Series Title: Critical Mass and Autism: Creating Independent Learners
Date: May 23, 2018
Time: 4:00-6:00 Mountain / 3:00-5:00 Pacific
Presented By: Brenda Smith Myles
Teach a skill from start to finish! Promote independence! Help individuals with ASD learn independently! Most individuals with ASD are taught skills only to a certain point. For example, an individual may learn to read a calendar of assignments and check it the night before; however, he is not totally independent on this task because he has not learned that you often need to check your calendar more often than one night before an activity, such as a test. As adults, they may be taught to pay bills and pay them on a timely basis when an invoice is provided. However, what if there is no invoice — such as with rent.
These challenges are directly related to a lack of success in independent living, employment, and social interactions. How do we change this trajectory? This presentation focuses on describing the factors that lead to critical mass for those on the spectrum when providing instruction and supports.
Session 1 - 5/16: This session will introduce the concept of critical mass as it applies to individuals with autism spectrum disorder. This session will discuss developing specific goals, evidence-based practices, and categorization that will help individuals with ASD achieve.
Session 2 - 5/23: The discussion of critical mass continues with the introduction of the levels of learning that help ensure that students have a foundation of knowledge on which to build new skills.
Session 3 - 5/30: This final session on critical mass will talk about the comfort zone and its impact on autistic students. The comfort zone will be discussed relative to matching ability to demands, matching ability to group size, and preventing explosions. The session ends with a discussion of communicating outcomes, including providing feedback and evaluation as well as the science of reinforcement.