This time I want to write you about the project I have been working on that has kept me very busy over the past months. Over the past 8 years, my training travels has taken me far and wide as the amount of trainings increased every year. I am honored by so many invitations of parents and professionals wanting to hear about my model of assessment and intervention. It is truly humbling. At this time though; it is beginning to become an entity that simply is too busy!
For this reason, I am opening my own online academy starting in January 2019. I have 3 major goals in mind. The first is to share my passion that change is possible in developmental delay if you know what to look for and where to begin. It is not about doing “more”, it is about the timing and sequence of what you put in place. We follow typical development and target intervention in different phases so the parent can follow and be released from the pressure of what I call the “catch-up” theory. In fact, intervention goes faster this way. If typical development was good enough for the typically developing child, it has to be good enough for the atypically developing child!
My second passion is to inform and equip families to the best of my knowledge. My wish is for parents to find joy in their children, to focus on their strengths while therapy intervenes on their child’s challenges. I want parents to feel they understand their child and their own position as an anchor for their children. Magic starts happening once the parent understands the value of “connection before correction”. Each behavior has a story, a reason and encourages the challenge of “chasing” the “why”. Nothing provides me more joy than when parent and child come together in harmony, when the parent knows how to challenge their child towards growth and feels the power to do so.
Finally, in order to create the above missions, we have to share our clinical skill with professionals, who like to exercise judgment and clinical thinking. What we learn at college (university) provide the foundation of working within our scope of practice, but it is the actual practice afterwards that informs clinical thinking. I have taken what I have learnt from children, families and other experts over 3 decades of practice to share a model of intervention that will promote specificity, individualization, clinical thinking and improve outcomes with clients. Of course, I do not believe that one person has the total answer for anything, and I do not pretend to think this is the “only” way of intervention. My hope is that this venture will spur other clinical experts to share what they know and create a base where knowledge can keep transforming our practice.
Courses will stretch over a number of weeks (6 to 12), meeting one time per week for 90 minutes. This allows for integration and reflection before adding more information each week. Webinars will occur in 90-minute sessions and will cover additional topics of interest. We also will have “track” courses, that will cover 4 levels of clinical practice. The first would be the bronze level, discussing theory and open to anyone to join. The silver level will target assessment for this specific population and the gold will target intervention. The final platinum level would consist of an individual practitioner presenting two cases, starting with assessment through intervention describing clinical thinking through their process. The last three levels will be applicable to only clinicians. These courses will follow a clinical model, but no one specific method of intervention will be over emphasized. The emphasis will be on broadening the mind to choose from a variety of tools to explore for each individual child.
The first 4 tracks we are going to kick off with in January would be Autism, The Reading Brain, Dyspraxia, and ADHD/ADD/Executive Functioning. We are also starting two single courses with regards to “Golden nuggets for Parenting” and another one explaining the concept of timing as a crucial building block in the brain. I am so excited about this venture and relieved that we are finally there. My hope is that it would be beneficial, insightful and promote the kind of thinking that will inspire parents and professionals to want to learn more. Children deserve the chance to be all that they can be. They deserve to be children who can play to their heart’s delight with joy and exuberance. They should be able to walk into every classroom with confidence, curiosity and a mind that looks forward to what the teacher has in store for them. I welcome any thoughts for future courses. We are working fast and furiously on the website, so please keep checking back in to know when the website is up and ready to go! Any day now!