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Deafblindness A Unique Disability.ppt

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					 Arizona’s Intervener
  Initiative: Lessons
        Learned
              Cindi Robinson
        Arizona Deafblind Project
Project Director & Intervener Coordinator
Even the most intelligent
deafblind individual must deal
constantly with the limitation
and distortion of information.
Without a continuous supply of
accurate information about his
interaction with the
environment, the MSD
individual will fail to develop
cognitively in the rate or to the
depth which will allow him to
avoid the label “retarded.”
He may have immense
potential, but without accurate
information, his brain is as
ineffective as a computer
without a program.      John McGinnes
Arizona’s Intervener
 Training Program
   Team training
   2 years long
   Face-to-face training
   6+ workshops 2-3 days each
   8 trainers

   On-site classroom follow-up and
    coaching
   Readings, logs, and assignments
   Team planning time at each workshop

   Certificates of professional
    development at each training
   Certificate of Completion at the end of
    training
          Since 1999

• 31 interveners for 22 students

• 200+ team members
Some Things We’ve
Learned – In General
Important to gain (and keep)
administrative support
Important to identify a team leader
Important to include the
intervener in team planning
Intervener Counts on the Team
  to help her help the student
• If need help with a skill in PE - OT/PT will
  help
• If need help food shopping – O&M will help
• If excited about interest in ASL hand shape
  – Communication Specialist creates a story
    Team Counts on Intervener
     to relay student changes
• Balance is off
• Extra sensitive to light today
• Difficulty sitting
• Is refusing food
• Has headache, is sick, etc.


ALL effect child’s ability to focus
Important for the teacher(s) to work
with the student regularly – and
develop a meaningful connection
Lessons Learned:
   TRAININGS
Important to train the whole team
      Those Attending With
        a Team Reported:
• stronger working relationships
• better collaboration
• common goals
• being on the same page for their student
• time to discuss & strategize with each other
“One of the most valuable results of the training has
been getting the entire team on the same page – it’s
given us time to discuss and strategize.”
                               Anonymous Teacher

“The trainings have allowed me to collaborate with
other educational team members in a way that gives
us all a common vocabulary and understanding.”
                               Anonymous Team Member
Interveners who attended the
trainings ALONE report:

•   feeling unsupported
•   a lack of teaming
•   isolated
•   burned out
•   the burden is all theirs – not shared
       Important to include
        presentations from:

a) Interveners actively working with
   students

b) Adults who are deafblind

c) Each other
 Important to have some sessions
 solely for:

• interveners
• teachers / other professionals
AZ Self Assessment Results
•   Done three times over 2-yr training:
        prior to training
        at end of 1st year
        At end of 2nd year
•   Based on Intervener Competencies
•   Uses Likert Scale rating
•   Rates both knowledge and skills
•   8 competency areas
After Year 1 - Teachers & Interveners
                                             Before    After      %
        Competency Cluster                             1 Yr
                                            Training           Increase
1. Deafblindness & Its Impact on Learning
and Development
     - Knowledge                            2.34       4.96    112%
     - Skills & Abilities                   2.75       5.05    84%
2. Process of Intervention / Role of
Intervener
     - Knowledge                            1.95       4.96    154%
     - Skills & Abilities                   3.42       5.23    53%
3. Communication: Methods, Adaptations,
Alternative Technology
     - Knowledge                            2.80       5.16    84%
     - Skills & Abilities                   3.42       5.17    51%
4. Impact of Deafblindness on Psychosocial,
Social, and Emotional Development
     - Knowledge                                2.48   4.92   98%
     - Skills & Abilities (didn’t cover yr 1)   3.97   5.15   30%
5. Sensory Systems and Issues - 5 Senses
     - Knowledge                                2.59   4.70   82%
     - Skills & Abilities                       3.43   5.02   46%
6. Motor, Movement, O&M Strategies for DB
     - Knowledge                                2.75   4.97   81%
     - Skills & Abilities                       2.68   4.53   69%
7. Impact of Additional Disabilities
     - Knowledge                                2.32   4.66   101%
     - Skills & Abilities                       4.14   5.06   22%
8. Professional Development, Values, & Ethics
     - Knowledge                                4.78   5.45   14%
     - Skills & Abilities                       4.87   5.60   15%
        Family Level

     When family understands:
“not deaf + blind, rather deaf x blind”
• Gives families greater support
• Supports language and learning in the
  home environment
  A Parent’s Perspective:

• Miracle of birth
• Complications – deafblind + + +
• Frustration – child is more than the sum of
  it’s parts
• Professionals don’t know deafblindness –
  just their own area
• Child doesn’t fit the mold
• WAITING for LRE and super hero
• Child continued to fall further behind
                                         S.K.
       Enter the INTERVENER
•   Built relationship
•   Understood child
•   Child trusted intervener
•   Child began to progress
•   Ongoing, immediate assessment of situation
•   Understood when to assist and when to step back
•   Gave child tools, support, encouragement
•   Became a bridge to learning
“Without her intervener – child would be lost in a
  world of caring people.”
                                                S.K.
  Without the Intervener
• “The child would become lost in a sea of
  expectations by people who don’t
  understand.”
• “A parent would live in chaos waiting for the
  next shoe to drop.”
• “The intervener gives parent permission to
  breathe again.”
                                   S.K., Parent
            Teacher Level
“Thank you so much for the trainings. I am
always excited to implement the new things I
learned, and appreciate having other things
reinforced. When I go to other trainings, I
always learn something new but usually there
isn’t a lot of relevant information that I can use
with my students. However, in your trainings I
not only leave with an enthusiasm to begin
implementing new ideas, but also feel the
majority of the information is directly related to
my students. Thank you!”
                                      J.Y., Teacher
         Ripple Effect
“What’s good for the student who is
  deafblind is good for all students.”
                        Anonymous Teacher
“I use deafblind strategies and concepts
(taught at Intervener Training) with every child
on my caseload (25). The Intervener Program
is changing the way all children are being
approached. Deafblind strategies offer the best
teaching practices and are important,
essential, and easily applied to most students.
It would be easier to tell you when I don’t use
deafblind concepts than when I do.”
                                  G.L., O.T.
“Extremely well thought out information that
is easily accessible. Gives me a feeling of
community and support to input these
strategies with our student.”
                             Anonymous Teacher
             Intervener Level
One Intervener’s Notes - 1st Day of Training:
“Too overwhelming – in over my head!”
observe      acknowledge      wait   acknowledge
gain trust
good fairy vs. independence

never give up
              NOW

Before doing anything, ask:
         “IS IT MEANINGFUL?”
“The “AHA moments … He’s got it” are
 the best! Without Intervener Training,
 who knows if they would have surfaced.
The AHA moments are everyday now as
we attach language to the meaningful!”

                           D.B., Intervener
“Training provides insight into the child’s
 world – it gives the intervener the time
 to get the feedback that they need.”
                               D.M., Intervener
“Intervener training helped me to slow down
my pace and understand more from the
student’s perspective. I need to keep things
structured and use a calendar system or
schedule system so the student knows what
is happening and when an activity is
finished.”                   Anonymous Intervener
“I gained a much deeper understanding of deaf-
blindness and the strategies to be used. It was
especially critical that we learned as a team.”
                                   Anonymous Intervener


“Intervener training gave me a better understanding
of kids with deafblindness, a better understanding of
how to teach concepts, and how to help the student
access information.”
                                   Anonymous Intervener
 A Teacher’s Perspective
     On Interveners

“I have seen more respect given to
 interveners. They aren’t looked at as just a
 specialized aide, instead they are viewed as
 someone who knows the ins and outs of
 deafblindness.”
                                 S.I., Teacher
           Student Level


 A child who is deafblind is not
limited by what they learn, but
    by what we teach them.
         Dr. Barbara McLetchie
“Our student has made progress by leaps and
 bounds this year with the the Intervener
 Training Program and support from the
 Deafblind Project. In regards to curriculum and
 access to information – we are finally working
 together as a team.”        Anonymous Team Member
  Students With Interveners
• Made more progress
• Better teaming
• Stronger educational programs and
  supports to their students who are
  deafblind
“Using an intervener offers the child
consistency in language modeling and
expectations … resulting in the bar being
set higher than if the child didn’t have an
intervener.”
                                H.D., Teacher
“Having an intervener allows for
mainstream exposure that our student
wouldn’t have otherwise had.”
                           D.M., Intervener
               Thoughts On The
                  Intervener

“When nothing seems to help, I go and
look     at    a     stonecutter       hammering    away
at     his    rock    perhaps      a     hundred   times
without as much as a crack showing in
it.    Yet at the hundred and first blow it
will split in two, and I know it was not
that blow that did it... but all that had
gone before.”                              Jacob Riis

				
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posted:12/19/2012
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