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Shelley Kenow has been a special educator for over 30 years. In recent years she has also become an author, Master IEP Coach®, and speaker/trainer.  Most of her teaching career was in the United States, although she did spend 3 years in England.  During her time in England, she worked for the Department of Defense Dependent Schools and volunteered in a British School system.  It was during her time in England that she fell in love with special education and more specifically, children with behavioral concerns.  


She has seen children from PreK-4th grade with some extremely unwanted behaviors learn how to handle their big feelings, train their brains differently, and become productive students who in turn have become productive adults.

Shelley constantly learned about the brain and behaviors while she taught.  She has taken all of her knowledge and experience and now teaches others what she learned along the way.


Attendees at Shelley’s talks have noted her passion, knowledge, humor, and strategy takeaways as positives



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#nolimits: We Know Who We Are But Not Who We Will Become

Want your audience to be empowered to think and react differently and begin to live a happier and more fulfilled life?  This keynote will have your audience members overhauling their thinking and shattering the limits they and society have placed upon them.  They will walk away with the tools to maximize their potential by having a better understanding of their and others' behaviors.

Cognitive Bias: What is it and how does it affect me in the workplace?

We all have cognitive biases that affect us in our daily lives.  These biases affect our mental health.  They drive how we respond to situations, how we think, and even how we work.  Understanding what a cognitive bias is will help you in all aspects of your life and can greatly improve your mental health.

Attendees will walk away knowing how these biases are formed, why we need to be aware of them, how we can identify them, and how to change them

IEP Basics for Parents of Exceptional Children

Special education and the document that drives it, the Individualized Education Program (IEP) is complex and overwhelming to many parents. This training will break down the components of the IEP, the process to getting to an evaluation for their child, how to have the child and parent's voices amplified and written directly into the IEP, and teach parents what is most important within the document.  Shelley also discusses a Section 504 Plan and how it differs from an IEP.

Book Study for Those Who "Can't..." Teach; True Stories of Special Needs Families to Promote Acceptance, Inclusion, and Empathy

Why would a teacher write a book and make the title from a saying no teacher likes?  Teachers all hate the saying "Those who can do and those who can't teach." They hate it because it insinuates that somehow they are less than all the other professions and that they aren't capable.  The people in the pages of this book feel that way all the time, too.  Each chapter is a different true story of an individual or family who were told, "You can't (be happy, have a fulfilling life, walk, talk, read, write, go to college, etc)" by a medical professional, teacher, school system, family member, friend, etc. and many are still hearing those words every day.

Understanding Behavior: Lessons for a Lifetime

Every day our interactions are based on lots of different bits of information.  Our behaviors are the communication of those bits of information.  Not just our behaviors, but the behaviors of every person with whom we interact. 

Every behavior, positive or negative, is communicating something.  How we respond to that communication will determine the outcome of the conversation. 

This professional development will teach you how to recognize your communication as well as those around you.  Participants will learn ways to improve their mental health and make the work environment a place where everyone feels welcome and safe.  This will create more wanted behaviors throughout your organization.  Managers will learn how to reinforce good/positive behaviors and how to minimize negative/bad behaviors.

Special Education: Is it Worth It?

It has been almost 50 years since the first special education law was passed.  Are things better for students who are eligible for special education? Has anything really changed? Is special education living up to its purpose and promises? What is the school-to-prison pipeline and how can we slow it down? This presentation answers those questions and many more

I’ve Been Hired as a Paraprofessional: Now What?

This was developed after years of being a paraprofessional and even more years of training/working with paraprofessionals and consulting with dozens of teachers and paraprofessionals.  The questions answered in this training are: What are my duties and assignments?  What does “help” look like?  What is an IEP?  Can I say “No” to a task?  Am I an equal member of the education team?  Will I be required to write lesson plans, discipline students, or speak to parents?  What does the teacher want from me? Participants will also learn instructional and behavioral strategies.

Workshops and Professional Development

Shelley is inspirational, funny, and I learn something every time I hear her speak.

Bria R

Speaking and Podcasts

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