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Autism Spectrum Disorders & The ‘Stress Bucket’. Kevin Baskerville KB Autism Services + Leicestershire AOS (IS) Manager Mapping your.

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Presentation on theme: "Autism Spectrum Disorders & The ‘Stress Bucket’. Kevin Baskerville KB Autism Services + Leicestershire AOS (IS) Manager Mapping your."— Presentation transcript:


2 Autism Spectrum Disorders & The ‘Stress Bucket’. Kevin Baskerville KB Autism Services + Leicestershire AOS (IS) Manager Mapping your way through the ASD Maze: National Team Teach Conference March 2013

3 STRESS unsure what is going to happen difficulties with communication literal interpretation of situation sensory difficulties anxious about failure does not know / understand rules poor concept of time changes in routine The Stress Bucket What ‘Fills your Bucket?

4 KB Autism Services 2009 Bucket Size (ability to cope) Influences Experiences prior to involvement at school/work How are you feeling? Memory – previous influences Activity planned Communication skills – receptive & expressive abilities Staff & students involved in the activity + many other abstract influences – CAN YOU THINK OF MORE? What affects the ‘size of your bucket?

5 ASD: Triad of Impairments Language and Communication Behaviour (Range of Activities and Interests) Social Interaction Wing, L. 1980 Inflexibility & Rigidity of Thought & Imagination OR + Sensory + Anxiety Issues

6 5 HITTING Sensory overload - panic You’re crowding me Get me out of here Where are you taking me? Can’t say what the matter is Don’t know how to ask for chase game I like the ‘buzz’ The ‘Iceberg’ of Behaviour: “Understand the Function to Understand How to Prevent”.

7 Anxiety Issues in Individuals with ASD Social Communication Phobia – Avoidant of social contact with other people (differing degrees) – Avoidant of speaking within social situations – Unsure of social rules – therefore avoid Memory Concerns – Been there/similar before – therefore avoid Fears/Worries – What if…? “1% chance is still a chance Kevin!” Watch Mark – QEDWatch Mark – QED – at end

8 KB Autism Services 2012

9 Neurological Aspects Differences within the cerebellum and limbic system Function of Cerebellum - ability to anticipate - motor planning – static balance – modulation of emotion – modulation of fine and gross motor skills – use of mental imagery – word retrieval, attention shifting Function of Limbic System –appreciation of novelty –maintaining attention –integration of sensory experiences –memory rote or habit memory rote or habit memory representational or cognitive associative memory representational or cognitive associative memory Video: Rage for Order


11 ‘The Anxiety Plan’ 1.Identify that your child is anxious and/or stressed and to what level 2.Establish techniques for reducing stress 3.Teach the individual to recognise their stress and to communicate this to an appropriate individual 4.Implement the relaxing strategy and observe for change 5.Teach self-reliance through self-relaxing strategies KB 2005

12 1. Identify that your child is anxious and/or stressed and to what level

13 Anxiety Issues: Anxiety Level Assessment Clearly define levels of anxiety For each time period, environment, activity rate the level of anxiety Look for patterns in time, activity, environment Also see Groden & Cautela (2001) ‘Stress Survey Schedule for Individuals with Autism’ nt/jt16273130x37172/

14 ‘The Incredible 5- Point Scale’ – Baron, Curtis (2003) What Does it Look or Feel Like? Example.

15 1 Keep doing what you are doing 2 Take time to calm a little – read a book, ask for help, think about something you like 3 Walk away. Find an adult to talk to. Do something you know helps you feel better. Tell someone how you feel. 4 Leave what you are doing: listen to some music. Tell an adult what is wrong 1 I feel calm. Everything is ok. 2 I feel a bit upset and sad. I am unsure what to do - puzzled 3 I am starting to feel cross – I don ’ t like what is happening. 4 I am angry. I want to shout or scream, to make a noise. How do I feel? 5 LOST IT! I need you to help me now.

16 Thermometer (Tony Attwood, 2001)

17 Feel-o-Meter (Tony Attwood, 2001)

18 2. Techniques to reduce Stress

19 Using the 95% to Reduce Stress  Positive Handling – the full range of strategies and interventions (physical and non-physical)  Use of space  Changes to the environment  Stance and posture  Facial expressions  Intonation  Simple positive messages What Can I Do To Reduce Their Stress?

20 In Addition – Use Their Interests (A.S.K.) Focus on the things they like to ease their stress &/or to show them a better way Thomas the Tank Engine Canal Systems of GB Flags of the World Power Cards (Elisa Gagnon) sources/factsheets/powercard.shtml

21 Relaxation Sequence : Getting Started

22 Physical Layout – to reduce stress Planning with the Child in Mind Location of Classroom within School Structured Easy to Understand Easy to Use Promotes Self-Management Seating Arrangement Clearly Marked Centres or Areas Independent Work Areas - (with fewer distracters) A “Comfort-Zone” - (a defined physical space)

23 Anxiety Issues: Relaxation Progressive Muscle sequence task that requires a tightening and relaxing of muscles twice a day to begin to recognize when muscles are tense or relaxed begin prior to situations when anxious Relaxation Powerpoint


25 Relaxation Book Building Bridges (1998) Yack, Sutton & Aquilla

26 Relaxation Book Building Bridges (1998) Yack, Sutton & Aquilla

27 Relaxation Book Building Bridges (1998) Yack, Sutton & Aquilla

28 Relaxation Book Building Bridges (1998) Yack, Sutton & Aquilla

29 Happy Book I feel happy when I am playing with a Koosh ball I feel happy when I am watching a Thomas video. I feel happy when I am eating an Oh Henry bar or a bag of chips. Adapt dependent on age/interests What would be in yours or your child’s? Or maybe Happy/Chilling Music, TV or Movie Clips – all that can relax or redirect

30 Visual Imagery What image relaxes you? Perhaps a Relaxing Powerpoint Presentation will help? Cognitive Picture Rehearsal et-CognitvePictureRehearsal.pdf

31 Corey’s Bus Home (A Cognitive Picture Rehearsal Example) 1. At the end of school I can get my bag. 2. Take a Deep Breath 3. Put on my coat! 4. Take a Deep Breath 5. Line up for the bus 6. Take a Deep Breath 7. Get on the bus 8. Take a Deep Breath 9. Mum is there to meet me off the bus mon/TipSheet- CognitvePictureRehearsa l.pdf

32 3. Teach the individual to recognise their stress and to communicate this to an appropriate individual

33 33 Hidden Curriculum The set of unwritten rules that no one has been directly taught, but everyone knows. Violations of these rules can make an individual a social outcast. Phrase associated with hidden curriculum: “I shouldn’t have to tell you but … “ “Everyone knows that … “ “It’s obvious … “ Brenda Smith Myles How Men Screw Up Romance – Hidden Curriculum Chaps!!!

34 How do I tell someone I’m stressed? Augmentative Communicative Devices Card/token/ use ‘my levels’ used to express they are leaving room – plan swings into action Text, note, pre-arranged signals – with staff & special peers Safe place needs to be sort/created Student & TA/LSA etc have agreement staff member will read situation & remove

35 4. Implement the relaxing strategy and observe for change

36 Implement & Watch When are they not stressed (when do they seem happy?) What can you learn from when they are not stressed to implement at times when they are? Implement relaxation devices What words can be used to describe improvements – to give them a voice?

37 The 4 Basic (but) Essential Questions That Need Answering! ① What am I doing? ② How long am I doing it for? ③ What will I be doing next? ④ When will I get to do the things that I really want to do? KB Autism Services 2010  Answering these consistently and you are onto a winner!  Can you answer them for yourself?  What happens if you don’t know the answer to one of the above questions at any time? What do you do?

38 5. Teach self- reliance through self-relaxing strategies

39 Check How I’m Feeling! What has worked? How can I keep it going? Self-monitoring - 1-5 scoring systems; use the calendar; look for patterns of positivity Self-talking – reminding myself how I am feeling, how well I have done & what I have achieved Mind mapping – to work out longer term plans (to help focus for the future); to answer ‘What’s the positive that can happen?’ Strategies to keep things going – write my own social stories, cognitive picture rehearsal (over-rides mental imagery issues) ; self- rewarding charts (keeping my levels under check I can reward myself) Understand my own diagnosis – a process to go through (Dean Beadle)Dean Beadle

40 Let’s Review: Strategies/Techniques 1.Help Individual Recognize His/Her Own Anxiety (where possible) 2.Improve Expressive Communication Skills + Develop Communicative Accuracy in Ability to Express Fear/Anxiety 3.Relaxation Strategies – Incorporated into Regular Daily Schedule, As a Preventative &/Or in Response to Anxiety


42 Thanks For Listening! Further Workshops Include (+ others) Understanding & Teaching Friendship Skills Sensory Processing Issues, ASD and the Classroom Cognitive Strategies to Help Students with an ASD: Social Stories, Power Cards, Cognitive Picture Rehearsals, SOCCSS + many more Peer Discussion about ASD Discussion about Diagnosis Why Do They Do That? Understanding Behaviour in Individuals with an ASD Contact me on - workshops can be evening, ½ day, Full Days or in the form of a 15 hour 6 Week Course (Based in Warwickshire, Solihull, Coventry, Oxfordshire & Leicestershire) Cheers – Kevin


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