Speakers and Sessions

IMPROVING SOCIAL SKILLS & LEARNING IN A SOCIAL MEDIA AGE

Children and teens today are spending more time texting, playing video games, and using social media than ever before. A 2018 Pew Research Center study reported that 95% of teens have access to a smartphone, with 45% of teens saying they are online almost constantly. Psychologists are finding that smartphone use is correlated to higher levels of anxiety, depression, and loss of social skills in children and teens. However, the loss of social skills and interactions are not conducive for academic achievement. Researchers in the cognitive and social sciences have found that the brain is wired for learning through physical social interactions and collaboration and that there is a correlation between a child’s academic performance and their social skills and behavior. Join us in New York this May and explore how our brains are wired for relationships and social connections and how the loss of social skills may be affecting achievement. Learn how you can help all students, including those with autism, navigate the social world and “fit in” today’s socially disconnected world. Discover strategies to help children and teens develop social skills and friendships and increase their academic achievement through social learning, positive social interactions, and healthy teacher-student relationships.

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Featured Speakers

Educating Students Who Have Different Kinds of Social Minds

Temple Grandin, PhD

Autism Rights Advocate; Professor, College of Agricultural Sciences, Colorado State University; Member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences; Author, Calling All Minds: How To Think and Create Like an Inventor (2018) and Thinking in Pictures: My Life With Autism (Expanded Edition, 2006); Co-Author, Unwritten Rules of Social Relationships: Decoding Social Mysteries Through the Unique Perspectives of Autism (2017) and The Autistic Brain: Helping Different Kinds of Minds Succeed (2014)

Irresistable: Teens and Technology

Adam Alter, PhD

Associate Professor of Psychology and Marketing, Stern School of Business, New York University; Author, Irresistible: The Rise of Addictive Technology and the Business of Keeping Us Hooked (2018) and Drunk Tank Pink: And Other Unexpected Forces That Shape How We Think, Feel, and Behave (2014)

Face-to-Face Communication Even With a Digital Device in Hand: How Do We Manage It?

Michelle Garcia Winner, MA, CCC-SLP

Founder and CEO, Social Thinking; Author, Social Media, the Social Mind, and Social Thinking (2013, socialthinking.com) and Think Social (2006); Co-Author, Good Intentions Are Not Good Enough (2016), Socially Curious and Curiously Social: A Social Thinking Guidebook for Bright Teens and Young Adults (2011), and “Measuring the Effectiveness of Teaching Social Thinking to Children With Asperger Syndrome (AS) and High Functioning Autism (HFA)” (2008, Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders)

The Psychology of the Good Life, Social Connections, and Well Being

Laurie R. Santos, PhD

Director, Comparative Cognition Laboratory; Director, Canine and Primate Laboratory (aka CapLab), which explores the evolutionary origins of the human mind by comparing the cognitive abilities of humans and non-human animals, including primates and canines; Director of Psychology; Professor of Psychology and Cognitive Science, Yale University; Head of Silliman College; Her course titled "Psychology and the Good Life" became the most popular course in Yale's history in 2018, Co-Author, "Developmental Shifts in Social Cognition: Socio-Emotional Across the Life Span in Rhesus Monkeys" (2018, Behavioral Ecology), "The Evolutionary Roots of Human Decision-Making" (2015, Annual Review of Psychology), "Comparative Developmental Psychology: How is Human Cognitive Development Unique?" (2014, Evolutionary Psychology) and “Sociobiology Young Children Are More Generous When Others Are Aware of Their Actions” (2013, PloS ONE)

Social-Emotional Learning: Its Importance for Promoting Health and Nurturing Success in School

Mark T. Greenberg, PhD

Founding Director; Bennett Chair and Professor of Prevention Research in Human Development and Family Studies; Edna Bennett Pierce Prevention Research Center, College of Health and Human Development, The Pennsylvania State University; Co-Author, Social and Emotional Skills Training for Children: The Fast Track Friendship Group Manual (2017), "Impacts of the CARE for Teachers Program on Teachers’ Social and Emotional Competence and Classroom Interactions" (2017, Journal of Educational Psychology), and "Thriving in School: The Role of Sixth Grade Adolescent-Parent-School Relationships in Predicting Eighth Grade Academic Outcomes" (2016, Youth & Society)

The Disordered Mind: What Unusual Brains Tell Us About Ourselves

Eric R. Kandel, MD

University Professor and Kavli Professor of Brain Science; Director, Kavli Institute for Brain Science; Co-Director, Mind Brain Behavior Initiative; Founder, Center for Neurobiology and Behavior, Columbia University; Senior Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute; Recipient, the Nobel Prize, the Lasker Award, the Gairdner Award, the Harvey Prize, and the National Medal of Science; Author, The Disordered Mind: What Unusual Brains Tell Us About Ourselves (2018), Reductionism in Art and Brain Science: Bridging the Two Cultures (2016), and In Search of Memory: The Emergence of a New Science of Mind (2006)

Autism: A Uniquely Human Experience

Barry M. Prizant, PhD, CCC-SLP

Adjunct Professor, Artists and Scientists as Partners, Department of Theatre Arts and Performance Studies, Brown University; Director, Childhood Communication Services; Author, Uniquely Human: A Different Way of Seeing Autism (2016); Co-Author, The Scerts Model: A Comprehensive Educational Approach for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders (2005)

1) SOCIAL BRAINS: PROMOTING SOCIAL SKILLS IN A DIGITAL AGE

The Disordered Mind: What Unusual Brains Tell Us About Ourselves

Eric R. Kandel, MD

University Professor and Kavli Professor of Brain Science; Director, Kavli Institute for Brain Science; Co-Director, Mind Brain Behavior Initiative; Founder, Center for Neurobiology and Behavior, Columbia University; Senior Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute; Recipient, the Nobel Prize, the Lasker Award, the Gairdner Award, the Harvey Prize, and the National Medal of Science; Author, The Disordered Mind: What Unusual Brains Tell Us About Ourselves (2018), Reductionism in Art and Brain Science: Bridging the Two Cultures (2016), and In Search of Memory: The Emergence of a New Science of Mind (2006)

The Science of Making Friends: Helping Socially Challenged Teens and Young Adults

Elizabeth A. Laugeson, PsyD

Founder and Director, UCLA PEERS Clinic, an outpatient hospital-based program providing parent-assisted social skills training for preschoolers, adolescents, and young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders and other social impairments; Associate Clinical Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, University of California, Los Angeles; Author, PEERS for Young Adults: Social Skills Training for Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Other Social Challenges (2017) and The Science of Making Friends: Helping Socially Challenged Teens and Young Adults (2013); Co-Author, Social Skills for Teenagers with Developmental and Autism Spectrum Disorders (2010)

The Psychology of the Good Life, Social Connections, and Well-Being

Laurie R. Santos, PhD

Director, Comparative Cognition Laboratory; Director, Canine and Primate Laboratory (aka CapLab), which explores the evolutionary origins of the human mind by comparing the cognitive abilities of humans and non-human animals, including primates and canines; Director of Psychology; Professor of Psychology and Cognitive Science, Yale University; Head of Silliman College; Her course titled "Psychology and the Good Life" became the most popular course in Yale's history in 2018, Co-Author, "Developmental Shifts in Social Cognition: Socio-Emotional Across the Life Span in Rhesus Monkeys" (2018, Behavioral Ecology), "The Evolutionary Roots of Human Decision-Making" (2015, Annual Review of Psychology), "Comparative Developmental Psychology: How is Human Cognitive Development Unique?" (2014, Evolutionary Psychology) and “Sociobiology Young Children Are More Generous When Others Are Aware of Their Actions” (2013, PloS ONE)

The Significance of Friendship and Peer Relationships for the Quiet, Socially Anxious Child

Kenneth H. Rubin, PhD

Professor of Human Development and Quantitative Methodology; Founding Director, Center for Children, Relationships, and Culture, University of Maryland; Author, The Friendship Factor: Helping Our Children Navigate Their Social World -- And Why It Matters for Their Success and Happiness (2003); Co-Author, “Peer Relationships and Influences in Childhood” (2017, Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Psychology); Co-Editor, Handbook of Peer Interactions, Relationships, and Groups (2018, 2nd Edition)

Tips for Teaching Social Competencies With Strategies for Anxiety Management

Michelle Garcia Winner, MA, CCC-SLP

Founder and CEO, Social Thinking; Author, Social Media, the Social Mind, and Social Thinking (2013, socialthinking.com) and Think Social (2006); Co-Author, Good Intentions Are Not Good Enough (2016), Socially Curious and Curiously Social: A Social Thinking Guidebook for Bright Teens and Young Adults (2011), and “Measuring the Effectiveness of Teaching Social Thinking to Children With Asperger Syndrome (AS) and High Functioning Autism (HFA)” (2008, Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders)

Friendships in the Digital Age

Eileen Kennedy-Moore, PhD

Psychologist; Advisory Board Member, Parents Magazine; Blogger for Psychology Today, PBS Parents, and US News & World Report; Creator, DrFriendtastic.com, which features friendship advice for kids; Professor for The Great Courses audio/video series, Raising Emotionally and Socially Healthy Kids; Co-Author, Kid Confidence: Help Your Child Make Friends, Build Resilience, and Develop Real Self-Esteem (Forthcoming, 2019), Growing Friendships: A Kids’ Guide to Making and Keeping Friends (2017), Smart Parenting for Smart Kids (2011), and The Unwritten Rules of Friendship (2008)

Social Networks in the Brain: From Agents, to Actions, to Interactions

Julia Sliwa, PhD

Postdoctoral Researcher, Laboratory of Neural Systems, The Rockefeller University; Researcher, Neural Circuits for Intelligence, Center for Brains, Minds & Machines, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Co-Author, “From Agents to Actions to Interactions: Uncovering Multiple Social Networks in the Primate Brain” (2017, Society for Social and Affective Neuroscience) and “A Dedicated Network for Social Interaction Processing in the Primate Brain” (2017, Science)

2) SOCIAL MEDIA: CHANGING BRAINS & MANAGING SCREEN TIME

IRRESISTIBLE: The Rise of Addictive Technology on Children

Adam Alter, PhD

Associate Professor of Psychology and Marketing, Stern School of Business, New York University; Author, Irresistible: The Rise of Addictive Technology and the Business of Keeping Us Hooked (2018) and Drunk Tank Pink: And Other Unexpected Forces That Shape How We Think, Feel, and Behave (2014)

Face-to-Face Communication Even With a Digital Device in Hand: How Do We Manage It?

Michelle Garcia Winner, MA, CCC-SLP

Founder and CEO, Social Thinking; Author, Social Media, the Social Mind, and Social Thinking (2013, socialthinking.com) and Think Social (2006); Co-Author, Good Intentions Are Not Good Enough (2016), Socially Curious and Curiously Social: A Social Thinking Guidebook for Bright Teens and Young Adults (2011), and “Measuring the Effectiveness of Teaching Social Thinking to Children With Asperger Syndrome (AS) and High Functioning Autism (HFA)” (2008, Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders)

Boost Social Skills by Reversing the Effects of Electronic Screen-Time

Victoria L. Dunckley, MD

Integrative Child, Adolescent & Adult Psychiatry, Centre for Life; Child Psychiatrist; Blogger, Psychology Today; Author, Reset Your Child's Brain: A Four-Week Plan to End Meltdowns, Raise Grades, and Boost Social Skills by Reversing the Effects of Electronic Screen-Time (2015) and “Gray Matters: Too Much Screen Time Damages the Brain” (2014, Psychology Today)

Digital Media on the Brain: Problems and Potential for Social and Emotional Development

Jenny S. Radesky, MD

Developmental Behavioral Pediatrician; Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, University of Michigan Medical School; Co-Author, “Early Childhood Media Exposure and Self-Regulation: Bi-Directional Longitudinal Associations” (2018, Academic Pediatrics) and “Use of Mobile Technology to Calm Upset Children: Associations with Social-Emotional Development” (2016, JAMA Pediatrics), “Children and Adolescents and Digital Media” (2016, Pediatrics), and “Mobile and Interactive Media Usage by Young Children: The Good, The Bad, and the Unknown” (2015, Pediatrics)

Growing Up Social: Raising Children in a Screen-Driven World

Arlene Pellicane, MA

Speaker; Former Journalist; Co-Author, Growing Up Social: Raising Relational Kids in a Screen-Driven World (2014)

Cyber-Violence: The Impact of Social Media on Adolescent Aggression

Jillian K. Peterson, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Criminal Justice and Forensic Science, Hamline University; Co-Author, "Cyber-Violence: What Do We Know and Where Do We Go From Here?" (2017, Aggression and Violent Behavior)

Screen-Schooled Kids: The Overuse, Misuse, and Best Use of Technology in the Classroom

Joe Clement, MEd

Teacher; Co-Author, Screen Schooled: Two Veteran Teachers Expose How Technology Overuse Is Making Our Kids Dumber (2017)

Matt Miles, MEd

Teacher; Co-Author, Screen Schooled: Two Veteran Teachers Expose How Technology Overuse Is Making Our Kids Dumber (2017)

3) SOCIALLY AWKWARD MINDS: UNDERSTANDING NERDS & AUTISM

Educating Students Who Have Different Kinds of Social Minds

Temple Grandin, PhD

Autism Rights Advocate; Professor, College of Agricultural Sciences, Colorado State University; Member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences; Author, Calling All Minds: How To Think and Create Like an Inventor (2018) and Thinking in Pictures: My Life With Autism (Expanded Edition, 2006); Co-Author, Unwritten Rules of Social Relationships: Decoding Social Mysteries Through the Unique Perspectives of Autism (2017) and The Autistic Brain: Helping Different Kinds of Minds Succeed (2014)

The Science of Why We Are Socially Awkward and Why That’s Awesome

Ty Tashiro, PhD

Social Scientist; Relationship Expert; Consultant; Former Award-Winning Professor, University of Maryland and University of Colorado; Author, Awkward: The Science of Why We’re Socially Awkward and Why That’s Awesome (2018) and The Science of Happily Ever After: What Really Matters in the Quest for Enduring Love (2014)

Teaching Nerds: Who Are They and Why We Need Them

David Anderegg, PhD

Psychotherapist; Faculty in Psychology, Bennington College; Faculty, Berkshire Medical Center; Author, Nerds: How Dorks, Dweebs, Techies and Trekkies Can Save America... and Why They Might Be Our Last Hope (2011), Worried All the Time: Rediscovering the Joy in Parenthood in an Age of Anxiety (2010), and Nerds: Who They Are and Why We Need More of Them (2007)

Autism: A Uniquely Human Experience

Barry M. Prizant, PhD, CCC-SLP

Adjunct Professor, Artists and Scientists as Partners, Department of Theatre Arts and Performance Studies, Brown University; Director, Childhood Communication Services; Author, Uniquely Human: A Different Way of Seeing Autism (2016); Co-Author, The Scerts Model: A Comprehensive Educational Approach for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders (2005)

Developing Social Competence for Students With Social Deficits

Janine P. Stichter, PhD

Professor, Department of Special Education, University of Missouri; Developer of the “Social Competence Curricula,” a program focusing on improving social competence in K-12 education; Developer of the “iSocial,” a 3-D virtual learning environment project; Co-Author, “A Six-Step Decision-Making Process to Guide Social Skills Instruction” (2018, Intervention in School and Clinic)

4) SOCIAL SCHOOLS: PROMOTING SOCIAL-EMOTIONAL LEARNING

The Social, Emotional Side of Teaching

Vanessa Rodriguez, EdD

Assistant Professor, Center for Early Child Health and Development, Department of Public Health, NYU Langone Health; Co-Director, Neuroscience & Education Collaborative, New York University; Former K-12 Teacher; Author, The Teaching Brain: An Evolutionary Trait at the Heart of Education (2014) and “Teachers' Awareness of the Learner-Teacher Interaction: Preliminary Communication of a Study Investigating The Teaching Brain” (2013, Mind, Brain, & Education)

Social-Emotional Learning: Its Importance for Promoting Health and Nurturing Success in School

Mark T. Greenberg, PhD

Founding Director; Bennett Chair and Professor of Prevention Research in Human Development and Family Studies; Edna Bennett Pierce Prevention Research Center, College of Health and Human Development, The Pennsylvania State University; Co-Author, Social and Emotional Skills Training for Children: The Fast Track Friendship Group Manual (2017), "Impacts of the CARE for Teachers Program on Teachers’ Social and Emotional Competence and Classroom Interactions" (2017, Journal of Educational Psychology), and "Thriving in School: The Role of Sixth Grade Adolescent-Parent-School Relationships in Predicting Eighth Grade Academic Outcomes" (2016, Youth & Society)

Promoting Teachers’ Social-Emotional Competence and Teacher-Child Relationships

Joshua L. Brown, PhD

Associate Professor of Psychology; Director, Applied Developmental Psychology Program, Fordham University; Co-Author, “Teacher-Child Relationships, Classroom Climate, and Children’s Social-Emotional and Academic Development” (2017, Educational Psychology), “Impacts of the CARE for Teachers Program on Teacher’s Social Emotional Competence and Classroom Interactions” (2017, Educational Psychology), and “Selection and Socialization of Aggressive and Prosocial Behavior: The Moderating Role of Social-Cognitive Processes” (2013, Research on Adolescence)

Integrating the Science and Practice of Social-Emotional Learning in Schools

Marc A. Brackett, PhD

Founding Director, Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence; Professor, Child Study Center, Yale University; Lead Developer, The RULER Approach to Social and Emotional Learning; Co-Author, "Creating Emotionally Intelligent Schools with RULER" (2016, Emotion Review) and "Advancing the Science and Practice of Social and Emotional Learning" (2016, Review of Research in Education)

The Mindful Classrooms: Progress, Problems, and Promise

Joshua M. Aronson, PhD

Associate Professor of Applied Psychology; Co-Director, Mindful Education Lab; Director, the Metro Center For Achievement Research and Evaluation (Metro CARE); Founding Director, Center for Research on Culture, Development and Education, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development, New York University; Co-Author, “Minding and Mending the Gap” (2015, Contemporary Educational Psychology); Editor, Improving Academic Achievement (2002)

5) COLLABORATIVE MINDS: USING GROUP LEARNING IN STEM & TEACHING

Social Learning in Science: Brain-To-Brain Synchrony and Group Interaction

Ido Davidesco, PhD

Research Assistant Professor, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, New York University; Co-Director, NYU Neuroscience & Education Collaborative, where he is developing two neuroscience education programs: Brain 101, a neuroscience enrichment program for elementary and middle school students and BrainWaves, an EEG-based neuroscience curriculum for high school students

Social Group Influences on STEM Motivation in Young Children

Allison L. Master, PhD

Research Scientist, Institute for Learning & Brain Science, University of Washington; Author, "Making STEM Social to Motivate Preschoolers" (2017, NAEYC); Co-Author, "Social Group Membership Increases STEM Engagement Among Preschoolers" (2017, Developmental Psychology)

Understanding Social Learning, Social Networks, and Social Regulation of Emotions

Kevin N. Ochsner, PhD

Professor and Director of Graduate Studies, Department of Psychology; Director, Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience (SCAN) Lab, Columbia University; Co-Author, “Evidence That Default Network Connectivity During Rest Consolidates Social Information” (2018, Cerebral Cortex), “From Striving to Thriving in the Face of Threats: The Emerging Science of Emotion Regulation Training” (2018, Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences), “Social Networks in the Brain” (2017, Nature Human Behaviour), and “Social Cognition as Reinforcement Learning” (2016, Cognitive Neuroscience)

Teaching Social Skills to Kids with ASD, ADHD, and Anxiety Through Social Theater

Shawn Amador, LCSW

School Social Worker; Therapist, CORE Connections Counseling; Developer of Social Theatre™, an afterschool group theater program designed to teach children social skills based on Michelle Garcia Winner's Social Thinking®; Author, Teaching Social Skills Through Sketch Comedy and Improv Games: A Social Theatre™ Approach for Kids and Teens Including Those with ASD, ADHD, and Anxiety (2018)

Fostering Staff Collaborations, Teams, and Co-Teaching

Jeffrey R. Benson, MA

Former Teacher and Administrator; Author, Hanging In: Strategies for Teaching the Students Who Challenge Us Most (2014); Co-Author, Teaching the Whole Teen: Everyday Practices That Promote Success and Resilience in School and Life (2016)

Rachel A. Poliner, MAEd

Former Teacher and Faculty Member; Founder Partner, Leaders and Learners Consulting; Board Member, Social-Emotional Learning Alliance for Massachusetts; Co-Author, Teaching the Whole Teen: Everyday Practices That Promote Success and Resilience in School and Life (2016) and The Advisory Guide: Designing and Implementing Effective Advisory Programs for Secondary Schools (2004)

6) CONVERSATIONAL MINDS: THE POWER OF TALKING, TEXT, & READING

Brain Research, Literacy and Some Impacts on Curriculum and Instruction

Marie H. Alcock, PhD

President, Learning Systems Associates; International Education Consultant; Founder, Tomorrow's Education Network; Co-Author, Quest for Learning: How to Maximize Student Engagement (2017), Bold Moves for Schools, How We Create Remarkable Learning Environments (2017), and The Power of the Social Brain: Teaching, Learning, and Using Interdependent Thinking (2013)

Understanding Texts and Readers: Improving Reading Comprehension, Groups, and Differentiation

Jennifer Serravallo, MA

Literacy Consultant; Former Staff Developer at the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project, Columbia University; Former NYC Public School Teacher; Creator of the Digital Campus Course entitled, Teaching Reading in Small Groups; Author, Understanding Texts & Readers: Responsive Comprehension Instruction with Leveled Texts (2018), The Writing Strategies Book: Your Everything Guide to Developing Skilled Writers (2017), and Teaching Reading in Small Groups: Differentiated Instruction for Building Strategic, Independent Readers (2010)

What We Say and How We Say It Matters

Mike Anderson, MS

Former Elementary School Teacher; National Milken Educator Award recipient; Former Program Developer, Northeast Foundation for Children; Author, What We Say and How We Say It Matters: Teacher Talk That Improves Student Learning and Behavior (Forthcoming, 2019), Learning to Choose, Choosing to Learn (2016), The First Six Weeks of School (2015, 2nd Edition), and The Well-Balanced Teacher (2010); Co-Author, What Every Teacher Needs to Know K-5 Series (2011)

The Power of We: Getting Started With Face-to-Face Academic Conversations

Ronald J. Nash, MA

Former Classroom Teacher and Administrator; Author, The Power of We: Creating Positive and Collaborative Classroom Communities (2018), And What About Your? Getting Started with Interactive Pairs and Small Groups (2018), From Seatwork to Feetwork (2015), The Active Workshop (2010), and The Active Classroom: Practical Strategies for Involving Students in the Learning Process (2008)

Improving Teen Talk: Skills for Classrooms, Connections, and Community

Jeffrey R. Benson, MA

Former Teacher and Administrator; Author, Hanging In: Strategies for Teaching the Students Who Challenge Us Most (2014); Co-Author, Teaching the Whole Teen: Everyday Practices That Promote Success and Resilience in School and Life (2016)

Rachel A. Poliner, MAEd

Former Teacher and Faculty Member; Founder Partner, Leaders and Learners Consulting; Board Member, Social-Emotional Learning Alliance for Massachusetts; Co-Author, Teaching the Whole Teen: Everyday Practices That Promote Success and Resilience in School and Life (2016) and The Advisory Guide: Designing and Implementing Effective Advisory Programs for Secondary Schools (2004)