First Hand Experiences: Learn from Students, Teachers, and Parents

[First-Hand Experiences Ep. 1] 

Today’s conversation is with Carli Saber. Early in her career, Carli was a Montessori teacher. During her time in the classroom she observed the clear abilities of her children as well as the limiting beliefs holding them back. Carli now works as a PSYCH-K Facilitator, helping parents and children to shift stress, anxiety, limiting beliefs, and lack of confidence due to learning difficulties to help clear the path to their full potential.

This conversation invites all of us to think deeply about how school-related anxiety can develop at an early age and persist into adulthood and what we can do to support the learners in our lives, including ourselves.

Learn more about Carli's work and get in touch with her on her website,

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S3 E1

[First-Hand Experiences Ep. 2]

Avery Willdridge is a 16-year-old high school student and podcaster who is passionate about mental health. In this episode, Avery shares her perspective on going through school with anxiety and depression. If you’ve ever wished you could understand more about what the students in your life may be experiencing, you won’t want to miss it.

Hear more from Avery on her podcast "IamAvery" at

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S3 E2

[First Hand Experiences Ep. 3]

Darryl W. Thomas is a former at risat-riskk student turned US Marine, loving husband, and committed father five. Hear a story about how things can turn out for the best, and learn about how Darryl is helping minortized students win in the face of adversity.

You can learn more about Darryl's work and purchase his books at

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S3 E3

[First Hand Experiences Ep 4]

Adva Hanan is a master teacher and teacher coach who earned two Bachelors and a Masters degree despite being told she’d never succeed in college. Hear what it was like for her going through school with multiple learning disabilities, what allowed her to succeed, and what success really means.

Hear more from Adva on her podcast, Shaping Little Minds.

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S3 E4

[First Hand Experiences Ep.5]

Suffering and Recovering When School Fails to Meet Needs with Polly Solomon

Laura has a conversation with Polly Solomon, a circus artist and teaching artist who lives with chronic migraine, a disability that deeply impacted her school experience growing up. If you have any students in your life who can’t seem to get a diagnosis that explains or helps with their struggles, you won’t want to miss it.

Find more from Polly! @polariscircus on Instagram, Youtube, and Facebook

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S3 E5

[First-Hand Experiences Ep.6]

We’re ending this podcast season with Lisa Richer, mom of two neurodiverse sons and founder of Journey 2 Bloom. With her work stemming from personal experience, Lisa helps parents of neurodiverse learners find and secure the best services, schools, and learning environments for their child’s unique needs. I’m especially excited to share it with those of you who have ever felt overwhelmed or at a loss about what step to take next to help your child.

Learn more from Lisa on her website:

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S3 E6

School Stress 101: Understand What's Going On in Your Child's Head and How to Help

[School Stress 101 Ep. 1]

Many teens are stressed and anxious and many are stressed and anxious about school. That's important but perhaps not breaking news. And that in itself doesn't necessarily make anxiety an academic issue.

But anxiety's effects on performance and achievement do. The good news is, research tells us what we can do about it.

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S2 E1

[School Stress 101 Ep. 2]

To protect us, our brains naturally pay more attention to unpleasant experiences. So, the pile of negative memories grows faster. The tendency our brains have to pay more attention to negative stimuli and build up these negative memories is what we call negativity bias. In this episode, I give you three actions you can take with your kiddo to help stop this bias from standing in their way to success.

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S2 E2

[School Stress 101 Ep. 3]

Telling a student to focus on their strengths when they just failed another math test or forgot to turn an assignment isn't going to feel very good either. Not to mention that it would be entirely ineffective at bringing about any change. So how do we walk the line between healthy and toxic positivity? In this episode, I'll tell you how kids can learn a healthier perspective to help them succeed in school.

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S2 E3

[School Stress 101 Ep. 4]

It's unspoken in that statement that the parents feelings about school performance are primarily anxious. And it's incredibly hard not to feel that way. We start developing a sense of stress about school performance as soon as we enter the system-at age of 5 or younger! And with all of the rhetoric about how college is more competitive than ever these days and students must do well in school (meaning, get good grades) in order to do well in life, it's no wonder parents are stressed! So what you should do with these very defensible feelings about grades that may also be negatively affecting your kids. Find out in this episode.

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S2 E4

[School Stress 101 Ep. 5]

Many parents contact us after years of having hired tutor after tutor without seeing their child find success. When this is the case, they’re frustrated, the child is defeated, and no one is excited about starting another relationship with yet another tutor with little hope of seeing a different result. If you’re hiring a tutor for your school-anxious child, get the answers to three questions before you spend any more of your hard-earned budge

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S2 E5

[School Stress 101 Ep. 6]

Asking for academic help for your child can be daunting because 

a.) it can be intimidating to talk with someone you don't know about your child's struggles

b.) you don't know how your child is going to feel about it and

c.) you know once you get an actual person involved, the financial investment goes up and the idea of throwing your money away on something  that doesn't work is exhausting. 

Here are three characteristics to be on the lookout for to make sure that any investment you make in support for your child will be totally worth it, whether you're asking for help from an academic coaching practice like School Without Suffering, an academic support center at your child's school, or another resource entirely.

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S2 E6

Back-to-School Sur-THRIVE-al Kit

Get concrete systems and tools that will have your child doing and feeling better this school year.

[School Sur-THRIVE-al Kit Ep. 1]

Establishing strong relationships with teachers has always been an important factor in making sure kids can feel good and do their best in school. Learn five key tips for starting a dialogue with your kids’ new teachers so that you can start to form this critical relationship with them. And get the email templates that will make introducing yourself easy and effective in the show notes!

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S1 E1

[School Sur-THRIVE-al Kit Ep. 2]

Learn the 4 questions you can ask your kids every day to enhance their academic achievement, improve self-esteem, and deepen your connection.

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S1 E2

[School Stress 101 Ep. 3]

Learn the top three strategies that everyone in the family can use this school year to manage their stress during study time and breathe easier in those challenging moments.

And get the free worksheets that will make it easy for your child to learn and use these strategies.

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S2 E3

[School Sur-THRIVE-al Kit Ep. 4]

Learn the first 3 steps of the Time Management System that teens and tweens LOVE so that you can start using them with your kids right away!

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S1 E4

[School Sur-THRIVE-al Kit Ep. 5]

Many students think that they are bad at planning and time management or just don't like it. But that's because they usually try to make themselves work for someone else's system. This episode will show you the magic of creating a system that works for them.

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S1 E5

[School Sur-THRIVE-al Kit Ep. 6]

What would it mean for your child to think and feel differently about school?

Deepa Narishman, college professor and mom of a wonderful School Without Suffering student talks with Laura about the challenges of having a child with school-related anxiety and the transformation that comes with true change in a child's mindset about school.

Full Episode, Show Notes, and Transcript for S1 E6