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Parenting "Outside of the Box" Children @ Laura's

Monthly on the first Wednesday

In May - Bringing Camp Home

For decades, summer camp has provided kids with the opportunity to explore, grow and be happy in an environment created to promote positive outcomes. Join President of Kidventure, Mike McDonell as he shares 23 years of summer camp experience and how to bring a little of that positive outcome to the home.  Mike will offer six tools practiced at Kidventure, and illustrate how parents can apply those tools in their own home so everyone has a better opportunity at being a happy camper!

Mike McDonell is the President of Kidventure. Kidventure provide summer camp and after school for children in Houston, Austin, Dallas, the Texas Hill Country, and China.


Raising a child of any type is more art than science, but raising a child who doesn't fit neatly into any "typically developing" box can be a particularly messy art. Parents of these “Outside the Box” children often ask themselves what is going on with my child, will they grow out of this, how can the schools help me, and What does a diagnosis mean for our benefits and our family?

Whether your child is diagnosed with special needs, or their particular challenges have yet to be identified, or if they are spirited, have sensory issues, have learning, emotional or behavioral differences, or fall into the quirky kid category, we'll explore the means to help you help your child here in the Westlake area with monthly guest speakers and parent discussions.

This series is targeted toward parents of children throughout the Eanes ISD school district whether in public, private, or home schooling and is open to everyone.

Joining a monthly speaker are two moms of elementary-aged boys with Asperger’s who spent several years with misdiagnoses, incorrect approaches, and a world of frustration trying to understand what was happening and what needed to happen in the schools to help their sons before crafting a plan to help their children grow into self-reliant and confident children that are finding their own way. 

Denise Bluestein is an Intellectual Property & Technology Attorney and mother to a 7-year-old son with Asperger’s and a 4--old daughter. She and her physicist/programmer husband have struggled for four years to determine what was happening with her son and what could be done to help him. Now with the correct diagnosis, they are finding greater progress and support in dealing with the challenges that arise as their son moves along through an elementary school path.

Barbara Paier is a mathematician by schooling, and a mother of two children. She walks a circuitous developmental path containing many significant behavioral bumps along the way with her 11-year-old son, who was finally diagnosed with AD/HD and Autism Spectrum Disorder at age 9. Her daughter is now 9 and seems to be following a more 'typical' developmental path, at least for now.