connections-for-learning

Individualized ABA-Based Group Instruction for Children Ages 3 to 7

The school environment can be challenging for young children who struggle with social or language skills. Connections 4 Learning is a daytime program that provides intensive ABA therapy for these children in a structured setting. This program is designed to provide an EIBI experience where children gain repeated opportunities to interact with peers and acquire critical (and often challenging) social and group behavior skills, all within our highly structured setting. Children benefit from multiple daily one-on-one sessions with a Registered Behavioral Technician (RBT) and carefully organized group and peer interactions.

The program is full-time, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and runs year round. There are limited half day options as well (9-11:30 and 12-3).  The program is directed by an experienced, doctoral-level BCBA-D. Our lead teacher is a BCBA and certified teacher.

A BCBA Case Manager designs each child’s specific goals in the following areas:

  • 1:1 Sessions with a Registered Behavioral Technician (RBT) that focus on intensive teaching and specific skill acquisition.
  • Small Groups that include structured play, group responding (i.e., academic or language-based tasks), or gross motor/fine motor activities.
  • Circle Time for more routine group activities, such as book/literacy skills or music skills (i.e., group responding to previously acquired skills).

 

What are the goals for children in the C4L Program?

  1. Provide an EIBI experience for children where learning opportunities are created all day, everyday.
  2. Each child has a program individualized to their specific needs.
  3. The opportunity to learn skills to have a successful experience when entering the school system is given.
  4. That each child would have opportunities to have group and social experiences at their developmental level.

 

What is EIBI?

EIBI stands for Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention and is the application of the principles of Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) to young children with developmental disabilities including Autism Spectrum Disorders.   It is widely recognized as an evidence based practice to improve the delays associated with autism including language delays, IQ, and adaptive skills.   Children who participate in EIBI programs are typically taught with 1:1 support.

The characteristics of a quality EIBI program include the following:

  • Age – EIBI programs usually begin with young children (under 2 when possible) with a starting age of up to 7 years old.
  • Intensity – EIBI programs typically range from 30-40 hours per week for children over 3 and 25-30 hours for children under 3.
  • Length of treatment – Treatment generally lasts 2-3 years depending on the need and age of child at onset.
  • Skills addressed – EIBI programs are designed to be comprehensive and target skills including language, pre-academic, social, and adaptive.

 

The research base supporting its effectiveness extends for more than 30 years and as a treatment strategy for autism is acknowledged to be effective by the US Surgeon General, US Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the American Academy of Pediatrics, National Research Council, Mayo Clinic, National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), and Autism Speaks, to name a few.

Is This Program a Good Fit for Your Child?

Connections 4 Learning will not be right for all children. Children who have already mastered the ability to learn in a group setting, for instance, may be better served with a traditional school environment.

Additionally, because our focus is on skill acquisition rather than behavior reduction, this program may not be suited for children with severe aggressive behavior.

Funding for the program is strictly through private insurance or private pay, and families are expected to commit to the program for the full school year. Families are also responsible for their child’s transportation.

How to Apply

Students will be accepted to Connections 4 Learning on a first-come/first-served basis. If you’re interested in applying, please contact our Clinical Director, Dr. Niki Thurkow, at 331-457-5533 to see if the program is appropriate for your child’s needs and to get you started with the application process.