TeenLife Blog

Supporting teen success, one post at a time

Author: Stephen Gray Wallace

Stephen Gray Wallace is president and director of the Center for Adolescent Research and Education (CARE), a collaborative committed to increasing positive youth outcomes and reducing negative-risk behaviors. He has broad experience as a school psychologist, adolescent/family counselor and college professor. He is director of counseling and counselor training at Cape Cod Sea Camps and a member of the professional development faculty at the American Academy of Family Physicians.

Posted Aug. 9, 2018, 8 a.m. by Stephen Gray Wallace | View Comments
d and lonely black girl feeling alone; sitting against a gray wall.

First, the good news. A new Youth Risk Behavior Survey report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is partially meant to focus the nation on behaviors among young people that cause the most serious health problems, and to assess how those risk behaviors change over time. This will help to foster critical prevention strategies for parents and professionals. And, new data analysis published by The New York Times reveals that, compared to survey results from 10 years ago, fewer kids report having had sex, drinking alcohol or using a host of other drugs. But there’s plenty of bad ...

Posted March 24, 2018, 8 a.m. by Stephen Gray Wallace | View Comments
Teenagers sitting around a campfire at camp.

Theodore Roosevelt reportedly said, “In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.” While Teddy was likely speaking of deciding issues far weightier than what to do with high school students during the summer months, with the advent of spring, it’s a topic of discussion around more than a few family dinner tables. My answer? The best thing to do is send high school students to summer camp! While there are many reasons, I will focus on ...

Posted Jan. 20, 2018, 8 a.m. by Stephen Gray Wallace | View Comments
What Every Parent Needs to Know About Addiction

Our children are at risk. And as rates of addiction soar for old and young, it’s essential that parents educate themselves about youth substance abuse. One 24-year-old college graduate told me, “I grew up in the suburban town of New Canaan, Conn., boasting some of the ‘best’ public schools in the country, high standardized-test scores and a near-perfect graduation rate. “I personally know five people who have passed away from heroin addictions. To make it through high school with friends, we basically had to take on a drug addiction of some sort, whether it was eating pills, getting wasted drunk, ...

Posted Jan. 18, 2018, 8 p.m. by Stephen Gray Wallace | View Comments
Why Summer Camp Is Still Relevant for High School Students

Behind the magic of summer camp lie the fundamental building blocks of experiential learning, social development, character, civic engagement and other 21st-century “soft” skills that might very well translate into job opportunities one day. Who knew? “From the time courageous and forward-thinking educators created what has grown to become a world-wide camp movement here …, they knew that something was lacking in children’s overall education,” Lucy Norvell, director of development and communications for the American Camp Association, New England, wrote in a 2016 article about the history of camps. “Those lucky campers who hiked and adventured along Connecticut’s Long Island ...