kitchen table math, the sequel: palisadesk on learning sites

Saturday, December 27, 2008

palisadesk on learning sites

Another autism resource for parents and teachers that you might want to check out (don't know if it is suitable for Jimmy, but it might be), is Teach Town. It developes an individualized program for each student in several domains. It was recommended to me by a psychologist for whom I have a lot of respect, and is working well for one of my students. Check out the website at Teach Town website

It's based on ABA principles, has a strong research base, and provides for home, school and therapist interaction (if applicable).
and: sounds like Jimmy isn't the prototypical "visual learner" that children with autism are assumed to be. Neither is my student. His auditory skills are far superior to his visual skills.
He did extremely well with Headsprout Early Reading and had decoding ability at the seventh grade level at the end (his comprehension was of course much more limited -- but prior to that he could not decode or read at all).

Some pluses:
- Kids usually love Headsprout, so he will enjoy doing it;
-You can have him repeat lessons, as needed, and you can stop in the middle of lessons and it will "save" where you stopped
-Headsprout has some knowledgeable people on staff who can provide support for using it with a student with autism, and they have an 800 number
- You get a money-back guarantee. If you are not satisfied that it is a good program for your child you can withdraw before 30 days and get your money back.

It's not for everyone but it works quite well for some very challenged kids, and with a money back guarantee, what's to lose?

1 comment:

palisadesk said...

I didn't think to mention it, but Teach Town also has a free trial offer -- I believe it is the first month free. I recommend signing up for it (they send you the software you need to access the online program), and then install & start at a time when you will be able to use the program regularly -- 30 minute sessions 2 or 3 times daily would be ideal (you can set the length of the session, from 0-60 minutes). Then the progress you see (or not) over the next 4 weeks would give you some indication whether it is worth the monthly fee -- something like $35.

A good thing to know -- you can put the acount "on hold" for things like vacations (the data will remain in place, ready for when you start up again).

I have found their email tech and instructional support to be excellent, too.

It is also easy to see what is being taught so that you can reinforce it in everyday activities. Say, the use of comparatives -- wider and narrower. If the session report shows the child is having difficulty with this you can make a point of doing things with him that use these concepts.

They have a whole selection of recommended "off-computer" activities for developing the target skills and knowledge, most of which are appropriate for a home setting.