Full Course Description
Autism and Sensory Processing Disorder: Over 75 Proven Strategies for Social Skills, Behavior and Learning
Counselors, Teachers/Educators, Occupational Therapists & Occupational Therapy Assistants, Psychologists, Social Workers, Speech-Language Pathologists, and other Mental Health Professionals
- Assess how sensory processing, environmental and communication issues influence learning and behavior.
- Analyze the latest brain research on autism spectrum disorders and how these findings impact the way therapists and educators work with children/adolescents.
- Determine how early sensory-motor experiences are stored in the brain.
- Present the components of sensory integration and sensory processing difficulties common to children with a diagnosis of autism.
- Evaluate how early experiences may be perceived differently for children with autism due to brain differences.
- Ascertain how underlying sensory processing difficulties impact learning, behavior and social skills.
Sensory Processing Components and Strategies
Autism: Concepts & Research
- Latest brain research
- Executive function
- Theory of Mind
- Central Coherence Theory
- Mirror neurons
Praxis (Motor Planning)
- Impact on those with autism
- Gross motor
- Fine motor
- Strategies for teaching new motor skills including activities of daily living
- 0 to 3:
- Non-contingent sensory diet
- Safe activities (e.g. bath time) to introduce new textures
- Sensory activities to expand play
- Sensory activities to promote language
- Early grades:
- Sensory input to increase focus on a task
- Teach Change
- Middle school:
- Sensory with executive function strategies
- Social sensory stories the student creates
- Case studies
- Incorporate sensory with Applied Behavioral Analysis
- Sensory paired with visual communication strategies
Autism Meltdowns in Children and Adolescents: Practical Strategies for Prevention, Intervention and Postvention
Counselors, Teachers/Educators, Marriage & Family Therapists, Occupational Therapists & Occupational Therapy Assistants, Physical Therapists/Physical Therapist Assistants, Psychologists, Social Workers, Speech-Language Pathologists, and other Mental Health Professionals
- Discriminate functions of behavior during a tantrum vs. meltdown.
- Analyze the connections and breakdowns between communication, social skills and behaviors.
- Employ a breathe card and emotions chart to develop self-control and self-management skills.
- Design optimal therapy/classroom structure to prevent overstimulation and sensory breakdowns.
- Employ SOCCSS, keychain rules and t-charts to prevent, intervene or consequate targeted behaviors.
- Utilize surprise cards, change of schedule cues and transition markers to alleviate anxiety.
Functions of a Meltdown
- Tantrum vs. meltdown
- Stages of a meltdown
- Sensory issues vs. behavior issues
- Meltdown video
Strategies for the Meltdown Cycle: Intervention, Prevention and Post-vention
- Sensory Issues
- Optimal learning environments
- Easy-to-use sensory tools
- Overstimulation and sensory breakdowns
- Incorporate a sensory lifestyle throughout the day
- Executive Function
- Increase attention and focus
- Strengthen motivation and engagement
- On-task and task completion skills
- Visual reminders for routines and predictability
- Visual structure for organization
- Develop self-control and self-monitoring skills
- Tools for self-feedback
- Use high focus and interest areas as powerful incentives to change behavior
- Social/Emotional Communication
- Communication for positive social interaction
- Appropriate interactions with their peers
- First-person stories for positive behavior changes and affirmations
- Explosive Behaviors
- Recognize the triggers
- Reduce symptoms of anxiety
- Modeling appropriate behavior
- Defuse explosive behaviors
- Decrease maladaptive behaviors
- Increase appropriate behaviors
- Special Considerations
- Collaboration with parents/caregivers
- Strategies for helping the parent/caregiver with grief
Techniques for After the Meltdown
- Strategies for instructional consequences
- Chart appropriate/inappropriate behaviors
- Activities for reviewing behaviors when calm
- Use cartooning to facilitate feedback
- Strategies for providing systematic feedback
- Reinforcement for communication strategies
- Identify feelings and review behavior
Hands-on and Small Group Activities
- Demonstration video
- Small group exercises: Brainstorm appropriate and meaningful replacement behaviors
High-Functioning Autism: Proven & Practical Interventions for Challenging Behaviors in Children, Adolescents & Young Adults
Counselors, Teachers/Educators, Marriage & Family Therapists, Nurses, Occupational Therapists & Occupational Therapy Assistants, Psychologists, Social Workers, Speech-Language Pathologists, and other Mental Health Professionals
DSM-5® Changes & Autism
- DSM-IV® and DSM-5®criteria comparisons
- Social (pragmatic) communication disorder
- Impact on service delivery (school/community)
- Successfully link the home, school and therapist
- IEP/504/Do they qualify for school services?
- Co-morbid disorders: Why the difference is important
Social Skills Interventions
Improve social skill deficits “Kid Cop” behaviors and why other kids get angry How to get peers to recognize them in positive ways Group activities Early intervention programs that can deliver long-term success
- Ways to work out conflicts that are effective in multiple settings
- Help peers, siblings and parents relate
- Verbal interventions that overload processing
- Self-stimulation (appropriate & inappropriate)
- Sensory strategies to avoid
- Coping/calming techniques that reduce melt downs
- Sensory Diet
- Anxiety reducing activities
- How anxiety impacts rigidity
- Help them “self-regulate”
- Successful transitions
- ADHD vs. hyper-focus
- Commonly prescribed medications and possible benefits and side effects
- Specific triggers and what fuels the rage
- Reduce aggressive and disruptive behaviors
- Mistakes that escalate defiant behaviors
- Overcome refusals to comply with even simple requests
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) Interventions
- What to do when they become stuck on high interest areas
- Specific medication interventions
- Impact on socialization and behaviors
Interventions for Specific Difficult Behaviors
- Reduce Internet and electronic addictions
- Changes in technology, school systems and mental health delivery
- Differentiate among common medications
- Medications that mimic difficult behaviors
- Side effects and off label use
- Impact of eating, sleeping and hormones on medication effectiveness
Case Studies, Demonstrations & Activities
- Case studies that demonstrate specific interventions for aggressive and non-complaint behaviors
- “Reminder video” technique: A way to facilitate behavioral rehearsal
- iPad® apps for social success, behavioral changes and speech and language
- Staff training techniques to experience what an individual on the spectrum might
- Implement interventions to teach children/adolescents diagnosed with High-Functioning Autism (HFA) the skills to independently manage their own regulation, anxiety and fears.
- Design effective strategies to approach transitions and routine life challenges for children/adolescents diagnosed with HFA.
- Utilize specific interventions to improve long-term social-emotional success for children/adolescents diagnosed with HFA.
- Suggest specific sensory-based calming techniques to reduce anxiety for children/adolescents diagnosed with HFA.
- Recognize the potential side effects of psychotropic medication that can mimic or cause behavioral issues related to HFA.
- Design specific behavioral interventions to reduce frequency, intensity and duration of difficult behaviors in children/adolescents with HFA.