Thursday, June 24, 2021

PECS Post-Training Survey Results

We conducted a survey of educators who had previously attended PECS Level 1 and 2 trainings sponsored by the OPI Montana Autism Education Project. The survey was conducted after they had been using PECS for three months to two+ years. 

Here are some of the results: 

(Doug - I think the *only* person who said, "No" might have had a slip of the mouse, since they also said they use PECS daily and PECS help them to better educate students.)

Additional Comments:

PECS has been extremely useful for students with limited communication.

This training has been of great help to me. Something that was applicable the day I returned to work.

I think all of our Special Ed staff should attend this training! We have multiple kids that use PECS and I think everyone that works with them throughout the day should know how to work with them in an effective way.

 Last year I had a three year old with autism who started the year with almost no ability to communicate other than to run and scream and flail. We introduced PECS and that beautiful little girl not only learned how to use PECS to communicate in sentences, she began speaking in sentences within a few months. Her progress was so rapid , and generalized throughout her day at school as well as home and within the community. I moved her from a self contained STAR class to my highest functioning class for kids with much less significant delays and she was the social and communication role model. All within a few months. I truly believe PECS changed the trajectory of her life!

If you want to know when we offer future PECS workshops, you can subscribe to the OPI Montana Autism Education Project mailing list here

Break Cards for Students Learning the Zones of Regulation

 Teaching How To Ask For A Break 

Compliments of Dawn Kindberg, Lima Public Schools. 

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Webinar - Treating Severe and Challenging Behaviors: Behavioral and Sensory Support

NCSA Webinar: Thursday, June 24, 2021

10:00-12.00 Pacific / 1:00-3:00pm Eastern

Robing Steinberg-Epstein, MD, UCI, will present 30 minutes on the neurological/sensory processing experience, underpinning of challenging and dangerous behavior in autism (30 minutes)

John Guericio, PhD will talk on his assessment tool for managing adults with severe behavioral challenges (30 minutes)

Erik Jacobson, PhD will talk on the cultural approach he and his team have embraced with the emphasis on their clients with severe and challenging behaviors by being happy, relaxed and engaged (30 minutes)

Indiana Resource Center for Autism - Virtual Conference

 IRCA staff are thrilled to announce our Inaugural IRCA Autism Conference: Learning Together. This year, the conference will be held virtually on September 29, 2021. Speakers will address a range of topics relevant for those across the autism spectrum and across the age span.  

Breakout Sessions

  • Positive Behavior Supports, Perception and the Pursuit of Happiness
    Presented by: Kelly Hartman, M.A.
  • Let Me In... I Can Learn Too! Strategies That Are Not A One Hit Wonder
    Presented by: Kris Baker, Special Education Coordinator; Leslie Brown, Autism Specialist and Sarah Reaves, M.S., CCC-SLP, Autism Specialist
  • Anxiety and ASD: Adults on the Spectrum Share
    Panel Presentation by: Kat Muir, M.A., CCC-SLP, Alexander Perry and
    Abe Shapiro
  • ASD & Assistive Technology Supports
    Presented by: Kelli Suding, PATINS Specialist
  • It’s Not One or the Other: The Excitement of Incorporating Mental Health and Behavioral Supports for Children on the Autism Spectrum
    Presented by: Kelly Dora, M.A., Behavior/Autism Specialist
  • ASD AND MORE: Autism and Co-Existing Conditions
    Presented by: Dr. Julie Steck, HSPP
Find more information and register here. 

Listen - A Short Film

A short film in which nonspeaking autistic people talk about how nonspeakers are represented in books, theatre, and film. They provide guidance for changing the narrative. Learn more and access transcripts, translations, and a toolkit here:

 You can view the 5 minute film here. 

Thursday, June 3, 2021

Over the Rainbow: Getting Kids with Autism to Try Colorful Foods

Feeding a child on the spectrum with picky eating can be challenging for a variety of reasons. To name a few:

  • Your son/daughter may be more sensitive to taste, texture, smell, or temperature
  • He/she may have skill delays that make using utensils, or even chewing or swallowing, difficult
  • Your child may crave predictability and want the same meal night after night
  • Your child could experience discomfort related to eating such as heartburn or tummy aches