Please note: I accept most private insurance and I will gladly work with your insurance to try to reduce or eliminate out of pocket expenses.
All services begin with an in-home assessment and consultation. During this time we will discuss your initial concerns and discuss treatment options for your child. Together we will identify your child's strengths and areas in your child's development which may need improvement. I will develop a detailed plan, which will address and strengthen these areas. Parents and caregivers are an important part of treatment. Therefore, any strategies that are used in sessions will also include specific, easy to implement strategies and techniques for parents and caregivers to use outside of sessions. This will ensure maximum benefit to the student and the most efficient rate of progress. As not only a behaviorist, but also a developmental specialist and a dual licensed educator with over 11 years of experience in the field, I will address all areas of your child's development: social, emotional, behavioral, cognitive, adaptive living skills, fine-motor skills, and gross-motor skills.
Applied Behavior Analysis:
While applied behavior analysis does involve discrete trial teaching, it is important to remember that discrete trials are just one component of ABA. ABA is, in fact, a broader term which simply means identifying factors in the environment which maintain problem behavior, and manipulating the environment to decrease undesirable behavior and increase desirable behavior. It is also important to note that ABA is not only used with children with autism spectrum disorder. ABA is a science that is applicable to solve a broad range of problems.
When appropriate for your child's learning style, applied behavior analysis curriculums involve teaching a set of skills in small steps. Each child has an individualized ABA curriculum based on research in Behavior Analysis literature and the individualized needs of each student. Each child’s curriculum emphasizes skills in attending, imitation, comprehension, use of language, play, motor, pre-academic, social, and self-help skills. If necessary, the curriculum may also include a plan to change specific behaviors that interfere with learning. This plan includes data collection, functional analysis, program development, and implementation to increase positive behavior change. The goal in every program is to generalize the skills taught in 1:1 instruction to typical and / or community settings. (TheraCare,2007).
As a developmental specialist it is my practice that when a child's program involves discrete trials, it is especially important to also combine discrete trials with Natural Environment Teaching. NET involves using the child's interests and natural environment to create opportunities for verbal interaction. Many theorists believe that this is the environment which is most effective for facilitating skills crucial for communication and language development. Therefore, this teaching method would lead to spontaneous production of those skills in the natural environment. (Mosier, 2011).
Developmental Intervention (Early
Although I am highly trained to work with children up to age 18, one of my specialties is working with children under 5 years of age. Frequently, developmental intervention is used with this age group. Developmental intervention involves language stimulation and targets the development of imitative speech and eventually spontaneous language. The goal is to lengthen these utterances as spontaneous language begins to develop. These services also involve a plan to address any lagging skills in cognitive, fine-motor, gross-motor, and social development. The teaching method for this age group involves using the child's natural environment to facilitate language learning. Play therapy is used to address and strengthen areas in your child's development which may need improvement.
Intervention for Problem Behaviors
Sometimes children learn maladaptive ways of communicating wants and needs, or escaping demands or tasks. Intervention for problem behaviors involves first identifying what factor is maintaining, or causing, the problem behavior. Then I will teach your child a functional replacement behavior and work with you to put into place a simple, easy to implement, effective plan at home to decrease the problem behavior and increase functional behavior.
A Note About Collaboration:
I am more than happy to collaborate with any professionals that you may already have on your child's treatment team, including doctors, psychiatrists, counselors, educators, etc. Treatment is most effective when we all work together!