Montana Autism Education Project News – February  2017


Upcoming Trainings:

CEC Conference

Missoula    February 15-17

The conference schedule and other information can be viewed here.

Positive Behavior Strategies for Students with Autism

Dutton   March 3

Discussion will center around types of behaviors; task avoidance, escape motivated, attention seeking, behaviors that produce sensory consequences, and the role motivation plays in behavioral success in many settings-school, home, and community. The training will also contain discussions about setting limits that work and the application of positive interventions. We will examine the common pitfalls that sabotage behavioral intervention plans and what to avoid when wanting to make significant behavioral changes. Discussion of how to conduct a Functional Behavioral Assessment, write a Positive Behavioral Plan and use an Antecedent/Behavior/Consequence chart will be presented to the conference attendees.

Go here for more information and go here to register.

Facing the Frontal Lobe: Strategies to Support Executive Function Skills in Students with Planning, Organization, Emotional Control, Working Memory and Attention Needs

Billings            March 29

Participants in the workshop will examine the impact of Executive Functioning on student learning and social interaction. The workshop is designed for all educators as attention is given to those skills needed by kindergarten through middle school students to be successful in a general and special education classroom. Participants will learn about the five domains of cognitive skills and will be given resource ideas and strategies that are designed to support strong cognitive skills in students. The strategies presented focus on skills that promote effective organization and time management, task completion, independent work, student plan setting and accountability. Additionally, the intervention ideas also provide a foundation to assist student self-monitoring, impulse control and emotional management. 

Register here.

Remember The Date – August 17 and 18    Missoula

Social Thinking will present the following workshops: 

Zooming In: Strategies for Concrete Learners

Zooming In: Strategies for Individuals with Subtle but Significant Social Problems

Registration will open in May.

You can also view trainings as they are added on the OPI Montana Autism Education Project blog 

Online Training in Autism Spectrum Disorders and Behavior Interventions

We offer subscriptions to a highly-rated online training in autism spectrum disorders and behavioral interventions. The training provides 55+ hours of instruction in autism spectrum disorders and behavioral interventions.  The training must be completed in 90 days. OPI renewal units are available. New groups start the middle of each month. 

If you are interested in taking the training please go here to register.


Montana Autism Education Project recent blog posts of interest:

Movin' On in Montana

Movin' On in Montana is a four-day on-campus event at Montana State University Billings designed for high school sophomores and juniors with disabilities.  These days will assist the students through the difficult transition from high school to college.  Following a step-by-step process, students will learn about the study skills, compensatory skills, social skills, and personal skills needed for a successful college experience.  Students will develop their own personal transition portfolio.

The highlight of Movin' On in Montana is the four-day stay on the campus of Montana State University Billings.  During the summer of 2017 students will live in the dorms, eat in the cafeteria, attend classes on the MSUB campus, and tour other college campuses.  Books, fees, tuition, room, and board will be provided at no charge to students accepted into the program.

Find more information here.


Implementation and Effectiveness of Using Video Self-Modeling with Students with ASD

Not only is video self-modeling evidence-based, but it is an easy intervention to implement that requires limited materials and time. A teacher, parent, or instructional assistant can easily use this strategy to teach a student a variety of different types of skills such as academic, social, functional, and vocational skills. 

Read more here.


This Is A Story Of Autism In Small-town America

Her parents face their own struggles at home. Izzy tends to bolt, as she did once when her father, Shane Green, stepped outside their home for a minute to take out the trash. Date nights are out of the question, because the couple has trouble trusting a babysitter to prevent Izzy from running away.

In a larger town, they might have been able to find a counselor trained in applied behavioral analysis (ABA), the intensive therapy that is usually recommended for children with severe behavior problems. But their community of 2,500 people has no qualified ABA providers — either state-funded or private — and they live hours away from the nearest one.

Read a very good article here.


Upcoming and Archived Webinars


Archived Webinar: Social Skills, Social Networking, and Adolescents with ASD: What Every Parent and Professional Should Know

Watch the archived webinar here. 


Webinar - Executive Function Series: Session 1 Building Memory and Focus – for Students with Autism and Intellectual Disabilities

February 22, 2017, 11:00 am CST - 45-minutes

Session 1: Remembering the information required to completing a task, and sustaining attention during a particular activity are skills that learners require to be successful in academic activities and to develop self-dependence. Augmented with student scenarios and context-specific situations, this webinar session will discuss and illustrate a variety of instructional support strategies to build and strengthen the working memory, attention and focus of students with autism and intellectual disabilities to enable them to succeed in school and beyond.

Register here with AbleNet. 


Archived Webinar - Supporting Students with Severe and Multiple Disabilities: What Paraeducators Need to Know and Do

This session will demonstrate how to choreograph effective paraeducator support to students with severe and multiple disabilities that is student-centered, non-intrusive and non-stigmatizing. Participants will learn strategies to maximize academic and social learning opportunities for students they support while facilitating growth of independence and reduce dependence on staff. The inclusion of classroom scenarios and student-specific vignettes during the presentation will help with implementation of best-practices.

Find and watch the archived webinar here (account creation required.)


Webinar - Teaching the Swipe Generation

Wednesday February 8, 2017 from 3:00 PM to 4:00 PM EST 

Join us as we examine developmentally appropriate apps and other technology resources for supporting the growth of language, play, literacy, and early math skills for children birth to eight years of age. Current research on the use of assistive technology for young children with disabilities will be discussed.

Register here.  

Other items

Consultation Visits

Staff from the Montana Autism Education Project are available to provide on-site trainings, classroom-level consultations or consultations on individual students. These services are available for no charge. Please contact Doug Doty at if you are interested in scheduling a consultation visit.

OPI Has Behavioral Consultants

The Office of Public Instruction (OPI) wishes to announce the availability of Behavioral Consultants for districts needing help in developing functional behavioral assessments (FBA) and behavioral intervention plans (BIP) for individual special education students without autism. If you are in need of a consultant, please contact Dale Kimmet at (

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Doug Doty, Statewide Coordinator

OPI Montana Autism Education Project 459-5303