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What the DEC Recommended Practices Say About ASD: Suggestions for Interventionists

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Title: What the DEC Recommended Practices Say About ASD: Suggestions for Interventionists


1
What the DEC Recommended Practices Say About ASD
Suggestions for Interventionists
  • Ilene Schwartz
  • Phil Strain
  • Glen Dunlap

2
DEC Recommended Practices
  • Provide guidance about the most effective ways to
    improve learning outcomes and promote the
    development of children, birth five
  • Highlight practices shown to result in better
    outcomes for children, families, and those who
    serve them
  • Research ? practice

3
Framework
  • Using the DEC Recommended Practices as a guide,
    what policies practices should be included in a
    comprehensive program for children with ASD?
  • Leadership
  • Assessment
  • Environment
  • Family
  • Instruction
  • Interaction
  • Teaming Collaboration
  • Transition

4
Leadership
  • 14 practices
  • L7. Leaders develop, refine, and implement
    policies and procedures that create the
    conditions for practitioners to implement the DEC
    Recommended Practices.

5
Leadership
  • Good leaders are essential to implementing
    recommended practices and high quality programs
  • Leaders create and support environments in which
    practitioners can do their best work
  • Leaders create environments and implement
    policies and practices that retain and support
    practitioners

6
Assessment
  • 11 practices
  • A4. Practitioners conduct assessments that
    include all areas of development and behavior to
    learn about the childs strengths, needs,
    preferences, and interests.
  • A9. Practitioners implement systematic ongoing
    assessment to identify learning targets, plan
    activities, and monitor the childs progress to
    revise instruction as needed.

7
Environment
  • 7 practices
  • E3. Practitioners work with the family and other
    adults to modify and adapt the physical, social,
    and temporal environments to promote each childs
    access to and participation in learning
    experiences.

8
Families
  • Three themes
  • Family centered practices
  • Family capacity building practices
  • Family and professional collaboration
  • Ten practices
  • F5. Practitioners support family functioning,
    promote family confidence and competence, and
    strengthen family-child relationships by acting
    in ways that recognize and build on family
    strengths and capacities. F5. Practitioners
    support family functioning, promote family
    confidence and competence, and strengthen
    family-child relationships by acting in ways that
    recognize and build on family strengths and
    capacities.

9
Instruction
  • 13 practices
  • INS6. Practitioners use systematic instructional
    strategies with fidelity to teach skills and to
    promote child engagement and learning.
  • INS7. Practitioners use explicit feedback and
    consequences to increase child engagement, play,
    and skills.
  • INS9. Practitioners use functional assessment and
    related prevention, promotion, and intervention
    strategies across environments to prevent and
    address challenging behavior.

10
Interaction
  • Five practices
  • Int 2. Practitioners promote the childs social
    development by encouraging the child to initiate
    or sustain positive interactions with other
    children and adults during routines and
    activities through modeling, teaching, feedback,
    and/or other types of guided support.
  • Int 3. Practitioners promote the childs
    communication development by observing,
    interpreting, responding contingently, and
    providing natural consequences to verbal and
    non-verbal communication and by using language to
    label and expand on the childs requests, needs,
    preferences, or interests.

11
Teaming and Collaboration
  • Five practices
  • TC2. Practitioners and families work together as
    a team to systematically and regularly exchange
    expertise, knowledge, and information to build
    team capacity and jointly solve problems, plan,
    and implement interventions.

12
Transition
  • Two practices
  • TR 2 -- Practitioners use a variety of planned
    and timely strategies with the child and family
    before, during, and after the transition to
    support successful adjustment and positive
    outcomes for both the child and family

13
What does this mean for children with ASD?
  • Programs need adults who can work together
  • Assessment must be thorough, on-going, include
    multiple domains, and influence instruction
  • Many instructional strategies can be used,
    data-based decision making is key
  • Social and communication behaviors are key
  • Environment modification can result in big
    changes
  • Transitions must be planned

14
These program elements yield best results for
children with ASD when provided in the context of
inclusive early education programs.
15
Myths About Inclusion
  • Too stimulating
  • Best for mildly involved
  • Harms others learning
  • Too costly
  • Compromises intensity
  • response opportunities x
  • fidelity of intervention delivered x
  • social validity of goals x
  • comprehensiveness of intervention x
  • data-based decision-making Quality Outcomes

16
When Does Inclusion Reap Possible Outcomes
  • Every day
  • All activities
  • Specially trained peers
  • Data tracking to make instructional decisions
  • Use of comprehensive curricula
  • Minimum of a 21 ratio

17
What Are the Mechanisms By Which Inclusive
Settings Produce Positive Social Outcomes?
  • Relationships and the
  • Cheers effect increasing opportunities to
    respond/participate
  • Encouragement of life on the preschool edge
  • Attitudes of and Advocacy by peers (LEAP data)
  • Informal but powerful instructional episodes that
    occur among peers

18
So, The Only Clear Outcome Difference is Social
So What?
  • Best predictor of 3rd grade reading is having a
    friend when you are 3
  • Preschool social relations also predict
  • Continuing friendships
  • Longevity
  • Recovery from serious medical events
  • Employment status
  • Independent living
  • Adult mental wellness

19
Peer Mediated Strategies LEAPs Social Skills
Curriculum
  • Getting Your Friends Attention
  • Sharing - Giving Toys
  • Sharing - Requesting Toys
  • Play Organizer
  • You be the Mommy.
  • Giving a Compliment
  • I like your painting.

20
Social Skill Curriculum Teaching the Skills
  • Describe Skill
  • Demonstrate
  • the Right Way
  • Demonstrate
  • the Wrong Way
  • Child Practice with Adult
  • Child Practice with Child
  • Set up Reinforcement System

21
What Really Stands in the Way?
  • The way it is and professional inertia
  • Edifice complex
  • Equating quality with one-to-one, adult child
    ratios
  • Some places, the lack of available EC settings
  • Lack of oversight and lack of consequences for
    noncompliance
  • Lack of institutional reinforcers for compliance

22
Effective Instructional Strategies
  • Critical Elements of Effective Educational
    Practice

23
Some Background
  • Effective instructional strategies for children
    with ASD are not different from effective
    instructional strategies for other children
  • However, effective instruction for some children
    with ASD requires more precision, care and
    attention to fidelity
  • Effective instructional strategies for young
    children with ASD are not different from
    effective instructional strategies for older
    children with ASD
  • However, attention must be paid to developmental
    characteristics (and thus curricular priorities)
    of young as opposed to older children

24
Elements of Effective Instruction for Children
with ASD
  1. Individualization of supports and services
  2. Systematic instruction
  3. Comprehensible and/or structured environments
  4. Specialized curriculum content (emphasis on
    social interactions and language)
  5. Functional approach to challenging behaviors
  6. Family engagement

25
INS 6 Systematic Instruction
  • Practitioners use systematic instructional
    strategies with fidelity to teach skills and
    promote child engagement and learning
  • Careful planning and goal setting
  • Careful planning of instructional procedures
  • Careful data collection
  • Careful implementation with fidelity
  • Careful, ongoing evaluation (progress monitoring)
    and adjustment of instructional plan as necessary

26
Instructional Procedures
  • Defining instructional target
  • Antecedents ---- specifying the contextual and
    antecedents under which target behavior should
    occur
  • Behavior ---- determining how the behavior will
    occur (e.g., prompting)
  • Consequences ---- specifying what consequences
    (e.g., reinforcers) will follow the behavior in
    order to make the behavior more likely to occur
    in the future

27
Instructional Procedures
  • Well-established evidence-based procedures, such
    as
  • Functional communication training
  • Peer-meditated instruction
  • Incidental teaching
  • And comprehensive programs, such as
  • Pivotal Response Training
  • EIBI (Lovaas etc.)

28
INS 7 Explicit Feedback and Consequences
  • Practitioners use explicit feedback and
    consequences to increase child engagement, play
    and skills
  • The most fundamental and the most important
    principle in all education and all learning is
    the principle of Positive Reinforcement

29
A Big Rule
  • Positive reinforcement is NOT positive
    reinforcement if it does not serve to strengthen
    (increase) behavior.
  • It is desirable for positive reinforcement to
    occur as naturally as possible, but positive
    reinforcement is not positive reinforcement if it
    does not serve to strengthen (increase) behavior.

30
Considerations
  • If you wish to implement effective instruction,
    you must be able to deliver a positive reinforcer
    contingently
  • If you are unsure, you can identify positive
    reinforcers through preference (or reinforcer)
    assessments
  • If your intervention plan is unsuccessful, the
    first place to look for a reason is the
    contingency
  • Is the reinforcer really a reinforcer?
  • Is it being used contingently?
  • Are there competing reinforcers?

31
INS 9 Functional Assessment and Positive
Behavior Support
  • Practitioners use functional assessment and
    related prevention, promotion and intervention
    strategies across environments to prevent and
    address challenging behavior
  • Functional assessment (or FBA) a process for
    identifying the function (purpose) of the
    challenging behavior and events in the
    environment that govern the behaviors occurrence
  • Function-based interventions rely on a functional
    assessment to identify components (strategies) of
    a behavior support plan (positive behavior
    support)

32
FA and PBS
  1. Establish a team (caregivers, family,
    professionals, etc.) and agree on specific
    definitions and goals related to challenging
    behavior (to reduce) and social-communicative
    behaviors (to increase)
  2. Design and implement feasible and valid data
    collection
  3. Conduct functional assessment to identify
    functions of challenging behavior and
    contextual/antecedent influences
  4. Design and implement a function-based behavior
    intervention plan
  5. Monitor progress and modify plan as necessary

33
And.
  • Behavior intervention plans work best if they
  • include multiple components ---- antecedent
    manipulations, instructional strategies, and
    effective consequences
  • Include active participation of family members
  • Are implemented with commitment and investment of
    all team members
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