Lecture Series

Parents, caregivers, teachers and therapists: if there’s a child in your life with learning differences, chances are you are seeking some advice. Discover the Lab School's popular Lecture Series! Our monthly lectures are rich with information, insights and tips that will help you nurture the opportunities - and navigate the challenges - learning differences can present. 

At our Wednesday night lectures, you'll have the opportunity to listen to - and learn from - leading LD and ADHD specialists as they address early childhood, adolescent, and adult challenges and opportunities. Our lecturers are outstanding, recognized professionals in the learning differences field. Just as important, each is accessible and ready to answer your questions.

All lectures are open to the public and offered free of charge.
There is no reserved seating. Seating is limited.
Registration is required – see registration link below.

Lectures are held in The Commons on the Reservoir Campus:
4759 Reservoir Road NW Washington, D.C. 20007

Unless otherwise noted, each lecture is 90-minutes long (7:30-9:00pm).

Check out more Lecture Series videos!

Click here for more Lecture Series videos.

2019-2020 Lecture Series Lineup:

List of 8 items.

  • September 25: Jonathan Mooney, Neuro-Diverse Writer and Advocate

    Jonathan Mooney
    Neuro-Diverse Writer and Advocate
    Author: Normal Sucks-How to Live, Learn, and Thrive Outside the Lines

    Register Now

    Jonathan Mooney will be selling/signing copies of his new book.
    Speaker Bio
  • October 23: The Top 10 Things You Need to Know about Vaping, E-Cigarettes and Juuls

    Adrianna Bravo, MD
    Health Services, Medical Director
    Episcopal High School
    Alexandria, VA

    Register Now

    Vaping was recently declared an epidemic by the US Surgeon General and, as many are recognizing first hand, it is a growing threat to our children. This risk, that nearly all adolescents now face, requires each of us to be educated about these nicotine (and illicit drug) delivery devices. We must be prepared to help prevent use by teens and support cessation efforts for those already experimenting with use of vapes. Dr. Bravo will provide a crash course in vapes and e-cigarettes, sharing the 10 most important things parents and educators ought to know. She will touch upon the increased pressures and risks these devices present for teens who also have anxiety, mood disorder or attention deficit profiles. The presentation will include slides, open dialogue, encouraging of questions, and hands on opportunity to become familiar with different vape devices in a show & tell style format. She will leave attendees with a summative handout that can serve as talking points for your own conversations with students.
    Speaker Bio
  • November 6: Growing up with Learning Challenges: Emotional and Behavioral Consequences

    Judith M. Glasser, PhD
    Clinical Psychologist

    Register Now

    Many children have strengths and struggles with learning. Some have specific challenges such as dyslexia or AD/HD. There is research that reveals that there are frequent emotional and behavioral impacts from growing up with these challenges. For example, there is some research that demonstrated that children who cannot read fluently by age 8 do not develop a sense of self-efficacy in learning – the sense that they can learn. The feeling of shame is observable when they cover their faces with their hair or hands, bury their faces in their arms, or hide behind their parents. Sometimes they become quiet or defiant. A review of records of a child who is struggling often reveals undiagnosed learning problems such as dyslexia or AD/HD. These are disorders that can hide behind average grades and average scores on standardized tests especially among very bright children.
    Speaker Bio
  • December 4: When Stimulants Are Not Enough: Alternative Strategies to Manage ADHD beyond Traditional Pharmacology

    Gonzalo Laje, MD, MHSc
    Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist
    Director, Washington Behavioral Medicine Associates                
    For over a half century, methylphenidate and more recently, other stimulants, have been the gold standard in the treatment of ADHD. However, many children and adolescents do not fully respond or tolerate stimulant medication. This talk will discuss other interventions that include non-stimulant medication, diet and food supplements, sleep and brain modulation methods that may help with the management of ADHD.
    Speaker Bio
  • January 15: Beyond Learning Differences and Executive Functioning Challenges: How to Solve Any Academic Problem with Study Skills and Time Management

    Paul Rivas, MA
    Founder/Director, SMITH RIVAS Study Skills & Academic Coaching
    Diagnosed learning differences and executive function deficits often become scapegoats for a far more sinister problem: poor study skills. Fortunately, the solution for these academic challenges is the same as the answer to neurotypical students’ academic problems: improved academic skills and time management. Unless students learn how to navigate their cognitive circumstances, they’re at risk of not getting their money’s worth in college or not finding satisfying work in a rewarding field, because study skills are directly equivalent to job skills and life skills. High school is a grind. The only way for students to have more free time, experience less stress, and enjoy increased motivation is to learn how to learn more efficiently so that they have more time to go do cool stuff. This talk will highlight simple, practical ways to help your students improve their study skills and time management. 
    Speaker Bio
  • February 5: Anxiety and Other Emotional Problems in Youth: Understanding and Treatment

    Daniel S. Pine, MD
    Chief, Section on Development and Affective Neuroscience
    National Institute of Mental Health Intramural Research Program
    This presentation will review from a broad perspective major symptomatic aspects of pediatric anxiety disorders as well as aspects of their longitudinal outcome and relationship to mood disorders.  The presentation will focus more deeply on treatment.  This will include a discussion of currently available treatments as well as a discussion of research in affective neuroscience.  This will focus on the ways in which neuroscience has generated ideas on novel therapies, particularly those that are arising through research on attention.  This provides novel insights for computer-based attention retraining therapies.  Finally, during the discussion period, discussion will be entertained and encouraged on the approach to particularly difficult clinical problems, providing clinicians with guidance in these scenarios.  This will include treatment-resistant anxiety, anxiety in very young children, and anxiety in highly-comorbid cases. 
    Speaker Bio
  • March 11: Playing with Math: Brain-Based Strategies to Improve Foundational Math Skills

    Steven G. Feifer, DEd, ABSNP
    This presentation will explore how children learn and acquire basic mathematical skills from a brain-based educational perspective. Keeping math fun, interactive, and meaningful through games and activities will be featured.   A discussion of how parents can help minimize math anxiety and maximize math performance will be an important component of the talk.   The role of language, picture cues, memory strategies, and symbolic thinking will be critical in developing automatic fact retrieval, quantitative reasoning, and the development of number sense for children with learning differences.
    Speaker Bio
  • April 22: Feeing Stressed? 10 Simple and Powerful Coping Strategies for Parents and Kids

    Elizabeth DuPont Spencer, LCSW-C
    Have you been overwhelmed with stress in your life?  Juggling work and family responsibilities on top of the extra work of parenting a child with learning disabilities or differing abilities can be overwhelming.  Join Elizabeth DuPont Spencer, LCSW-C, an author, presenter and therapist as she provides insight about stress and teaches you how to make simple changes in your thinking and behavior that will lead to a healthier approach to managing stress and even help you get back to enjoying life!
    Speaker Bio
Visit Lecture Series Resources for information from past sessions.
The Difference is Extraordinary
The Lab School of Washington
4759 Reservoir Road, NW | Washington, DC 20007-1921 | 202-965-6600