On the Horizon – 01/26/2009

Horizons Developmental Remediation Center
On the Horizon
On the Horizon

Welcome to “On the Horizon”

Issue 45: New Year Resolutions for Teachers

On the Horizon is an award winning weekly ezine for parents of children with developmental disabilities who want simple, effective strategies to reduce stress, support their child’s development, and improve quality of life for the whole family.

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In This Issue

Help for the New Year

A Note from Nicole: Teachers in a Rut?

Idea of the Week: Sledding

Feature Article: New Year Resolutions for Teachers

The Horizons Team Recommends: RDI Program; Flex Your Brain DVD

Upcoming Events: Sibshop; CORE Approach Parent Teleseminar; Parent Chat

A Note From Nicole
Nicole Beurkens

Hi Everyone!

It’s great to be back home, even if I did have to come back to the freezing cold weather and snow! I’m looking forward to getting caught up on things at home and around the office this week.

When I was a classroom teacher, I can remember periodically feeling like I was in a rut. Things would be going along fine, but I would suddenly realize that I
wanted to implement something new, get some fresh ideas, or expand my knowledge base in some way. Sometimes we think about professional development as something that schools provide for us, but the reality is that there are many great options we can explore ourselves. In this week’s feature article, Courtney provides some ideas for taking advantage of the many resources and support opportunities
available to us. For parents, think about how you can play a role in
helping your child’s teachers access some of these opportunities through passing along the link to a helpful website, emailing an inspirational quote, or loaning a book you have found helpful.

Now that I’m back in town, my team and I are moving full steam ahead on getting some new projects completed. We’ve got a resource book for school staff in the final stages of editing, a series of audio seminar for
teachers, and some fabulous resources for families in the works. Stay tuned for some sneak peeks in upcoming editions!

Have a fantastic week!

Looking to the horizon,

Nicole Signature

Idea of the Week

Snow fun


Find a great sledding hill near where you live and get on your outdoor gear. Grab the sleds, saucers, or whatever else you think will bring you down the hill and head out for some fun. Try riding together, going solo, having races, going backwards, or any other crazy things
you can do while sledding. Don’t forget, that in order to do
it again, you do have to climb back up the hill!

Feature Article


New Year
Resolutions for Teachers

By: Courtney Kowalczyk, M.Ed.

It is hard to believe that 2009 is already here! The holidays came and went so quickly,
and now we are on to bigger and better things in the New Year. As a teacher and consultant, I believe that starting a new year is always a great time to put into action our personal New Year’s resolutions. Now, many of us typically think about and plan our personal resolutions; but have you ever thought about making resolutions for yourself professionally as well? Making changes for the better in our professional lives is just as important as in our personal lives.

As teachers, we know there are so many things that we need to do day in and day out to keep our classrooms working efficiently and effectively. Planning lessons, managing schedules, and keeping up with grading are just a few of the daily activities that we are required to do. As you move through the rigmarole of our professional lives, do you ever stop andnthink about what you are learning or gaining from your professional experience? Have you learned a new strategy and implemented it in the classroom? Is teaching still fun, or have you fallen into the rut of the day in and day out routine? Here are a few simple suggestions and ideas for New Year’s resolutions for teachers
that will help keep you fresh and moving forward in your professional

  • Read a new strategy book or article for teachers. It is important for teachers to keep up on their reading and understanding of educational practices and procedures. Every month, new strategy books and research articles that share research based best practices come out for teachers. You can find these materials online through your preferred search engine or database. It is amazing to see all of the materials that are available today!


The Horizons Team Recommends

Flex Your Brain

Flex Your Brain DVD Program

It’s Here–A Simple Way to Build Flexibility and Thinking Skills in Your Students!

Help your preschool and elementary students learn to: think creatively; flexibly adapt to change; notice similarities and differences; and compare and contrast perspectives

This fun and effective learning tool has two components:

The “It is a _____” component uses colorful inkblot paintings to promote creative and flexible thinking. Spend a few minutes looking at a different inkblot each day, and think about what it could be. This can be done as a great morning warm-up activity, in an individual therapy session, or as a discussion with the whole class.

The “Daily Differences” component provides teachers with simple ideas to incorporate variations into the day. Ideas include:

  • Change the location of items in the classroom
  • Sit in different shape configurations at “circle” time
  • Serve “chilly cookies” from the fridge instead of the cupboard for snack time
  • Take different routes as you travel throughout the building

Note to Parents: These make great gifts for the teachers and therapists in your child’s life!

For more information, click here

Relationship Development

CORE Approach Program!

Finally – Hope and Real Improvement is Possible for Individuals with Autism and Their Families!

If your child has been diagnosed on the autism spectrum, or with a related neuro-developmental condition, you simply cannot afford not to investigate the CORE Approach Program. If you are ready for a change; ready to step away from the status-quo; ready to stop doing things that aren’t getting you where you want to be; ready to really understand the core deficits creating obstacles for your child; ready to significantly impact your child and your family for the better – then you are ready for CORE Approach.

Watch the video and learn more here

Upcoming Events

Please join us!

  • CORE Approach Parent Teleseminar with Nicole & Erin – Get your Questions Answered (Horizons Families Only)
    Thursday January 29 2009, 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM EST
  • Horizons Parent Chat: Objective Support with Michelle & Courtney
    (Horizons Families Only)
    Monday February 2, 12:30 PM to 1:30 PM EST
  • Sibshop – Horizons Sibling Network
    Open to everyone!
    Saturday March 14 2009, 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM EST
  • HANDLE® Intermediate Training
    April 6-11, 2009 and May 4-9, 2009
  • Sibshop – Horizons Sibling Network
    Open to everyone!
    Saturday May 16 2009, 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM EST
  • Sibshop – Horizons Sibling Network
    Open to everyone!
    Saturday July 18 2009, 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM EST

See our Event Calendar for more details…

On the Horizon is a weekly ezine for parents of children with developmental disabilities who want simple, effective strategies to reduce stress, support their child¹s development, and improve quality of life for the whole family.

Our mailing address is:

Horizons Developmental Remediation Center

3120 68th Street SE

Caledonia, MI  49316

Our telephone:

(616) 698-0306

Our email address:


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