Category Archives: EF Conference

36th Annual EF Conference Speaker Spotlight: David Flink on Identity, Advocacy, and Accommodations

This is the fifth post in a series that highlights the speakers of this year’s 36th Annual Executive Function Conference, which will focus on promoting resilience and equity for ALL students.

This November, we are honored to feature David Flink, Ed.M., who will offer a session on “Identity, Advocacy, and Accommodations: Transitioning to a World After COVID.”

Building Stronger Classroom Experiences

How can educators work to rebuild stronger classroom experiences than the ones we left behind before COVID-19? At ResearchILD’s 36th Annual Executive Function Conference, David Flink will discuss the importance of embracing students’ identities, providing effective accommodations, and promoting self-advocacy to build stronger and better classroom experiences for all students. This session will focus on taking advantage of the opportunity we currently have to build a more equitable education system that meets the needs of all students.

David Flink is the Founder & Chief Empowerment Officer of Eye to Eye, an organization dedicated to improving the life of every young person with learning differences.

Through Eye to Eye’s mentoring program, high school and college students with learning differences are trained to mentor similarly-identified middle school students. Eye to Eye is the only national organization run for and by people with learning and attention issues, like dyslexia and ADHD. In March of 2021, David was named a CNN hero for helping to unlock greatness in the 1 in 5 students who learn differently.

Learn More

You can learn more about David Flink and his work:

Caitlin Vanderberg, M.Ed., SMARTS Program Associate

SMARTS Executive Function Curriculum: smarts-ef.org

Research Institute for Learning and Development: researchild.org

The Institute for Learning and Development: ildlex.org

36th Annual EF Conference Speaker Spotlight: Dr. Maurice Elias on Social-Emotional Learning and Character Development

This is the fourth post in a series that highlights the speakers of this year’s 36th Annual Executive Function Conference, which will focus on promoting resilience and equity for ALL students.

This November, we are honored to feature Maurice Elias, Ph.D., who will offer a session on “Social-Emotional Learning and Character Development: The Foundations of Safe and Successful Schools.”

Social-Emotional Learning and Executive Function

The COVID-19 pandemic has reframed our collective understanding of how closely intertwined the cognitive and affective elements of learning truly are. It is so clear that schools are places where much more than just academic learning happens. While social-emotional learning curricula are often viewed as separate from academic curricula, all types of learning happen in real time in moments each day that shape students’ character and self-efficacy. As students return to in-person learning this fall, it is crucial that they feel safe and supported in their learning environments.

Dr. Maurice Elias is a professor in the Psychology Department at Rutgers University and Co-Director of the Academy for SEL in Schools. Dr. Elias is also the director of the Social-Emotional and Character Development Lab, which aims to develop schools of character, close achievement gaps, and increase student proficiency. Their research-based approach focuses on improving students’ capacity to recognize and manage emotions, solve problems effectively, view others’ perspectives, and establish positive, empathic relationships with others. 

At ResearchILD’s 36th Annual Executive Function Conference, Dr. Elias’ presentation will explain the link between SEL and executive function and how it connects to resilience and equity. Dr. Elias will offer examples of how to embed SEL into various aspects of the school day.

Learn More

You can learn more about Dr. Elias and his work:

Caitlin Vanderberg, M.Ed., SMARTS Program Associate

SMARTS Executive Function Curriculum: smarts-ef.org

Research Institute for Learning and Development: researchild.org

The Institute for Learning and Development: ildlex.org