Put together the soaring increase in students diagnosed with autism and related impairments, a group of dedicated educators seeking solutions to the challenges they face daily, a team of been-in-the-trenches experts, three days of amazing content and hands-on experience, and what do you get? The answer is:
Extreme Makeover-Autism Education Edition
Let’s face it—there are lots of seminars and workshops available these days related to autism and other neurological disorders. In my days as a classroom teacher and consultant I attended many of these workshops, with some being better than others. What I found is, at best, these other offerings gave me a strategy or two to add to my repertoire. At worst I spent one or more days trying to stay awake while someone with no real experience with students or classroom teaching delivered repetitive content that didn’t allow me to do anything different when I got back to my classroom. Have you been there, too? Are you frustrated with the lack of learning opportunities for professionals who want to go beyond “business as usual” and truly understand and address the needs of our students?
I’m going to expose myself to some potential criticism here and tell you that I had to step away from the world of education for a while in order to gain the knowledge and skills I was seeking. I was looking for information that would allow me to go beyond the surface level skills I was teaching my students and really get to the root of the issues that were preventing them from being as successful as I knew they could be. I was tired of other people telling me how wonderful it was that my students were talking, behaving in the cafeteria, and getting A’s on their spelling tests. What I longed for were students who could think, communicate, flexibly adapt, and have true friendships. What was being taught in all those other courses and workshops wasn’t helping me accomplish those things with my students, so I went out in search of what was missing. The answers did not come from the fields of special education, behavioral psychology, or traditional approaches to autism. Instead, they came in the form of research and seminars in the fields of developmental psychology, neurology, neurodevelopmental disorders, and brain-based learning. Through learning about current research and practice in these areas I was able to get a much better understanding of the obstacles these students face and how to address them. It is this knowledge that I will be sharing with you in this one-of-a-kind 3-day workshop experience.
What makes me and my team qualified to provide training for professional educators? For starters, we have all worked in school settings and continue to provide training and consultation to schools throughout the United States and abroad. We know what it’s like to be in the role of a general education classroom teacher, special education teacher, therapy provider, consultant, and administrator. This allows us to take the specialized knowledge we have obtained outside the field of education and apply it in meaningful ways to the school setting. Our experience spans public and private school settings, specialized schools, charter schools, and homeschool settings. In addition to our extensive experience in schools, we also have a wealth of knowledge and experience outside of these settings. As consultants to families, we have worked with hundreds of families to address the challenges of autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders. Our integrated approach allows us to work as a team of professionals in order to provide the most comprehensive and beneficial treatment for parents and children. Speaking of children, you should know that we have experience working with individuals from infancy through adulthood. So, whether you teach young children or young adults, the content of our workshops and the real-life experience we bring to the table is applicable to your students and your situation. All of us have attained at least a master’s degree level of education, with specializations in numerous areas. Beyond our degrees, we all are passionate about continuing education and seek out opportunities to further our learning whenever possible. Each member of our team has completed the rigorous Relationship Development Intervention (RDI)® Program training and is an RDI® Program Certified Consultant. We are often invited to speak at events and hold our own training conferences for hundreds of professionals each year. Listing all of our individual degrees, certifications, and professional accomplishments would take too long and, frankly, be boring for most of you. Let’s just say that we have the experience and training to provide you with the best possible learning experience on this topic.
I promise you this workshop will be like nothing you have ever attended before. We’re going to work really hard, but have a lot of fun as well! Over the course of our three jam-packed days together we will cover how to:
• Shift from a mindset of working around deficits (compensation) to correcting the root issues that create obstacles for your students (remediation)
• Identify the core features of neurodevelopmental disorders that create communication, learning, and relationship challenges for your students
• Modify your communication to promote your students’ communication and thinking abilities
• Prompt students in ways that support critical thinking and communication skills, not prompt dependence
• Identify the unique strengths and obstacles of each student in order to determine appropriate placement and programming
• Structure the school day to develop competence and flexibility
• Decipher student behavior and address the root issues creating problems
• Identify the developmental milestones that lead to meaningful and appropriate communication, cognition, socialization, and behavior
• Work effectively with parents to promote student development consistently in all environments
• Focus on what really matters for students across the school day
• Reach your highest purpose as an influential guide in the lives of students with neurodevelopmental disorders
It’s going to be a busy 3 days, and we want to make sure everyone is able to get the absolute most they can out of the experience. That means comfortable rooms and seating, tasty snacks and beverages to keep the energy flowing, and fun activities to break up the days. We are holding the event at a location that will allow you to stay on-site if you are traveling to attend. You will get information on the exact location and sleeping room discounts well in advance of the event. Even if you live in the area, we encourage you to stay on-site for the three days of the event so you can stay focused on your learning and have the opportunity to network with the other fabulous professionals in attendance.
As you may have figured out by now, this event is not for everyone. If you are a professional educator of any type (teacher, psychologist, speech pathologist, OT, PT, social worker, administrator, or other) who is committed to doing the absolute best you can for your students, is invested in your own learning as a professional, enjoys the challenge of working with students who have neurodevelopmental disorders, and has a vision for being better with your students tomorrow than you are today—this workshop IS for you. However, if you are an educator who enjoys the status quo, only does the minimum required of you, and is not interested in rising to meet the challenges of students with neurodevelopmental disorders—this workshop is NOT for you. In fact, I’m going to be very clear that whiners, complainers, I-just-want-an-excuse-to-not-be-in-school-for-the-3-days-of-the-workshop, negative thinkers ARE NOT WELCOME (you know who you are and so will everyone else if you do attend)!
Our goal is to make this a positive, uplifting, and career-changing event for everyone who attends!
Your registration includes:
• Three days of amazing content and hands-on experience delivered by Nicole and her team of expert colleagues who have all spent years working in school settings
• A copy of the revolutionary book Learning as we Grow: Enriching Education for Students with Autism and Other Neurodevelopmental Disorders
• Workshop binder with copies of presentations, handouts, and plenty of space for notes
• A personal blueprint that will allow you to plan and implement your learning right away
• A copy of Flex Your Brain—a practical resource for incorporating remediation strategies in the school setting
• Snacks and lunch all three days of the workshop
• Special treats and activities each day designed to keep you relaxed, focused, and in optimal learning mode (hint-how does a massage sound??)
• Sleeping room discounts
• Bonus late-night Q&A session the evening of Day 2
• Follow-up Q&A teleseminar with Nicole 6 weeks after the workshop
Registration for this one-of-a-kind event is only $997.
Why the larger-than-average price tag for this event? Quite frankly, because the value of the content you will be receiving is that good. You could attend numerous workshops and not come away with the information, strategies, and mindset shifts you will experience in this one event. For those of you who are interested in cutting through all the fluff that’s out there and getting down to the nuts-and-bolts of what you need to understand and do to make a change for your students—this is the event to attend, and the cost is more than worth it. I will tell you now that this is the only time this workshop will be offered at this price. When we offer it again next year the price will be substantially higher.
Think about it this way:
• How much of your time and energy is spent worrying about how you are going to approach each day with your students, write IEPs that reflects their needs, manage behaviors, involve parents…and the list goes on?
• How much time, energy, and money is at stake for your district if you fail to provide quality educational experiences for students with autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders? Have you looked at the average cost of a due process hearing lately?
• Have you added up the amount of time and money that is spent on holding meeting after meeting without significant changes? Time spent trying to appease families and appease other professionals in your building or district?
• How much time, energy, and money are you currently spending on resources and trainings that aren’t meeting your needs or those of your students?
• What is it worth to reduce your frustration and feelings of incompetence when it comes to working with these students?
We are so confident that you and your students will benefit from this workshop experience that we guarantee it. If, by the end of day one of the workshop, you do not feel you are getting what you thought you would from the experience, we will refund your entire registration fee. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain by taking advantage of this opportunity to invest in yourself and your students right now.
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