International Association of Special Education
Kevin Spencer is an artist who believes in creating inclusive communities where everyone experiences an authentic sense of belonging and no one – for any reason – is relegated to the margins. He is an Educator, Teaching Artist, Researcher, Consultant, Speaker, Curriculum Designer, and Film Producer. He is also a world-renowned Illusionist with dozens of accolades to his credit including 2009 International Magician of the Year and six-time recipient of Performing Arts Entertainer of the Year. He believes strongly in the power of the arts to impact the quality of people’s lives. He has dedicated his life to making a difference in communities around the world – both on and off the stage.
Closing Plenary Presentation - "It's Not an Illusion: Engaging Students with Special Needs"
Students with special needs - including autism - are faced with challenges in behavior, social cognition, linguistics, motor coordination, and sensory abilities. Developing these competencies is critical if they are to experience positive self-esteem, building friendships, adjust to life, and find success in the adult world. The central enabler of any effective intervention is a motivated student. Research has demonstrated that arts-integrated approaches to promote function, academic, and social skills development can stimulate and encourage engagement on the part of students with disabilities. This presentation will introduce attendees to a groundbreaking, arts-integrated intervention by sharing research and anecdotal evidence demonstrating the magnificent relationship between the arts and special education. This promises to be an informative, educational, and heartwarming experience for all those who attend - remarkably entertaining and poignantly inspiring.
On the first night of the conference, delegates will have the opportunity to view Kevin's film, "Powerful Medicine: Simply Magic". The film was named Best Short Documentary at the Outside of the Box Film Festival and, recently, named Best Documentary at the Hollywood Short Film Festival.
For more information about Kevin's work and research visit any of these websites: