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Practical Strategies to Support Executive Skill Development at Home and at School

Presented by Peg Dawson, Ed.D., NCSP

Monday, April 17, 2023  |  Kelowna, bc

Workshop Description

Skills include task initiation and follow through, working memory, sustained attention, performance monitoring, inhibition of impulses, and goal-directed persistence. While the groundwork for the development of these skills occurs before birth, they develop gradually through the first two decades of life. But from the moment that children begin to interact with their environment, adults have expectations for how they will use executive skills to negotiate many of the demands of childhood – from the self-regulation of behaviour required to act responsibly, to the planning and initiation skills required to complete chores and homework. Parents and teachers expect children to use executive skills even though they may little understand what these skills are and how they impact behaviour and school performance. The importance of executive skills to overall cognitive functioning first became apparent in work with children and teenagers who had sustained traumatic brain injuries. Problems involving planning and organization, time management, and memory, as well as weaknesses with inhibition and regulation of emotions, have long described a significant component of traumatic brain injury. Executive skills have also assumed an important role in the explanation of Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder.

This workshop will begin by providing an overview of executive skills, including definitions and a description of the developmental progression of these skills in the first two decades of life. The approach to understanding executive skills presented in this workshop is structured around two key concepts: 1) that most individuals have an executive skills profile that includes both strengths and weaknesses; and 2) by defining executive skills discretely rather than grouping them in broader categories, it is possible to design interventions to address specific deficits that lend themselves to data-based decision making. Workshop participants will gain a deeper understanding both of the model being presented and of their own executive skills profile. The heart of the workshop will address how to assess executive skills and develop interventions designed to address specific executive skill weaknesses.

Workshop Topics:

Agenda & Learning Objectives


Part I: Overview of Executive Skills

  • Definitions
  • Underlying theory
  • Executive skills in the context of brain function and child development


Part II : Assessment of Executive Skills Parent/teacher/student interviews

  • Behaviour rating scales
  • Observations
  • Informal assessment
  • Formal assessment


Part III : Three intervention strategies

  • Environmental modifications to reduce the impact of weak executive skills
  • Teaching strategies/routines to help youngsters develop/improve executive functioning
  • Using incentives to help youngsters practice or use skills that are difficult


Part IV : Coaching as an effective strategy for building executive skills

  • Overview of coaching
  • Description of 2-stage process coaching with younger children
  • Clinical case examples
  • Description of research studies supporting the efficacy of coaching


Learning Objectives

  • Define executive skills
  • Identify how executive skills impact school performance and daily living
  • Use assessment tools to identify executive dysfunction
  • Access a repertoire of strategies to improve executive skills in students
  • Design your own intervention strategies tailored to the needs of individual students
  • Utilize classroom-wide interventions to improve executive skills

Continuing Education Credits

This workshop has been formally approved by the following associations:
  • Canadian Psychological Association (CPA)

† The Alberta College of Social Workers (ACSW) and the Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Social Workers (NLASW) accept CPA-approved CEUs.

* Participants will receive a certificate of completion after every workshop. Workshops are pre-approved for 5.5 or 6 credits per day unless otherwise specified.

Your Presenter(s)

Peg Dawson, Ed.D., NCSP

Dr. Peg Dawson: In over 40 years of clinical practice, Dr. Peg Dawson has worked with thousands of children who struggle at home and in school. At the center of their struggles are often weak executive skills. Along with her colleague, Dr. Richard Guare, she has written numerous books on this topic for educators, mental health professionals, and parents, among them Smart but Scattered, Smart but Scattered Teens, Executive Skills in Children and Adolescents, and Coaching Students with Executive Skills Deficits. Peg is also a past president of the National Association of School Psychologists, and the International School Psychology Association, and is a recipient of NASP’s Lifetime Achievement Award.



“Dr. Dawson is incredibly informative and provided exceptional clarity on executive functioning skills. She was generous with her materials and I left feeling much more confident in how I can approach students that are struggling. This was so useful to me and I would highly recommend this workshop to ANYONE who has questions.”
– Calgary, AB | November 5 – 6, 2019

“This course was very interesting and engaging. Peg was incredibly knowledgeable, shared amazing resources and gave real like examples of how her strategies have worked and been implemented. Would highly recommend her course to other teachers and professionals.”
– Ottawa, ON | October 30 – 31, 2019

“Great presenter with a realistic, positive approach, who drew capable on her experiences. I was certainly glad I attended today’s session!”
-Halifax, NS | June 5, 2014


Who Should Attend

Education and Clinical Professionals: All education and mental health or healthcare professionals who work with children or youth including, but not limited to K–12 Classroom Teachers, School Counsellors, Learning Assistance/Resource Teachers, School Administrators, School Paraprofessionals including Special Education Assistants, Classroom Assistants and Childcare Workers • All other professionals who support behavioural challenges and complex learning needs including but not limited to: Nurses, Social Workers, Psychologists, Clinical Counsellors, Family Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Speech Language Pathologists, Addiction Counsellors, Youth Workers, Mental Health Workers, Probation Officers and Community Police Officers.

Recommended Accommodation

Ramada by Wyndham Kelowna Hotel & Conference Centre

2170 Harvey Avenue, Kelowna, BC

phone:  250-860-9711

website:  www.wyndhamhotels.com/en-ca/ramada/kelowna-british-columbia/ramada-kelowna-hotel-and-conference-centre/overview?CID=LC:RA::GGL:RIO:National:07839&iata=00093796

 Full map & directions

Our rates:

* Please check back at a later time as this information will be updated when corporate/group rates are secured.

When booking hotel rooms, ask for the Jack Hirose and Associates corporate rate. To receive our corporate rate, rooms must be booked one month prior to the workshop date. Please keep in mind hotel rates may fluctuate.

Registration & Fees

Registration Early bird Fee Regular Fee
Individual Enrollment $269 $289
Group 3-7 $254 $274
Group 8-14 $239 $259
Group 15+ $224 $244
Full-Time Student $224 $244

All fees are in Canadian Dollars ($CAD)

Fees do not include applicable taxes (5% GST).

Early bird cutoff date: April 3, 2023
To receive the early bird rate, registration and payment must be received by Monday, April 3, 2023.

Please review our Registration Terms and Conditions for information on our cancellation policy, payment policies, rebates, and more. You must agree to our Terms and Conditions to register for a workshop or conference.

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