A One-of-a-Kind Program

JumpStart is an innovative week-long program where parents and children are coached one-on-one. Parents learn to help their child overcome behavior that stands in the way of learning, and how to promote their child’s development through communication and play.

JumpStart Families

  • Most JumpStart children are newly diagnosed and are about to start early interventions
  • JumpStart families have often found that typical parenting has not been enough – they need a new parenting model to support their child
  • Our goal is that families leave feeling hopeful and prepared to advocate for their child in the home, school, and community

Why Parent Training?

  • Training allows parents to leverage teachable moments in daily home routines, recognize best-fit services, and learn a vocabulary for effective advocacy
  • Research shows that parents who have been trained to understand their child’s learning often achieve the best outcomes
  • JumpStart is committed to the whole family. Grandparents, caregivers, and siblings are welcome!

A JumpStart Week

  • Behavior coaching: We use Pivotal Response methods to increase educational readiness and target learning barriers  such as tantrumming, inattention, and perseveration (two days)
  • Communication coaching: Our speech and language pathologists focus on initiating communication, working with non-verbal communication, establishing joint attention, and integrating verbal and non-verbal communication (one day)
  • Social skills and play coaching: We use child-initiative as a reinforcer (similar to Floortime therapy) to structure play with the child, parents, and peers, and to incorporate sustained social interaction (one day)
  • Community coaching: We engage the family in half-day trips to a playground to learn to initiate play with peers, or visit a mall to navigate a food court, elevators or grocery store (half day)
  • Parent education and treatment planning: Dr. Siegel meets with each family for a week-in-review to discuss how to apply what they’ve learned in individualized plans for schools, therapists, and other services (two hours)

JumpStart takes place at ACNC with one family each week. Families attend with their children, Monday through Friday, 9 AM-3 PM for a series of structured sessions tailored for each child and family. Time and spaces for meals and naps are included each day. Follow-up visits in the home, school, and community are common.

For more information, on funding or appointments call Rakesha Butler at 415-391-3417 (rbutler@acnc.org).

ACNC staff in this program