Hi! I’m Sarah! I’m an educator and author who specializes in developing executive function skills in teens and tweens. I wrote my first book, Everyone Has Something, to empower different learners everywhere to embrace their journeys and reframe their struggles in a positive light! I’ve worked with students with a range of disabilities for over 15 years, and I share my insights, research, and even my mistakes by writing for educational media like KQED and Edutopia.
When I discovered that most of my students were failing because they were lacking skills not intelligence, I began to innovate lessons and coaching sessions to fill the executive function gaps and catch kids up! After years of hearing from colleagues and parents that these strategies had profound positive impacts, I wondered how I could share these ideas and help even more students! Through my podcast, courses, and coaching, I now help parents, educators, and therapists who are struggling to support smart kids with invisible missing skills.
I live in California with my husband, Adam, and our cat, Abbey. Adam and I love to spend time outdoors and to grow our own food! We love to travel and learn about, well, everything!
My Story (and why I get what you’re going through)
I have Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, a neurological condition in which my body attacks the covering of my nerves, causing pain, nerve death, and muscle and coordination challenges. This disease is mostly invisible (except for the times I’ve recovered from my 11 surgeries so far), and from the outside, my desire to rest or use handicapped parking can look like “laziness” to others. (A fact that strangers still sometimes point out to me!)
When I was in school, I obsessed over becoming just like the “perfect kids.” But, I certainly couldn’t run like they did—with my funky little feet—and doing a cartwheel was more like a fumbling, sideways somersault, if that. My class would have to sit on the grass waiting for me to finish the mile run, and, let me tell you, having 34 kids watch you struggle is embarrassing and lonely. I felt I was the only one with a problem. My mom would hug me and assure that everyone had something, and I tried hard to believe her.
I know what it’s like to have an invisible disability. I know what it’s like to try your hardest but still be deemed “not good enough” by teachers and other adults. I know how greatly supportive strategies can transform your life. And I know what it’s like to fight hard for understanding—for myself and for my students.
I’m here to help take you from awareness to action, from theory to practice. It’s too important to wait. Learn with me, and I’ll show you how to teach and coach your child to fill those executive function skill gaps and experience success at school, and home, and in all areas of life!
2018-2019 National Association of Special Education Teachers Outstanding Teacher Award
Sacramento Teacher of the Year 2015
2013 Innovative Sessions Presenter with CHADD (ADHD organization)
2011 Janny Latno Innovative Programs Grant
I’d love to hear from you! Reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org! I really do read every single note and love learning with our EF Tribe!