School Fair, January 9th

January 9th – School Fair: Alternatives for 2e Students–7-8:30pm Miller Library, Ellicott Room, Ellicott City, MD
It can be a little overwhelming to search for non-public school placements for twice exceptional (2e) students. On one hand, parents look for schools that can sufficiently challenge their children and teens with accelerated learning in areas of strength, including art integration and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) programing. Some students need a comprehensive program that offers remediation for learning, executive, and/or social communication challenges, while others simply need academic supports provided through a learning plan. You will have an opportunity to visit a number of tables to pick up literature and talk with representatives from area schools, to learn more about options for your student. Some of these schools offer summer programming and camps, as well. We hope that you can join us!
Everyone is welcome – members and non-members alike!

For directions see Hclibrary

Participating Schools (note that others may still join the list here)

Echelon, Wye River, Siena, Summit, Chelsea, Nora, Baltimore Lab, Glenwood

Monday December 14th CANCELLED for “Emotions and Learning” Discussion and Video

Due to low response this meeting was cancelled

Walking the Path with 2e Learners: Emotions and Learning
Join us December 14th at 7:30 pm at the Miller Library where we will discuss “Emotions and Learning: Focus on the Strength” 
 The identification of a learning disorder can both point the way to correct remediation and offer a sense of relief to students and their parents and teachers. Often, people find it liberating to learn that the student has unique neurological strengths and weaknesses and is not simply “lazy or dumb.” In one video clip from Walking the Path with 2e Learners, Fran Bowman talks about how when, after testing, she has told students that they have dyslexia, they will respond, “I am so relieved.”
 However, labeling can have pernicious effects if that label implies “who the person is.” The students and parents in Walking the Path share the emotional pain of stereotyping and segregation from classmates who often say unkind things because of ignorance about learning disorders. Susan Kuhn describes how a teacher told her husband, also dyslexic, in middle school that he would not ever go to college. He is now a physician; however, the doubts engendered by that teacher linger today.
You will learn: 
• Elevator model of emotion

• Stress and Performance

• Learned Helplessness

• How to Praise effectively 

• Internal vs. External Motivation

• Encouraging Independence

Join us Monday October 19th at Miller Library 7pm

We will begin the school year with a “Meet and Greet” for newcomers and IDL members with an Introduction to the video production made by IDL with a grand from the Columbia Foundation called “Walking the Path with the Twice Exceptional Learner”

Come and meet parents and professionals to kick off the new school year.


Join IDL on Monday April 13th for “Social Skills Training” at Miller Library

Monday April 13th: Making Social Skills Training Meaningful for 2E Students         
At 7pm

Children with learning differences are often at a distinct disadvantage in social situations due to their difficulties processing language efficiently and accurately, interpreting verbal and non-verbal social cues and inhibiting quick (and often extreme) reactions; they may also show a general lack of understanding of how their (often quirky) behavior causes peers and adults to treat them a certain way.  In many cases these students have difficulty adhering to classroom rules or conversely are “rule enforcers” that do not know how to be flexible when the situation warrants it.  They struggle establishing and maintaining close friendships and may be at a greater risk for being bullied. Nicole Orellana will discuss her experiences teaching social skills to elementary and middle school students with a variety of diagnoses including Asperger Syndrome, Autism, ADHD and language disorders. She will discuss how she incorporates principles from Applied Behavior Analysis and Michelle Garcia Winners’s Social Thinking Curriculum as well as her experiences as a speech therapist into her social skills programming.  She will also discuss what focus areas and treatment strategies she finds make the greatest impact on her students’ progress.

Nicole Carl Orellana MS, CCC-SLP is the co-owner and President of The Children’s SPOT Inc, a Howard County based practice of speech, occupational and behavior therapists.  She has been a speech and language therapist working with children and young adults diagnosed with apraxia, learning disabilities, language disorders, Attention Deficit Disorder and Autism Spectrum Disorder for over 10 years.  She has experience in both school based and private practice settings.

Join us for “Make, Design and Code Opportunities” with Dr. Boser 1/12/2015

Monday, January 12, 2015

Miller Library, 7pm

Make, Design, and Code Opportunities for 2E Tinkerers


          with Katharina Boser, Ph.D., Developmental Cognitive Psychologist and Technology Coordinator

Learn about the latest programs and technologies that will allow students to learn about visualization, 3D design, and programming at their level and pace. In addition to tutorials and projects, you will learn and receive a demonstration of some free 3D design programs  (e.g.,Google SketchUp and Autodesk’s Tinkercad & 123D Design). These programs allow you to work with 3D printers so you can design in three dimensions. Dr. Boser will  discuss the benefits of teaching young kids about programming. Particularly when students struggle in the language and verbal domains,  their visualization and non-verbal logic and math skills may be an area of strength. You will learn about Scratch, MIT App Inventor, and Python, as well as other resources and examples highlighted on  You will also learn about engineering and design programs that teach coding skills at an early age, including the Lego First program, Lego Mindstorms EV3/NXT, and PLTW.  Dr. Boser will describe the benefits and drawbacks for 2e kids of tech and cyber challenge programs such as the Lego Competitions, Destination Imagination, Future Cities, and the West Point Bridge Challenge. Finally, you will learn about other local programs and events to watch out for which involve problem solving, early programming and coding concepts, and design and tinkering.  Come with questions!

Dr. Boser completed a Ph.D. At Cornell University in cognitive psychology and then worked as a post doc at University of Maryland and then scientific researcher at Johns Hopkins University investigating language retraining in aphasia and autism. She was a board member and then Co-Chair of the Innovative Technologies for Autism Initiative for Autism Speaks until 2011. She is a board member of the Atlantic Seaboard Dyslexia Education Center (ASDEC) in Rockville, MD. She is the President of Individual Differences in Learning, Inc.(IDL), an educational non-profit in Maryland providing professional development to teachers and parents regarding brain-based teaching techniques and innovative technologies for students with a range of cognitive impairments, including autism and twice exceptionality (2E). In 2009, she produced a set of videos and educational materials for teachers about the strengths and weaknesses of 2E students, called “Walking the Path with your 2E Student”. She presents at national and international conferences on autism technology integration, 2e kids and technology education research, advocates for Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and co-edited the book, “Technology Tools for Students with Autism,” published by Brookes Publishing in 2013. In 2011, she joined the faculty of the Glenelg Country School in Ellicott City, Maryland as a Computer Science Teacher and Technology Coordinator. She is a Soroban(Japanese abacus) Instructor, Lego First Robotics team coach, 3d printing enthusiast and involved in the “maker” movement.

RSVP with

A $5.00 donation is requested


Join us Monday Dec 1st for Linda Spencer, Ph.D., CCC-SLP on Communication Challenges for 2E Students

Monday, December 1, 2014 note date is first Monday of December
7pm at Miller Branch Library

Linda Spencer, Ph.D., CCC-SLP

Twice Exceptional Children’s Communication Challenges: Is it Attention, Language, or Both?

Did you know that about 20-30 percent of children affected by ADHD struggle with language? Or that up to 50 percent of students with Language Disorder also have ADHD? And that deficits in executive functioning impact both disorders? Language disorders often share some of the same characteristics of attention disorders and can even be mistaken for one another. When this happens it’s very common for students to not receive effective interventions or educational supports. Dr. Linda E. Spencer will tease out the differences between ADHD and Language Disorder during Children’s Communication Challenges: Is it Attention, Language, or Bothto help parents and other concerned adults recognize which challenges their children are struggling with. When the primary concern is ADHD, problems with language may incorrectly be attributed to the ADHD. Recognizing where the problems lie is an important part of any intervention.

Linda E. Spencer, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, is a practicing speech-language pathologist who has worked in public schools, colleges and universities. She has maintained a private practice in speech-language pathology for more than 20 years. Dr. Spencer has provided evaluations and direct intervention to children and adults with a variety of speech, language, voice and communication challenges. Currently, Dr. Spencer provides service as an independent evaluator of students with communication, speech and language disorders that affect their acquisition of educational and social skills.


Join us Monday, October 6, 2014 for “College Planning…”

Get Ready: College Planning, Preparation, and Placement with your Twice Exceptional Student

with Joan Wittancentral park

Note change in location for this meeting only to East Columbia Library. The address is 6600 Cradlerock Way, Columbia, MD 21045

If you are starting to think about college, you are probably asking many questions. How do you help your son or daughter prepare for college? What supports and services will be available? How do you find the right fit for your student’s needs? Join us for answers and frank discussion as we review the college planning, preparation, and placement process. We’ll focus on essential skills for college success, improving college readiness, the types of accommodations and services for standardized testing and college, and finding the “right fit”. Whether your student is just entering high school or starting senior year, there is much you can do to promote college transition and success skills.The College Consulting Collaborative (Joan Wittan, Sue Cook Christakos, Kyle Kane and Lori Vise) is a partnership of independent educational consultants who work with students who have a wide variety of learning differences. They love the challenge of finding and building on their students’ strengths and maximizing their potential. They have expertise in language-based learning differences, GTLD students, autism spectrum disorders, NLD, accommodations and adaptations, fostering college readiness, and assistive technology. Visit their website at Wittan loves working with students who learn differently and embraces the challenge building on their strengths to develop college readiness skills. She has expertise in gifted and talented students with learning disabilities (GTLD), accommodations, and assistive technology. She has chaired the Independent Educational Consultants Association’s LD Committee and served for many years on multiple initiatives through Montgomery County Public Schools, The Barker Foundation Adoption Agency, and as President of the GTLD Network.

Join us Monday May 12th, 2014 for “Gifted Girls with ADHD” with K. Nadeau

Monday, May 12 , 2014 at Miller Library, Ellicott City


please RSVP with

Kathleen Nadeau, Ph.D. : Gifted Girls with ADHD: Making sure they are not overlooked

Kathleen G. Nadeau, Ph.D. is an internationally known authority on ADHD across the lifespan. She is the author of a dozen books on the topic of ADHD and is the director of the Chesapeake ADHD Center of Maryland, with offices in Columbia, Silver Spring and Annapolis. As the parent of an adult child that was gifted and ADHD/LD, the topic of giftedness and ADHD is one near and dear to her heart. She will talk about the confusion about giftedness and ADHD, overlapping traits, ways to best support students that are both gifted and ADHD, and ways to help these students understand and appreciate their gifts and challenges.


Monday March 10th is Dr. Greenberger and May 12 is Dr. Nadeau

Monday, March 10, 2014

Medications 101 with Dr. Brett Greenberger

Back by popular demand and rave reviews from our membership…Learn more about medication management of ADHD/ADD, Depression, Anxiety, and other child/adolescent disorders in an informative presentation by Dr. Brett Greenberger, who will leave plenty of time for a question and answer session. If you missed his talk last year, this is your chance to get your medication questions answered.

Dr. Brett Greenberger is a board certified child and adolescent psychiatrist who has practiced in Howard County and surrounding counties for over 10 years. He specializes in the treatment of childhood disorders such as anxiety, depression, mood disorders, ADD/ADHD, learning difficulties and other childhood disorders. He owns and operates a private practice in Columbia, Maryland, Collaborative Counseling Center, where he provides comprehensive psychiatric services, including evaluations and medication management. He is also the Medical Director of Psychiatric Services at Jewish Community Services in Baltimore. He enjoys working with children and adolescents, and strives to improve his client’s mental health by utilizing a variety of techniques such as medication management, supportive counseling, psycho-education and family support. Dr. Greenberger is passionate about his work and has three children of his own.

Please NOTE the change of date for our last meeting with Kathleen Nadeau. There will be no meeting in April and Dr. Nadeau will join us at Miller library on May 12th instead.

Join us on Monday, February 10, 2014 for Dr. Cooper Kahn


Another Year (sigh): Tips and Strategies for Helping Your Disorganized Child or Teen Build Effective Executive Skills
with Dr. Joyce Cooper Kahn

This presentation will focus on ways to support disorganized students in the classroom and at home and ways to help students move toward independence in their executive skills. We will briefly review the definitions and the development of executive functions to set the stage for principles of intervention. Specific strategies for managing school demands will be presented, and there will be time for questions and discussion.

Joyce Cooper-Kahn, Ph.D., is Co-founder of PRA (1994) and the Director of Child-Development Resources. She is a clinical child psychologist and has been in practice for over 20 years, specializing in helping children and their families to manage behavioral, emotional and academic challenges.

In her work, Dr. Cooper-Kahn brings together science, clinical experience, and an appreciation for the daily demands of those raising and teaching children. Her passion lies at this junction where psychology informs daily life.

For more information about Dr. Cooper-Kahn and her practice, go to