I earned by Bachelors Degree in Psychology and Masters Degree in Social Work from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Go Illini! I’ve been a school social worker for several years in elementary, middle, and high schools working with students ages 5-20 and with a range of disabilities, including Autism, ADHD, Behavior Disorders, and other Mental Health Concerns.
At my school, almost 70% of the kids live in poverty. I work with some who have faced extremely difficult situations and others who just need a boost to get through the day. Yet in spite of it all, they are some of the most resilient and enthusiastic kids I have ever met.
Many of my kids have a difficult time participating in conventional school activities such as paying attention, following directions, and performing pencil/paper tasks. Since they have a hard time learning the way many other students do, activities have to be very interactive in order for them to learn. By using games and other activities, students with ADHD, Autism Spectrum Disorder, emotional & behavior disorders, or other challenges can learn how to regulate their emotions, solve problems, and develop appropriate relationships with others.
Within my classroom, I strive to create an environment that demonstrates to all my students that their differences and challenges are accepted. I love watching their faces light up when they realize that they ARE able to succeed in the classroom. These students are our future and I am committed to helping them learn the skills they will need to succeed and realize their own potential to change the world around them.