JUNE 7, 2019

Many people see the word “exceptional” when related to students and naturally think the student is “special needs.“ Many students, from those who are profoundly gifted to those with various learning difficulties are all exceptional and deserve to have the best education regardless of income, location, or religious affiliation. We believe in empowering ALL families to make educational decisions using all options available to them.

Guest speakers will cover various topics from basic and advanced homeschool setup and training,  to curriculum and lesson plan organization, along with how to build an educational program that fits your needs and your busy lifestyle. ESA-approved vendors will be there to offer products, training, and workshops to help you with your exceptional student and their unique needs. 

We cannot wait to see you at the 24th Street Conference Center.

A small lunch of sandwiches, meat, cheese, vegetables and fruit will be provided by AESA with your entry to the conference. Any donations made will help AESA to defer the cost. We thank AESA for their continued support for this conference and their dedication to the special-needs community in Phoenix, AZ and beyond.

Some people, especially those with secial needs, can be easily overstimulated.  To restore a bit of mental and physical energy sapped by chaotic environments,  many people find that a quiet room can work to escape into a brief, restorative oasis of peace and solitude. We hope you will take time to enjoy a little quiet time.

We realize that curricula can be expensive, and if it doesn’t work out, you may have wasted a lot of money. If you have a used curriculum set, drop it off at our table and see if there are any other curricula you may want to try. If you don’t like this one either, bring it back next year to try again

Schedule of Events

  • 8:00-845 Linda Crosby – ESA: Facts & Fiction
  • 9:00-9:45 Mary Ann LaRoche – SEEDs for Autism
  • 10:00-10:45 Christine Rogers-Fook – Joining ESA
  • 11:00-11:45 Janet Giel-Romo – Strategies to Teach Science and Social Studies to Children with Disabilities
  • 12:00-12:45 LUNCH BREAK (Free provided by AESA)
  • 1:00-1:45 Linda Crosby – ESA: Facts & Fiction
  • 2:00-2:45 Kimberly Marshall – Curriculum Modifications Q & A
  • 3:00-3:45 Michele Knowlton-Thorne – The Importance of Self-care
  • 8:00-8:45 Michelle Harris – Special Education Advocacy & ESA
  • 9:00-9:45 Sharon Patton – Teaching Methods
  • 10:00-10:45 Jesse Lochridge – Benefits of Martial Arts Therapy
  • 11:00-11:45 Kimberly Isaac – RDI Therapy
  • 12:00-12:45 LUNCH BREAK (FREE provided by AESA)
  • 1:00-1:45 Fracesco Caban – Movement & Physical Activity
  • 2:00-2:45 Carol Fitzpatrick – Teaching Children with Dyslexia, Dysgraphia, and Dyscalculia

List of Vendors

Covenant Homeschool Resource Center

Our mission is to encourage and equip families for a successful homeschool journey


Our mission is to bring about lasting change in education through the creation of powerful learning games. We believe that you don’t have to sacrifice learning content to make something fun!

Lee's ATA

The ATA is the premier worldwide organization dedicated to the martial arts discipline of taekwondo, and is the founding organization of other international affiliates that include the World Traditional Taekwondo Union (WTTU) and the Songahm Taekwondo Federation (STF).  

Lee’s ATA

Austin & Lily

Austin & Lily is a special education company dedicated to providing the very best special education curriculum and instruction.

Austin & Lily

Rainbow Readers

The solution to a dyslexic’s problem could be as simple as adjusting the learning environment in some way, or teaching parents how to do easy things with their own children at home. When properly dealt with, dyslexia can be overcome by most people, sometimes with amazing results!

Rainbow Readers

Drew's Art Box

Our art curriculum is ideal for ages 9+, and is comprised of 3–7 video lessons per box. Each unit is educational and explores the different elements of art and principles of design, art vocabulary, and art history. All supplies are included so that no additional purchases are necessary.

Drew’s Art Box

SEEDs for Autism

We provide a path from “learning to earning” for young adults with autism through education, vocational training and social development in Phoenix, Arizona.

SEEDs for Autism

Grad Solutions

We are founded on the belief that every student has the ability to graduate high school. We have made the goal of attaining a high school diploma within reach. Since we opened our doors in 2012, Grad Solutions has been helping students fulfill their potential. We do this through personalized instruction, individual mentoring, excellent curriculum, flexibility, and a progress based program that does not require minimum attendance or seat time.

Grad Solutions

Brightmont Academy

Brightmont Academy is an accredited private school offering one-to-one instruction for students in grades 6-12, and tutoring for students in grades 3-12. Founded in 1999, we have helped over 4,000 students experience success, and have 14 campuses in the states of Arizona, Colorado, Michigan, Minnesota, and Washington. 

Brightmont Academy

Kay Brock Music

Kristen Brock is a music teacher. She has a bachelor’s Degree in Music Performance from NAU. She has also completed additional coursework in education and psychology. She has an Arizona Fingerprint Clarance Card, and has 13 years teaching private music lessons

Artplay LLC.

Artplay uses art-making to encourage open verbal sharing while creating, or art as the expression itself. We use traditional art supplies (paints, pastels, pencils, large paper, canvas), as well as sensory supplies (play dough, clay, water beads, slime, instant snow), or building supplies (glue, wood pieces, rope, boxes, cardboard tubes), to give kids options for how they want to express themselves. While the creation is happening, we do direct check-ins about your child’s home, school and extracurricular lives, as well as the main concern that brought them to Artplay. We also talk about what they are creating and why, as often the art becomes a tool for helping kids feel less anxious.

Art Play

Pathways School & Evaluation Center

To educate children with learning differences, attention deficits, and developmental delays to achieve their greatest potential. We strive to instill confidence and empower students to succeed by developing an intrinsic desire to learn.

Pathways School

Way to Grow Pediatric Therapy & Dyslexia Center

Pediatric Occupational Therapists (OT), Physical Therapists (PT) and Speech Therapy (ST) help children to restore or develop their functional performance in a variety of areas. For children, some of the areas include play, self-help skills, functional mobility, school performance, and social skills. At Way to Grow, LLC, we provide individualized, play-based and child-centered OT, PT and ST services. Our treatment sessions are provided in a clinic setting with a sensory based gym, featuring a wide variety of equipment, toys and activities to motivate, encourage and provide each child with a “just right” challenge to foster maximum skill development. Your child will love to grow and learn with us in our fun, safe and supportive environment!

Way to Grow

Movement Monestary

Movement Monastery is inextricably entwined with the beginnings of Dancemeditation. In the mid-1990s, Dunya settled in Austin, TX after an extended residence in the remote Sufi community in New Mexico. In Austin, Dunya taught classes and weekends locally. It wasn’t called Dancemeditation yet. Dunya drew on her expertise in three bodies of work—Shattari Sufism, Art (Dance), and Somatics—to weave a teaching characterized by Beauty and Mystery. At length, it found its name—Dancemeditation. As her student group grew, one serious practitioner, Karuna Haber, approached Dunya wanting a more extended commitment. She suggested a training program. This excited the swelling Austin student group as well and the Certification Training Program was born. Over the past 25 years, the project has blossomed as waves of intent practitioners find their way to weekends, classes, and the extended retreats known as Movement Monastery.

Movement Monastery

D.A.M.E.S. (Differently Abled Mothers Empowerment Society)

It’s goal is to provide mothers with access to a community of peers via an online forum, access to monthly webinars with experts in education rights and disability rights, financial wellness and self-care, and access to weekly meditation, yoga and exercise classes that mothers can take whenever they find time in their busy schedules.


Usborne Books

Usborne Books & More is a division of Educational Development Corporation (EDC), a well-established company that has twice been recognized by Forbes Magazine as one of The 200 Best Small Companies in America  and three times by Fortune Magazine as one of America’s 100 Fastest Growing Small Companies, and has been in existence for over 20 years. 

On March 1, 1989, the direct selling division was created to concentrate exclusively on selling Usborne books. In late 2008, EDC acquired Kane Miller Publishing, an internationally known publisher of children’s books with over 20 years in the industry.  

Today, Usborne Books & More distributes books through thousands of independent consultants who sell directly to the consumer via home shows, direct sales, book fairs, and web sites.  Also, when registered as an Educational Consultant, can sell to schools and libraries. 

Usborne Books