Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Training - Teaching Self-Advocacy Skills

Virtual Training – October 15th   3:30 – 4:30 p.m.  // October 22nd   9:00 – 10:00 a.m.

Self-advocacy skills are important for the children in your classroom and their having those skills will make the classroom experience more enjoyable and productive for everyone. This webinar will provide you with a plan to teach practical self-advocacy skills your students can start practicing in your classroom and at home.

Register for the training here

Monday, September 27, 2021

Book: Prevent-Teach-Reinforce: The School-Based Model of Individualized Positive Behavior Support Second Edition

 Suggested by one of our Autism Consultants. 

Solve serious behavior challenges in K–8 classrooms with the updated second edition of this bestselling book, your practical, user-friendly guide to the Prevent-Teach-Reinforce (PTR) model. Developed by highly respected experts on positive behavior support, this research-proven model gives your school team a step-by-step blueprint for reducing problems unresolved by typical behavior management strategies. You'll get explicit guidance and strategies for implementing all five steps of PTR: 1) teaming and goal-setting, 2) collecting data, 3) conducting a PTR Functional Behavioral Assessment, 4) developing a PTR behavior intervention plan, and 5) monitoring progress and making data-based decisions. Enhanced with new research on PTR and fresh content on timely topics like multi-tiered systems of support, this guidebook will help you resolve even the toughest behavior challenges—and improve social and academic outcomes for your whole class.


  • proven effective by research and field testing in real classrooms—PTR was shown to reduce behavior problems and increase evidence of social skills and academic engagement
  • structured and explicit, with five systematic steps that take you beyond tips and strategies
  • consistent with positive behavior support and derived from the principles of applied behavior analysis
  • easily adaptable to the needs and goals of each individual student
  • effective for both typically developing students and learners with disabilities and other challenges

New and enhanced material on:

  • Using multi-tiered systems of support (MTSS)
  • Implementing evidence-based classroom strategies
  • Becoming an effective team facilitator
  • Collaborating as a strong, cohesive team
  • Monitoring progress with the Individualized Behavior Rating Scale Tool
  • Developing successful behavior intervention plans
  • Creating useful task analyses
  • Making data-based decisions

Plus: new case examples that illustrate components of PTR, two in-depth case studies, and new and revised forms (also available online for easy download)

See more here

Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Social Thinking Trainings - 2021 School Year

The OPI Montana Autism Education Project has a limited number of scholarships for Montana public school educators to attend online trainings from Social Thinking. These trainings will be from 10:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. OPI renewal units (4) will be provided after verification from Social Thinking that you have completed the training.  

The link to register through the OPI Montana Autism Education Project can be found here

A description of the trainings can be found here. The OPI scholarships are only available if you register through the above OPI link. 

If you have any questions, please email Doug Doty at

Friday, September 10, 2021

Virtual STAR Training - October 21/22, 2021

This comprehensive two-day workshop provides participants with detailed examples and practice activities on how to implement the evidence-based practices identified in  the National Standards Report (2009). The STAR Program is used to provide examples

Appropriate content connected to the common core curriculum is presented and detailed information on the three evidenced-based instructional methods of discrete trial training, pivotal response training and teaching through functional routines are shared. 

Participants will learn how to implement these strategies through structured lesson plans and a curriculum scope and sequence. The workshop will include extensive data collection systems and participants will learn to collect and use data for instructional decision making. 

The virtual training will not be recorded and attendance is required on the training dates. 
This virtual training is limited to 60 people. 
Ten OPI renewal units will be available for this training. 
This training is FREE from the OPI Montana Autism Education Project.
            The training is from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. each day.

You can register for the training here

Friday, September 3, 2021

MonTECH’s Montana AAC Town Halls

 Big news! MonTECH’s Montana AAC Town Halls begin this Wednesday, September 8th, 4:00-5:00 pm! As you know, MonTECH is Montana’s assistive tech program. But we have a secondary mission: to support the capacity of our community to serve those with complex communication needs. 

Monthly AAC Town Halls are an amazing opportunity for Montana’s professionals to share information and learn from each other.  Network with practitioners encountering the same obstacles of practicing in a rural state with limited resources, serving a population requiring a special skill set.  Without knowledgeable SLPs, OTs, educators, and care providers, Montanans who could benefit from AAC are voiceless!


Town Halls will feature talking points based on your interests, and time to share and discuss specific needs you encounter in your work. The focus of each meeting alternates between adult and pediatric practice.  Meetings are practitioner-focused for therapists and educators, but families, caregivers, direct support staff, and case managers are also welcome.


Learn more about Montana AAC Town Hall and see the schedule for future meetings: []

Register for the Pediatric-focused AAC Town Hall on September 8th:[]   

Register for the Adult-focused AAC Town Hall on October 6th (and subsequent meetings): []

Set aside one hour a month (or every other month) to build relationships with colleagues, develop skills, and learn together.  We hope to see you soon!



Shawna Hanson

Outreach Coordinator


MonTECH []

Montana Family to Family Health Information Center []

The Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities

University of Montana

Thursday, September 2, 2021

Why Johnny Doesn't Flap

 This is my new favorite book about autism. It is also is available in hardcover. 

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

How to Create an Inclusive Learning Environment for Neurodiverse Students

One of the main challenges facing teachers is that many don’t have experience with neurodiverse students or the training necessary to create a safe classroom space.

“While teachers are not mental health clinicians, they have been tasked with both identifying kids who have not yet been identified as needing more support, and with managing these unique brains regardless of how much outside-of-school support they are (or aren’t) getting,” writes registered psychotherapist Christina Crowe, founder of Dig a Little Deeper Psychotherapy and Counselling.

Read more here at Planbook