I’m Shannon McNamara. I have spent my entire 20-year career as a clinical social worker working with children and families with learning differences. I love seeing kids find what makes them curious, and parents seeing what sparks their kids.
I founded Curious Kids Educational with a mission in mind. That mission is to help, educate, and support families with neurodiverse kids to find their own paths and wisdom in learning.
I came to this field by chance and experience. Growing up in special education classrooms as a child with diagnosed learning differences I have seen the progression of cultural thought from “special” to “diverse”. My learning differences have always allowed me to see roadblocks as problem-solving opportunities instead of barriers. It taught me to persist and find alternate paths to a destination, which generally led to a greater understanding of concepts, thoughts, and principles. It wasn’t until earning my master’s degree in clinical social work, working in schools and community mental health and family support settings, and having my own children with learning differences that I realized that the language around neurodiversity had changed but the systems supporting these individuals had not, at least by much.
What I noticed the most was how scared parents were for what this meant for their kids and how a desire to help ended up identifying the child as learning disabled rather than an individual with a unique approach. Through the years I have begun working with families to shift this perspective on learning and education by helping them understand their testing and work with their strengths. Through this kids developed confidence in their abilities, a conviction in their knowledge, and curiosity about the world; parent’s learned that there are no limitations to what their kids are capable of when they can adjust the lens that they are looking through, and families learned that they are stronger as a team than any one of them when working alone.
We don’t lower expectations, we adjust the map.