Neurodiversity, Pathology, Cognition and Normalization: A Critical Reflection
1.5 CPDs, 1:05:53
This learning session considers how views of neurodiversity, pathology, and cognition can inform education research and Montessori practitioners’ understanding of normalization. Specifically, the neurodiversity and pathology paradigms and the information processing model of cognition are introduced to foster participants’ critical consumption of “evidence-based” practices for working with neurodivergent students. Further, research on elementary (yes, elementary!) teachers’ perceptions of normalization is discussed and examined through these lenses. Finally, participants will be asked to critically examine their own views of normalization given their new understanding of these paradigms and cognition.
Dr. Laura Flores Shaw
Laura Flores Shaw, Assistant Professor and Interim Director of the Doctor of Education program at The Johns Hopkins University School of Education, is extensively trained in family systems therapy and educational neuroscience and has direct experience as Head of School within an AMI-based Montessori school framework. Laura’s work has focused on translating research from the learning sciences, sustainability education, and family systems research into school design and classroom practice. Re-contextualizing common terms such as “executive function” and “attention” are areas of particular interest, especially in relation to issues of race, class, neurodiversity, and behavior.
Dr. Dana Baker
Dana Baker brings 15 years of experience as an early childhood educator, interventionist, and learning specialist, during which she actively designed inclusive models of instruction and coached novice and experienced teachers in child-centered practices to promote achievement for all. She is a mind, brain, and teaching specialist with a research focus on designing learner-centered, innovative school environments and modes of instruction that reject the false binary of typical and atypical learners in exchange for the reality of neurodiversity as normative. She currently serves as an Assistant Professor of Education at Fairleigh Dickinson University where she prepares undergraduate and graduate students to effectively teach students with disabilities in PK-12 settings.