There are a number of different kinds of instructional services that students access from me. Below are a few that I use on a regular basis:
Social Skills Instruction teaches students appropriate behaviors and interpersonal communication skills which may or may not include self-discipline and problem solving skills. We work on preventing inappropriate behaviors by teaching students replacement behaviors to increase skills and behaviors that will increase social acceptance. Most times these skills are initially taught one-on-one or through small group instruction and then generalized into the classroom as the student progresses.
Anger Management is for students who are unable to control their anger in the school setting to the point that it is disrupting their learning or the learning of other students. Anger management teaches students about anger and where it comes from. Students learn how to recognize symptoms of anger and will learn a variety of strategies to help them deal appropriately with their feelings. Once identified, the strategy or strategies can be incorporated into the regular school setting.
Self-Monitoring strategies help students who have a limited awareness or understanding of their behaviors and the effects on others. Self-Monitoring helps students recognize and keep track of their own behaviors. After a behavior is identified, the teacher and student work to find an appropriate monitoring system. Through appropriate use of the self-monitoring system and regular reinforcers, students learn how to effectively monitor their own behavior and make changes before it becomes a problem. This monitoring system allows students to become more successful in the regular education environment.
De-escalation is necessary for those students who's feelings increase to the point where they cannot remain in the regular classroom. Through self-talk, teacher talk, writing, drawing, time-outs, etc. Students learn how to calm themselves down in an acceptable amount of time. De-escalation is necessary to ensure the safety of both students and staff.
Problem Solving teaches students to think or talk through their problems to find a solution. There are several different strategies from weighing pros and cons to more in-depth methods that require students to think about the problem, identify their options, identify the consequence for their options and whether or not a solution will be reached. With continued practice, students can think about the consequences before they act and prevent problems from further escalating.Relaxation Techniques are taught to students who have a particular difficult time calming down. This can be for students who suffer from anxiety or for those with anger management difficulties. There are several techniques used for relaxation that are taught to the students such as deep breathing, counting to ten, etc. After a student identifies a technique that works particularly well for them, the strategy is practiced regularly and the student is prompted to use it when necessary.Self-Motivation is taught to students who are not able to find a reason to accomplish tasks. Motivation can be found through different types of reinforcers depending on the students interests. Once motivators are identified a plan is implemented that will allow the student to reach reasonable goals. Rewards are implemented on a regular basis and eventually faded out.
Positive self-talk is a particularly difficult thing for adolescents to do. To increase this, we start by identifying strengths of the student, and activities that focus on those strengths are incorporated. Students participate in exercises and activities that teach them how to say good things about themselves particularly during times of struggle. These exercises are eventually generalized into the regular education setting.Crisis Management is only used for students who exhibit behavior which could potentially become a safety hazard to themselves or others. A crisis management plan usually involves several staff members to participate depending on the child's needs. Problem behaviors are identified and a plan is designed according to those behaviors. Once the plan is designed the child is informed of the plan and instructed on what will happen if their behavior becomes a concern. In addition, the child is also taught de-escalation strategies. It is a step-by-step procedure that is followed consistently when the child's behavior escalates.