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Archive for the 'Upcoming Events' Category

National Center of Technology Innovation - Technology Innovators Conference

Wednesday, November 12th, 2008

The National Center for Technology Innovation (NCTI) is hosting the Technology Innovators Conference in Washington, DC on November 20 and 21, 2008 at the Madison Hotel.  This conference will include technology developers, researchers, technology vendors, policymakers, OSEP projects, and the media.  Online registration is now closed. On-site registrations will be accepted.

The conference offers 2 days of informative presentations and an expo which will offer the following opportunities: 

TeachTown has received funding and support from NCTI and we are looking forward to a long-term relationship with the organization as our company grows.  Click here to see more about our history with NCTI.

Help Kids with Autism and Laugh with Dana Carvey in San Francisco on April 25th

Monday, March 17th, 2008

I found out about this event and just had to share it, this is a great opportunity to have a fun night out (and see Dana Carvey!!) and help raise money for autism and other special needs children.


Join the legendary Dana Carvey and friends for a five-star evening of
food, wine, and wit for a worthy cause

Oak Hill School, the Ryder Foundation and the ASHA Academy.

Enjoy a VIP cocktail reception followed by an intimate gourmet dinner prepared by
Bay Area celebrity chefs. Laugh out loud at a private stand-up comedy show
featuring Dana Carvey and friends. Meet the talent at an exclusive after-party with
divine desserts and drinks, and groove to the beat of the Back Burner Blues Band.

Friday, April 25, 2008


1290 Sutter Street, San Francisco, California
Entrance on Van Ness Ave.


Dana Carvey.jpg

5:30 - 6:30 pm, VIP Cocktail Reception
6:30 - 8:00 pm, Celebrity Chef Dinner hosted by Joey Altman
8:30 pm, Dana Carvey and friends (Doors open at 8:00 pm)
10:00 pm - Midnight, Meet the Stars After-Party

- cocktail attire -

For more information, please contact Nancy Frumkes Events at
415.789.1969 or nancyfrumkes@earthlink.net


Oak Hill kids.jpg

Located in Marin City, California, the Oak Hill School is certified by the California State Department of Education and provides an academic and therapeutic program for children from kindergarten through adolescence. Their staff includes special education teachers, speech and language pathologists, occupational therapists, creative arts therapists and psychotherapists.

While the range of disabilities among children is broad, classroom groupings cluster children with similar academic levels and learning styles. Their education program includes groups of children with good verbal skills and strong academic potential as well as groups of children with emerging language and academic abilities. Children who have struggled in the traditional classroom environment have an opportunity at Oak Hill to develop academic and social skills, high self-esteem and become leaders among their peers.


ryder_lake.jpgThe mission of The Ryder Foundation is to provide funding to organizations that research the environmental causes
of autism and effectively treat afflicted children.

The Ryder Foundation funds research that investigates the link between environmental toxins and Autism Spectrum Disorders.
The Ryder Foundation funds research aimed at establishing empirically-proven treatments for autism.
The Ryder Foundation funds programs that assist low-income families in getting treatments, therapies and supplies.
The Ryder Foundation funds programs that help local autistic and developmentally challenged children reach their full potential.


ASHA is a holistic, multidisciplinary academy in Bangalore, India, providing special education to children with severe disabilities, particularly autism. Founded in 1995, ASHA endeavors to “render exceptional love, care, hope, and educational assistance to children with special needs, to help them develop and utilize their potential.” The school also provides family support, community outreach, and training.

ABA Conference - Memorial Day Weekend, 2007

Monday, May 21st, 2007

Coming up over Memorial Day weekend is the next ABA (Association for Behavior Analysis) conference in gorgeous San Diego, California!  This year there are more interesting presentations and opportunities for learning than ever before.  One of the most interesting things is seeing the advancement of ABA for treatment of children with autism and how even the most structured approaches are now realizing how critical generalization, creativity, and flexibilty are for the optimal treatment outcome!  This modern philosophy in ABA demonstrates that intervention can be extremely effective, scientific, and socially relevant.  I also am very interested to see the presentations on technology (although there are still only a few of these!!).

Here are some things that I recommend checking out if you plan to attend (workshops have an additional fee but are nice because they are more focused and detailed and you often have less crowds to deal with).  These suggestions are ones which would appeal to someone interested in autism and who holds a similar treatment philosophy to TeachTown (i.e. using sound principles of science, but realizing the importance of generalization and natural routines):

teachtown cloud background1.JPGTEACHTOWN EVENTS!!


*#218 Symposium—5/27/07—1:30-2:50pm—America’s Cup AB
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Philip N. Chase, Ph.D.

Empirical Validation of Internet-Based Curriculum
Chair: Philip N. Chase (West Virginia University)
Discussant: Satoru Shimamune (Hosei University)

The current crisis in education recognized by a variety of reports, studies, and commentators could have serious long-term effects on children world wide. In response to this crisis a number of behavior analysts have targeted the empirical validation of curriculum for their research agenda. In particular, with recent advances in computer technology, there has been a strong interest in developing and evaluating internet curricula. Three examples are Headsprout, a program that teaches beginning reading, iLearn a middle school mathematics curriculum, and TeachTown, a program for autistic children. This symposium will present the current data and methods used to evaluate these programs. Emphasis will be given to descriptions of the how these programs have integrated single-subject methods with program evaluation methods, methods for evaluating teacher and other professional implementation, and more traditional random controlled studies to create a thorough method of empirical validation.

An Evaluation of the Effectiveness of iLearn Math in Improving Math Achievement in Middle School. ROBERT L. COLLINS (iLearn, Inc.)
Abstract: The effectiveness of iLearn Math in improving math achievement was evaluated in the sixth grade of a Title I middle school in a rural area of Georgia using a quasi-experimental design. The Experimental Group used iLearn Math as their only math instruction for the school year. The Control Group received their regularly-scheduled traditional classroom instruction. At the start of the year, there was no difference between the two groups on an experimenter-developed pretest. At the end of the school year, differences were assessed using scores on the Georgia Criterion Referenced Competency Test (CRCT) administered annually to all six-grade students in Georgia. For the iLearn Group, 87% of the students met or exceeded the standard on the CRCT vs. 65% for the Control Group. The state average was 74%. In addition, 28% of the iLearn Group exceeded the standard vs. 10% for the Control Group.

Education and Treatment of Children with Autism Using Computer-Assisted Programs from TeachTown. CHRISTINA WHALEN DALLAIRE (TeachTown)
Abstract: Because of the numerous education options available for children with autism, many of which are not supported by research, the use of evidence-based practices is particularly important for this population. With recent advances in computer technology, there has been a strong interest in the use of computer-assisted instruction (CAI). Due to the unique characteristics and learning styles of children with autism, the interest and need for CAI is especially strong. TeachTown: Basics utilizes not only computer instruction and data tracking, but provides off-computer generalization activities and a communication system for the child’s team. Several research studies have been or are being conducted to assess the efficacy and expand this product. In addition, research is underway for the design of future products. Data from these studies will be presented along with a discussion of the importance of developing evidence-based technology for children with autism and the implications for designers and researchers.

Headsprout Early Reading: Multi-Year, Multi-Site Measures of Effectiveness. Janet S. Twyman, T. V. Joe Layng, and DEBORAH HAAS (Headsprout)
Abstract: This presentation will first review the teaching routines used, the critical reading repertoires taught, and the formative evaluation data which shaped Headsprout Early ReadingR, a scientifically-based, empirically validated online early reading program. The presentation will then focus on data from the growing body of summative, or large scale, evaluations of the program. Data will be presented from empirically-based case studies, outcome measures from field use, multi-year evaluations, and perhaps of greatest importance, controlled research featuring unbiased group assignment.


7:00 PM - 7:50 PM
Gregory AB
Technology Special Interest Group
Chair: Christina Whalen (TeachTown)
This group will focus on using technology for the practice and research of ABA. ABA members with interest in video, computers, television and other technology are welcome. The purpose of this group is to better define best practices in the use of technology and identifying the significant research questions for the field.AbbyClarkBill.png

8:30 PM - 10:30 PM
Elizabeth A
Co-Chairs: Christina Whalen (TeachTown) and Terry Tibbetts

8:30 PM - 10:30 PMElizabeth ACo-Chairs: Christina Whalen (TeachTown) and Terry Tibbetts 

8:30 PM - 10:30 PMElizabeth ACo-Chairs: Christina Whalen (TeachTown) and Terry Tibbetts 000_108_Abby_pushing.pngFriday, May 25:

1) Workshop #18: Promoting the Generalization and Maintenance of Skills in Learners with Autism and Related Disorders (Celiberti)

2) Workshop #20: Social Skills: Assessment and Intervention Planning for Children with Autism (Carter)

3) Workshop #32: Enhancing Social Reciprocity of Children with Autism Within Everyday Routines (Leach)

4) Workshop #37: Introduction to Pivotal Response Training (Schreibman)

5) Workshop #41: We Know We Have to Do It, But How? Schools Searching for Social Skills (Davis)

6) Workshop #59: Intensive Early Intervention: Key Clinical Interventions That Lead to the Best Outcome (Larsson)

7) Workshop #62: Self-Management: Promoting Autonomy for Individuals with Autism and Other Developmental Disorders (Thompson)

8) Workshop #69: Using Curriculum Based Measurement to Track Responses to Intervention (Cautilli)

Saturday, May 26:

1) #7 Business Meeting - Autism Newcomers Meeting 10:30-11:20

2) #31 Symposium

1:00 PM - 2:20 PM
Elizabeth H

The Generalization of Effective Prompting Techniques by Paraprofessionals Educating Learners with Autism Spectrum Disorders
Chair: Laura J. Hall (San Diego State University)
Discussant: Beth Sulzer-Azaroff (Univerisity of Massachusetts, Amherst)

3) #34 Symposium
1:00 PM - 2:20 PM
Elizabeth F
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Brooke Ingersoll, Ph.D., BCBA

Use of Behavioral Interventions in Community Early Intervention Programs for Children with Autism
Chair: Laura Schreibman (University of California, San Diego)
Discussant: Gail G. McGee (Emory University School of Medicine)

4) #49 Paper Session
2:30 PM - 3:20 PM
Douglas A

Teaching Critical Social Skills to Children with Autism
Chair: Lisa Stoddard

5) #51 International Paper Session
2:30 PM - 3:20 PM
Elizabeth G

Theory of Mind and Executive Function
Chair: Dawn Holman (Autism Spectrum Consultants, Inc.)

6) #66 Symposium
2:30 PM - 3:50 PM
Elizabeth F
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Jane Howard, Ph.D., BCBA

Using the Science of Applied Behavior Analysis to Develop Methodologies to Improve Language and Social Skills in Children with Autism
Chair: Jane S. Howard (California State University, Stanislaus)

7) #75 Symposium
3:30 PM - 4:50 PM
Douglas A
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Tristram Smith, Ph.D.

Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention: Main Findings from the Multisite Young Autism Project
Chair: Tristram Smith (University of Rochestor Medical Center)

8) #95 Paper Session
4:00 PM - 4:50 PM
Elizabeth H

Social Stories
Chair: Heidi Hillman (Heritage University)

10) #102 Poster Session
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM

11) #116a Panel Discussion
8:30 PM - 9:20 PM
Edward AB

Professional Development Series: An Introduction to Pivotal Response Treatment (PRT)
Chair: Candice Jostad (Western Michigan University)

LYNN KERN KOEGEL (University of California, Santa Barbara)

Sunday, May 27:

1) #133 B.F. Skinner Lecture Series
9:00 AM - 9:50 AM
Douglas C

Joint Attention and Symbolic Play: Active Ingredients of Effective Early Behavioral Intensive Intervention
Chair: William H. Ahearn (The New England Center for Children)

CONNIE KASARI (University of California, Los Angeles)

2) #139 Symposium
9:00 AM - 10:20 AM
Elizabeth G
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Jennifer M. Gillis Mattson, Ph.D., BCBA

Behavioral Approaches to the Study of Social Interactions in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Chair: Jennifer Gillis Mattson (Auburn University)
Discussant: Raymond G. Romanczyk (Institute for Child Development)

3) #153 International Symposium
9:00 AM - 10:20 AM
Elizabeth H

Outcomes for Children in the Ontario IBI Program
Chair: Adrienne M. Perry (York University)

4) #161 Symposium
9:00 AM - 10:20 AM
Douglas A
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Marjorie Charlop-Christy, Ph.D.

Treatment Outcome for Children with Autism: A 15-Year Longitudinal Study
Chair: Marjorie H. Charlop-Christy (Claremont McKenna College)

5) #200 Poster Session
12:00 PM - 1:30 PM

6) #229 Symposium
1:30 PM - 2:50 PM
Elizabeth G
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Nanette L. Perrin, M.A., BCBA

Strategies that Fit: Identifying Efficient Interventions to Support Children with Autism, Families, and Staff
Chair: Nanette L. Perrin (Early Childhood Autism Program - Community Living Opportunities)
Discussant: Shannon Kay (May Institute)
7) #243 Symposium
3:00 PM - 3:50 PM
Elizabeth G

Models of Service Delivery for Families with Children with Autism: From Early Identification to Parent Education
Chair: Daniel Adam Openden (University of California, Santa Barbara)
Discussant: Daniel Adam Openden (University of California, Santa Barbara)

8) #256 Panel Discussion
3:00 PM - 4:20 PM
Douglas A
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Frank Cicero, MS, BCBA

Incorporating Research from Other Disciplines into the Behavioral Treatment of Learners with Autism
Chair: Joanne Gerenser (Eden II Programs)

9) #293 Poster Session
5:30 PM - 7:00 PM

Monday, May 28:

1) #329 Paper Session
9:00 AM - 9:50 AM
Elizabeth F

Examining Social Skills Training with Autism and Asperger Syndrome
Chair: Debra Leach (Florida Atlantic University) 

2) #333 Symposium
9:00 AM - 10:20 AM
Betsy A

A Low Budget Approach to Starting and Operating an Academic Day Center for Children with Autism
Chair: Morten Haugland (Haugland Learning Center)
Discussant: Kristine D. Haugland (Haugland Consulting) 

3) #334 Symposium
9:00 AM - 10:20 AM
Doulglas A
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Philip N. Hineline, Ph.D., BCBA

Assessing Autism Interventions in Public Schools: Which Strategies, for Which Children, with What Resources?
Chair: Philip N. Hineline (Temple University)
Discussant: Gina Green (San Diego State University) 

4) #357 Panel Discussion
10:30 AM - 11:50 AM
Elizabeth G
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Michael Weinberg, Ph.D., BCBA

A Panel Discussion for Sharing Materials and Ideas for Increasing Acceptance of ABA Worldwide
Chair: Michael Weinberg (Professional Education Resources and Conference Services)

5) #368 Paper Session
10:30 AM - 11:50 AM
Elizabeth H

Issues Related to Autism and Autism Treatment
Chair: Ronit Molko

6) #373 Symposium
10:30 AM - 11:50 AM
Douglas A
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Rebecca MacDonald, Ph.D., BCBA

Teaching Joint Attention Skills to Children With Autism
Chair: Rebecca P. F. MacDonald (The New England Center for Children)
Discussant: William V. Dube (University of Massachusetts Medical School-Shriver Center)

7) #378 Poster Session
12:00 PM - 1:30 PM

8) #445 Poster Session
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM

Tuesday, May 29:

1) #480 International Paper Session
9:00 AM - 10:20 AM
Mohsen AB

Variables Affecting Instruction to Children with Autism
Chair: Kelly McKinnon 

2) #505 Symposium
12:00 PM - 1:20 PM
Mohsen AB
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Gerald E. Harris, Ph.D., BCBA

Measuring Change: Assessment Issues in the Treatment of Autism
Chair: Gerald E. Harris (Texas Young Autism Project)

2) #506 Symposium
12:00 PM - 1:20 PM
Emma AB 

Motivational Strategies for Increasing Social Interaction between Children with Autism and Their Typically Developing Peers
Chair: Rosy Fredeen (University of California, Santa Barbara)
Discussant: Gerald E. Harris (Texas Young Autism Project)      

Assistive Technology

Wednesday, October 11th, 2006

icon_child1.gifMany children with autism spectrum disorders require the use of assistive technology to help them learn at home, in the community, and in school.  The term “technology” does not simply relate to things like computers, TV, video, or cameras.  In fact, these materials are considered to be “high technology” compared to items which are “mid technology” such as overhead projectors, calculators, and CD players.  There are also “low technology” items which are probably used the most for this population.  This would include things like picture schedules, picture communication, highlighters, dry erase boards, and many of the other visual supports that are needed to help the child learn.2002-2-March.jpg

If you are interested in learning more about assistive technology, I found an excellent summary by Susan Stokes which was written under a contract with CESA 7 and funded by a discretionary grant from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.

itechcenter1.jpgThere are many organizations which deal with assistive technology (AT) and aim to help families better understand their options and to choose the appropriate AT for their child.  One such organization is Parents Helping Parents who offers an iTECH Center with hands-on experience with different types of AT and provides training sessions to help families use the AT.  I will be doing a parent information night on October 25th to teach families in the San Francisco bay area more about the TeachTown: Basics program.  If you are interested in attending, spaces are still available.

There are also several conferences each year which host thousands of at050_360_Jupiter_Classroom.jpgtendees including parents, teachers, speech pathologists, behavioral consultants, and schools staff to provide more information about assistive technology.  One such conference is the Closing the Gap Conference at the Sheraton Bloomington Hotel in Minneapolis, Minnesota on October 19-2, 2006 with pre-conference workshops October 17-18.  In addition to the many other valuable exhibits and presentations, TeachTown will host an exhibit booth there with demonstrations and information about our products and research.

In January, 2007, another big assistive technology conference will take place in Orlando, Florida.  This conference is sponsored by the Assistive Technology Industry Association (ATIA) and will occur at the Caribe Royale Resort on January 24-27.  TeachTown will be hosting an exhibit booth and will provide a hands-on training workshop for TeachTown: Basics.

phase1j.jpgIf you are interested in picture communication specifically, Pyramid Educational Consultants provides some of the best training.  This program uses the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) and workshops are available all over the country. 

Association for Behavior Analysis Conference, Atlanta, GA

Friday, April 21st, 2006

When: May 26-30, 2006
Where: Hyatt Regency Atlanta

atlanta_image01_sm.gifWhat’s the latest in behavioral research?
Since 1974, ABA has been the primary professional organization for behavior analysts, dedicated to the enhancement and development of research, education, and practice, of behavior analysis. This conference is for those interested in the philosophy, science, education, and teaching of behavior analysis including researchers, speech pathologists, behavioral consultants, teachers, and parents.

TeachTown is very excited about our participation in the ABA conference this year. In addition to having an exhibit where we will hand out copies of our research paper, evaluation software, and give demonstrations to conference participants, we are also giving two presentations. We are particularly excited about the symposium with fellow researchers and clinicians from University of Washington and ASTAR.

Here are the presentations in which we’re involved:

#64a Symposium 
3:00 PM - 4:20 PM
Regency VII
AUT/EDC; Service Delivery
BACB CE (CE Instructor: Christina Whalen, Ph.D., BCBA)
TeachTown: A Comprehensive Computer-Assisted ABA Treatment Program for Children with Autism
Chair: Christina Whalen (TeachTown)
Discussant: Ilene S. Schwartz (University of Washington)
 Facilitating Language and Social Behaviors Using the TeachTown program. CHRISTINA WHALEN (TeachTown), Lars H. Liden (TeachTown), Brooke Ingersoll (Lewis & Clark College), Eric Dallaire (TeachTown), and Sven Liden (TeachTown)
 Abstract: Children with autism spectrum disorders often respond well to treatment programs that incorporate visual learning including pictures and videos. Recently, researchers have begun to study the effects of using computers to teach children with autism and have demonstrated some effectiveness. One of the biggest criticisms of using computers with this population is that it may impede two of the most critical learning areas for children with autism – language and social interaction. In a recent study, language and social behaviors of 4 children with autism and 4 children with other developmental disorders were measured in play and computer sessions with their parents. For the children with autism, inappropriate language and social behaviors decreased and appropriate language and social behaviors increased while on the computer compared to play sessions with the parent. A demonstration of the software will be presented along with research data.
 Comparing Teacher-Implemented Discrete Trials to Teach Town: Rate of Acquisition and Generalization. NANCY ROSENBERG (University of Washington ), Bonnie McBride (University of Washington), and Ilene S. Schwartz (University of Washington)
 Abstract: Four young children with ASD participated in this intervention. The purpose of this intervention was to compare the rate of acquisition and generalization of receptive vocabulary items taught using teacher-implemented discrete trials and a computer-generated discrete-trial program (i.e., Teach Town). The primary research questions were: (a) which intervention resulted in children learning the vocabulary items more quickly, (b) which intervention resulted in more generalization, and (c) during which intervention did children display more positive affect and behavior. A parallel treatment design was used to answer these questions. Results will be discussed in terms of trials to acquisition and percent of generalized responding. Social validity data will also be presented.
 Incorporating TeachTown into a Comprehensive Behavior Analytic Program for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. ELIZABETH J. WYMAN (ASTAR Center) and Susan K. Malmquist (ASTAR Center)
 Abstract: Empirical evidence supports the need for 25-40 hours per week of intensive behavioral intervention, for children with autism, most effectively begun at the age of diagnosis. Families often struggle with locating direct service providers to supply these hours, wait lists with ABA providers, and funding these services. Providing this intense number of behavioral therapy hours is a challenge. The utilization of a computer software program to provide discrete trials or to supplement an existing therapy program is one option for families. However there are some pre-requisite skills that must be in place before the computer software can be used as an effective teaching tool (e.g. the ability to remain seated in a chair, isolated pointing, visual scanning, attending). We examined and compared the skills required to utilize the TeachTown software effectively with children who demonstrated the basic prerequisite skills and those who demonstrated few or none. An analysis of these skills as well as the children’s skill acquisition and generalization rates were also considered and analyzed.
Workshop #90 BACB Continuing Education
8:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Regency VII
CE Instructor: Christina Whalen , Ph.D., BCBA
TeachTown: Incorporating ABA Best-Practices Into Computer-Assisted Treatment for Children with Autism
CHRISTINA WHALEN (TeachTown), Brad Mcguire (TeachTown ), and Manya Vaupel (TeachTown)
Description: The use of computers with children with autism is becoming increasingly prevalent yet this technology still seems relatively untapped with its potential. In this workshop, all of the essential elements of ABA for children with autism will be discussed including Sd’s, prompting, discrimination, aquisition, reinforcement, generalization, data-collection, information sharing, and research. These topics will be discussed in terms of how to incorporate the best-practices of ABA into computer technology. One example of a program that attempts to incorporate all of these essential elements, the TeachTown program, will be presented and attendees will receive free demo copies of the software. It is suggested that attendees bring laptop computers for a more hands-on experience.
1) What are ABA best-practices and how will we know when we are doing it?
2) How can we use computers to improve existing ABA practices?
3) How can we better manage data from ABA programs?
4) How important is generalization? What is the best approach for incorporating generalization into treatment? How can we measure generalization in ABA programs?
5) What research has been done on using computers with children with autism and what research still needs to be done?
6) What is the TeachTown program? How does this program incorporate ABA best-practices?
Activities: Review of ABA therapies available for children with autism; review of “best-practices” in ABA therapy; review of studies using computers for children with autism; discussion of advantages & disadvantages of using computers for children with autism; review and hands-on demonstration of TeachTown program along with discussion of “best-practices” in ABA; discussion of generalization and ideas for incorporating generalization into computer-assisted programs.
Audience: Parents, teachers, professionals, and researchers specializing in autism, language delays, or other special needs. Basic understanding of ABA and ABA principles (e.g. reinforcement, prompting, discrimination, etc.) - these terms will be reviewed briefly but workshop is ideal for those with basic understanding of these principles.
Level: Intermediate
Member: $75 Non-member: $90
After 3/10 Member: $100 Non-member: $115
If you are planning to attend the conference, Atlanta offers plenty of fun things for you and your family to do as well:


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