the coming year to bring about positive change. We developed teams to work on articulating our commitments to peace, social justice, community, play and care, and the environment. We committed to redesigning the Take Action section of our website to make it more appealing to intuitive as well as linear learners. Small groups worked on designing CEASE mini-grants, creating guidelines for facilitating workshop discussion sessions, creating a New Committee Member Handbook, and designing a user-friendly Take Action page on our website.
We also revisited our role as “the conscience of NAEYC” by committing to continue voicing our values of social justice and peace related to NAEYC’s position statements, especially regarding the use of technology in the ECE classroom, the need to acknowledge that war is violence, and the critical role of play in children’s learning and development. We discussed the upcoming NAEYC conference in Washington, D.C. and agreed to not only present our CEASE seminar but to also sponsor the Defending the Early Years and the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood presentations. We committed to being a presence at the Capitol by visiting our representatives and demonstrating in behalf of children and families.
For activities in 2012 and earlier, see our Archives page.