The Autism Helper Podcast

The Autism Helper Podcast

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Welcome to The Autism Helper Podcast, where we explore different strategies to improve the lives of individuals with autism.


33: Work (Step 6 in the 7 Steps for Setting Up a Stellar Autism Room)
Jul 15 • 39 min
Now let’s get to the meat and potatoes of your classroom. When setting up your class, what curriculum and activities do you need to ensure your students are learning? There’s no quick and easy answer. The idea of developing a set of materials for your…
32: Data (Step 5 in the 7 Steps for Setting Up a Stellar Autism Room)
Jul 1 • 31 min
Yes - data collection needs its own step in the classroom setup process because it is that important. Data should be the backbone of your classroom. You should embed your data collection system into your classroom setup process. Make it something…
31: Visuals (Step 4 in the 7 Steps for Setting Up a Stellar Autism Room)
Jun 17 • 38 min
In this episode, we review how to set up visuals in your classroom in a way that is purposeful and effective. You want only the visuals that are useful and not a whole huge set of ones you don’t need. Use visuals to label. This helps with organization and…
30: Schedules (Step 3 in the 7 Steps for Setting Up a Stellar Autism Room)
Jun 3 • 38 min
Schedules are a must have for every classroom because they are functional. We all use schedules! In step 3 of the Seven Steps for Setting a Stellar Autism Classroom, we review the whole schedule process. First, learn how to create a detailed student and…
29: Classroom Structure (Step 2 in the 7 Steps for Setting Up a Stellar Autism Room)
May 27 • 45 min
Why is structure important? A structured environment decreases negative behaviors, lessens student anxiety, increases independence, and improves student independence. And guess what? It also helps you manage and lead your staff. Creating and maintaining a…
28: Organization and Planning (Step 1 in the 7 Steps for Setting Up a Stellar Autism Room)
May 20 • 37 min
Step 1 in the Seven Steps for Setting Up a Stellar Autism Classroom: Organization and Planning. Don’t be tempted to skip this step. The classroom process should be purposeful and thoughtful. Spend time actively brainstorming and evaluating the needs of…
27: Interview with Dr. Mary Barbera, BCBA
May 13 • 41 min
Dr. Mary Barbera is a best selling author, BCBA, and autism mom. In this episode, I chat with Mary about her journey into the autism world. She shares the story of her son’s diagnosis, how she learned about ABA, and what inspired her to become a BCBA.…
26: Conversation With Shannon Penrod of Autism Live
May 6 • 62 min
Shannon Penrod is a parent of a child with autism and a true advocate. She is the host of Autism Live a YouTube channel where she shares her experiences on parenting and ABA as well as interviews many experts in the field. Shannon’s perspective is…
25: Discussing School Readiness with Shira and Shayna from How to ABA
Apr 29 • 50 min
BCBAs Shira Gaunt and Shayna Karpel discuss school readiness and all that it entails. Shira and Shayna are from How to ABA and the Bx Resource. Coming from both a clinical and school background, Shira and Shayna share practical tips and ABA strategies in…
24: April Q&A
Apr 22 • 20 min
In this Q and A episode, listener questions are answered in detail! I share my advice for those wanting to become BCBA and the process I took in that endeavor. Next, I discuss strategies for keeping the noise level of staff down and how to directly and…
23: Talking All Things DATA with Christine Reeve
Apr 15 • 50 min
In this episode, Dr. Christine Reeve and I discuss best practices for data collection. Chris is a BCBA with a Ph.D. in clinical psychology. She has over 20 years experience in the field and has worked in a wide range of settings. Her most recent book,…
22: What Your Classroom Can Learn from the Business World
Apr 8 • 36 min
A successful business thrives off of productivity, efficiency, and effective team management. In this episode learn how to apply popular business and productivity life hacks and philosophies to your classroom. Grab some actionable takeaways that can be…
21: Is Your Literacy Program Functional?
Apr 1 • 21 min
Functional means designed to have practical use and used to development of a larger whole. Is your literacy instruction hitting these two things? In this episode, we discuss what functional actually means. Functional doesn’t mean vocational or having low…
20: Call with Leanne Page of ParentingWithABA.com
Mar 25 • 49 min
In this episode, learn how BCBA Leanne Page incorporates her knowledge of Applied Behavior Analysis into her daily parenting life. Leanne shares easy to understand action items that parents, teachers, or clinicians can utilize right away. Leanne’s…
19: Time Out: New School vs. Old School
Mar 18 • 22 min
Rethink your ideas about time out. Instead of viewing this intervention as harsh and aversive instead reframe time out as “time away from reinforcement.” When used in the correct situations, this strategy can be extremely effective to reduce dangerous and…
18: 7 Limiting Beliefs that EFF with Your Day
Mar 11 • 30 min
A limiting belief is a little voice in your head that negatively shapes your behavior and your path to success. The first step to change is becoming aware of your own limiting beliefs and then reframe your way of thinking about the topic. In this episode,…
Episode: 17 Q&A March ‘19
Mar 4 • 25 min
In this Q&A episode, I answer commonly asked questions sourced through social media and my email. We discuss how to approach situations with parents who don’t agree with a behavior plan and how to reframe the way you think about parent relationships.…
16: How Visuals Lead to Independence (hint: there’s more to it than you think!)
Feb 25 • 25 min
If you are in the special ed world, utilizing visuals isn’t a new concept. You are probably an expert on how and why using visuals is important. But let’s go one level deeper. The goal for all of our students and kids is independence. In this episode, we…
15: Why Pinpointing Behaviors Will Improve Your Instruction - Chat with Brigid McCormick
Feb 18 • 53 min
In this episode, Brigid McCormick, BCBA shares valuable ways to improve your instruction, decrease your staff training time, and increase the overall enjoyment of learning all by spending time pinpointing behaviors. Brigid is the founder and clinical…
14: The 5 Mistakes I Made as a First Year Teacher
Feb 11 • 20 min
Learn from my missteps during my first year in the classroom. In this episode, I share 5 major mistakes that wreaked havoc on my first year and how you can avoid these. Trying to “do it all” really never works but it definitely doesn’t work when you have…
13: You are Your Classroom’s Publicist
Feb 4 • 15 min
Back in the day as a new teacher, I thought the bulk of my job would be actually teaching my students. I was so wrong. This job encompasses so much more - managing staff, paperwork, collaborating with clinicians, etc. And now we have one more title to add…
12: I Don’t Negotiate, Except That I Do
Jan 28 • 22 min
My name is Sasha and I am a problem behavior causer. As a parent and a teacher, I have caused increases in problem behaviors. This happens because I negotiate, I give in, or I give attention. And guess what? This works for me in the moment. Negotiating or…
11: Tips for IEP Meeting with Chrissy Kelly
Jan 21 • 51 min
In this episode, I interview Chrissy Kelly of Life with Greyon & Parker. Chrissy is a parent to two boys with autism. She is a dedicated advocate and has a high level of knowledge in special education and applied behavior analysis. She shares her journey…
10: Lesson Plan Pep Talk
Jan 14 • 21 min
Let’s talk about decision fatigue. Making decision after decision all day can be exhausting and mentally draining. Lesson planning not only helps hold you and your team accountable but it reduces the amount of decisions you need to make each day. You…
9: Why I Hate the Phrase “Busy Work”
Jan 8 • 21 min
Sometimes independent work tasks are mistakenly thought of as “busy work.” Busy work implies something that has the main purpose of being kept occupied. It has minimal functional purpose. Independent work is couldn’t be farther from this. Independent work…
8: The IKEA Effect; How Staff Involvement Build Buy-In
Dec 31, 2018 • 14 min
It’s happened to all of us. We went to IKEA, picked out the perfect $22 shelf, and proceeded to spend 5 hours putting it together. That shelf is now held together by masking tape but has made move after move with you because you refuse to get rid of it.…
7: Q&A Session
Dec 24, 2018 • 20 min
In this episode, I answer commonly asked questions pulled from emails, social media, and blog comments. Some highlights: I discuss how to streamline your end of the day transition, what to do when a student is extremely attached to the teacher,…
6: Handling Student Aggression
Dec 17, 2018 • 24 min
All behavior is communication - even behavior that is disruptive, dangerous, and aggressive. Those behaviors are communicating something and they are communicating it loudly. While you are in the process of finding and implementing an effective and…
5: Navigating Sensory Needs During the Holiday Season
Dec 10, 2018 • 30 min
In this episode, Katie, an Occupational Therapist, shares tips and strategies for navigating the overwhelming sensory experiences that can come along with the holiday season. This time of year can be challenging for everyone and we want to be sure to be…
2: Growth Mindset for the Special Educator
Nov 20, 2018 • 24 min
With a growth mindset, effort and hard work are your keys to success. Failure and struggle are part of the process and the journey. As a special education teacher, parent, or professional, having a growth mindset is essential to excelling at your job. In…
4: Chatting with Gina about the Big Impact of Small Changes
Nov 20, 2018 • 21 min
Gina is part of The Autism Helper team and our resident preschool teacher. Gina and I chat about the process of building a new program program from the ground up, how she readily makes changes in her room, and the importance of teaching independence (even…
3: Staff Training Pt II
Nov 20, 2018 • 20 min
So you’ve been sold on this whole idea that staff training is important. Cool. Now how do you exactly go about doing that? What’s the best way to teach your staff how to do something? In this episode, we get into the details of how to effectively teach…
1: Staff Training
Nov 20, 2018 • 21 min
Why do we forget about one of the most important parts of our job? Staff training doesn’t seem to be a high priority on a day to day basis but it’s actually what will give you the biggest bang for your buck when it comes to the overall success of your…