Fiddleheads After-School Sessions
Fiddleheads after-school sessions are a holistic, heart-centered therapeutic approach to social and emotional learning. We create a safe and stimulating environment for children and youth to experience and enhance their connections with their bodies, inner worlds, peers, and the natural environment. Taking the stigma out of therapy, our Fiddleheads counselors and clinicians bring joy, nature, and the real-life experience of authentic relationships and presence into the healing process.
- Petaluma: Helen Putnam Regional Park
- Sebastopol: Ragle Ranch Regional Park
- San Francisco: Presidio
- Berkeley: Tilden Park
- Oakland: Roberts Park
- Richmond: Wildcat Canyon
Meets 1 day per week, 3:30pm–5:30pm
Fall Session 2021: September 13th–November 15th
All of our locations are tentative based on preliminary enrollment. If you are interested in a specific location we encourage you to apply early. If you are interested in a location that is not on this list, don’t hesitate to contact us. Click here to inquire about bringing Fiddleheads to your area!
$1,610Per 14-week sessionThis is the actual cost of the session. If you can afford the full cost we encourage you to choose this option.
$1,190Per 14-week sessionThis is our historically subsidized tuition. This option is available for families that need some financial assistance.
Contact UsPer 14-week sessionThis is a variable rate for families with financial assistance needs greater than Tier 2. We can provide additional assistance to families that demonstrate a need through our Financial Assistance Fund.
We are in partnership with East Bay and North Bay Regional Centers. If you are a client of the Regional Center, reach out to your Service Coordinator to express interest and check your eligibility.
Multi-child discount: Sign up for two or more children and receive $50 off your total cost for each child.
Referrals: Refer a new family to Fiddleheads and receive additional $25 off your total cost. Please make sure your friend(s) reference your name and code FRIEND in the “How do did you hear about Fiddleheads” section of the application.
- Arrive at 3:30 PM
- Short period of free play until all children arrive
- Counselors bring everyone together for circle time
- At Circle Time, counselors lead activities, play social skills games, teach mindfulness, music, and more
- Counselors share with group the primary activity for the day (fish pond, climbing tree, tag game, etc.)
- Hike to destination
- Snack time, counselors tell stories, lead discussion around the theme for the day (e.g., friendship, working together, overcoming challenges, etc.)
- At destination, counselors lead main activity (art, games, cooperative project, etc.)
- At Closing Circle we share our apple and lemon of the day, and connect activities to theme of the day
- Depart at 5:30 PM
Fiddleheads Counselor Narrative
In the morning, we headed down to the Wood Line, where one of the highlights was finding a GIANT banana slug in a log! The kids had a great time observing and gently touching the slug, and we learned some cool slug facts! We also used pieces of bark as “wands” and took turns magically transforming each other into things like toads, backpacks, and “infinity!” Today many of the kids struggled with listening and following instructions. There was a lot of energy among all of the campers from the get go this morning and they were very excited to start the day, which was wonderful! However, when they get excited while playing, they often tend to shut out other stimuli such as requests from Trudy and I and this can throw off the balance of the group. One of the strategies we used today to restore centeredness to the group was a mindfulness exercise accompanied by calming music. In the tree grove by the Wood Line, we put on some peaceful music, which immediately helped regulate the kiddos, and asked them to notice some of the things around them in nature using their five senses. We noticed the beauty of the wind rustling through the eucalyptus trees, the sunlight filtering through, and the unique swirls in the bark.
In the afternoon, we headed back to the creek, which is one of the kids’ favorite spots to play. We had lunch, ran around, and picked some more wild blackberries! The kiddos love finding special sticks and carrying them with them throughout the day, and they often use them in pretend play with each other. They can also become very possessive of them and we are continuing to work on respecting each others’ possessions, including these sticks, and asking before we use them.
Some of the campers also struggle with rigidity when it comes to rules and anxiety when others are not following them. This can be helpful when the kiddos gently remind their friends of our agreements, but can be challenging when this becomes a source of anxiety and results in angry outbursts. We are continuing to work on using our words to respectfully let others know when their behavior is upsetting us. We are also working on the concept of empathy and being mindful of how our words and actions affect others. Some of the kiddos also like to yell out negative/unkind words in a repetitive pattern while they are walking around to no one in particular, which appears to be a method of self-regulation. We are working to have them replace these words, such as “stupid” and “yucky,” with positive words.
Overall, today was super fun! Group cohesiveness continues to increase every day and it is beautiful to see how the kids’ friendships with each other are developing. They have gotten lots better at sharing with each other as well and we have been noticing even more cooperative play and emotional vulnerability in conversations with each other. We are looking forward to a wonderful rest of the week with the campers and seeing some of you tomorrow!