Tuesday, Jan 13 Drop-In Philosophy Discussion

Drop your 9-12 year old off for a philosophical discussion while you hit the Santa Barbara Downtown Farmers Market!

January 13 Topic

Using Shel Silverstein’s beloved book, The Giving Tree, as a conversation starter, we’ll be contemplating our relationship with nature—when, how, and why it’s ok to use natural resources to care for us versus when, how, and why we should serve as caretakers of the world.

As with ALL Club GPS discussions, there are no right or wrong answers to these questions. Instead, we’re looking to help kids learn to listen with empathy and understanding to other opinions and expand their understanding of big ideas and concepts.

Location: The Kidzmet Clubhouse – 112 W Cota St, Santa Barbara, CA 93101
(Top floor of the Dubin Learning Center)

Maximum 8 children per group

Ages: 9-12
Cost: $25

Register Now:

Child’s Full Name

Parent Name

Leave a Comment January 10, 2015

Why I Started Club GPS

I started Club GPS because I wanted as many kids as possible to have a Dead Poets Society kind of learning experience…as EARLY as possible—including the ones who can’t afford a $30K private school. You know, the kind of experience where young club members realize,

Club GPS vs. Traditional Classroom Education“You must strive to find your OWN voice because the longer you wait to begin, the less likely you are to find it all.”


“We must constantly look at things in a different ways.”


“You must trust that your beliefs are unique, your own, even though others may think them odd or unpopular.”

…and, most importantly…

“No matter what anybody tells you, your words and ideas can change the world.”

So, how does this differ from what’s valued in the current US educational system?

I’m not saying that there’s not a place for the education taking place in traditional classrooms. They serve a vital function in developing many of the habits of mind that are needed for success outside of school. But it’s far from a complete solution. We need to give students the opportunity to look at a more expansive and holistic view of learning and life. A view where there’s not necessarily a clear cut, black-and-white answer to all questions, but a whole spectrum of possibilities. Here are just a few of the ways the educational experience in the clubhouse will differ than the ones most kids experience in the classroom:



Thinking quickly, fluency drills, processing speed evaluations


Thinking deeply and broadly



Being “cut out” for the system and teacher-defined mold


Finding your own, authentic voice



Competition for “best in class”


Collaboration to make sure everyone lives the best possible life



Quiet, Orderly Classroom


Collaborative, Creative Clubhouse



Looking for the one “right answer” to a question


Looking at the same question from multiple points of view



Listening with the intent to soak up and parrot back the right answer


Listening with the intent to be changed by what we hear



Recreate or come to the same conclusion as the “expert”


Dream up and bring to life a new solution or conclusion that is uniquely yours



Filling a bucket with past knowledge


Lighting a desire fire to reveal future insight

Click the links below for more information about:

Our Curriculum
Our Instructor
Our Location
Virtual Tour

Leave a Comment December 18, 2014

Top 9 Questions We’ll Be Asking in Club GPS

So many philosophical questions…so little time!

Here are just a few of the questions we’ll be contemplating together during our time in Club GPS.

While we’ll have lesson frameworks, each session will unfold slightly differently based on who’s in the room.

Good idea










General Structure of Each Club Session

(All times approximate.)

30 min GROUP WARM UP with one of the questions above to give our brains a good stretch

5 min GET INSPIRED by a short video about a REAL kid who’s changing the world

10 min HOW TO do the day’s activity

30 min SOLO ACTIVITY with 5 min BRAIN BREAK halfway through

5 min REFLECTION on where we are on the activity

2 min MINDFULNESS MOMENT to refocus and share thoughts

20 min PAIRED ACTIVITY with someone who “thinks different” than you (10 min for each partner) with 5 min BRAIN BREAK halfway through

5 min Vote for this week’s coolest LIFE HACK


Our only required at-home work for ClubGPS will be for students to ask themselves the contemplation question for the week before bed at night and record the first thing that pops into their mind on the topic first thing the next morning in their journal, then bring in their journal each week. However, if kids want to think about their individual final project during the week, try one of the life hacks that came up, or talk to other club members about their projects or ideas, they are welcome to do so!

Take a Virtual Tour of the Clubhouse

Location: The Kidzmet Clubhouse – 112 W Cota St, Santa Barbara, CA 93101
(Top floor of the Dubin Learning Center)

Minimum 4/Maximum 6-7 children per group.

Classes start the week of Jan 5.
Cost: $350 per child (20 hours)

Registration Closed for Winter Session

Sign Up To Be Notified About Upcoming Sessions

Leave a Comment December 17, 2014

Coming in January to Santa Barbara!

Ideas Worth Spreading…For Kids

Empowering Kidzmet Kids to transform their thoughts and ideas into actions that can make their world and community a better place.

DesignedCollaborative Learning for 9-12 year olds, this NEW Santa Barbara area enrichment club will be grounded in shedding light on the causes closest to our hearts while developing both the unique strengths of each participant and critical 21st Century success skills like collaboration, critical thinking, effective communication, awareness building, problem solving, time management, and project planning.

During our time together, club members will discover an inspiring and enriching program that sparks learning through FUN as we work together to develop presentations and promote a final event chock-full of kid-developed ideas about how we can make our world a better place.
More About the Curriculum
More About the Club
More About the Instructor

Location: The Kidzmet Clubhouse – 112 W Cota St, Santa Barbara, CA 93101
(Top floor of the Dubin Learning Center)

Minimum 4/Maximum 6 children per group.
Each group will meet once per week for 2 hours.

Classes start the week of Jan 5.
Remaining class DAY options: M, Tu, or W
Remaining class TIME options: 1-3p or 3:30-5:30
Cost: $350 per child (20 hours)

Registration Closed for Winter Session

Sign Up To Be Notified About Upcoming Sessions & Spring/Summer Break Camps!


About the Instructor

Jen Lilienstein, multi-award winning author, businesswoman, and Kidzmet Founder will lead each class. Jen’s background combines 20+ years of marketing, advertising, writing, and speaking with a passion for celebrating, embracing, and nurturing kids’ unique learning strengths. A former UC Regents Scholar that earned her Bachelor’s degree from UC Irvine at 19, Jen has won a multitude of awards for her work with Kidzmet.com the past 5 years, including:

  • being named one of Startup Nation’s Leading Moms in Business 2010,
  • the 2011 Parent Tested Parent Approved award for Kidzmet,
  • the 2012 National Parenting Center’s Award for her Kidzmet work,
  • the MIT Enterprise Forum audience award in 2013,
  • the Spring 2013 Pinnacle Award for Best Parenting and Family Book, and
  • the Summer 2014 Academics’ Choice Smart Book Award for A Parent’s Playbook for Learning.

Kidzmet Awards

At home, Jen is Mom to an extraverted-intuitive daughter who has a passion for the arts and an introverted-sensing son who is enthralled with nature and engineering.

2 Comments October 13, 2014

On Cyber Bullying as a Social Phenomenon

by Dr. Tali Shenfield, Clinical Psychologist

Our society has changed a great deal over the last fifty years. Technology has increased our ability to communicate with each other. The world has gone wireless and the average human being today carries in his or her pocket more communication potential than that possessed by any mid-Twentieth Century government office.

It is not surprising that this vast network of communication has a great deal of influence on our children. The continuous adoption of new technologies has become a social game-changer. Lifestyles, and modes of social interaction are in a constant state of flux. These new developments also cause a number of new problems, not the least of which is a loss of social skills. Social skills are an art form. An analogy can be made to the art of painting. At one time, it was quite beneficial to be able to paint a recognizable reproduction of a real-life scene. Then along comes the camera, making it possible to reproduce an image without having to pick up a brush. The camera reduced the necessity of realistic painting, and also had a great deal of influence on the kind of image which is created.

While we have, in our present society, a greater ability to communicate than at any time in the past, the quality of that communication has dropped drastically. The ability to engage in coherent and intelligent debate has almost completely vanished. Political candidates now debate in sound bites because that’s what the technology facilitates. Disagreements are now often reduced to shouting matches, both on and off the Internet.

Technology has also given rise to a new form of harassment called cyber bullying. For young people, online social networks have become an important part of gaining social acceptance. Children are considered outcasts if they don’t have a Facebook page. In fact, the need for communication over the Internet is so great that children often use it as an argument against their parents attempts to restrict Internet access.

When a universal increase in the ability to communicate is coupled with a lowering of the quality of communication, it results in an inevitable increase in rudeness and cruelty. Bullying is often the result.

Because of this, parents should be informed of the dangers as well as the advantages of the Internet.

One of the big problems with cyber bullying is that it is not direct and face to face. Anyone with a computer can make rude, viscous or denigrating remarks against another person without fear of physical reprisal. While the anonymity of the Internet may give power to the powerless, it also gives power to the crude and the ruthless.

Cyber bullying has become a very serious problem that has already resulted in more than one death by suicide. Cyber bullying is most severe among teenage girls, although boys are sometimes victims or the bullies.

The lack of face-to-face contact gives courage to bullies and makes them feel invincible. Because of this, they may make a far more serious assault than they would if they had to physically confront their victim.

One of the dangers of cyber bullying is that children rarely report it to their parents when it happens. This is primarily due to fears that parents will restrict internet access, overreact, under-react, or simply not understand.

Since your child may not reveal when he or she is being bullied, it is very important to understand and look for the signs of cyber bullying. Here is what you should look for:

  • Sudden withdrawal from online communication
  • Your child blocks or clears the screen or closes the browser when you enter the room. The same applies if your child closes or quickly puts away his phone.
  • Withdrawal from friends or an unwillingness to participate in social activities with his or her peers.
  • A rapid change in mood after being online or using a cell phone.
  • Your child suddenly changes his circle of friends.
  • Your child is withdrawn, sad or agitated for no apparent reason.

Here’s what you can do about cyber bullying.

  • Maintain communication with your children. Don’t lecture or fuss, just let them know that you are willing to listen and that they can come to you if they have a problem. They are not alone.
  • If they have done something over which they are embarrassed, such as sending an inappropriate picture of themselves to someone else, or they are embarrassed by the bullying itself, let them know that you won’t punish them, you are simply concerned for their safety.
  • Take action. Let the school or the authorities know what is happening. Many law enforcement agencies now have special task groups who investigate incidents of cyber bullying.
  • Be particularly vigilant if your child has a developmental disorder. Children with disorders such as ADHD, ODD, and Autism are more likely to be bullied and to be bullies. They tend to act impulsively and don’t always understand the subtleties of social interaction.

And finally, stay computer literate. Learn the language of social media. You can find out a lot at netlingo.com. By learning about social media, you open up the communication lines between yourself and your child, because you have knowledge of social media in common. A parent who knows social media is one of the best defenses against cyber bullying.

Child Psychologist- Dr. Tali Shenfield, C.Psychotherapy.Author Bio: Dr. Tali Shenfield is a Child Psychologist and a Clinical Director of Richmond Hill Psychology Center. She holds a PhD in Psychology from the University of Toronto and is a member of the College of Psychologists of Ontario, Canadian Register of Health Service Providers in Psychology, and Canadian Psychological Association. If you’d like more information about Dr. Shenfield, you can find it on her website: www.psy-ed.com

1 Comment August 21, 2013

Previous page


Personality Type Forum

Subscriber Count