Gil talks about Shrub Oak International School on “Affect Autism.”

15 Feb

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I love the blog and website, Affect Autism! I sat down with my good friend, and fierce developmental advocate, Daria Brown, while I was in Toronto at Oakwood Academy a couple of weeks ago, to do a podcast and interview for her influential blog. We talked about Shrub Oak International School, the school I am helping to found in Westchester County, New York. We ranged over a number of topics, but we focused in on how I plan to use what I have learned over many years of starting, running and consulting to schools to make Shrub Oak extraordinary. Specifically, we talked about how the fantastic 127 acre campus of Shrub Oak supports the sensory processing challenges of students, and avoids the problems that occur when classrooms are overcrowded and schools are loud and confusing.

Take a couple of minutes to listen to the interview, visit the Shrub Oak website, and then do a deep dive on Daria’s site, “Affect Autism.” I think you will find it worth the time you invest!

The Start Of Something Big!

30 Jan

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I am thrilled to announce that I am the Co-Head, and Clinical Director of a spectacular new school, Shrub Oak International School! It is a co-educational, boarding and day school located in the town of Shrub Oak in Westchester County, NY, on 127 acres of beautiful rolling fields and woods. For me, it is a dream come true!

I have traveled in this country and internationally over the last many years, and I have looked at all kinds of developmental programs for students with autism spectrum disorders, and I have seen what makes them work, and what makes them not work so well. I have noticed, again and again, that if all other things are equal, one of the factors that makes a program successful is ROOM, and lots of it! When a program does not have enough room, and students do not have access to nature, things do not go well. Shrub Oak has those things in abundance. Not that space is the only advantage, but if you don’t have space, if your students are crammed into small classrooms and you cannot get them outside to play in nature, you are in big trouble!

I am so excited to be able to take the beautiful campus, with it’s fields and forests, its Equestrian Center, its pool, and especially its organic farm (with my son Glenn as its steward) and use these spaces to supply sensible, effective developmental clinical programs, in the way I have always dreamed to supply them.

There are, of course, a million other things to say, like the ages of the students (middle school and high school), the number of students (390 boarding and day), the number of staff (about 600) and details about the amazing programs and curriculums. But, all of that will have to wait, and as you can imagine, I will be talking here a lot about the school’s development from now to opening in September, 2018.

For now, I just want to say how proud I am to be a part of this project, and how thrilled I am at being able to make my dream school a reality!

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Foundation Academics: First Things First

26 Sep

Foundation Academics: What is it?

Foundation Academics: What is it?

Here is a podcast I did with Affect Autism, and it’s host, Daria Brown. She is a real leader here in North America, headquartered in Toronto, on the issue of respectful, appropriate, developmental support for people with autism spectrum challenges. I loved talking with her about a concept I came up with about 10 years ago, Foundation Academics. It is my attempt to explain to parents why we need to focus on early developmental levels before we get to reading, writing and arithmetic. It helps to explain that you need to do first things FIRST, and THEN we will get to those more traditional, “secondary academics.” I think this is my first publicly available full explanation of the idea of Foundation Academics, one of the cornerstones of my educational philosophy for folks with developmental challenges like autism spectrum challenges. Enjoy!

Featured on HBO Vice this Friday

3 Aug

This Friday’s episode of Vice on HBO features the staff and students, and maybe some parents, of the Rebecca School.  The correspondent GiannaToboni, spent the day with us about 6 months ago, and she was really great. We have no control over how they decided to cut the material they shot, but we are very proud of our staff, our kids and our families. The promo above shows that they understood our model of respectful, developmental support, so I am optimistic, and looking forward to seeing it this Friday night!

Nice to be on this list!

28 Jun

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http://affectautism.com/2017/06/27/five-great-floortime-books/

My friends at Affect Autism just put together a list of books they like for parents of kids on the autism spectrum. What an honor for my book with Dr. Greenspan,

Respecting Autism! I am particularly honored to be standing next to some of Dr. Greenspan’s other books, and happy to be a part of a movement toward respectful, effective, developmental support for people with autism, and autistics alike! Thank you, Affect Autism, for the honor, and thank you for all the advocacy work you do every day!

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Gil Talks about the Remarkable “Extremely Inconvenient Child”

21 Mar

This quick clip is from a training at the Rebecca School on 3/17/17. I brought up the subject of children who challenge us at the school, a concept I have come to call “The Extremely Inconvenient Child.” I do Not mean anything bad about the child, I am making the point that they challenge our way of doing things, point out our flaws, and show us where we need to improve.

Atlantic DIR/Floortime School Conference

8 Jan
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Petra Daitz, MS/ED far left, and Gil Tippy, PsyD second from the left

On Saturday, January 21st, 2017, I will be speaking at a very cool conference in Atlanta, put on by ICDL and the Community School, entitled 2017 Annual DIR® in Education Conference . Not an inspiring name, but some inspiring speakers! I will be talking about DIR/Floortime models for post-21 education, particularly a not-for-profit model I developed in CA, and its application nationally. Dave Nelson, the Executive Director of the Community School in Decatur, GA, is organizing the event and speaking, as is Emily Rubin, MS, CCC-SLP, who always teaches me a lot. I am particularly excited to have one of the great teachers from Rebecca School presenting, Petra Daitz, MS/ED, who will present her fantastic class, with lots of video. The conference promises to really make clear the school application of DIR/Floortime, and is in a beautiful space at The Atrium at the Cator Woolford Gardens at the Frazer Center in Atlanta. This is a great conference, focused on schools, in a beautiful, intimate setting. Seating is limited, but some seats are available! I hope to see you there.

2017 Annual DIR® in Education Conference
Frazer Center, Atlanta, Georgia
Saturday, January 21, 2017
9:00AM – 4:00PM

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