My son's case manager at a local autism clinic wants to quit focusing on his homework and focus on additional work that is data driven but in my experience is also too easy for my son to do, and too easy for the therapists to give themselves a good grade. The therapists struggle to help him get his homework done in the two hours they have with him on Tuesday and Thursday. It… read more
Doing homework can be data driven. Reducing his behavior to deviate from the homework should be decreased (whining, crying, yelling, hitting, running away from table) while increasing the on task behavior. All that should be able to be counted and graphed or timed and graphed. If what they are trying to do is too easy then is it mastered? If mastered why are they trying to work with him on mastered skills other then for maintenance purposes?
My son's ABA program attacks both area: functional skills & academic skills. It's not like he will do all his homework @ the therapy session, but they teach him comprehension concepts (reading area), logical thinking (math), verbal interaction (answer qs from his reading), sit quiet (more reading time), writing skills (more homework), potty time, etc... While he's doing his therapy session he is automaticaly doing his homework. My son spends 4 hours daily on ABA after school. SO we have to make sure he does his homework on this time, because he won't have anytime less to do it. My son's ABA program focuses on Verbal communication & functional skill. But they make sure all his programs cove whatever he sees on the school...
Hi Robin and Sharon,
Just a quick update. The ABA work at home is going very well. I have a lot of input. He's challenged. And even more importantly, he loves it with Robyne as his aide, we had another aide, named Kate who was exceptional as well.
The public school experience resulted in huge stress on my son, Octavio. Almost, every night he begs me to home school him, etc. Rather than continue to try and squeeze better results out of the school (one step forward two backward), I've spent the year looking for better schools. You have no idea how relieved I am that he got into APL, in seattle. http://www.aplschool.org/ .
Almost all the para-professionals at APL have their Masters in ABA topics. The director's competency level is extremely high. Octavio starts in the fall. Now, everyday after school it's, "I can't believe I still have to go to this stupid school. Everyone hates me and I hate them. Why can't I start APL immediately." I can't wait, either :) .
Thanks for your fantastic replies, Ned
Ned just the fact that they struggle with him, that it is stressful to them, and tell you to deal with it tells me they don't have the proper training. It really sounds like they just wanted to work at easy stuff and ignore the hard stuff. Although a good behavior analyst works in the environment so as to more easily observe, evaluate, and transfer the skills in the real world many are turning to clinics because they can she more clients in a short amount of time. Although I have used a clinic type setting for group activities and social skills I do in home for individual. In your situation it really sounds like quality is the issue and not the location.
Here is an example for you to look at: Tonight my son is going to his karate class. This is a program for children with special needs. It is run by a former autism cluster teacher who is a master instructor for the particular Karate art. There are many staff of various levels of training from the karate school assisting. There is no behavior analyst. No matter what my son does, how he behaves, how many tantrums he has, how much he listens, I am told sit back, relax, they'll handle it. And they do. I absolutely believe in having and using a Board Certified Behavior Analyst in the program or supervising the program but sometimes someone with true training and experience in a related field can be just as good. Google define behavior analysis or what is behavior analysis it just seems the people you are using or the ones assigned to your son are not practicing ABA.
I'm not sure who would have told you that ABA is about over-easy skill acquisition. Our skills begin with foundational lessons and we build upon them into complex lessons needed for adulthood. If your child is mastering skills quickly, that is great. But there is always a "next step". Perhaps he should be re-evaluated to ensure whomever developed his plan is targeting the areas he truly needs help with.