Breakout one:  10:55-11:55 a.m

Breakout two: 1:10-2:10 p.m.

Breakout three: 2:20-3:20 p.m.


Open to All


Setting Your Students Up for Success: The Responsibilities of the Special Educator in the Classroom

Mia Belsky, Educator from Connections Education Center of the Palm Beaches, Inc.

This session will address the various strategies that can be used to ensure success for all students regardless of ability. Several topics will be discussed including establishing a collaborative and open relationship with parents, structuring your classroom to ensure that behavioral and academic expectations are met, and developing a warm, positive environment where all students feel valued. The discussion will include Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports, a variety of behavioral techniques that can be used by any educator, integrating blended learning into your teaching, and differentiating instruction in a classroom with a wide range of abilities. 

Breakout one & three


Psychological Testing:  When to Refer and Why?

Arielle Burdo, Ph.D,   Alpert Jewish Family & Children's Service Levine Jewish Residential & Family Service

Psychoeducational testing is a process of problem solving to try and determine the core components of a person’s psychological or mental health, personality style, IQ, and to identify personal strengths and weaknesses. Results from a comprehensive evaluation can often provide important information about a child’s natural learning style.  Testing can provide insight into whether a child is more specifically an auditory or visual learner.  In general, with input from the psychologist, testing can lead to overall greater success in the classroom setting. 

Breakout two


Developing Accurate and Fluent Reading through the Imagery-Language Connection

Alexandra Curbelo, Center Manager at Lindamood-Bell Learning Processes

Lindamood-Bell Learning Processes (LBLP) is an organization dedicated to helping children and adults learn to their potential through the use of its research-validated programs, which have been proven successful for individuals with learning challenges, including dyslexia.  This workshop will focus on dual coding of imagery and language, the LBLP Seeing Stars® program which supports the development of phonemic awareness through the multisyllable level, visual memory, word attack, word recognition, spelling, contextual reading (both accuracy and fluency), and reading comprehension.

Breakout one & two


BE SOCIAL:  The Missing Pieces to Help Your Students (Preschool-High School)

Alana Fichtelberg, M.A., CCC-SLP

Most children naturally learn to navigate the social world very successfully.  However, there are other children who have great social difficulties regardless of their academic abilities.  They know “what” the social rules are, but don’t realize when they are in it. These students need to learn/understand the “why” in order to become flexible, good problem solvers, consider the views of others, interpret body language/facial expressions, and see the “big picture” both in life and when reading books. This presentation will provide easy suggestions for educators to help students socially and academically throughout the day using methodologies such as “Social Thinking®” (developed by Michelle Garcia  Through this social learning, students can become more successful in school, work, and life.

Breakout three


What Does a Mom, a Son and Teacher Have to Say about Autism?

Debby and Benji Gans

This session will help you understand what it is like to live with Autism from the perspective of a mom, a child and a teacher. Join Debby, Benji Gans and Mrs. Ami Steinbock, as they answer YOUR questions in an honest and open discussion about living and learning with Autism.

Breakouts two & three


Engage All Learners

Mira Halpert, 3D Learner

Over 60% of students today learn best when they see and experience information. It is vital all students, even the active learners, be engaged in your classroom. Learn techniques, movement exercises and strategies that will keep your students motivated and connected to the learning process, without you getting frustrated. 

Breakout two


Why Children Do the Things they Do: Basics of Child Behavior In the Classroom

Roseanne Lesack, Ph.D., BCBA-D, ABPP, Director, Unicorn Children’s Foundation Clinics

Children communicate through their behavior. So, what is their behavior saying to you during class?  This session will provide an overview of how to understand your students’ behaviors and how to respond to disruptive behaviors to encourage more positive outcomes.

Breakout two


Modifying Curriculum and Integrating Technology in the Classroom

Pam Ludwick, Educator from Connections Education Center of the Palm Beaches, Inc.

This workshop will focus on how to modify curriculum for children with special needs. We will also discuss ways to integrate technology into the classroom to support curriculum and allow special needs students mainstream and be more successful in a typical setting.

Breakout one & three


Hineni: From Noticing to Meeting Needs

Miryam Buchler, Lital Dayan, Veronica Maravankin, Barbara Kay Early Childhood Learning Center Leadership Team
What does seeing the children B’Tzelem Elohim- in the Image of God - mean? What are the implications? How does seeing children as unique individuals affect you personally and professionally?  Educators will leave the workshop with practical tools to engage and build meaningful relationships with children.
Breakout one & three


Arranging and Running a Classroom Environment for a Mixed Population of Special Needs and Typical Students

Jason Portman, Educator from Connections Education Center of the Palm Beaches, Inc.

A student’s non-compliance is not necessarily a behavioral issue. Professional Crisis Management (PCM) states that simple manipulations in environment can drastically decrease non-compliant behaviors. What do we as teachers need to know and what can we do to help students act appropriately in the classroom?

Breakout one, two & three


Not Just the Child 
Elaine Rotenberg, Ph.D. Clinical Director of the Alpert Jewish Family & Children's Service
When a family is raising a child with a disability, the focus of the entire family often centers on that child. The emphasis on finding the right doctors, evaluations, medications, and interventions often “takes over” the energy of the family.  This session will explore the challenges families face when living with a disability, in terms of finding a balance for the family as a whole.  Emphasis will be placed on parents and siblings, navigating priorities, and how this impacts communication with classroom teachers.
Breakout three


Curriculum Modifications and Accommodations
Tina Trujillo, Reading Specialist for Palm Beach County School District
Learn quick and simple modifications for your students with disabilities.  Discover how changes you make for your students with disabilities can help your whole class!
Breakout one & two


Neurodiversity in the 21st Century
Risa Voorhees, LCSW

Approximately 35 percent of children in public school have specific learning disabilities. 1 in 42 boys and 1 in 189 girls has been identified with an Autism Spectrum Disorder. These statistics are conservative and our schools (and employers) needs to adapt. This session will explain neurodiversity and how best to address the neurodiverse student in your classroom. A paradigm shift in how we view, teach and react to such a large portion of our population will minimize stigma and enable smart, talented people  to embrace their differences and become successful and productive members of society.

Breakout two


Michelle Wolke

Making the Parent Connection…..

Understanding and relating to the parents is just as important as your relationship with a child. A child will ultimately become more successful if his/her “team” is on the same page. Communication is of the utmost importance. It is our job to figure out how to work with the parents for the benefit of the child. Every situation is different. We will discuss different strategies to use.

Breakout one