What Others are Saying...

A Special Education director sent this to Cathy as to the reason she invited her after reading this email from one of her principals. 

"Thank you for giving me the opportunity to attend the Autism Meltdowns in Children and Adolescents: Practical Strategies for Prevention, Intervention and Postvention seminar in Santa Fe on Wednesday.  This has been a very stressful year, dealing with students who express behavior problems daily, which many times have led to complete meltdowns.  The frustration on my end, as a teacher was at an all-time high, which led to daily frustration within my classroom.  This was affecting our class as a whole, not only the students displaying behavior issues and/or meltdowns, and it has been very difficult teaching during these emotional breakdowns.  Coming to work had become stressful and my weekends were not times of relaxation, they were times of pure dread.  I’d question what my new week would entail, what would occur for my student to meltdown, how would I react, what could I do to help myself get through the day.  I’d come to class trying to mask my frustration, to bring happiness to these students, and really to focus onteaching, but it became a cycle of several students and I meeting frustration, while the rest of the class had to witness it all.  Prior to this seminar, I was engaging in personal activities to try to relieve my stress (e.g. working out, sleeping, rewarding myself with shopping, etc.), but the minute I began learning the new strategies in the seminar, I began to truly feel at peace.  Inow have new tools to prevent meltdowns.  I now can empathize on a level that I had never been able to this year.  I now see the importance of prevention and teaching appropriate social skills for many of my students.  Inow know that not all meltdowns are preventable, but I have the strategies to work on empowering my students to learn their behaviors and teaching them new ways to re-act to their own frustrations.  These new strategies include student input, which helps foster positive student-teacher communication.  What’s the best part, you ask?  It’s that ALL of my students benefit from these new strategies.  The minute I received colored copies of Kathy’s Positive Behavior Flip Book, schedules and the surprise cards, as well as the t-chart, I began using them in our class.  The students have been introduced to the Emotions Chart and I have used them twice today, with two different students, to prevent meltdowns.  I have utilized the T-chart twice in my classroom, once in the cafeteria, and once at the playground to resolve student behavior today.  I have used the Flip Book whole group and the students really responded well.  So thank you for allowing me to participate in this seminar.  It was truly a blessing and has not only brought me back to a humble, positive outlook, but it empowered me with new strategies that have worked in relieving my students’ meltdowns, which in turn will make for much better school days for each one of them.

P.S. The strategies are free on www.igivuwings.com." - Nancy P., hobbs, NM