Igniting Motivation to Maximize Student Potential

Igniting Motivation to Maximize Student Potential

Save the date — November 9 & 10, 2023 — for Research Institute for Learning and Development’s 38th Annual Executive Function Conference. This year’s theme is Executive Function, Motivation, and Engagement: Fostering Social-Emotional Learning and Positive Behavior in Students. Here are just a few of the exciting speakers you’ll hear from.

Diving Deep into Motivation 

Ellen Braaten, Ph.D., is an associate professor at Harvard Medical School and an experienced psychologist, researcher, speaker, and author. She is set to deliver an insightful presentation titled “Bright Kids Who Couldn’t Care Less: Rekindling Students’ Motivation.”

Join Braaten to delve into the complex issue of motivation among academically capable students who struggle to harness their potential. Her presentation will include strategies to inspire and empower students, fostering a renewed passion for learning and unlocking their true capabilities.

Arriving at Motivation Station

Michelle Garcia Winner, M.A., CCC-SLP, is the founder and CEO of Social Thinking® and a globally recognized thought leader, author, speaker, and social-cognitive therapist. She is gearing up to deliver an insightful presentation titled “Motivation Station: Using Visual Scales to Help Students Think Beyond ‘Awesome’ or ‘Awful.'”

Garcia Winner will discuss visual scales, a powerful tool to expand students’ emotional vocabulary and enhance their understanding of nuanced emotions. Attendees will gain practical strategies and innovative techniques to empower students to think critically about their emotions, fostering self-awareness and promoting social-emotional growth.

Learn More


  • Caitlin Vanderberg, M.Ed., SMARTS Associate

SMARTS Executive Function Curriculum: smarts-ef.org

Research Institute for Learning and Development: researchild.org