• September 13, 2018

    Teenagers with School Challenges: Flexibility


    Flexibility is the ability to change and shift plans, tasks and approaches to solve a problem, complete a task or activity or maintain open communication.

    Flexibility can be understood in a few different contexts. It helps us adapt and manage a variety of situations and expectations. Flexibility can be important in problem solving, in routines, and in social interaction and relationships.

    Flexibility Challenges Can Occur in Multiple Settings

    Inflexibility can pose challenges for a teenager in school, at home and in social settings.

    Some teens may be inflexible in all areas of life, and others may be inflexible in one context and not in another. Teens who are struggling significantly with flexibility may have anxiety or Autism Spectrum symptoms.

    Problem Solving

    The first context is flexibility in problem solving.

    Can a teenager explore different approaches and consider perspectives from the teacher/ classmates/ group work partners to solve a novel problem?

    Some teenagers get stuck. They see a task from only one angle, failing to think flexibly about how to solve the problem.

    Helpful Strategies

    These teens may need to be taught specific strategies to try at least 3 ideas for solving a problem.

    Another strategy is for the teen to teach another student how to solve the problem, and then that student teaches the teen a different way to solve it. They take turns being a teacher and being a learner.

    Flexibility in Routine

    The next related context for flexibility is flexibility in routine.

    This concern may be evident at home when you have a teenager who must always follow the same routine after school.

    For example, he must always do his math homework at the kitchen table, have a snack, and then take a break.

    If you have a doctor’s appointment or a school program, this change is met with stress and sometimes refusal because the schedule is changing.

    Encourage Flexibility

    Encouraging some flexibility in a teenager’s routine is good.

    Certain activities, like getting ready for school or bedtime, benefit from a predictable routine. Find time to vary it up, encourage spontaneity and try new things with your teenager.

    Flexibility Challenges at School

    Inflexibility in routines and schedules can also cause challenges at school if changes occur. For example, an assembly, a fire drill, or a substitute teacher may alter the flow of the day, the routine, and the expectations.

    These changes can cause frustration and stress in a teenager who is inflexible.

    At school, it can be possible to create choices for a student who struggles in these situations. Allow a student to select preferred seating at an assembly or to leave the class early for a fire drill. Provide notice that the teacher is out sick, and have the student choose to stay in the classroom or take his reading to the library.

    Provide Choices

    A very inflexible teenager may need choices built into the day when schedule changes or other differences in the day may provoke anxiety.

    Some schools will be accommodating no matter what. Others may require a Section 504 plan noting the presence of a disability, like anxiety or autism, to provide accommodations for these changes in routine.

    Social Interactions and Relationships

    The third type of flexibility is important in social interactions and relationships.

    An inflexible teenager may feel misunderstood by a certain teacher and may refuse to work on the relationship. Some teenagers struggle to see the perspective of others, to take the time to understand differences of opinion. Teens who are inflexible in relationships tend to feel they are always right.

    Teenagers with autism especially need to feel like a teacher understands and respects their point of view; otherwise they often discount a teacher and don’t try to learn from them. These teens may also have conflict with others who have differing opinions and perspectives.

    Teaching Life Lessons

    Flexibility to be able to listen to teachers, classmates, friends and parents and to consider other perspectives and opinions helps build relationships. Helping teenagers see the value in hearing all sides of an issue will improve their ability to build relationships.

    If your teenager struggles significantly with social interactions and relationships, a counselor or school psychologist-led social group may be helpful. Teenagers must practice being collaborative and learning from each other; learning social flexibility is an important life lesson.

    If your teenager has considerable difficulty with any or all aspects of flexibility, try some of these strategies. See CLEAPE for other free ideas and strategies: https://cleape.com/organizing/flexibility/ https://cleape.com/behaving/rigid-behavior/ https://cleape.com/socializing/perspective-taking/.

    Connect with CLEAR

    If you need more support or believe your child might have a disability, like autism or anxiety, CLEAR Child Psychology can help. Call or email today to schedule a consultation.

    Contact CLEAR today by calling 303-222-7923 or visiting our website at www.clearchildpsychology.com.


  • September 4, 2018

    Teenagers with School Challenges: Executive Functioning

    Executive Functioning is a fancy term to refer to challenges with planning, initiating, executing and organizing tasks and information.

    When students move into high school, they are expected to independently navigate a schedule of 5-8 classes, all with different timelines, expectations and assignments. Students must keep up with materials, deadlines and schedules to be sure work is submitted on time to the right teacher in the right format.

    Even with the websites and emails and ways to track and schedule using technology, these skills are not easy for any of us (adults included).

    Teens Get Overwhelmed

    For some teenagers, these tasks feel daunting and overwhelming.

    Many teenagers just give up.

    Others try their best but fail to execute a complete plan. They may do the work but never turn it in at school.

    Parents are scratching their heads or yelling in frustration. “Why are you failing math?” “Where is your missing geography homework?”

    How to Help Your Teen

    It is most helpful when a student can have just enough support to learn these skills.

    A teenager needs to experience success to have the motivation to keep trying. For some teens, this support means having a teacher or mentor who helps them make a schedule and checks in weekly on the assignments and progress.

    Taking big projects and breaking them into manageable chunks with due dates for each part can help a teen maintain organization.

    Teens, Teachers, and Parents Working Together

    A teacher or mentor also needs to have some email communication with both the teenager and a parent so that a teen can have support at home in meeting deadlines. This small team can really help scaffold executive functioning skills for a teenager.

    Students with learning disabilities, ADHD or Autism tend to have impaired executive functioning skills already, making this process more difficult than it is for teenagers who have fully functioning prefrontal cortexes. Often, schools are willing to be more accommodating and provide more scaffolding and support for those students who have a disability.

    Connect with CLEAR

    If you think your child might be struggling more than other students with executive functioning skills, CLEAR Child Psychology can help. We can assess skills to see if a disability is present and/or consult with families to work out a plan to tackle these issues.

    Also, on our companion website CLEAPE, we offer free articles on “organizing” that provide more information and strategies to parents and teens. www.cleape.com

    Don’t let your teenager put his or her head in the sand. Executive functioning is an important life skill. Get help before challenges escalate and grades start to fall.

    Help your student achieve success, build skills and maintain high motivation.

    Contact CLEAR today at 303-222-7923 or visit our website at www.clearchildpsychology.com.

  • August 28, 2018

    Is Your Child Having Trouble with Writing?

    Is your child having trouble with writing?

    If you ask your child what he or she likes about school, is writing the very last on the list?

    Many children dislike writing or find it very difficult. Why is writing so hard? The issue with writing is that it requires so many skills to work simultaneously.

    For example, your child has to be able to tell a story (Narrative Coherence), express his ideas (Expressive Language), remember words and how to spell them (Visual Encoding), use fine motor coordination skills to physically write letters (Handwriting & Dexterity), and to stay calm in the face of frustration and difficulty (Self-Regulation & Anxiety).

    It can be hard to determine why a child is struggling with writing. If it is possible to narrow down the causes of writing challenges to one or two of the areas mentioned above, it will be easier to target the right intervention. Parents and teachers can help a child achieve success by targeting the area of need. Interventions for challenges with story telling are different from interventions for challenges with handwriting, but both can make writing challenging.

    At Cleape.com, all of these skill areas are described, including what you can do to help https://cleape.com/learning/writing/

    If you continue to have concerns about your child’s writing or other struggles in school, CLEAR Child Psychology can help.

    Started by the psychologists who authored CLEAPE, CLEAR Child Psychology is a primarily web-based psychological practice founded in Broomfield, CO with the goal of making Clinical expertise accessible and reliable (CLEAR). Clear launched services summer 2018 with the mission to: Shorten the time from first concern to diagnosis, free families from the burden of unknowing, and connect kids with the help they need to lead happy lives.

    Call or contact CLEAR today to schedule a $99 consultation with these psychologists to identify strategies and resources to support your child. You can receive help within the same week, at times on the same day you call.

    Call 303-222-7923 or contact us on www.clearchildpsychology.com

  • August 23, 2018

    How Do You Find a Psychologist?

    For a long time, psychologists were expected to treat clients only within the state that the psychologist and the client reside and/or have an office.

    For example, let’s say a psychologist lived in Ohio but practiced in Pennsylvania. He or she would need a Pennsylvania license but may also have an Ohio license for consultations in that state.

    A psychologist could petition to a state board to practice in a nearby state, even without that state’s license, for up to 30 days per calendar year.

    With the popularity and growth of telepsychology, clients wish to seek services from providers in other states.

    In turn, providers wish to help clients no matter where they live. Some states have more rural areas, and it may be hard for a family to find a provider with expertise that they need.

    The Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards or ASPPB is working to create an E-Passport, which will allow states to accept interstate credentials for practice without a long credentialing process. This E-Passport will make sure that families and individuals can seek services quickly and without hassle and that providers are skilled and maintain appropriate licensure.

    For now, an Interjurisdictional Practice Certificate or IPC allows psychologists to practice in 7 states for 30 days per calendar year without seeking special permission from the state board.

    Currently, an additional 6 states are passing or have passed legislation accepting interstate practice from clinicians who meet stringent criteria as a psychologist. When additional states pass this legislation the E-Passport will become active legislation and be available for psychologists to apply.

    Where can CLEAR Child Psychology offer services?

    We each have an Interjurisdictional Practice Certificate (IPC) from the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards (ASPPB).

    At this time, based on the laws of interstate practice, CLEAR Child Psychology can offer services to clients who reside in the following IPC states. We expect that this list will grow quickly to include other states and jurisdictions as the E-Passport legislation moves forward.

    These states have agreed to interstate practice for 30 days per calendar year without first requiring a psychologist to petition the board. If you or family/friends reside in one of these states, reach out for consultation, CLEAR Child Psychology can help!

    Services can be scheduled easily and quickly to meet your needs. We hold licenses in Colorado and Dr. Kroncke also holds a Georgia license meaning that we have more freedom to practice for an unlimited amount of time in these states. With the IPC we can also work for 30 days per year in:

    • Georgia
    • Idaho
    • Kentucky
    • Mississippi
    • New Hampshire
    • Ohio
    • South Carolina
  • August 7, 2018

    Back to School Transitions

    Wondering how to get your child ready for school this fall?

    As a parent, you know your own child. You know how he or she copes with transitions.

    Whether this is your first year of school or your child is going into 5th grade, some children struggle with the end of summer and the start of the school year.

    At times, schools offer camps or activities toward the end of the summer that take place at school. These opportunities can be helpful ways to gradually transition your child back to the school setting.

    In the absence of camps or sports activities that get a child back into school, consider other ways to support your child in the weeks leading up to school starting.

    First, think about bedtime, wake time, and lunchtime.

    Summer schedules change as children attend camp, go on vacation, go to the pool or stay up late to watch those summer action movies.

    Try to set up a consistent schedule that closely matches your school schedule.

    Gradually ease your child or children back into a regular routine so that they are not shocked when school requires earlier mornings and rules around snack and lunchtime.

    Next, take advantage of any opportunity to introduce your child to his or her new teacher in advance. Preferably, find a quiet time to meet the teacher, see the classroom and even find his or her seat or cubby can help a lot.

    Give your child a chance to see the structure and expectations, read any classroom rules or see the daily schedule.

    Allow your child to tell the teacher about interests, favorite classes, etc. Even 15 minutes to get a glimpse into the school year may help your child get off to the right start.

    While not every child in the class may have such an opportunity, request this brief meeting if you know your child struggles with transitions back to school.

    Every teacher wants to get the year off to a good start. Your child’s teacher should be open to meeting him or her in advance to improve the probability of a successful first day.

    Usually, schools are happy to accommodate you on a teacher training and set up day.

    Finally, try to plan some play dates with school friends in the weeks leading up to the transition. See if you can find out who is in your child’s class.

    Otherwise, meeting with students in and around your child’s grade level, even to play on the school playground, if accessible, can help your child turn his or her focus back to the fun aspects of school and things to look forward to in the new school year.

    Sometimes, difficulty with transitions can be related to general flexibility. Parents might find this article helpful to learn more about helping your child be flexible. https://cleape.com/organizing/flexibility/

    If you continue to have concerns for your child, call CLEAR Child Psychology to schedule a consultation.

    We hope your child has a smooth transition and a great school year!


  • July 24, 2018

    Is your child constantly worrying about everything?

    Is your child constantly worrying about everything?

    Is he saying ‘what if’ all the time?

    Is she always worried that something bad will happen to her parents?

    Is your child unaware that these imagined catastrophes are unlikely to come true?

    Some children are very sensitive and internalize many worried thoughts and feelings. Children who worry a lot may have a sensitive temperament.

    In some cases, a child may have what psychologists call generalized anxiety.”

    The good news is that while anxiety is often readily contagious among family members, anxiety is highly treatable.

    Family strategies, as well as individual supports for your child, can make a big difference for anxious kids.

    The other good news is that www.cleape.com has a variety of free resources that address anxiety.

    Written by licensed clinical psychologists, www.cleape.com guides families to the resources they need to get help for their kids!

    The information is free, reliable, and accessible.

    Here are a few articles about anxiety in children.






    Additionally, CLEAR Child Psychology can help.

    From the authors of CLEAPE, based in Colorado, CLEAR is a primarily web-based clinical psychology practice making clinical expertise accessible and reliable (CLEAR).

    CLEAR launched this summer with the mission to help 1 million families take a clear leap forward and find the right help for their kids’ mental health, developmental and educational needs.

    Call or email CLEAR today to schedule a web-based consultation with the licensed clinical psychologists who developed the CLEAPE model.

    Consultations can be scheduled quickly, sometimes within the same day. The cost is $99 for an hour of personalized time with experts focused on helping your family succeed.

    CLEAR can help. Receive expert strategies and direction to resources for your child quickly and from the comfort of your own home.

    We will help you take a CLEAR LEAP forward!

    Call: 303-222-7923

    Email: dr.harrison@clearchildpsychology.com

    Website: www.clearchildpsychology.com


  • July 19, 2018


    Is your child not sleeping?

    If your child isn’t getting a solid night’s rest, chances are you aren’t either.

    But what can you do?

    Information abounds for parents of babies and toddlers who are not sleeping through the night.

    But what about for parents of 8-year-olds, 10-year-olds, middle schoolers, and high school kids?

    Where can we turn for help?

    When one child in the home is not sleeping, it can wreak havoc on the whole family.

    You may be bleary-eyed and exhausted. Your other kids may be grouchy and short-tempered. Your kids may be falling asleep in language arts class.

    It can all start because one family member just can’t seem to get any Zzzzz’s.

    Turn to www.cleape.com, a free mental health framework for parents and professionals.

    Written by licensed clinical psychologists, www.cleape.com guides families to the resources needed to get help for their kids!


    You will find no ads, no pop-ups. Just free, reliable, and accessible information.

    Check out the Sleep Problems page to help your child (and the rest of the family!) get some rest.


    Need some guidance in moving forward? Not sure what to do next?

    CLEAR Child Psychology can help.

    From the authors of CLEAPE, based in Colorado, CLEAR is a primarily web-based clinical psychology practice making clinical expertise accessible and reliable (CLEAR).

    CLEAR launched this summer with the mission to help 1 million families take a clear leap forward and find the right help for their kids’ mental health, developmental and educational needs.

    Call or email CLEAR today to schedule a web-based consultation with the licensed clinical psychologists who developed www.cleape.com.

    Consultations can be scheduled quickly, sometimes within the same day. The cost is $99 for an hour of personalized time with experts focused on helping your family succeed.

    CLEAR can help. Receive expert strategies and direction to resources for your child quickly and from the comfort of your own home.

    CLEAR Child Psychologists can help you with strategies and resources to help your child get some Zzzzz’s!

    And that’s something we can all rest easy about!

    Call: 303-222-7923

    Email: dr.harrison@clearchildpsychology.com

    Website: www.clearchildpsychology.com



  • July 10, 2018

    Authors of Cleape Launch Psychology Practice: Clear Child Psychology

    Summer 2018: Grand opening for new psychology practice from the authors of Cleape. CLEAR Child Psychology is based in Colorado, but is a primarily web-based clinical psychology practice that makes Clinical expertise accessible and reliable (CLEAR). A team of psychologists started full time this summer with the mission to help 1 million families find the right help for their kids.  Visit the site at clearchildpsychology. To learn more about what psychologists do see https://cleape.com/professionals/licensed-psychologist/.

    Here on cleape readers have FREE access to a wide variety of resources and psychological information. For example, learn about processing speed and what it means for your child here https://cleape.com/understanding/processing-speed/ 

    Cleape is free and will always be free. CLEAR is a psychology business offering up fee-based services for kids and their parents who have concerns about mental health, development, or education.