• New Insights and Interventions that Work for Autism, Sensory Processing Disorders and Oppositional Behavior

    Research is providing insight into how the brain thinks, creates and feels. This scientific progress also reveals that for each person, brain plasticity allows competencies to develop even when early indications imply limitations.

    Webcasts from Profectum Foundation’s 2nd international conference provide access to presentations by leading scientists, clinicians, and educators feature state- of- the-art research and treatment models to advance progress for individuals with autism (ASD), sensory processing disorders (SPD), behavioral and learning challenges of all ages.

    Explore the newest scientific discoveries in “executive function”, sensory processing, motor planning and timing, communication and oppositional behavior. These scientific findings confirm the use of the DIR-FCD model in your home, classroom and clinic to enhance working memory, attention, self control, sensory motor integration and visual spatial knowledge. Case discussions and videos will demonstrate treatment strategies in all settings which support development of lifelong competencies for relating, thinking, feeling and functioning.This conference helps you understand the barriers to progress and “how to” move forward through case discussions, examining underlying processes, hands on workshops, and the opportunity to learn how to interact and play with your child using the techniques of Floortime to promote progress.

    Conference Full Series

    $95.00 / 6 months Add to cart

    Friday, March 21, 2014

    Welcome & Program Overview

    Ricki Robinson, MD, MPH

    Foundational Capacities for Development – The FCD’s: The Role of Experience and the Importance of Developmental Readiness

    Serena Wieder, PhD

    Model theory introduced major paradigm shifts from behavioral and cognitive to dynamic developmental systems that can adapt to the many variations posed by developmental disorders and the many factors that influence it, not bound by age or limitations in interventions or rate of progress. The DIR-FCD model defines the necessary structural capacities. Experiences form the building blocks of this structure. To be meaningful these experiences depend on developmental readiness to become part of what the child knows, understands, and can execute. When this occurs, an individual becomes the agent of his or her own intent and competencies. They should be based on an affective need within the child such as curiosity or interest. They also must be active as well as interactive, with an adult who mediates the meaning, unfolding in a sequential manner so that the child can make common sense of and understand them. Exposure is not enough. This session will discuss the foundational pathways to competence and how to activate, organize and integrate experiences to find the sequence that takes you from the start to the finish that is an essential part of executive functioning.

    $15.00 / 6 months Add to cart

    Understanding Executive Function and Its Role as a Core Competency

    George McCloskey, PhD

    This presentation will cover executive functions in children, adolescents and young adults; definitions of “executive functions”– what they are and aren’t; current brain science – what is known about the neurological basis of executive functions; how executive functions develop in children from birth through young adulthood; the ways executive functions impact the learning of reading, writing, math, athletic performance, listening, speaking and social behavior; how to recognize the signs of strengths and/or deficits in executive functions; assessing executive functions and what to do to improve the development of executive functions in your individuals with developmental challenges.

    $15.00 / 6 months Add to cart

    Building Competencies from Pre-K thru Young Adulthood in Public and Private School Settings

    Monica G. Osgood; Christine Seminaro, M Ed; Karen McDowell

    Expanding on the morning plenary on executive functioning, this presentation will focus on the critical components in educational programs that are needed to build strong developmental foundations that lead to independence and success beyond school. New understanding of how to support motor challenges while fostering interactions, play, high level thinking and creativity are illustrated through videos of classroom activities. An exploration of the common challenges of young adults with ASD and related challenges and strategies to prepare them for success will be included.

    $15.00 / 6 months Add to cart

    Using Movement to Close Sensory Feedback Loops and Scaffold Cognition in ASD

    Elizabeth Torres, PhD

    The new changes to the DSM-V and the addition of sensory disturbances as a core problem in autism spectrum disorders (ASD) open the possibility of using movement as our ally to improve diagnosis, research and treatments. Movement has been traditionally conceived as a unidirectional stream: as an output stream of information flowing from the central nervous system (CNS) to the periphery along efferent channels. However, movement is also a form of sensory input to the CNS that flows in closed loop from the periphery to the brain along afferent channels. The variability inherently present in our movements contains information that our kinesthetic receptors transduce and decode to help guide our actions and help us predict the sensory consequences of our impending decisions. In this way the movement variability present in our behaviors serves as informative sensory feedback and as an amplifier of our internal somatosensation. Movement variability permits the continuous objective quantification of change in natural behaviors as the child grows, develops and is subject to behavioral interventions or to drug treatments.

    In this lecture we show new statistical methodology to address the heterogeneity of ASD and to dynamically track changes in all aspects of behavior at different time scales, in real time and longitudinally. More precisely we will show how to identify individually the best sources of sensory guidance for the child, those which sharpen perception, make decisions faster, more accurate and anticipatory, generally scaffolding cognition as they transition into adulthood.

    $15.00 / 6 months Add to cart

    Think Before You Move!

    Darlene Hanson, MA, CCC-SLP; Peggy Schaefer, MM, MT-BC with Emma Cladis

    Many individuals with ASD and other developmental disorders who also exhibit minimal to no verbal communication have difficulty organizing and timing their movements in order to communicate.  This can be demonstrated by their difficulty in initiation, sequencing/continuing, and inhibition.  Families and professionals often describe the difficulty these individuals have implementing alternative and augmentative communication (AAC) with statements such as, “he is not consistent” or “he can’t make a choice between two pictures.” In this session we will discuss how to help individuals organize their movements and thinking in order to support their use of AAC and improve their relationship with their friends/family and others in their world. Video clips will be used to illustrate the beneficial relationship between thinking/moving/communicating in the real world for individuals with ASD.

    $15.00 / 6 months Add to cart

    Mobilizing Movement in the Clinic, Home, School: A DIR-FCD Model Case Presentation
    Webcast Not Available

    Beth Osten, MS, OTR/L; Diane Selinger, PhD; Traci Swink, MD with commentary from Profectum Faculty and Guest Presenters

    A model case of a child with Autism followed by a multidisciplinary team over many years will showcase how support of his motor planning and sequencing as a major component of his multidisciplinary treatment program helped him move forward to better communication, improved attention, executive function, learning and emotional regulation. This case is presented by Senior Faculty members of the Profectum Academy who have been key members of his treatment team and will share through narrative, and videos his challenges and impressive progress over time. This case will demonstrate the value of a relationship based multidisciplinary team to address each challenge for an individual in order to support  continued development across the years.

    Saturday, March 22, 2014

    Sensory Processing and Neuroimaging Assessment to Guide Treatment Interventions

    Elysa Marco, MD

    This presentation will correlate the neural networks of sensory processing and the brain changes in these networks found in recent neuroimaging research in Autism and Sensory Processing Disorders (SPD).  The importance of these changes as it relates to the new sensory features in the DSM-5 Autism clinical criteria will be emphasized.  Sensory and attention based differences found in Autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders will also be reviewed.  A novel approach using sensory processing and neuroimaging will be demonstrated that includes the use of IPad technology to guide diagnosis and treatment.

    $15.00 / 6 months Add to cart

    Sensory Processing and Neuroimaging Assessment: Case Presentations of Treatment that is Informed and Supported by the Research   

    Rosemary White, OTR/L | Panel Discussion: Sherri Cawn, MA CCC-SLP; Diane Selinger, PhD; Traci Swink, MD

    Three cases will be presented including video clips that demonstrate how clinical reasoning is supported by the research and how the research informs and deepens clinical practice.  An interdisciplinary panel will share the reflections on this rich process of research and clinical applications.

    $15.00 / 6 months Add to cart

    Redefining Oppositional Behavior
    Webcast Not Available

    Mona Delahooke, PhD; Connie Lillas, PhD, MFT, RN | Panel Discussion: Catherine Crowley, OTD, OTR/L; Barbara Stroud, PhD

    It is common across disciplinary boundaries to view a child through his or her “behaviors.” Parents, teachers, and professionals alike, become concerned when a child’s behavior is defined as “oppositional.” Rather than viewing behavior through a singular lens, this plenary and panel discussion presents a way to understand oppositional behaviors as organized through an integrated “big picture” framework.  Video-based case material will showcase a variety of “oppositional” behavior reflecting a range of diagnostic categories and ages.  Cases will be compared and contrasted in the context of understanding “bottom-up” (sensory-motor strategies) and “top-down” (language-based strategies) learning processes. The invited panel will further elucidate these neurodevelopmental markers in the discussion.

    “I’m Not Going to Lose It!”  How to Stay Regulated and Calm While Helping Your Child Work Through Challenging Issues – Parents and Professionals Working Together

    Mona Delahooke, PhD with parents Megan Browne, MariKay Cuthill and Jennie Linthorst

    We all know the role of the parent is vital to the success of the child but how does a parent of a child with behavioral challenges maintain emotional control 24/7?  Using the “R” in DIR-FCD Model is vital.  Calming strategies are necessary for both the parent and the child. A framework of five critical points will help move the initial gut reaction toward a more positive interaction.  The ultimate goal is to teach the child that he can obtain what he needs without having to resort to challenging behavior.

    Sunday, March 23, 2014

    The Development of Motor Control in the Sensory Affective Rhythm of Child/Caregiver Interaction

    Rosemary White, OTR/L; Beth Osten, MS, OTR/L; with Profectum and Guest Faculty

    This workshop will address motor development from birth to 7 when there is fully matured balance and equilibrium.  The goal of the workshop is for participants to understand how the sensory affective interaction of caregiver supports righting reactions which are a foundation for the infant, toddler and preschooler to explore and make meaning of their world.  This workshop will bring together how we can learn from the research of Elizabeth Torres, PhD and Elysa Marco, MD and bring it into our work with children and their families.

    $15.00 / 6 months Add to cart

    DIR-FCD Model Assessment and Intervention for Older Children and Young Adults

    Diane Selinger, PhD; Karen McDowell; Michele Parkins, OTR/L

    This workshop introduces participants to the basics of doing DIR-FCD Model interventions with older children, young adults and their families. Video examples will illustrate Floortime with individuals in both one-on-one and group settings. The integration of DIR-FCD Model principles into semi-structured classroom lessons and how the model prepares adolescents for transition to adulthood will also be demonstrated.  Additionally, the workshop will support an understanding of emotional and social challenges experienced by this population and developmental goals to strengthen and address them in all communities. Sample IEP goals will be provided to reflect interventions covered.  Importantly there is an emphasis on the integration of foundational levels of development while simultaneously respecting the individual’s profile, age, unique challenges, and continuing growth towards higher levels of thinking and interacting.

    $15.00 / 6 months Add to cart

    Speech, Language and Communication: Finding the Holes in the Swiss Cheese

    Sherri Cawn, MA, CCC-SLP; Cindy Harrison, M.Sc. – Reg. CASLPO; Marilee Burgeson, MA, CCC-SLP

    This workshop will explore speech language and communication through a DIR-FCD Model lens. The focus will be on identifying strengths and the underlying challenges (the ‘holes’) across a number of individual communication profiles (younger children, older children, verbal individuals and non-verbal individuals).  Case histories will be reviewed and illustrated with video clips to demonstrate the principles of diagnosis and treatment emphasized in this workshop and to clarify how the Speech and Language therapist works together with a multidisciplinary team to support challenges in these key areas that can impede developmental progress.

    $15.00 / 6 months Add to cart

    Visual Spatial Challenge’s Domino Effect on All Aspects of Development

    Serena Wieder, PhD; Karen McDowell; with Guest Presenters

    Understanding where you are in space and where other things are relative to you – is essential to anything you want to do, how you think, how you learn, how you feel, how you relate and communicate with others, how you play, how you move, and how you organize and navigate your inner and outer world. This workshop will examine the symphony of developmental milestones supported by vision, how to identify difficulties, the relationship to anxiety, how to use our new manual to guide intervention, and why integrating the silos of intervention is essential through case illustrations. Based on Visual/Spatial Portals to Thinking, Feeling and Movement by Serena Wieder, PhD and Harry Wachs, OD.

    $15.00 / 6 months Add to cart

    Integrating an Understanding of Neurobiological Challenges Such as Anxiety, Mood Disorders, Executive Functions/Attention, Seizures and Sleep Disorders and their Treatment into a Comprehensive Multi-Disciplinary Intervention Model
    Webcast Not Available

    Traci Swink, MD; Diane Selinger, PhD; Beth Osten, MS, OTR/L

    Children with ASD and related special needs face many challenges as they negotiate the transitions, demands and expectations of daily life. For many of these children, underlying neurobiological challenges such as anxiety, mood disorders, and executive function/attention deficits further compromise the brain’s capacities to integrate experiences, form relationships and enhance learning. Additionally, some children experience seizures and significant sleep disturbances that further derail development and impede developmental progress. Using an in depth case study, this workshop will explore the relationship between developmental and neurobiological challenge in a vulnerable child. The discussion will focus on identifying symptoms and monitoring progress from a multidisciplinary team approach and highlight how evidenced-based medical treatment becomes an integral part of a comprehensive treatment program. Emphasis will be placed on how neurobiological and developmental challenges are positively impacted when parents, therapists, mental health professionals and medical professionals forge a relationship and collaborate together.

    Executive Functioning and the DIR-FCD Model in Schools

    Monica G. Osgood; Christine Seminaro, M Ed; George McCloskey, PhD

    This post-conference workshop will expand on the Friday morning plenaries on Executive Functions and the DIR-FCD Model in the classroom. It will provide a deeper understanding of the role of executive functions in development and learning while providing specific strategies via videotape examples. Classroom and small young adult group activities will help the participants understand the developmental processes and core capacities needed in order for individuals to succeed as well as how to foster them in individuals with diverse needs. Sample IEP goals will be provided to reflect interventions covered.

    $15.00 / 6 months Add to cart