I teach children with Autism in Las Vegas, in the Clark County School District. Our district, no doubt like many others, has been overwhelmed by the number of young children with autism spectrum diagnoses. We receive support from "Low Incidence" which includes services for the hearing impaired and multiple disabilities, as well as autism spectrum disorders. The department provides support through itinerant behavior specialists, who help us design programs for especially challenging students. They also provide training.
I spent Monday through Thursday of last week working with students from the autism early intervention program, using the methods of Applied Behavior Analysis to teach pre academic skills, increase compliance, and maintain attention. It came with a lot of encouragement and coaching, and I left feeling that I had further cemented my skills in delivering discrete trial teaching. (A little applause when I got all three plates--um--students spinning at the same time was quite gratifying.)
I went with a good foundation, including graduate work in applied behavior analysis, as well as opportunities to see skilled practitioners work. I realized that I need to be sure the information I provide here provides a good platform for you, my readers, when you have students with autism but lack the training and resources I have here. I decided it was time to build a platform that will work for you, providing a clear explanation of the techniques. You will find some good examples of discrete trial training online at You Tube, though I hope to have some demonstrations up, as well.
I hope you will realize that at present, it's still a work in progress. I've laid out a general article, ABA or Applied Behavior Analysis, which will serve as a foundation. I have also added a new article about the Function of Behavior, to join and article I had already written about Discrete Trial Training. I will be adding articles about assessing reinforcement, learning to learn skills, and other parts of applied behavior analysis as it is used to support success in children with autism spectrum disorders. I know that these could be vital for my readers overseas, who lack the resources and skills that we have access to here in the United States.
Bear with me, though if you have some things you don't see and need me to address, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Oh, and bear with me: I know that the new trend is to call is "Discrete Trial Teaching," I just need the extra time to recode that article. I teach tomorrow morning.