Autism Education Expert Susan DeLuke, Ph.D. Slated to Speak at Common Ground Center’s Camp Kaleidoscope

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Susan DeLuke, Ph. D., an expert in the field of autism spectrum disorders and a professor at The College of Saint Rose in Albany, NY, will be giving a presentation at the 5th Annual Camp Kaleidoscope in Starksboro, VT on June 24, 2011. Parents, guardians, and caretakers of children with autism spectrum disorder are invited to attend the event. The presentation is free and open to the public.

A family enjoys some quality time in a hammock at Camp Kaleidoscope.

During Camp K families create lasting, positive family memories together in an atmosphere that allows them to be safe and truly relax.

Susan DeLuke, Ph. D., an expert in the field of autism spectrum disorders and a professor at The College of Saint Rose in Albany, NY, will be giving a presentation at the 5th Annual Camp Kaleidoscope in Starksboro, VT on June 24, 2011. Parents, guardians, and caretakers of children with autism spectrum disorder are invited to attend the event. The presentation is free and open to the public.

DeLuke’s work has been featured on “The Today Show” as well as in "The Unified Teacher Preparation Programs for General and Special Educators." She received her doctorate in special education from Syracuse University and has been teaching at The College of Saint Rose since 1992. In 2003, DeLuke, who has also been a special education teacher, began an innovative series of social programs for children with autism spectrum disorder called Friday Knights.

Camp Kaleidoscope is a family camp for families with children with autism spectrum disorder administered by the non-profit Common Ground Center. Camp K (as Camp Kaleidoscope is affectionately called) was inspired by a group of parents and educators who asked Common Ground to create a family camp tailored to meet the needs of families like theirs. During Camp K families create lasting, positive family memories together in an atmosphere that allows them to be safe and truly relax. The innovative program was designed collaboratively with professionals in the field, local activists, and Common Ground’s well of excellent staff.

DeLuke will be presenting on the social needs of children with autism spectrum disorder, understanding the issues that impact their social challenges, and some ways to assist with greater social understanding. The title of her talk is: “Understanding the underlying challenges to developing social skills and social competence for children and adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders: Methods for teaching and supporting social participation and learning.”

During Camp K, DeLuke will also be working with a select group of program volunteers who are participating in “The Family Partner” program. Family Partners are college and graduate students who are pursuing careers in the field of autism. Each Family Partner is assigned to a child with autism spectrum disorder with whom s/he works throughout the day.

Many states, including Vermont, suffer from a lack of trained speech-language pathologists and occupational therapists; The Family Partner program helps students gain hours towards certification as well as invaluable experience working with a family outside of a clinical setting that they can then bring back with them to their own communities and professional fields.

DeLuke will begin the presentation around 9:00 a.m. on Friday, June 24, 2011. Coffee will be served. The public, parents, and community members are invited to attend, please RSVP to Susanna Kellogg at susanna [at] cgcvt [dot] org.

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Susanna Kellogg
Common Ground Center
(802) 881-8267
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