Pick of the Week: Wooden Animal Nesting Blocks

Explore the animal kingdom and develop spatial motor skills with these delightful and durable Wooden Animal Nesting Blocks! From a tiny sea horse to a great big elephant, discover charming animals from four animal habitats.

This week only, you can save 15%* on the Wooden Animal Nesting Blocks with promo code WANB15 at check-out!

With all 8 blocks stacked, they tower almost 3 feet tall. These Wooden Animal Nesting Blocks are great for practicing patterns and sequencing skills in very young learners. Don’t forget to use mention or apply promo code WANB15 at check-out to redeem your savings this week!

*Offer is valid until 11:59pm EST on July 7th, 2015. Not compatible with any other offers. Be sure there are no spaces or dashes in your code at checkout!

Pick of the Week: More What’s Wrong? ColorCards – Develop skills in problem-solving, storytelling, and more!

Help students develop skills in observation, deduction, problem solving, anticipation, storytelling, insight, and more with the More What’s Wrong? ColorCards. This set of 36 photographic cards shows a range of activities and situations with incorrect, unusual, or unexpected elements to identify and discuss, and even induce a few chuckles! Save 15%* this week on the More What’s Wrong? ColorCards by applying promo code WHATSWRONG at check-out!

The open-ended nature of the problems posed also enables different levels of application ranging from single identification of what’s wrong to understanding and explaining how to fix the situation and the potential consequences.

 

 

 

 

 

 

An instruction booklet with possible discussion points and ways to structure a session is also included, with pages that identify which cards show mistakes with clothes, wrong objects, wrong methods, or impossible/unlikely events. Don’t forget – you can take 15%* off your order of the More What’s Wrong? ColorCards by using promo code WHATSWRONG at check-out this week!

Tips on Effective Self-Management with ABA Techniques by Daniel Sundberg

Most of us at some point or another have struggled with time management. Whether it is finding more time to spend with your children, or just finding the time to exercise, time management can be a major challenge. But the benefits are potentially huge. When I first started graduate school I had trouble scheduling classes, work, research, exercise, and social activities. Fortunately, I was introduced to some effective techniques, derived from the principles of applied behavior analysis, designed to help people systematically manage their own behavior, known as self-management (Cooper, Heron, & Heward, 2007). The self-management process at its core is about taking data on your own behavior and setting up systems to manage your own performance. Individuals have used self-management to address a wide variety of challenges, from reducing smoking and managing spending, to better utilizing their billable hours and managing medication use. Additionally, self-management techniques have been used by individuals with a wide range of developmental and cognitive abilities (Cooper et al., 2007), and have been shown to be effective in increasing an array of positive behavioral skills in individuals with autism (Lee, Simpson, & Shogren, 2007).

While I find a specific tool like the Self Management Planner useful in coordinating my own efforts at self-management, the components of a good self-management program can be incorporated into many different types of tools or systems. These components are very similar to those that you may see in effective applied behavior analysis or performance management programs (Baer, Wolf, & Risley, 1968; Daniels & Bailey, 2014). At its most basic level this process involves specifically identifying important goals and related behaviors, measuring progress, determining how to affect those behaviors and reach your goals, and evaluating and modifying your program as necessary (Cooper et al., 2007). While Cooper et al. (2007) present a wide range of self-management tactics, here are a few specific suggestions for making your self-management program more effective:

  • Define your goals and the related behaviors. Creating a goal is a very important part of this process, as specific goals have been repeatedly shown to be more effective than vague goals (Locke & Latham, 2013). By identifying what you ultimately want to accomplish in the future it becomes much easier to identify things you can do today to get you there. Here are some specific tips for setting your goals:
    • Set a long term goal in terms of an accomplishment, not an activity (e.g. “save $5,000 for a vacation” rather than “spend less money”).
    • Make these long-term goal challenging yet attainable.
    • Set many short term goals, and direct these towards behaviors and results.
    • Make these short-term goals realistic – err on the side of making them too easy.
    • Make both short-term and long-term goals as specific as you possibly can.
    • Use your short-term and long-term goals to identify day to day behaviors that will allow you to reach your goal.
    • When you are selecting the goals that you want to focus on, pick only a few at any given time. It is reasonable to focus on around 4-6 goals at a time, too many and it becomes easy to lose focus – if everything’s a priority, nothing’s a priority.
  • Identify measures. Tracking and measuring your progress is critical, and a large part of that involves clearly defining how you will measure the goals and behaviors you identified. For example, if you want to reach a set of parent training goals will you measure it in time spent working on that goal, milestones accomplished, appraisal from a clinical supervisor, or some other means? The more objective and countable, the better.
  • Change the behavior of interest. There are a number of ways to try and change your behavior. Often times, simply measuring behavior can produce change. If that is not enough, enlist the help of a friend to help you set and track your goals, keep you accountable, and deliver consequences. You can use Facebook or some other social media tool to make a public commitment and regularly post on how you are progressing. Paid programs such as Stickk can help you to track and measure your progress towards a goal. It is also possible to rearrange your environment in a way that makes the desired behavior more likely, B.F. Skinner wrote extensively on this in this in Enjoy Old Age: A Program of Self-Management (Skinner & Vaughan, 1983).
  • Track and measure. Record data on your progress every day, or at least several times per week. Frequently tracking your performance will also serve as a regular source of feedback, which can by itself change behavior.
  • Evaluate and modify your program. Taking frequent data will also allow you to make much more informed decisions about the effectiveness of your program. When recording your data spend some time evaluating your self-management program. Determine whether the goals you have set are realistic, you have enough time in your week to accomplish what you want, your environment is set up to help or hinder your progress, etc. This step is a lot easier to do if you are frequently taking data. If you are not making the progress you want (or aren’t even able to track your progress!) that means something needs to change. Reflect on what has been done thus far and consider other changes you could make that will lead to greater success.

Here are a few other points that are not specifically part of the self-management process, but may help you in your efforts:

  • Before you go to bed, make a list of the things you need to do tomorrow. Keep that list next to your bed, so you can jot down a task you think of in bed, rather than fixating on it.
  • Consider whether there are tasks that you do better at different times in the day. For example, I find that I do my heavy mental activities best in the morning, and try not to schedule anything too mentally demanding during the post-lunch lull.
  • Honestly appraise how well you respond to prompts and lists. For some, having a to-do list can control a lot of behavior, for others it is not nearly so effective. If you find that you don’t respond well to to-do lists, no amount of listing and planning is going to change your behavior. You may find that you need to recruit a friend to help in your program.
  • Schedule in some breaks. Most of us cannot tackle tasks back to back to back all day at the energy level needed. Even if it is 10 or 15 minutes, plan in some time during the day to take a quick break. You may find that this has the effect of making your time on task much more effective.
  • Avoid multi-tasking with important activities at all costs. The act of shifting your focus from one activity to another can take up more time than you expect, and eliminate any perceived efficiency from doing two things at once.

Self-management is no easy task, but the benefits can make the effort well worth it, not just for you, but for those you work with as well.

WRITTEN BY DANIEL SUNDBERG

Daniel Sundberg is the founder of Self Management Solutions, an organization that operates on the idea of helping people better manage their time. Towards this end, he created the Self Management Planner, which is based on an earlier edition created by Mark Sundberg in the 1970s. Daniel is currently a PhD candidate and continues his work helping individuals and organizations better themselves.

Pick of the Week: Reading Comprehension Cubes

Make reading discussions fun with Reading Comprehension Cubes! These foam cubes with comprehension questions on each side are great for promoting conversations, peer learning, and active reading. This week only, you can take 15%* off your order of Reading Comprehension Cubes with promo code READCUBES at check-out!

To use the Reading Comprehension Cubes, students answer the questions before reading with the red cubes, during reading with the blue cubes, and after reading with the green cubes. Your set includes 2 of each cube and an Activity Guide. Each of the 6 cubes measures 1½ inches.

Don’t forget – use our promo code READCUBES at check-out to save 15%* on Reading Comprehension Cubes this week only!

Pick of the Week: NEW! Save 20% on the AFLS Vocational and Independent Living Skills Protocols

Fresh off the press, the final protocols in the Assessment of Functional Living Skills (AFLS) series are now available: Vocational Skills and Independent Living Skills. Now through June 16th, receive 20% off any quantity of these new Protocols. No promo code necessary.

The Vocational Skills Assessment Protocol provides caregivers and professionals with information to teach essential skills to learners who are preparing to enter the workforce or those who are already working but want to further develop skills for a wide variety of settings. This assessment covers skills related to obtaining employment, searching for job openings, creating resumes, completing applications, and preparing for interviews. This protocol also includes a wide range of basic work-related skills such as job safety, payroll, financial issues, and interacting with supervisors and co-workers. It also includes a review of skills required in specific types of jobs in a variety of settings. With this assessment, practitioners can help evaluate vocational skills for individuals with various types and levels of disability. Click here for a quick preview!

The Independent Living Skills Protocol provides caregivers and professionals with information to teach essential skills to learners who are being prepared for independent living. The assessment covers critical skills critical such as organizing possessions, cleaning and cooking, as well as money management skills related to financial planning, banking, paying bills, using debit and credit cards, and shopping. This protocol also incorporates skills about the assertion of personal rights, awareness of the motivation of others, and managing relationships with others in various settings. Click here for a preview!

This week only, take 20% off either or both the Vocational Skills and Independent Living Skills Assessment Protocols. No promo code necessary.

*Offer is valid until 11:59pm EST on June 16th, 2015.

Pick of the Week: “Language Development Lessons for Early Childhood” Workbook

Strengthen listening and speaking skills in your learner with this workbook by speech-language pathologist Jean Gilliam DeGaetano that contains 80 pages of reproducible Student and Instructor Worksheets. The worksheets cover 3 basic techniques – Yes or No Answers, Choosing Between Two Answers, and Completing Sentences. This week only, you can save 15%* on Language Development Lessons for Early Childhood by using our promo code LANG15 at check out!

The lessons in this workbook feature various scenarios along with corresponding questions that ask the listener to answer yes or no, choose between two answers, and complete descriptive statements read aloud by the instructor. All three techniques in this book are great for stimulating receptive and expressive language in young children.

Take 15%* off your order of Language Development Lessons for Early Childhood by applying promo code LANG15 at check out this week only!

*Offer is valid until 11:59pm EST on June 9th, 2015. Not compatible with any other offers. Be sure there are no spaces or dashes in your code at check out!

Pick of the Week: Sentence Building Dominoes – A fun, hands-on way to teach sentence formation skills

Help your learner improve reading, spelling, and grammar skills by building a variety of sentences with these colorful Sentence Building Dominoes. This week, you can also save 15%* when you order your set of Sentence Building Dominoes with us. Just be sure to apply our promo code DOMINO when you check out online or over the phone.

With 114 double-sided and color-coded dominoes that feature 8 parts of speech—nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, conjunctions, prepositions and punctuation marks—the possibilities are endless!


This is a fun, hands-on way for early readers to learn parts of speech and practice sentence formation skills. The dominoes come packed in a handy storage bucket.

Don’t forget to apply our code DOMINO at check-out to redeem your savings on the Sentence Building Dominoes this week!

 

*Offer is valid until 11:59pm EST on May 19th, 2015. Not compatible with any other offers. Be sure there are no spaces or dashes in your code at check out!

Pick of the Week: NEW! The Self Management Planner, created by Daniel Sundberg, PhD

From Daniel Sundberg, PhD, comes the brand new Self Management Planner which offers you a better way to organize your life and check things off your to-do lists! The planner utilizes the concepts and principles of ABA to help you to get more done, and is designed specifically for users who have busy and frequently changing schedules and want something that will do more than schedule time in the day.

This week only, you can save 15%* on the new Self Management Planner by Daniel Sundberg, PhD. Just use our promo code SMP15 at check-out!

Not only is this planner perfect for effective time management and organizing your activities, but it also allows to set and track your goals (it even includes graph paper so you can watch your progress!). This is a perfect tool for those data collectors out there who are looking for an excellent organizational and record-keeping tool.
The Self Management Planner includes:

  • Appointment book with full 18.5 hour days and 7 day weeks, to accommodate those who work on variable schedules
  • A tutorial on using the planner, appointment book, and measuring your success
  • A guide to setting long term goals, and figure out ways to accomplish those goals
  • A system for that allows you to select and track your daily activities. People have used this section to track a huge variety of important things like spending, hours billed, driving mileage, activity goals, and more
  • Graphs to help you see and track progress on your goals
  • Lined note paper
  • Blank date periods that allow you to start the planner on your own schedule to prevent page waste
  • Weekly and daily to-do lists
  • Space to make note of all day events
  • Sized at 8.5″ x 5.5″ to fit a small bag or purse

We also have an exclusive article from Daniel Sundberg on all the features of The Self Management Planner and how to use it:

The Self Management Planner
by Daniel Sundberg, PhD

If you deliver treatment services to individuals with autism spectrum disorders or other special needs, then you know how hectic it can be to schedule multiple clients, meet with families, supervise staff, find time to write reports, and manage your many other responsibilities. For parents of children with autism and other special needs, the story is no different. Managing school, treatment sessions, doctor’s appointments, accomplishing your treatment goals, all while managing the rest of your life. It can get overwhelming to try and fit it all into one 24 hour period. However, effectively managing your time and your schedule helps to accomplish your to-do list and better help the individuals you care for. The good news is it is possible to do this without creating more time in your day, it simply requires effective self-management, a process of systematically managing your own behavior (Cooper, Heron, & Heward, 2007). The Self Management Planner is a tool designed to help people self-manage their own behavior to make use of their time and accomplish their goals.

The Self Management Planner is designed specifically for users who have busy and frequently changing schedules and want something that will do more than schedule time in the day. The Self Management Planner has helped parents, teachers, students, working professionals, and others to free up their time and accomplish their goals. Some people have used the planner and the behavior change tools to do simple things like record their driving mileage, schedule and increase study time, and track daily good deeds. They have also taken on bigger issues like tracking and identifying triggers for migraines, keeping track of medications, recording hours billed, managing daily spending, and freeing up time to spend with their children.

The different parts of The Self Management Planner were developed based on the concepts and principles of behavior analysis, and refined with user feedback to create a product that will satisfy the needs of those who are interested in effectively managing their life. The planner includes a full week appointment book with 18.5 hour days, full weekends (for those whose days do not start and stop at 9-5, and weeks do not end on Friday), and daily and weekly to-do lists. In addition, users have space to set yearly goals (such as pass the BACB exam or save enough for a vacation) and a section in every week of the appointment book to measure and track daily and weekly behavioral targets (such as study time, money spent, or a child’s IEP goals).

The planner also has 52 lined pages for notes, and graph paper to visually track important measures. Additionally, there is a comprehensive tutorial to guide users through the self-management process, which includes creating effective goals, identifying ways to measure and evaluate those goals, determining ways to set yourself up for success, and using the planner to manage your time. All of this is packaged in a convenient 8.5” x 5.5” size that will slip into most briefcases, backpacks, and purses.

If your time is at a premium and you are looking for a way to accomplish more and better serve those who depend upon you, effective self-management may help. The Self Management Planner can help to structure your self-management program to allow you to accomplish more.

Don’t forget to redeem your savings this week only on The Self Management Planner by applying our promo code SMP15 when you check out online or over the phone with us!

*Offer is valid until 11:59pm EST on May 12th, 2015. Not compatible with any other offers. Be sure there are no spaces or dashes in your code at check out!

Pick of the Week: Chunk Stacker – A Word-Building Game to Expand Vocabulary and Improve reading

Open the doors to literary success with the challenging and stimulating word-building game, Chunk Stacker! This week only, you can save 15%* on Chunk Stacker by applying our promo code CHUNK at checkout, and help students expand their vocabulary and improve reading skills!

Chunk Stacker encourages strategic and lateral thinking as players attempt to fill their trays with words made from frequently used onsets and rimes. The rules are simple, but involve plenty of higher-order thinking.

Players select from face-down tiles and try to make words on their stackers, making and breaking as necessary. Chunk Stacker includes a 48-page dictionary for word look-up and definition, word trays, and 80 onsets and rimes tiles. Play as a game or use it for teaching basic reading and spelling!

Don’t forget to use our promo code CHUNK this week only to take 15%* off your order of Chunk Stacker!

*Offer is valid until 11:59pm EST on May 5th, 2015. Not compatible with any other offers. Be sure there are no spaces or dashes in your code at check out!

We’ve extended our Language Builder promotion! Save 30% and more!

Great news for those of you who might have missed our 3-day promotion for our Language Builder sets! We’ve extended our sale to last through next Tuesday, April 28th. Just use our promo code BUILDER15 at check-out to redeem these savings below on all of our Language Builder card sets until next Tuesday:

We’re offering a value bundle of the Language Builder Picture Cards and the Picture Noun Cards 2 together for only $155 (a $234 value)! You’ll be saving over $75 with this bundle! Just add the bundle to your cart—no promo code necessary.

 

Everyone’s favorite—the Language Builder Picture Cards—is a 350-card set that teaches key language concepts to children with autism or other speech and language delays. With vivid, beautiful noun cards created by a parent and professional experienced in the program needs of ABA, this set will foster receptive and expressive language skills. Get the individual set of the Language Builder Picture Cards for $149 only $110—just apply our promo code BUILDER15 during check-out!

We’re also letting you SAVE 30% on any of our individual Language Builder sets, Picture Noun Cards 2, Emotions, and Occupations.

The Language Builder Picture Noun Cards 2 is a 200-card set of photographic noun cards for building additional vocabulary in students who have mastered the original Language Builder Picture Cards. This set is great for labeling practice, as well as sorting, adjectives, functions, things that go together, storytelling and more.

 

The Language Builder Emotions Cards depict facial expressions and emotions by presenting various scenarios featuring men and women of various ages and ethnicities. This 80-card set will help students identify and discuss different feelings and emotions, inviting discussion about a range of emotions, why people may feel a certain way, and possible responses to these feelings.

The Language Builder Occupations Cards is a complete set of photographic cards that depict community workers, both male and female, in each occupation. There are 115 cards featuring 61 different occupations. Each photo is depicted in a natural setting with plenty of contextual clues and reinforcers illustrating that occupations are not gender specific. The set is ideal for teaching occupations, community helpers, gender labels, pronouns, storytelling and more.

*Promotion expires at 11:59pm EST on 04/28/2015. Not valid with any other offers. Be sure there are no spaces or dashes in your code at check-out!