Children Who Challenge:
Developmentally Informed Family Intervention

CE Hours: 6.0
Instructor: C. Wayne Jones, PhD

Friday, April 21, 2017, Philhaven Conference Center, Mt Gretna, PA
Thursday, May 4, 2017, PA Counseling Services, Lebanon, PA
Thursday, May 9, 2017, Northwestern Human Services, Colmar PA
8:45 am to 4:00 pm

This workshop is designed to address two common traps in the practice of family therapy with children who present with challenging behavior.  One involves the failure to include the child as a partner in assessing, planning and implementing treatment. Too often it is the caregivers and the therapists who frame the problem to be addressed and who determine the desired outcomes.  When the child’s voice is missing from case conceptualizations, goal statements and treatment plans, this can set the child up to be less engaged with the treatment process.  This workshop presents developmentally-informed strategies for talking with and including children and adolescents as collaborators.

A second trap involves the failure to notice under-developed skills that often underlie and exacerbate children’s challenging behavior, such as difficulties with flexibility, frustration tolerance, and problem-solving. Family therapists attend to relational context, which is critical, but may overlook the child’s relationship to his or her own brain and how it works. This workshop demonstrates collaborative strategies and tools for identifying cognitive as well as lagging skills and how they link to the child’s behavior.  This workshop draws on Dr. Ross Green’s empirically-supported Collaborative & Proactive Solutions (CPS) model. 


As a result of attending this training, participants will be able to:

  1. Identify four  developmental principles applicable to family treatment of children with ODD
  2. Identify the characteristics of developmentally-informed treatment
  3. Identify clues to the child’s hidden lagging skills in Negative Interactional Cycles with parents
  4. Describe myths and facts about the causes of children’s challenging behavior
  5. Recognize the “caregiver expectation-child ability” gap in caregiver-child interactions.
  6. Describe common lagging skills among children with ODD