Person Centred Thinking refers to the foundation skills and tools that underlie all the discovery of who a person is and how they want to be supported. It is an ongoing process intended to change the way we plan, design and deliver care & support, ultimately aimed at helping people get better lives by listening to them well. These tools are vital to support autistic children and young people.
Person Centred Thinking links with Person Centred Reviews, support planning processes being piloted for Personal Budgets / Education, Health & Care Plans, Government plans to involve parents/carers more in planning and commissioning of services, Government plans to give individuals with SEN/disabilities more control and choice in their own lives. the tools include, The One Page Profile, Working and Not Working, and The Communication Chart.
The One Page Profile/Portrait/Passport
The One Page profile- Single Page Portrait is a tool and it is only as good as it is applied. By that, we mean all communication is of the utmost importance (e.g. all must be involved- parents, teachers, TA/LSA, Heads of Year and all those involved with the child/young person. )
It is living in that it is continually updated as necessary.
Teachers and all staff involved get a snapshot of the child.
it is a confidence booster for the child and parents, as it empowers them. Other professionals involved with the family can also benefit from the document as the parents can use their copy as they see fit.
Ultimately, it helps avoid the misunderstandings, miss communications, miss interpretations between all those working with the child/young person and the parents. It also helps the child/young person avoid the frustrations that can easily come from being misinterpreted and misunderstood.
this is just one of the areas I am trained in and have trained others in. It is a vital part of the School SEN responsibilities.
Working and Not Working
This can be a very useful tool to use:
- To maintain a balanced view of a situation
- In reviews or other formal meetings
- In conflict situations, or any time you feel like your perspective or your child’s perspective is not being heard
- At home to “check in” regularly with members of your family .
- It is a vital part of the School SEN responsibilities.
The Communication Chart
This is an important tool as part of the person centred approach. It looks at the behaviour and what is behind it. All "behaviour" is communication and sometimes we have to be detectives to work out what the child or young person is trying to communicate in that "behaviour". No behaviour is "challenging" in that the child or young person displaying it is not "challenged" by it. It is usually those around the child or young person, those who care for educate that are challenged by them. the tools look at understanding them, what is being communicated and how to educate others in regards to them.
The questions include:
What is happening?
These are all of the external things that are happening. The time of day, who is around, What has just happened.
What does the child or young person do?
This is what the young person actually does.
The things that can be felt, heard or seen by other people. Record this as specifically as possible so that other people know what the young person does.
What do people think that it means?
This is what people think the young person is trying to say through their actions. It is OK to use your best guess here and check it out.
What should people do or not do in response?
This identifies good support for the young person at that time. Be Specific and clear in what people should or should not do. Also include the most obvious things.
This is also a vital part of the School SEN responsibilities.
Understanding and Working with Children and Young People on the Autism spectrum
What autism is and what does it mean for those who have it?
Current statistics say that 1 in 64 to 1 in a 100 is born autistic, chances are you are already working with or know someone who is autistic. The internet is full of "stories" myths and the newest "therapies" in regards to autism but there is little out there about the facts. How it is actually diagnosed, what it feels like to a child to be autistic in society today. It can be hard to figure out what is fact and what is fiction.
By first understanding what autism actually is, How it is diagnosed and what the criteria is for diagnosis can someone then start to navigate how to support and then work with the autistic child/young person or adult.
The training sessions I can provide can range from three hours to a six week ( meeting once a day) sessions and anywhere in between to meet the need required. They are mainly practical interactive sessions .
With the recent government's recent SEN reforms and it's disabled child policy
Educational settings, schools, nurseries, etc. have a responsibility to all SEN children and young adults. With the recent introduction of the EHCP, understanding the needs of autistic children and young people is Good Practice for schools and beneficial to parents.
Excerpt from training session:
Circle of friends
Circle of Friends, sometimes known as Circle of Support, is a powerful tool for inclusion which was originally developed by Forest (et al, 1993) in North America. The values that underpin the Circle of Friends approach are, ‘full inclusion for all; the belief that there is not social justice until each belongs and has an equal place in our schools and communities,’ (Newton and Wilson, 1999, p.5). The Circle of Friends approach works by developing a support network around individuals in the school community who are experiencing social difficulties often due to a specific disability, difference or behaviour. Volunteers from the peer group meet regularly with the "target" pupil therefore ensuring that relationships are built around him/her. The group also problem solves with the target pupil in order to address any social difficulties that he/she may be experiencing in school. This approach has been used to great effect in many schools in order to ensure the inclusion of individual pupils.
The approach can be used to develop a sense of community in the class and the school. It is an important tool for enhancing the social cohesion of pupils and for ensuring that a class gels. It can be used for ensuring pupils experience a smooth transition from primary to high school or from other points of transition. At points of transition pupils need to find their own feet but some also need a supporting hand which the programme can provide.
Session for Lunchtime Supervisors introducing them to "structured" facilitated play
The purpose of this intervention is to improve the social inclusion of elementary– aged ( Autistic) children through facilitated interactions with their peers. I was lucky enough to gain full authorisation as well as support from Mark Kretzmann, Jill Locke and the Kasari Research Group UCLA for the Autism Intervention Research Network on Behavioral Health (AIR–B), who are the creators of "Remaking Recess". (For more information go to www.asdweb.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org.)
We will go over specific strategies for Lunchtime Supervisors to use on the playground and in the cafeteria. Some will seem difficult, some will seem easy, some will even be strategies that you already use. We will look into the idea of " State of Power Engagement", how to identify the different types ans well as the strategies used to support the individual students. These tools and strategies are not exclisive to any autistic student but can and does benefit all students of all levels of engagement.