In edWeb’s Behavioral Strategies for Students with Autism: Going Beyond 1:1 webinar, Nina Finkler, M.Ed., LDT/C, BCBA and President of Nina Finkler Autism Services explained a number of behavioral strategies to implement into class lessons. The webinar began with a brief overview of the potential benefits and pitfalls of the 1:1 model. Although the 1:1 model allows students with autism to establish foundational learning readiness, Finkler highlights that not only is the 1:1 model difficult to achieve without a large staff, but it can also limit the social growth of students who may become overly dependant on their teachers. By regularly showering students with undivided attention, teachers risk introducing their students to unrealistic social standards that may be carried into other settings.
Moving beyond the 1:1 model can be difficult to achieve for teachers who struggle to meet the individual needs of their students who have special needs. Yet, utilizing behavioral strategies such as 2:1 and 3:1 quick trials, tutoring and monitoring, and leader/prompter models can encourage the development of social skills that are necessary for success in postsecondary settings and adult programming.
Here’s a brief breakdown of these models:
- 2:1 and 3:1 Quick Trials allows teachers to implement IEPs while working with more than one student at a time. This model teaches students to work independently on individual lessons and wait for instruction. Selected goals must support fast-paced trials and requires that the instructor is organized.
- Tutoring 2:1 and 3:1 is for students with some level of independence and allows for focused, sustained teaching. Like the 2:1 and 3:1 model, one student is given independent work while the other student receives 1:1 instruction. This model is characterized by high levels of reinforcement and periodical check-ins with students who are working independently.
- Monitoring mirrors the rotational instruction that is practiced in traditional classrooms with group lessons followed by individual work time. In this model, the teacher offers group instruction and individual assistance as needed. This model utilizes individualized reinforcements and encourages all students to stay on task with some level of independence.
- Leader/Prompter encourages students to focus and respond to the leader who gives both instructions and reinforcers. In this model, students are encouraged to work in a group setting. Prompters use nonverbal gestural strategies to prompt student action, keep data and implement behavior plans or reinforcements. The ultimate goal of this model is to gradually fade prompters out of the group.
Implementing these strategies while maintaining the attention of every student can be difficult in any classroom. Visual learning can be a powerful, integral part of individualized education as special ed classrooms transition beyond the 1:1 model. Research proves that customized visual supports improve outcomes and behavior in the classroom for students with autism and other special education needs.
With more than 15,000 interactive lessons, Vizzle allows teachers to modify activities to meet the needs of any number of students with special needs. Real-time reporting is integrated into the Vizzle platform, making the charting of progress toward IEP goals and objectives simple. Vizzle is accessible from any device and can be implemented into classrooms with any behavioral model. Try our FREE trial and see how Vizzle can make a difference for your students.