This week I’m bringing back to the podcast Dr. Devon MacEachron, a New York-based psychologist specializing in assessment and educational planning for gifted and twice-exceptional learners. The last time Devon was on the show, we talked about the assessment process for 2e learners, but today we’re moving on to the next natural step of this conversation, and actually, the next step for a parent whose child has been identified as having any sort of neurodifference, from dyslexia and ADHD to a processing speed or sensory issue.
And that step involves really exploring this question: What now?
As in, what should I do with this information? How should I feel about it? Where do I begin? How can I figure out a way to navigate this unknown path in a way that’s in alignment with my values and will best support my child?
This is a very practical episode intended to give you a framework for processing what can be overwhelming or unexpected information and then moving forward with confidence.
About Dr. Devon MacEachron: I grew up in Mill Valley, California, just north of San Francisco. My father was a professor who loved to travel. I was “homeschooled” on the road for the 2nd grade when we took a year to travel from London to Hong Kong. We lived in Uganda for my first two years of high school where I attended a local, academically selective public magnet school where I was one of a handful of non-African students. I earned my B.A. from Amherst College (graduating in the first class of admitted women), my M.B.A. from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania (graduating in the top 3% of my class), and my Ph.D. in School Psychology from the University of California at Berkeley. In my business career (between the MBA and PhD) I worked in investment banking and strategic planning. I was a stay-at-home mom for a chunk of time too. My husband and I met at a bank in Manhattan, went to Wharton together, and have lived in Manhattan, Philadelphia, Houston, New Canaan, CT, Belvedere, CA, Madison, CT, and India. We were able to replicate the experience I had of living abroad as a high school student with our own children in India for four years. In New Delhi I worked for an Indian educational foundation doing assessments of children from all kinds of backgrounds (Indian, Nepalese, English, Dutch, rich, poor). I learned a lot about cultural sensitivity. When we came back to the states I first opened a private practice in Connecticut and then shifted to Manhattan.I love living in New York. My husband and I live on the Upper East Side in an apartment we decorated with finds from our travels.
THINGS YOU’LL LEARN FROM THIS EPISODE:
- If and when to disclose a diagnosis to a child
- A step-by-step breakdown for what parents should do once they receive a diagnosis for their child
- Whether or not parents should consider getting a second opinion
- How to vet advice and therapies and other approaches for addressing a child’s unique challenges
- Why it’s critical that we view children through a strengths-based lens
- Dr. Devon’s best practices for navigating the journey of raising a differently wired child
- Dr. Devon MacEachron on Supporting 2e Learners (podcast episode)
- What Works Clearing House: U.S. Dept. of Education. Reviews research on programs and policies. Parents might select the Children and Youth with Disabilities filter. The kinds of programs reviewed are “educational” in nature, and include Orton Gillingham, Wilson Reading, Functional Behavioral Assessments, etc.
- Website of Science Based Medicine: Topics include acupuncture, chiropractic, herbs and supplements, is gaming an addiction. More psychological and medical than educational in focus
- Pseudoscience in Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy: A Skeptical Field Guide by Stephen Hupp. Critical reviews of Brain Gym, medications for ADHD, cognitive behavioral therapy and more.
- Neurobollocks website: Tagline is: debunking pseudo-neuroscience so you don’t have to. Seems to have stopped writing articles in 2015, but has good pieces on Brain Balance and Amen clinics.
- Quackwatch: “Your Guide to Quackery, Health Fraud, and Intelligent Decisions.” Articles on aromatherapy, supplements, the Feingold diet, etc.
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