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In this episode, Abby Moehringer shares one of the most important steps to do after a behavior happens. Abby is a special education teacher and BCBA. She breaks down the essential step of repairing after a behavior happens. Abby discusses why this step is important, when repair should happen, and the actionable steps to take when initiating how to …
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In this episode, Jana Sarno breaks down the art and science of a behavior consultation. Jana points to the evidence-based framework needed for consultation and training but also highlights the importance of “soft skills” needed for this process to be successful. Jana explains essential strategies such as reflective listening to truly improve the co…
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The new course the Practical Behavior Approach is officially open for enrollment. This course is designed for general ed teachers, special ed teachers, clinicians, paraprofessionals, and parents supporting children with challenging behaviors. This course will prepare you to prevent, respond, and build. The strategies are rooted in the science of Ap…
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Resilience is the ability to bounce back after stress, failure, hardship, or adversity. Resilience is closely related to emotional regulation and problem solving. In this episode, learn why resilience is an essential life skill and some practical ways to build resilience throughout the day in both home and school settings. Join The Practical Behavi…
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Emotional Regulation is the ability to cope with the range of emotions. In this episode, I break down what emotional regulation is and why it’s important. Then we review what two major things can hinder the development of emotional regulation. Emotional Regulation skill building can be broken into 3 areas: pre-regulation, naming/validating emotions…
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In this episode, Dr. Joe Lockavitch breaks down why reading comprehension is important and how we can reach out to more struggling readers. Dr. Joe is a former classroom teacher, school psychologist, university professor, special education director, applied reading researcher, and is the author and developer of The Failure Free. Reading Program. Dr…
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When a child is in crisis mode, they are not ready to learn. In a meltdown situation, our goal as the adult is to keep the child safe and reflect on how to prevent this in the future. In this episode, we explore what to do in an episode of explosive behavior. We go through the 6 steps of de-escalation on how to safely move the child through the epi…
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Decreasing negative behavior actually happens away from the negative behavior. That means we have the most success in long-term behavior reduction by preventing problem behaviors before they start. It may sound easier said than done but there are some essential strategies that you can add to your classroom, home, or clinical practice to readily avo…
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Practical Functional Assessment and Skills Based Treatment were designed by Dr. Greg Hanley as an effective and ethical alternative to reducing extreme problem behaviors. In this episode, three school administrators share their experiences implementing PFA and SBT on a district wide level. Lisa Xagas, the Assistant Superintendent for Student Servic…
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In this episode, we review Naturalistic Developmental Behavioral Interventions (NDBIs) and how they can be used in both a clinical or classroom setting. Dr.Jamie Hughes-Lika shares her expertise on this topic. She defines what NDBIs are, how they are different than traditional ABA, and how child-led teaching works. Dr. Hughes-Lika is a Board Certif…
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Having your team on the same page is essential for the successful implementation of behavior plans. In this episode, Amanda Borosh, BCBA, breaks down why staff training is important and how to overcome some of the challenges. Amanda shares actionable strategies for getting team buy-in and improving follow-through. Amanda is a licensed special educa…
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In this special episode, I share an excerpt from a recent live workshop. This session is titled Can’t Do or Won’t Do. Every decision we make is shaped by our skills and abilities to perform the action and our motivation to do so. In this clip from the workshop, I share how to approach challenging behaviors from a can’t do or won’t do perspective. -…
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Lois Letchford is a reading specialist who is passionate about teaching struggling students how to read. In this episode, Lois dives into the problems with many traditional literacy approaches and the impact this can have on students. She shares some key strategies for building reading skills by building engagement and focusing on comprehension. Lo…
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Julia DeNey founded Sense-ational You, an adaptive apparel brand for autistic children who need help regulating so they are empowered to be successful no matter where they are. In this episode, Julia discusses what sensory needs are and how they can impact behavior. She explores the area of tactile sensory needs and how different clothing can be ch…
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Tim Kretchman is the founder of Action Driven Education and a former teacher and administrator. In this episode, Tim shares how to identify “just right” accommodations for students in a range of settings. Tim shares the four key variables that make accommodations work - strengths, needs, degree of need, and fit to the instructional setting. Tim sha…
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Katherine Saint, Ph.D., LPC, BCBA-D, Katherine has her doctorate in Behavior Analysis and is a Licensed Professional Counselor. In this episode, we discuss the 4 attachment styles from a behavior analytic perspective. Katie shares what learning histories typically lead to each attachment style and what supports we can give to help those individuals…
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Elizabeth Klein is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst and Clinical Director of an ABA program that delivers therapy in home, school, clinic, and community settings. She noticed a common challenge with children with autism across settings - eating problems. In this episode, Elizabeth discusses with eating challenges are common for children with auti…
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When creating successful inclusion, there can be many obstacles along the way. Rebekah Poe, M. Ed. is an award-winning former special education teacher and a national teaching conference presenter. Rebekah shares what inclusion is and some tips and strategies for making inclusion effective and possible. She shares how to work with reluctant teacher…
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Extinction is the process of removing or discontinuing reinforcement for a behavior. This would then reduce or eliminate the behavior. However, this strategy can have some challenges during implementation. In this episode, Dr. Billie Retzlaff breaks down what extinction is and what are some alternatives to reduce problem behaviors. She dives into n…
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Independent work is essential to running a successful classroom. This allows small group instruction to happen and builds critical life skills of work endurance and sustained attention. Many independent work systems include task boxes. Task boxes include one activity and often students rotate between assigned task boxes. In this episode, I share 3 …
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Dr. Rachel Schwartz, PhD, BCBA-D breaks down sexuality education in special education. She reviews how teachers and related services fit in to providing this conversation. Dr. Schwartz shares what topics are appropriate for what ages and why these are essential life skills for all learners. She tackles tricky topics such as how to work with staff m…
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Dr. Taylor Day is a licensed child psychologist and parental coach who specializes in autism and neurodivergent affirming care. In this episode, Dr. Tay shares her Whole Family Approach™ which focuses on the needs of parents and siblings of autistic children, as well as the children themselves. We discuss how to provide education and support that v…
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Effective leadership is imperative for both BCBAs and classroom teachers. Within a clinic or in-home setting, BCBAs manage and lead Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTs). Janelle Upthegrove is the owner of Grover Behavioral Services and shares her insight and strategies for creating a positive and effective work environment. Janelle discusses usin…
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Training teams on behavior plans and strategies is essential to successful implementation. In today’s episode, school-based BCBA and former special ed teacher, Meghan Edwards is breaking down how to approach team training from start to finish. She covers how to get started with a new plan or team, how to find training time, ways to build buy in, an…
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Dr. Norrine Russell is the founder of Russell Coaching for Students, which uses an innovative method of coaching for complex students. In this episode, Dr. Russell dives into the complicated skill of problem-solving. She shares why problem-solving is such an important yet difficult skill for students to learn. She gives specific examples and strate…
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Practical Functional Assessment and the Skills Based Treatment Approach is a proven effective and applicable approach to severe problem behavior. In this episode, special educator and behavior consultant, Erica Vogt, shares her experience with PFA-SBT in a school setting. Erica breaks down the PFA-SBT process, gives some real-world examples, and di…
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Whether your students are engaging in off-task behaviors or more extreme and dangerous problem behaviors, there are some universal key strategies you need for positive behavior change. These mindsets and frameworks are imperative for decreasing problem behavior and teaching positive, prosocial responses. In this episode, I share the 5 key strategie…
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Gina Russell is a former preschool special education teacher and currently works in early intervention. Gina is a blogger on The Autism Helper team sharing best practices for early childhood. In this episode, Gina shares 5 ways to foster early language development. These strategies are all actionable ways to build awareness, interest, and curiosity…
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Lupe Castaneda is a BCBA with over 20 years of experience in both the public and private setting. In this episode, Lupe shares some key strategies for successful consultations and relationships with teachers and staff. Lupe discusses how to overcome the challenges of finding time and getting buy-in when training teams on behavior plans. We also dis…
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Liliana Diaz-Vazquez is a certified licensed bilingual speech-language pathologist. In this episode, she shares best practices for supporting bilingual students in the classroom. Liliana explores common misconceptions regarding multilingual students with language delays such as speaking multiple languages will cause regression or confusion. She giv…
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Running small groups allows you to provide differentiated and individualized instruction to your students. But the process of setting up centers can be overwhelming. In this episode, we go through the steps for getting started with centers. We review situations such as having low or no staff and students that aren’t able to work independently yet. …
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Managing and leading your team is an essential role in being a special education teacher however it’s something we are not prepared for. In this episode, I review the most frequently asked questions I get about staff training and collaborating with paraprofessionals. I discuss how to find the time for staff training, how to get buy in, and how to e…
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In this episode, we delve into frequently asked questions on behavior. We start off by reviewing the question I get asked the most; How do I handle _____ behavior? There is one answer I give to every question that references a specific behavior - whether kicking, hitting, scratching, running! Then we cover how to handle taking away preferred items,…
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Answering frequently asked questions about schedules! In this episode we dive into why schedules are essential, the schedule continuum, and how different schedules can be set up. I walk through how to select a schedule type for each student and how to get your team on board! ---------------------------------------------- Enter our "Seasons of Givin…
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Sometimes I get asked, “When should I switch from academic skills to functional skills?” This is implying that at some point in junior high or high school, we should move away from academic instruction. My answer to this question is - never. We should never move away from teaching academics because academic skills are functional skills. As our stud…
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Paraprofessionals in a special education classroom should be working as educators - providing instruction and taking academic data. Teachers should lead their team and provide training so all staff members can work collaboratively and effectively. The goal for staff training should be for the teacher to replicate herself so the paraprofessionals ar…
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In a highly differentiated special education classroom, it should be mostly focused on small group instruction over whole group instruction. When you do whole group instruction for students with a very wide range of skills, it will be too hard or too easy for much of the group and that’s when problem behaviors happen. ------------------------------…
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When you get into a power struggle with a student, there is no winner. You will never walk away from a power struggle having deepened rapport or trust with a student. It typically does the opposite and breaks down your relationship with the student. When it comes to the power struggle, it’s best to avoid it before it starts. -----------------------…
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Running a self-contained classroom requires a high degree of organization. When things are a mess and disorganized, there is less instructional time and likely to be more problem behaviors. A hot mess of a classroom will lead to a hot mess with the students. ---------------------------------------------- Register up for my free, live webinar happen…
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Reverse inclusion is when students from the general education come into the special education classroom for opportunities for peer modeling and creating friendships. For some students, their level of needs may not allow for inclusion in the general ed setting. Reverse inclusion is a good option for these students to receive the benefits of inclusio…
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Venting in the teachers’ lounge can have a negative impact on the culture and community in your school. When we only spread negative stories about our students we perpetuate often untrue stereotypes. As special education teachers, we need to be publicists for our students and spread some good PR! ---------------------------------------------- Inter…
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The start of the year is all about two things: routines and reinforcement. You need to establish your schedule, centers, and systems in the classroom and teach that to your students. That also needs to be paired with lots of reinforcement. The start of the year is not about data - it’s about being the chocolate chip cookie! ------------------------…
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It’s common practice to have IEP goals with an 80% mastery criteria. In this episode, I challenge whether that level of mastery is sufficient for building new skills. 80% means one out of every 5 is wrong. In some skills and goals, a 100% mastery criteria will demonstrate the total level of understanding needed to move on to the next skill. -------…
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One of the most controversial opinions I have is about how to laminate and cut out pieces. There are heated opinions on whether or not to pre-cut before laminating. When special ed teachers need to prep hundreds of materials each year, time saving yet effective strategies are a must. ---------------------------------------------- Enrollment for our…
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When destructive behaviors happen in a classroom, the results can be disastrous. In Facebook groups, I occasionally see posted photos of trashed classrooms. In this episode, we explore what the negative consequences of this could be and why it likely won’t have the desired effect. ---------------------------------------------- Enrollment for our Pr…
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There is a popular phrase in the special ed world: Data or It Didn’t Happen. As a BCBA who loves data, I hate this phrase. This phrase put unreasonable expectations on teachers and doesn’t take into account the competing contingencies that happen with data collection. Just because there aren’t enough resources to collect thorough data doesn’t mean …
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Lois Letchford is a reading specialist who is passionate about teaching struggling students how to read. In this episode, Lois dives into the problems with many traditional literacy approaches and the impact this can have on students. She shares some key strategies for building reading skills by building engagement and focusing on comprehension. Lo…
  continue reading
 
In this episode, learn why both administrators and teachers love The Autism Helper’s Curriculum Access. Leah Green, Special Education Coordinator from West Fargo Public Schools, shares why her district decided to implement Curriculum Access within their special education classroom. She shares what features were important to her as an administrator …
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Michelle B. Rogers is an Autism Mom & Life Coach for Parents of Children with Autism. In this episode, we discuss essential life skills that Michelle works with parents on teaching their children. Michelle shares the 3 critical skills that all children need to be successful. We dive into one of those skills - toilet training. Michelle shares some o…
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In this episode, parent, podcast host, and advocate Lia McCabe shares her story of her children’s and her own diagnosis with autism. She shares how her diagnosis with autism impacts her parent and also what lead her to share her story and provide support within the autism community Lia is the Founder of AutismWish, a charitable initiative providing…
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