Talisman Semesters: Our Program


Our students live, study, and play together in their group of eight, guided by a team of highly-trained instructors through daily living, community-building, and a full slate of recreational activities and outings. Days and weeks are highly-structured and focused on building targeted skills, while including ample down time to recharge. Academic lessons are expanded upon outside of the classroom, adding relevance and deeper learning. Afternoon and weekend activities may include sports (basketball, ultimate Frisbee and Quidditch), outdoor pursuits (fishing, hiking, tree climbing), and indoor hobbies (art, board games, building projects ). Day trips head to cultural events, popular hiking trails, and places of local interest.

The highlights of the ADHD, Autism, and Aspergers school are our expeditions. Each group embarks on two weeklong journeys to southeastern destinations that brim with interesting historical, cultural and natural sites. Students are immersed in hands-on learning, with their classroom lessons woven into these new experiences. Groups may visit Georgia sea islands, iconic mountain sites, or Washington, D.C., among others.


Each middle or high school group of eight students and two staff shares a cabin at Talisman, living the camp life through the semester. Chores are shared as part of practicing community living. Instructors help students take on responsibility for self, belongings and surroundings. Wholesome meals are shared in our dining hall. Our nurse visits weekly and oversees all healthcare needs. Groups practice budgeting on regular shopping trips. Students connect with families via weekly phone calls and frequent emails. At our ADHD, Autism, and Aspergers school, age-appropriate independence is encouraged as students learn to advocate for themselves in a supportive environment.


1c8e8632-a170-4b06-af4c-8848034c2313Every student at our ADHD and Aspergers school has unique goals for their semester, including both social and academic skills. So, while each week has an overall theme (such as responsibility, trust, or empathy), each student works on his own objective. The program director
leads weekly discussions on the theme, including games, role plays and
practice activities. Teachers and residential instructors continue the
theme, and individual coaching, throughout the week, finding teachable
moments to emphasize lessons and bring learning to life.