Saturday, August 12, 2017

Handouts for Social Thinking - Missoula August 2017


Day 1  PowerPoint Day 1  Additional Handout

Day 2  PowerPoint
Day 2  Additional Handout
Day 2  Social Behavior Map
Day 2  Action Plan

(NOTE - these links will only be available through August 18th, as per our contract with Social Thinking.)

The presenter (Kari Zweber Palmer) has also provided a link to:  

Under the “Zooming In” days, there is information that can be helpful to read before the conference. It is also where you can find the bibliography.​

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

TEACCH - Fundamentals in Autism

Great Falls – October 23 and 24
Bozeman – October 25 and 26
The Fundamentals in Autism is a two-day workshop that will provide participants with an overview of the learning styles of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Structured TEACCHing strategies.
Structured TEACCHing is based on the understanding of the symptoms and learning styles of individuals with autism and the use of visual supports to provide meaning, promote independence and capitalize on the individual’s strengths. Participants will also learn behavior management strategies using Structured TEACCHing principles. The format of this workshop will include presentations, videos, interactive discussions, and small group activities.
At the completion of the training, participants will be able to:
  • Identify characteristics and learning styles of Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Develop individualized schedules and work/activity systems
  • Develop meaningful visual structure that promotes independence with educational activities
  • Problem solve behaviors using Structured TEACCHing principles 
This course is designed for educators, paraeducators, psychologists, and speech language pathologists. 

Go here to register.

Attendance is limited to 50 people.

Six OPI renewal units will be available for this training. This training is FREE from the OPI Montana Autism Education Project.

NOTE: This is a different, shorter training than the TEACCH trainings we have previously provided.


Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Social Thinking Returns to Montana!!

August 17th and 18th, 2017
9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Hilton Garden Inn - Missoula*

Speaker:  Kari Zweber Palmer

August 17th:

ZOOMING IN: Strategies for Concrete Learners (kinder - young adult)

Delve into the needs of our more literal learners who may have diagnoses such as ASD, ADHD, language learning or sensory integration challenges. They are often perplexed by the abstractions of the school curriculum, show marked difficulty in reading social cues, and are often aloof and less organized. Discover how best to teach individuals based on their age and how to enhance learning in the inclusion-based classroom. Explore lessons that translate abstract social concepts into concrete ideas that can help improve social understanding over time.  Audience members love the many video examples and treatment tools! Read more
What You Will Learn
  1. Describe four core characteristics of Challenged and Emerging Social Communicators and explain why these students struggle to learn social and academic concepts in groups and as a result require different social thinking lessons from Nuance Challenged Social Communicators. 
  2. Develop a lesson for an individual with characteristics of an Emerging Social Communicator. The lesson will include visual support(s) and/or worksheets to translate abstract concepts to more concrete ideas. 
  3. Describe at least one additional treatment approach to use in conjunction with Social Thinking for individuals who function as Challenged and Emerging Social Communicators. 
August 18th:

ZOOMING IN: Strategies for Individuals with Subtle but Significant Social Problems (kinder - young adult)

Explore the needs of nuance-challenged social communicators who may have diagnoses such as Asperger's syndrome, ASD, ADHD, or social anxiety. They are often in mainstream education and struggle with the intricacies of social relationships, homework assignments, and working in peer-based groups. Discover effective strategies that encourage nuanced perspective taking and executive functioning while attending to the person's mental health. Take with you nuance-based social learning lessons for use in both treatment plans and in the mainstream classroom.

What You Will Learn

  1. Describe four core characteristics of those considered to be Nuance Challenged Social Communicators and how to consider those characteristics in group planning. 
  2. Describe how to develop strategies for use in school and home settings, differentiating cognitive behavioral treatment from applied behavior analysis. 
  3. Develop lessons or a group of lessons geared toward students with more nuance-based challenges. The lessons will include the creation of worksheets to translate abstract concepts into more concrete ideas. 
  4. Create a social learning activity that can be used in an inclusion-based learning environment to engage all students in the classroom.
OPI renewal units (6), ASHA CMH (5.5) and SWP/MFT/LAC CEUs (6) per day will be available. 

Monday, August 7, 2017

NAA's Be REDy Booklet for First Responders

NAA's Be REDy Booklet for First Responders is a free, downloadable toolkit containing extensive resources to help first responders prevent and respond to wandering incidents in their community. 
This item is provided by NAA at no charge. When you complete the order process, you will receive a link to download the booklet in PDF format. The link will expire in 72 hours.

'Social Camouflage' May Lead To Underdiagnosis Of Autism In Girls

Girls appear to have mastered what some call "social camouflaging," says Amanda Gulsrud, clincial director of the Child and Adult Neurodevelopmental Clinic at University of California, Los Angeles. Gulsrud develops school interventions for children with autism. The interventions are based, in part, on earlier research done by colleagues at UCLA, who did a study looking at how boys and girls with autism interact with their peers on the school playground. The boys clearly stood out as being different, Gulsrud says. They were very isolated from the other boys, who were in a large group playing sports. The boys with autism were the ones "circling the perimeter of the yard, or off by the tree in the back."
Girls with autism, on the other hand, didn't stand out as much, she says. They stuck close enough to the other girls to look as if they were socially connected, but in reality they were not really connecting. "They were not having deep, meaningful conversations or exchanges," Gulsrud says. They were flitting in and out of that social connection.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Transition Tools for Life

A Workbook & Guide for Transitioning Through Life Students & Families of Students with Disabilities 

With 240+ pages it seems to have a lot of resources. 

Rethinking regression in autism

The loss of abilities that besets some toddlers with autism is probably less sudden and more common than anyone thought.

Chawarska’s view echoes the findings of numerous studies that reveal a “range of onset patterns,” as University of Melbourne autism researcher Amanda Brignell and her colleagues explain in a 2016 paper, from ‘early onset’ (early developmental delays, no loss of skills) and ‘delay and regression’ (some early delays, then loss) to ‘plateau’ (no early delays and no loss, but a failure to gain) and ordinary ‘regression’ (no delays before a clear loss). These trajectories differ so much in their timing, speed, depth and effects that it requires a tangle of words and parentheticals to try to squeeze them into a binary framework.
Given all this, Ozonoff argues, we should speak not of regression, but of a variety of onsets: The true clinical picture of how autism begins to present is not two-tone or even spectral, but a complex kaleidoscope of possibilities. “I don’t even call it regression anymore,” she says. “I just think of it as onset: how symptoms start.”

Webinar - A Techie Approach to Addressing Behavior

September 20  2:00 - 3:00 CST

Whether you are a teacher, a parent, a school administrator, or an education professional, successful behavior management is key to success in school and all other settings. Whether you prefer to manage (or self-manage) behavior through strategies and low-tech supports, or you are keen on going all digital, there is a tech tool for that! Join us to explore techie resources and strategies for addressing unwanted behavior for all age groups and all settings!

Register here. 

Webinar - Fun Activities Using a Tablet Devices

August 23rd  2:00-2:30 CST

This presentation will demonstrate how blending low technology with higher technology such as applications (“Apps”) run on an iPad can be used to help students with special needs participate in the classroom. 

Register here. 

Webinar - Pediatric and School-Based AAC Evaluations

August 08, 2017, 10:00 am CST - 1-hour

When evaluating and treating someone a child with a communication disorder therapist can have a long and tedious process in helping secure a device for a pediatric patient or a school based child. There are several steps involved from the initial evaluation to submitting a device submission report. What tools are available to help us streamline the evaluation process? What are the dos and don’ts report writing when we are completing a device submission report? How can our treatment plan on the report and IEP help the user acclimate to their device? 
In this presentation, participants will learn what needs to happen before, during, and after an AAC evaluation for pediatric and/or school based communication device user. The resources, tools and strategies learned during this presentation can help a therapist during each stage of an AAC evaluation and treatment plan. During the presentation tools and strategies for having the most effective AAC evaluations and device submission reports will be discussed and demonstrated. These resources can be easily implemented into a clinician’s evaluation process when working with school based children or pediatric therapy.

Register here 

Accommodating Disabilities in the School Meal Programs: Guidance and Questions and Answers (Q&As)

This Question and Answer (Q&A) memorandum is designed to provide practical guidance related to accommodating disabilities in the School Meal Programs.

The attached questions have been grouped under the following headings: General Information; What is a Disability?; Procedural Safeguards; Requesting a Modification; Making a Meal Modification; Reimbursement for Modified Meals; Accommodations to the Meal Service; Non-Disability Situations; and Miscellaneous.

Read more here.  

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

The OPI is Looking at Changing Our Criteria for Autism

Why change the OPI autism criteria?

Our current criteria was developed in 2000 and is a blend of the IDEA criteria and the DSM IV-R criteria for autism and Aspergers. The understanding of autism spectrum disorder has greatly increased since 2000. The OPI is interested in seeing if we can provide a better, more defined, criteria for autism spectrum disorder than the current rule language

What is the initial process the OPI will to follow to consider a new autism criteria

Rather than create a large, statewide rule revision committee that would have multiple meetings, we are having single-day meetings with different regional groups of educators and others to provide us with ideas, feedback and direction in creating new rule language.  

Members of the public will have a chance to provide comment on the specific language of a revised rule as part of the rule-making process.

Will there be any changes to the Evaluation Report team members?

If the criteria is changed we would plan for implementation beginning in the 2018 school year. The revised criteria would only be required for initial evaluations and would not affect already-identified students unless the ER team chose to re-evaluate the student's continued eligibility as a student with autism.