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About

Kari Zweber Palmer

MA, CCC-SLP

Kari Zweber Palmer is a speech language pathologist/social cognitive therapist at her private practice, Changing Perspectives, in Excelsior, MN. She has co-authored, with Michelle Garcia Winner, Ryan Hendrix, and Nancy Tarshis The Incredible Flexible You: A Social Thinking Curriculum for the Preschool and Early Elementary Years. Additionally, Kari consults with local school districts on implementing Social Thinking into their programming.

 

Kari's interest in communication and related disorders began long before she studied it formally. Her mom, Jane, is a speech language pathologist and Kari grew up in the field. Kari received her Bachelors degree from the University of Missouri and Masters from the University of Kansas. Following her formal training, she started her career as a speech language pathologist in the public schools in Minnetonka, MN, working predominately in the early childhood and elementary levels.

 

Kari's interest in Social Thinking was first ignited in graduate school when she was encouraged to facilitate a "social skills" group for teens. As she attempted to pull together a lesson plan for the group, she quickly realized she had no idea how to truly teach social. Discovering Michelle's work made all the difference, as she found information that concretely explained what to do and more importantly, why. Finding herself increasingly fascinated in Social Thinking, Kari researched and wrote "The Double Interview: Assessing the Social Communication of Adolescents with Asperger Syndrome" for her Master's Thesis. Department faculty at the University of Kansas awarded her the Margaret C. Byrne Saricks Graduate Research Award for demonstrating excellence in Master's thesis research.

 

Kari worked as a full time therapist at Michelle Garcia Winner's Center for Social Thinking in San Jose, CA. Her diverse caseload included preschool aged children to young adults, all with varying levels of social cognitive challenges. Kari had the good fortune of training directly with Michelle and co-treated a teen group with her each week.


Kari is an active presenter and likes nothing better than to share the power of Social Thinking with others. Comments from past workshop participants include: "Kari was engaging, enthusiastic and obviously passionate about the topic. She was not only knowledgeable but balanced the information with real life examples and humor."

 

Personal
Kari can usually be found chasing after her kids, thinking about training for another triathlon with her husband, and enjoying the lakes of Minnesota. She loves to travel and considers her experiences with an infant on an airplane the most interesting social experiment.

 

Financial Disclosure

Financial: Speaker for Think Social Publishing, Inc. and receives speaking fees and royalty payments. 

Non-­financial: No relevant non-­financial relationships exist. 

Related Products

Recent Articles

Thinking Flexibly About We Thinkers! Volume 1 Social Explorers: Your Questions, Answered

Author(s): Ryan Hendrix, Kari Zweber Palmer, Nancy Tarshis and Michelle Garcia Winner

If current trends continue, universal preschool is the next big educational initiative coming our way. And, we are thrilled about it. Study after study demonstrates the benefits of starting education early, and that education is the best way to close the income gap for disadvantaged students. It’s also the best way to provide those rich and supported collaborative learning and play experiences our children with social cognitive learning challenges need to help them close the social gap.

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Are You Teaching Deeply, or Redirecting Behavior? Using the Social Thinking Vocabulary Terms Expected and Unexpected

Author(s): Kari Zweber Palmer

Social Thinking Vocabulary terms describing behavior as “expected” or “unexpected” are popular as they help students develop self-awareness and look for the “hidden social rules” in a situation. This article offers tips and questions to reflect on your instruction to determine if your use of the terms “expected and unexpected” is a catalyst for powerful teaching, or just an attempt to redirect behavior.

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Why Social Thinking Developed an Interactive Play Scale (GPS) and How This Relates to Classroom Participation

Author(s): Michelle Garcia Winner, Nancy Tarshis, Kari Zweber Palmer and Ryan Hendrix

Kids come to the classroom with differing abilities. Those who are more "me based" or adult based players are not as likely to naturally figure out the dynamics of a playground or a classroom, while those with stronger "we based" play skills tend to be more fluid in their ability to attend and learn in larger groups. Learn about our new Interactive Play Scale and how you can use our tools to help the children you work with improve their social understanding through play.

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