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Excellence In Individualized Learning Programs

 
 
 
 Approach

Applied Behavior Analysis

Our teaching programs and strategies are grounded in the well established science of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). Applied Behavior Analysis has a history of more than 50 years of peer reviewed research on specific methods of teaching new skills, and reducing problem behaviors, even for the most challenged learners. An emphasis of ABA methodology with learners on the Autism Spectrum is recommended by the New York State Department of Health (1999), the National Research Council (2001) and the National Autism Center (2009). Reviewing research across many professional disciplines, the National Autism Center found that over 90% of scientifically supported interventions for children with Autism had behavioral methodology at their core.

Assessment

Initial and ongoing assessment are key to the selection and development of appropriate intervention programs for students with Autism Spectrum Disorders. We spend several hours getting to know our learners and their families before we develop goals and begin teaching. Once we design individualized goals, you and the rest of the child's team will collect data on an ongoing basis so that we can evaluate the success of our teaching programs. On the basis of these data, your child's programs are adapted to ensure that progress occurs and continues.

Curriculum

We take pride in our ability to design intervention programs around the specific needs of each of our learners. During intial assessments and regularly during our ongoing relationship, we work collaboratively with you to develop appropriate goals for your child. Our goal selection is informed by a number of published curricula depending upon the age and skill level of the learner, the skill areas targeted, and the intensity of services provided. The VB-MAPP heavily informs our language instruction and our early intervention.

Context of Intervention

We believe in embedding instruction into the everyday activities of our learners to the greatest extent possible. Teaching sessions for many of our learners take place in community settings as well as in their homes. Learners on the Autism Spectrum often have difficulties generalizing skills outside of the learning context. The real locations in which targeted skills are needed are often the best place to teach the skills. When necessary and appropriate, we also include more structured 1:1 teaching sessions incorporating blocks of discrete trial teaching, fluency-based instruction, and more naturalistic teaching strategies. Most of our learners receive a mix of natural environment, discrete trial and fluency-based instruction.

Starting in the Spring of 2013 we have been offering clinic-based Play Workshops week nights, after school. Our 8 week Play Workshops alow us to offer customized social skills instruction with neurotypical peer buddies. We are very excited about this new opportunity to add what we believe to be such an important component of any intervention program for learners with ASD. Our new clinic-based services will complement the high quality in-home and community-based interventions we already provide.