Attending an IEP meeting as a parent can be overwhelming and intimidating. At every meeting, parents have a chance to give input. As a teacher, I have seen parents who on the spot, are not able to express their child’s strengths and challenges.
The graphic organizer I created helps parents plan ahead of time what they want to share. The document includes a section to write in strengths, concerns and remedies.
Teachers can give this form to parents to fill out before the IEP meeting to help them organize their thoughts.
What are some ways you have shared your concerns with the child’s IEP team meeting?
“behavioral strategies used to assist students with autism spectrum disorder in monitoring their own behaviors and administering their own rewards.”
Laura J. Hall
This is a personal application of a behavior change tactic that produce a desired change in behaviors.
Student with ASD are able to monitor their own progress with acquiring new skills and decrease problem behaviors with self-management systems. From a young age, self-management strategies are an important part of encouraging independence. It is also an evidence based strategy.
How self-management cards help students with ASD:
Self-management allows students with autism who typically have poorly developed self-management skills to participate in the development and implementation of their own behavior management.
Students are being instructed to:
(a) observe specific aspects of their own behavior
(b) provide an objective recording of the occurrence or non-occurrence of the observed behavior.
The student is in charge of determining if they engaged in a specific behavior. Research shows “the activity of focusing attention on one’s own behavior and the self-recoding of these observations can have a positive relative effect on the behavior being monitored.”
Questions to consider
What is the target behavior?
In what settings will the student self-monitor?
What type of promo (cue) is most appropriate?
How often will the student self-monitor?
What external incentive or reward will be given?
There are certain steps that have been outlined that I will share here:
Here are the steps necessary for implementing self-management systems
Step 1: Identify preferred behavioral targets
Step 2: Determine how often students will self-manage behaviors
Step 3: Meet with the student to explain the self-management procedure
Step 4: Prepare a student self-recording sheet
Step 5: Model the self-management plan and practice the procedure
Step 6: Implement the self-management plan
Step 7: Meet with the student to determine whether goals were attained
Step 8: Provide the rewards when earned
Step 9: Incorporate the plan into a school-home collaboration scheme
Step 10: Fade the intervention
Have you used self-management systems? What are your thoughts?
(source-The Best Practice Guide to Assessment And Intervention For Autism Spectrum Disorder In Schools 2nd edition by Lee A. Wilkinson)
YouTube video showing the incredible 5 point scale
The incredible 5 point scale for support with ASD and anxiety
All people live with some level of stress and anxiety but when anxiety gets in the way of daily functioning in school, it becomes a problem. The incredible 5 point scale is a tool to support students with autism who experience anxiety.
Who created the incredible 5 point scale?
Kari Dunn Buron created the incredible 5 point scale. She created this strategy based on many years of working with students who experience autism. This author is committed to positive support for all students. She is passionate about teaching the skills needed for social success.
“More than any other issue for children with anxiety, loss of emotional control can lead to removal from the general education classroom to a more restrictive educational environment equipped to deal with behavior challenges.”
Getting the chance to watch Dr. Temple Grandin talk has been a career long dream of mine!
When I started working with children with autism back in 1997, her book “Thinking in Pictures” was one of my first introductions to autism.
Dr. Grandin was one of the first individuals with autism who could articulate what life is like for people on the autism spectrum. Parents and professionals both clamored for her knowledge, expertise and valuable insight.
I just had the amazing opportunity to hear her speak at the US Autism Association!
Here are the major takeaways I had from her keynote speech:
Limit screen time for children with autism to less than 1 hour per day. She noted that many of the children who could succeed in computer science are sucked in to video games and no longer can access their full potential due to their addiction
Parents need to “start letting go”-foster independence from a young age. She likened this to the adult cow who still wants to nurse from the mama cow. She said we need to “wean our children” so they are not dependent on us
“don’t over-protect”the child with autism
Allow children a multitude of hands on experiences because true learning takes place with hands on experiences not through screens
Teach young children how to “wait” and how to “take turns” and use board games as a way to teach these skills
Having real jobs are important for young adults with autism starting at age 13 (or so).
Don’t get hung up on the label of autism
Focus on the strengths of the child not the deficits-build upon a child’s special interest which could end up leading to a valuable career one day. As an example, a child who is interested in pipes can become a plumber.
Don’t make kids with autism do “baby math” if they excel in math. Allow the child to excel in the area they are gifted in
Encourage friendships through shared experiences such as cub scouts, school clubs etc. A shared interest will help build the friendship
There is NO need to disclose autism diagnosis for milder cases due to some prejudice surrounding autism. Instead, tell what you need “those lights give me a headache”
Stretch students to grow and don’t overprotect them!
Allow for choices
If you were at the conference or have learned from Dr. Grandin yourself, please share what your biggest takeaways are in the comments!
Social Stories are another great visual support and intervention for students who experience Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Visual supports are valuable in helping students structure and understand communication and social interactions.
Social Stories were developed by Carol Gray in 1995 as a way to teach children with ASD how to read the intricacies of the social environment and to teach new skills.
These techniques use a brief narrative that describes a situation, relevant social cues, and responses.
They can teach multi-step situations. Similar to “Task Analysis” a skill is broken down into smaller steps for a student to learn and understand.
There are a variety of social skills training programs available, but Social Stories can be created by anyone including teachers, parents, speech language pathologists, and they can be used with all ages of students.
Read and review the social story when the student is calm to teach the behavior or social skill. Review the social story often and reinforce positive student behavior related to skills in the social story
Social Stories are simple narratives, written in positive language that support a student’s communication in a way that makes the new skill or social environment more personal and concrete