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Behavioral & Developmental Pediatrics


The following courses are currently enrolling participants or are ongoing at the Center for Developing Minds in Los Gatos. Please click on the course title for more detailed information.

* Supportive Siblings
* Ask the Expert: Strategies to improve your child's behavior
* Meltdowns to Shutdowns
* Dynamic Dyads


Supportive Siblings
For brothers and sisters of a child with special needs.

Supportive Siblings Flyer

The siblings of a child with special needs face situations and deal with issues unique to many families. This monthly group will provide these sibs with a safe and supportive environment for them to communicate their concerns, share their stresses, and learn how other families handle difficult situations related to having a special needs child.

Facilitated by a CDM therapist, the siblings will be able to address issues related to their specific family situation, while participating in fun group activities. Discussion will focus on how to communicate any feelings of resentment or jealousy, suggestions on what to do during embarrassing moments, and recognition of the siblings’ important role in their family.

The group will meet at the Center for Developing Minds and the class size is limited to provide participants with personalized attention. Plus, pizza will be served for all the participants! Fee for each session is $100 per family.

Instructor: Jennifer Rich, Marriage & Family Therapist

Class schedule
Monday evenings:
6:00-7:00 pm (ages 8-12 years old)
7:00-8:00 pm (ages 13-18)

Meeting dates:
Upcoming dates include January 28, February 25 and March 25.

Ask the Expert: Strategies to improve your child's behavior

Ask the Expert Flyer

Is taking your kids to the playground a struggle?
Do you have a battle in the back seat of every car ride?
Can’t get the kids to stop playing video games or put down their phone?

This new, once-a-month, interactive group is ideal for families who are experiencing difficulty managing some aspect of their children’s behavior. The discussion can address challenges like toilet training and sleep issues, to traveling with children – whether it’s a short car ride or a journey on a plane or train – and provide tips for making each of these challenges less of a struggle. For example, if “Fortnite” is taking over your child’s waking hours, the topic of how to moderate online gaming and media consumption and encourage alternative play could be discussed, or if getting your child to eat healthy foods is a problem, diet can be a focus.

Participants will bring their own behavior topics of concern and questions to address, and the moderator will help parents and caregivers:

• Recognize potentially triggering situations for disrupting behaviors,
• Apply behavioral strategies over the triggering situations,
• Use behavioral tools in their own specific family settings,
• Stabilize calmer routines, either at home or away.

The group is held the second Thursday of each month at the Center for Developing Minds, and the fee for each family is $50 per session, which includes take-home materials as appropriate. If you are interested in enrolling, please contact the front office staff to reserve a spot, because space is limited. For families experiencing a variety of, or more significant, behavior challenges, additional private sessions with our behavior experts can be scheduled.

Instructor: Victoria Tenenbaum, Pediatric Behavior Specialist

Upcoming class schedule:

January 10, February 14, March 14
Noon to 1:00pm.


Meltdowns to Shutdowns
Emotional Regulation and Stress Management Group.

Meltdowns to Shutdowns Flyer

Many children struggle to cope with the stress created by the fast pace of their lives. Children with low thresholds for frustration, tendencies toward negativism, or difficulties tolerating losing or not getting their way, demonstrate this stress with an extreme emotional reaction (meltdown) or a closed emotional reaction (shutdown). This class will help children to learn to recognize their feelings before becoming overwhelmed by them.

A collaborative approach to the group will provide parents with a better understanding of how the concepts relate to the entire family and gives them an opportunity to participate in weekly parent trainings. Parents will have individualized support specific to their child and receive help in understanding and generalizing new concepts.

Classes are held at the Center for Developing Minds and will be moderated by Cassandra Harms, LMFT, and therapist interns (MFT-Ts). Course fee is $800.00 for the eight class sessions, including the weekly parent sessions. Class size is limited to provide participants with personal attention.

Lead Instructor: Cassandra Harms, Marriage & Family Therapist

Class schedule
Tuesdays (parent and child) and Fridays (child only),
5:00-6:00 pm.

Meeting dates:
March 5 through March 29, 2019.
Open to children ages 8 to 11 years old.


Dynamic Dyads

Dynamic Dyads Flyer

Dynamic Dyads is a new parallel and complimentary service to the Meltdowns to Shutdowns groups that are held at the Center for Developing Minds. This smaller-sized group – just two children – is an ideal option for children who may need additional practice and generalization of their emotional modulation, stress management and social abilities. Each dyad is designed and led by a child and adolescent therapist, and children will work together in a casual classroom setting. Individualized skills to be worked on may include relaxation techniques, social rules and expectations, problem solving, and practice communicating about feelings -- while participating in games and leisure activities.

The instructor will design specific curriculum for participants, and dyads will be formed based on children's current abilities. If you are interested in dyad work for your child, please contact the Center for Developing Minds and our instructor will contact you to determine an appropriate classmate match for your child. Once a dyad is formed, one or multiple sessions will be scheduled. Classes will be 50 minutes with a 10-minute write-up period. At the end of each class, parents will be given an individualized note that includes a session summary, homework, and specific teacher comments and observations.

Instructor: Cassandra Harms, Child and Adolescent Therapist
The age range for participants is generally 9-14 years old.

Class schedule
Based on each participant’s availability.

To register for any of these courses, or for more information,
please contact 408-358-1853 or

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