There were so many important developments in the world of special education during the first part of 2019. Many seem to be focussing (and about time) on humanising the stories behind the labels and pushing for accountability of those in positions of power.
Recognising your own emotions and identifying effective strategies for managing these is a key skill for any child.
You can call it challenging behaviour but these events really demonstrate is a highly anxious,frustrated or traumatic reaction to stress, Autistic children are not any more prone to behavioural incidents than other children so we need to look deeper if our interactions or environment is leading to issues.
this post is specifically focused on strategies that may be effective for autistic children. This post draws heavily on the work of Damian Milton from who’s writing I have learnt so much from over the last year or two. This booklet has particularly shaped my approach to teaching. Most of these strategies are really just aimed at reducing stressors throughout the day. I would like to stress these are interpreted through by teaching experience and context is very important.
In this post I am classing reluctant learners as those who often do not finish tasks, they may do the minimum to get by or even flat out refuse to take part. As inclusive teachers we constantly have to be mindful of the drivers of the child’s behaviour. The key to creating engaged learners is to know the child and the barriers they face. Some issues may go deeper and require additional specialist support. A class teacher dedicated to engaging their students can have a huge impact on the students experience of education and their outcome in life. Engaging learners is as much about emotional confidence as intellectual propensity so make that bond and enable all to achieve
The importance of an inclusive school learning environment Every student, whether in special schools, an alternative provision or general education classrooms has a dream inclusive classroom. This utopian learning environment will be different for every learner. Some learners may need wide-ranging adaptations requiring specialist input. There are some common environmental adaptations we can all make […]
The interactions, bonds and relationships of a family unit are so diverse that what may help one family will insult another.
This is blog post is primarily school-based and SEND focused, but can any education or care setting that strives to be truly inclusive should be able to use this as an environmental and relational approach based checklist or simple inclusion audit tool. Before you start looking at strategies or labeling a child’s actions as challenging […]
There are many many children out there who are crying out for help. There are many dedicated, enthusiastic, creative and compassionate people who are desperate to help. These people need help, we are increasingly facing highly complex issues that very few educational professionals are equipped to deal with. I am writing this as a teacher but I know there are CAMHS workers, social workers and support staff throughout the country who are feeling like this.
I needed something quick and simple to support a young student through a difficult time. She was very reliant on staff to support her with very little idea ways she could help herself without getting overwhelmed. Her actions suggested she needed some prompts to think of ways to ask for help.
These books are only those I have read and can recommend. They all follow an inclusive and positive support ethos. They all also focus on the only part of behaviour support we can control – ourselves. If your school has a zero tolerance behaviour policy read these and make it your mission to get that rewritten.I will get around to doing a second post but I need to get reading first!
This post will outline the role relationships play in behaviour support, I will also outline some of the research led practices I have used. Before I start I do want to say that I have read studies I do not agree with. I also know that a huge number of studies conducted ON Autistic children/adults focus on strategies intended to normalise social behaviours which is a huge ethical issue. Fortunately I have had the opportunity to listen to and discuss elements of my practice with actually Autistic academics and practitioners. This has greatly shaped my approach and ethos towards behaviour support, I will also admit this has slanted my view of a lot of studies that remove the human element from behaviour and reduce the children to purely objects to study. To this end I fully expect some of the approaches in the post and the presentation to be a bit controversial and I am 100% sure that at least some of them will contravene your school (or center’s) behaviour policy.
A Guide to supporting transitions and changes with Autistic students within school.
Transition is a challenge that our students face on a daily basis. These transitions take place on a range of scales. From the micro transition of switching thoughts between tasks to major physical transitions between environments. The number of individual transitions an individual will undertake throughout the day is huge. Each one may well be a source of stress and anxiety for each student. The level of this anxiety and how it is communicated to us will vary dramatically. As with all the actions of our students this stress may not be easy for us to interpret. The quotes are from Autistic people I asked but are anonymised. I know I do not include enough Autistic voice, I will strive to expand this in future posts (I would welcome your comments.)
This seemed apt to post now as the country simmers slowly beneath the summer sun. This post is based on observations and frequency data over a shorter period of hot weather. Whilst analysing the behavioural incident data records a spike in frequency for a specific group of 9 students was noted (the red box on […]
Looking beyond “No apparent reason”. Internal Antecedents: Does Behaviour Really come “Out of the Blue?” Often overlooked, internal antecedents are an important element in behaviour support. This article is based on my experiences working with Autistic children who also communicate in ways we find challenging. We do our best to find patterns, clues and reasons […]
These are 10 simple ways to prevent challenging behaviour escalation by making small changes to your interactions. In our PBS training these are called active interventions. In reality there are thousands of these, the better you know the child the more adept you will become at identifying the most effective strategies in your teacher’s toolkit […]
“If a child is Autistic, they do not like change.” This is the biggest stereotype, attributed to autistic people, the most widely repeated generalisation (In schools anyway). It is not entirely accurate? A better comment would be “Change causes anxiety.” or “The thought of change out of my control is stressful”. Everyone to some degree […]
Every day teachers, parents and carers are faced with potentially challenging situations. Many of these are defused through skillful behaviour support. These successful resolutions will have certain common characteristics. There are some essential conditions that must exist to deescalate an incident of challenging behaviour.
Christmas and the holidays can be a trying time for our young people. Lights and decorations have been up since mid November, Mince pies and decorations were in the shops before halloween and the Coca-cola truck is already on tour.
n my role as behaviour lead at my school I am increasingly interested in the impact of sensory processing on learning, engagement and what we perceive as challenging behaviour. I wanted to find out more so asked some questions of the twitterverse. This is a breakdown of some of the things I was able to take away from the chat.