Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Archives

Episode #82: Mastering the IEP Parent Input Statement

Show Notes:

In this empowering episode, we dive into the world of Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) and the pivotal role of the Parent Input Statement. Join us as we welcome Heather Wright, a Master IEP Coach, who shares invaluable insights on how parents can effectively advocate for their child’s education.

Discover the secrets to crafting a compelling Parent Input Statement, one that goes beyond mere concerns and transforms your child’s educational journey. Learn how to embrace your essential role in shaping your child’s IEP and why preparation is the key to a successful IEP meeting.

This episode is a must-watch for parents, guardians, and anyone involved in the IEP process. It’s time to supercharge your advocacy, foster collaboration, and unlock your child’s full potential in their educational experience. Don’t miss this chance to take your child’s education to the next level.

Connect with Heather:
WEBSITE: http://www.heatherwrightconsultant.com
INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/heatherwrightconsultant
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/heatherwrightconsultant

Are you getting our newsletter? If not, subscribe at https://waterprairie.com/newsletter

Support our podcast and help us share more incredible stories by making a donation at Buy Me A Coffee. Your contribution makes a significant impact in bringing these stories to light. Thank you for your support!
https://BuyMeACoffee.com/waterprairie

Music Used:
“LazyDay” by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Artist: http://audionautix.com/

*******************

Heather Wright, M.Ed. is a special education consultant who began her career more than 16 years ago as a middle school special education teacher. She is passionate about the world of special education and supporting families through this seemingly difficult process by providing them with the tools that allow them to be an advocate for their child all while developing a plan to move their education forward.  She provides a variety of services to meet the unique needs of families, starting with a free 30 minute phone consultation. 

She obtained her masters degree in Learning Disabilities and Behavior Disorders from Georgia State University, in Atlanta, Georgia and is also a member of the Master IEP Coach® Network.  She currently works with families of children with learning disabilities, autism, developmental delays, behavior disorders, and other health impairments, to get the supports and services in the public-school setting, through collaboration. Parents know their children best and are their best advocates; however, they don’t have to be alone! 

Heather grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and moved to Georgia in 2006, where she lives with her husband and two fur babies. When she is not working you can find her cooking and baking, crafting, binge watching her favorite show, or enjoying the lake.

Read More

Episode #81: How to Prepare for a Special Needs Baby

Show Notes:

In this episode of the Water Prairie Chronicles, Tonya speaks with Dr. Stephanie Dueger, an author, educator, parent coach, and psychotherapist who works with expectant and new parents and their little ones up to age 5. The discussion revolves around supporting parents who are expecting a child with special needs. They emphasize the importance of seeking help and resources to cover the potential financial and emotional challenges. Dr. Dueger also talks about the significance of informing older siblings about the situation, keeping communication open, and being sensitive to their emotional needs.

The conversation extends to the role of extended family and friends in supporting parents during this time. Dr. Dueger suggests offering practical help, such as making meals, listening, and finding helpful resources for the family. She emphasizes that each family’s journey is unique and encourages embracing the experience of parenthood, no matter the challenges it may bring.

Overall, the interview provides insights and guidance on navigating the complexities of preparing to parent a child with special needs, emphasizing the importance of community support, open communication, and embracing the journey of parenthood.

📣 Connect with Stephanie:

WEBSITE: preparedforparenthood.com

EMAIL: info[@]preparedforparenthood.com

FACEBOOK: preparedforparenthood

PODCAST: Coming Soon!

Are you getting our newsletter? If not, subscribe at https://waterprairie.com/newsletter

👉 Support our podcast and help us share more incredible stories by making a donation at Buy Me A Coffee. Your contribution makes a significant impact in bringing these stories to light. Thank you for your support!

https://BuyMeACoffee.com/waterprairie

Music Used:

“LazyDay” by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Artist: http://audionautix.com/

*******************

Meet Today’s Guest:

Dr. Stephanie Dueger is an author, educator, parent coach, and psychotherapist who works with expectant and new parents and their little ones up to age 5. Her book, Preparing for Parenthood: 55 Essential Conversations for Couples Becoming Families (2020), is the book she wishes she’d had for herself when first becoming a parent and was the winner of a bronze medal for Parenting and Relationship books in the 2022 Global Book Awards and a finalist in the 2023 Book Excellence Awards. She facilitates parent workshops and courses and was the Editor-in-Chief of the academic Journal of Pre- and Perinatal Psychology and Health from 2019-2022. Dr. Dueger lives in Colorado with her husband, two daughters, and furball of a dog. Learn more about her work at https://preparedforparenthood.com.

Read More

Episode #80: Parenting Emotionally Intense Kids

Show Notes:

In this interview, Tonya speaks with Anouk Brière-Godbout about parenting emotionally intense children, especially those with special needs. They discuss various challenges faced by parents of such children and common misconceptions. Anouk emphasizes that these children often experience intense emotions that may not be understood by others. They also discuss strategies for dealing with meltdowns and finding solutions that work for each child.

Anouk provides valuable insights into the world of parenting emotionally intense kids, including the importance of self-care for parents. She mentions her website and podcast, “Parenting the Intensity,” as resources for parents looking for support and strategies. Overall, this interview sheds light on the challenges and needs of parents in this unique situation and offers a resource for support and understanding.

📣 Connect with Anouk:

WEBSITE: https://familymoments.ca/

PODCAST: https://www.justcast.com/shows/parenting-the-intensity/audioposts

Are you getting our newsletter? If not, subscribe at https://waterprairie.com/newsletter

👉 Support our podcast and help us share more incredible stories by making a donation at Buy Me A Coffee. Your contribution makes a significant impact in bringing these stories to light. Thank you for your support!

https://BuyMeACoffee.com/waterprairie

Music Used:

“LazyDay” by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Artist: http://audionautix.com/

Read More

Episode #79: IEPs vs 504 Plans: Understanding the Differences

Show Notes:

In this episode, Helen Panos, owner of Dynamis Learning in Atlanta, GA, and Heather Wright, a Master IEP Coach, share a wealth of knowledge and guidance on the important topics of Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) and 504 plans for students with disabilities. These passionate advocates offer a comprehensive overview of these plans, emphasizing the critical role that parents play in their children’s educational journey.

Throughout the discussion, the conversation underscores the need for a collaborative approach, emphasizing that the school system, educators, and parents should work as a team to ensure that each student’s unique strengths and weaknesses are recognized and addressed. Additionally, they highlight the importance of early intervention, early identification of potential issues, and ongoing communication to foster a supportive educational environment.

Overall, this podcast interview provides an essential resource for parents, teachers, and anyone interested in the world of special education. The conversation highlights the importance of advocating for every child’s unique needs and creating an inclusive educational environment through collaboration and communication.

📣 Connect with Helen:

WEBSITE: https://www.dynamislearningacademy.com/

FREE Advocacy Brochure: https://bit.ly/40vheZg

PODCAST: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/smart-parents-successful-students/id1581128395

INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/dynamislearningacademy/

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/dynamislearningacademy

YOUTUBE: https://youtube.com/channel/UC-DBFY2KmyXii8Zp41R0RbQ

📣 Connect with Heather:

WEBSITE: http://www.heatherwrightconsultant.com

INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/heatherwrightconsultant

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/heatherwrightconsultant

Are you getting our newsletter? If not, subscribe at https://waterprairie.com/newsletter

👉 Support our podcast and help us share more incredible stories by making a donation at Buy Me A Coffee. Your contribution makes a significant impact in bringing these stories to light. Thank you for your support!

https://BuyMeACoffee.com/waterprairie

Music Used:

“LazyDay” by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Artist: http://audionautix.com/

Read More

Episode #78: Parenting Challenges: A Mother’s Story of Finding Her Value

Special needs parenting is hard! You can get lost in the process of helping your child through all the stages of growing up, and many parents lose themselves along the way. Our guest in this episode, Megan Gibson, understands how parenting challenges can cause a special needs parent to feel like they get lost along the way, and she’s made it her mission to help others find the freedom to be themselves.
During this interview, Megan emphasizes the importance of staying true to your values and vision as a parent, even in the face of criticism or uncertainty. Throughout the conversation, Megan discusses her relationships, both past and present, highlighting the importance of surrounding oneself with supportive people who share your values and vision. She also touches on the difficulty of the transition when your children become more independent and offers guidance on navigating this challenging stage.
Overall, Megan’s journey is a testament to the power of resilience, self-awareness, and the importance of staying true to your values as a parent. Her story is not just about parenting; it’s about personal growth, transformation, and self-discovery. Megan’s willingness to share her experiences is both heartwarming and enlightening, offering hope and guidance to others on their parenting and self-improvement journeys.

📣 Connect with Megan:
WEBSITE https://freedtobeyou.com/
PODCAST https://freedtobeyou.com/podcast
INSTAGRAM https://www.instagram.com/freedtobeyou
FACEBOOK GROUP https://www.facebook.com/groups/freedtorediscoveryou
YOUTUBE https://www.youtube.com/freedtobeyou

Learn more about Water Prairie: https://waterprairie.com

Are you getting our newsletter? If not, subscribe at https://waterprairie.com/newsletter

👉 Support our podcast and help us share more incredible stories by making a donation at Buy Me A Coffee. Your contribution makes a significant impact in bringing these stories to light. Thank you for your support!
https://BuyMeACoffee.com/waterprairie

Music Used:
“LazyDay” by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Artist: http://audionautix.com/

Read More

Episode #77: Unlocking the Secrets of Emotional Intelligence Through Play!

Show Notes:

Join us in this enlightening episode as we delve into the world of emotional intelligence with our guest, Melissa. She introduces us to a fascinating game that not only brings joy and laughter but also enhances our emotional awareness. Learn how Melissa’s innovative game helps individuals of all ages expand their emotional vocabulary, connect with others, and improve communication skills.

Discover how Melissa’s game fosters vulnerability in a safe space, allowing players to share and express their emotions effectively. Whether you’re a parent looking for engaging activities to connect with your kids or an educator seeking valuable resources for your classroom, this episode offers a treasure trove of insights.

Tune in to explore the transformative power of emotional intelligence and find out where you can access Melissa’s game and upcoming resources. Plus, don’t miss the bonus emotional tools she’s giving away for free. Join us on this journey toward emotional intelligence and strengthen your connections with those around you.

📣 Connect with Melissa:

Website: https://emotioncommotiongame.com/

Buy the Emotion Commotion game: https://emotioncommotiongame.com/products/emotion-commotion-game

3 FREE Emotional Tools: Click on the green banner on Melissa’s webpage at https://emotioncommotiongame.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/emotioncommotion/

*******************

Are you getting our newsletter? If not, subscribe at https://waterprairie.com/newsletter

👉 Support our podcast and help us share more incredible stories by making a donation at Buy Me A Coffee. Your contribution makes a significant impact in bringing these stories to light. Thank you for your support!

https://BuyMeACoffee.com/waterprairie

Music Used:

“LazyDay” by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Artist: http://audionautix.com/

Read More

Episode #76: Special Needs Sibling Relationships and Disability Awareness

Show Notes:

In this insightful episode, join us as we delve into the complexities of special needs sibling relationships and the challenges of growing up with disabilities. Our guest, Melissa Ortiz, opens up about her personal experiences as a person with a disability and the dynamics she faced with her sister. From childhood memories to adult understanding, Melissa shares candidly about the trials and triumphs that shaped their relationship. She provides valuable advice for parents striving to strike a balance between their non-disabled and disabled children, emphasizing the importance of communication, age-appropriate explanations, and fostering mutual respect. Melissa also discusses her passion for advocacy and her efforts at ABLE Americans, a resource hub aimed at connecting families and providing vital information. Join us for an enlightening conversation that sheds light on the power of support, understanding, and unity within families facing the challenges of disability.

Melissa has been a guest on earlier episodes. To hear her story of growing up with Spina Bifida, check out Episode 72. To learn more about her work with ABLE Americans, be sure to listen to Episode 74.

*******************

Connect with Melissa:

Twitter: @dcbelleonwheels

Instagram: @dcbelleonwheels

Facebook: @melissa.d.ortiz.5

Email: mOrtiz@nationalcenter.org

Connect with Us: https://linktr.ee/waterprairie

Support this channel: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/waterprairie

Music Used:

“LazyDay” by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Artist: http://audionautix.com/

Read More

Episode #75: From Childhood Stroke to Triumph

Show Notes:

🎙️ In this captivating episode, join us as we delve into an extraordinary story of resilience, survival, and the unbreakable human spirit. Fred Rutman, the guest of today’s show, takes us on a remarkable journey through his experiences of childhood stroke, multiple health battles, and his unwavering determination to overcome them all.

🎧 Tune in as we explore Fred’s incredible journey of triumph and discover the resilience that lies within all of us. Don’t forget to subscribe, share, and leave a review if you found this episode as inspiring as we did.

*******************

Connect with Fred:

YouTube: The Dead Man Walking Podcast

Instagram: @repeatedlydf

Facebook: Repeatedly Dead Fred Author Page

LinkedIn: @fredrutman

Purchase Fred’s book: The Summer I Died Twenty Times: Because Lightning Does Strike the Same Spot Twice

https://amzn.to/3L54Mtj

** As an Amazon Associate, I may earn from this purchase. **

Sign up for the Water Prairie Newsletter: https://waterprairie.com/newsletter

Support this channel: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/waterprairie

Music Used:

“LazyDay” by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Artist: http://audionautix.com/

Read More

Episode #74: Advocacy for all: ABLE Americans and Disability Rights

Show Notes:

In this interview, Melissa Ortiz, Senior Advisor for ABLE Americans, discusses the mission and initiatives of the organization focused on advocating for the rights and inclusion of people with disabilities. The conversation highlights several key points:

Focus on Human Dignity:
Melissa emphasizes the importance of recognizing the inherent dignity and value of every individual, regardless of their disabilities. She believes that every person is made in the image of God and should be treated with respect and consideration.

Goals and Programs:
ABLE Americans aims to create impactful policies, resources, and support systems for individuals with disabilities. Melissa mentions their plans to develop an app, a speaker’s bureau, legal assistance, and a job finder tool. They seek to address a range of issues including education, employment, healthcare, and more.

Collaboration and Advocacy:
Melissa shares her commitment to collaborating with various organizations, government agencies, and policymakers to promote inclusion and positive change for people with disabilities. She discusses her efforts to engage with politicians from both sides of the aisle to ensure that disability issues are properly addressed in legislation.

Championing Individuality:
Melissa underscores the need to view each person with a disability as a unique individual rather than defining them solely by their condition. She advocates for breaking down stereotypes and advocating for policies that empower individuals to participate fully in society.

Involvement and Support:
Melissa encourages individuals, families, caregivers, and educators to get involved by sharing personal stories, contributing resources, and connecting with ABLE Americans. She stresses the importance of joining together to create positive change and to support one another on the journey toward greater inclusivity.

Overall, the interview provides insights into the meaningful work of ABLE Americans, shedding light on their mission to create a more inclusive and supportive society for people with disabilities.

Connect with Melissa:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/dcbelleonwheels
Instagram: https://instagram.com/dcbelleonwheels
Facebook: https://facebook.com/melissa.d.ortiz
Email: mOrtiz@nationalcenter.org

Connect with ABLE Americans:
Website: https://nationalcenter.org/programs/able-americans/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/AbleAmericans

Connect with Us: https://linktr.ee/waterprairie

Sign up for the Water Prairie Newsletter: https://waterprairie.com/newsletter
Support this channel: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/waterprairie

Music Used:
“LazyDay” by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Artist: http://audionautix.com/

Meet Today’s Guest:

Melissa Ortiz serves the National Center for Public Policy Research as the organization’s Senior Advisor for the ABLE Americans Project.
In her role, she develops the project’s strategic plan, marshals key resources and helps oversee the implementation of the project. She also assists the National Center’s president in identifying necessary contractors, employees, strategic partners, stakeholders and donors and serves as a key spokesperson.
Melissa identifies as a “happy warrior” and is enthusiastic about driving a dialogue between people living with disabilities or chronic illness and policy makers across the political spectrum, especially conservatives. She has worked in the classroom in Nashville, Tennessee and in the nonprofit sector in New York City and Washington, DC. She was honored to serve as President Trump’s Commissioner of the Administration on Disabilities. The first female board member of The Conservative Caucus, one of the oldest conservative groups in existence, she currently resides in Washington, D.C. with her husband Tony and Service Dog Dachshund, Annie Oakley.

Read More

Episode #73: Navigating Mobility Challenges: From Childhood to Coaching

Show Notes:

In this insightful interview, we sit down with Nathan Gutierrez, a remarkable individual with spina bifida, to delve into his journey of living with a mobility disability. Nathan’s candid sharing takes us through his childhood experiences, family support, education, healthcare insights, and his inspiring path to independence. Join us as we explore his triumphs over challenges, his engagement in sports and social activities, and his valuable advice for parents and individuals facing similar situations.

🔹 Childhood and Family Support: Discover how Nathan’s parents nurtured his independence from a young age, empowering him to overcome obstacles and actively participate in daily life.

🔹 Educational Experiences: Gain insights into Nathan’s education within mainstream schools, his perspective on effective communication, and the significance of self-advocacy and Individualized Education Programs (IEPs).

🔹 Healthcare and Transition to Adulthood: Learn about Nathan’s proactive approach to maintaining bladder health and preventing urinary tract infections (UTIs). Explore his journey from childhood to adulthood and the importance of gradually involving children in their healthcare routines.

🔹 Sports and Social Life: Dive into Nathan’s engaging experiences with wheelchair basketball, youth sports, and coaching programs. Discover how these activities not only contributed to his physical well-being but also enriched his social interactions and self-confidence.

🔹 Tips for Parents and Individuals: Nathan shares invaluable advice for parents, emphasizing the significance of promoting independence, creative problem-solving, and collaborative approaches to managing mobility challenges.

🔹 Wheel Life Coaching: Nathan’s latest venture, “Wheel Life Coaching,” is dedicated to helping individuals and families with mobility disabilities navigate their unique journeys. Learn how Nathan’s coaching aims to simplify information, provide tailored solutions, and empower individuals to achieve their aspirations.

Join us for this enlightening conversation, as Nathan’s story reminds us of the power of determination, family support, and the unwavering spirit to thrive despite life’s challenges. Don’t miss out on this heartwarming and informative discussion – watch now!

*******************

Connect with Nathan:

Website: wheellifecoaching.com

Instagram: @wheellife_coach

Connect with Us: https://linktr.ee/waterprairie

Support this channel: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/waterprairie

Music Used:

“LazyDay” by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Artist: http://audionautix.com/

Read More