Effective Teaching, Successful Lives
Barbara T Doyle, MS
Welcome to BarbaraDoyle.com
Barbara is completing her schedule of activities for 2015. If you would like her to train, consult or present for you or your organization, be sure to contact her right away!
June 18, 2015
I can hardly believe that 2015 is almost half way finished! In preparing for the rest of this year, I wanted to talk to you about QUALITY OF LIFE. We use the phrase "quality of life" in planning and discussing children and adults with autism and other special learning differences. But what is a quality life?
A quality life includes:
What else contributes to a quality life? Let me know what you think as you discuss this with your friends, family and
colleagues. You can reach me via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 708-966-4683.
August, 2014: MENTAL HEALTH
As promised, I am providing you with some ideas that have been generated by the wonderful participants in my mental health workshop. The following lists were generated at Rend Lake College, but they reflect the findings of other groups with whom I have had the privilege of working.
To begin, I divided participants into three groups. Each group formulated responses to one question.
1. What can mentally healthy people do?
2. What contributes to our mental health?
3. What harms our mental health?
In an inclusive way, we discussed how the answers to these questions apply equally well to children and adults with disabilities and children and adults with no identified disability. This is an important tenant of my approach to inclusion: ALL people are people. Disabilities do not define the person. The disability label is one guide to help us help children and adults reach their potential and have a high quality of life.
Check out this material and then discuss with staff, families and teams: Are we doing everything we can to promote the mental health of the children and adults we support? Are we doing anything that could harm mental health that we need to change? Are we systematically teaching the skills needed to be a mentally health person? We could not list every element in each group, so what do YOU think needs to be added?
What can mentally healthy people do (most of the time)?
What can we do to support the development of mental health in ourselves and others?
What can harm our mental health?
August 1, 2014
Hello again everyone. I hope you are having a wonderful summer.
I am updating my Upcoming Events page so please check it out.
You will see that an important focus for me this year is MENTAL HEALTH. The more I learn about mental health and mental health issues, the more I realize that we all can DO something about the mental health of children and adults with autism or other learning or developmental issues, as well as for ourselves and for everyone with whom we interact. I have developed workshops that focus on this topic with practical ideas of things we can DO right now that promote mental health and things we can all STOP DOING that may be having an negative impact on mental health. As always, my focus is educational (not medical or psychiatric ) and is designed to help us, regardless of our roles, help make the world a better place for children and adults with autism or anyone else.
We all know that mental health is as essential as physical health for a successful life where we can strive to fulfill our potential and have satisfying relationships with others. We also have seen in the news what can happen when we do not recognize and address the mental health needs of children and adults in our society.
So lets get started! I will help you learn how to start promoting mental health every day for yourself and others!
Keep in touch and as always, contact me if I can be of help.
August 6, 2013
BEING TRULY EMPLOYABLE
Wow the National Autism Conference in State College PA was great! I promised participants that I would post some of what we talked about in our sessions. The handouts are now in my Helpful Handouts section.
We talked about what skills people need to have to become truly employable. There is an urgent need for us to begin teaching the skills related to employability from very early in life instead of waiting until the teen age years. We decided this is true for our students with ASD as well as ALL students. People with ASD can be such great employees when we target and teach needed skills!
Here is a skills list that my participants generated. Some are things that we need to KNOW, some are things that we need to be able to DO. We discussed how what you DO is sometimes much more important than what you know because others generally see what we DO and cannot see the content of our minds.
You will notice that each skill mentioned here could and should be broken down into many, specific, objective, and measurable goals. What would happen if we recognized the importance of these skills and started teaching them in an age appropriate way starting at age five, not fifteen!
The list would not be overwhelming if we started teaching from early in life and divided teaching and learning opportunities between school, home and the community. Assume competence and start teaching these skills no matter what the age, stage or diagnosis of the individual. Start wherever you are with whatever you can do!
We list the most important one first:
So let's get busy making ALL students more employable!
2013 has been a wonderful year so far. I continue to focus on projects in the metro-Chicago area and will travel nationally and internationally for conferences, consultations, technical assistance, and training. It seems that my messages of practical, ready-to-implement strategies that lead to lifelong success for everyone on the autism spectrum are needed more than ever for people on the autism spectrum of all ages.
As always, my services include technical assistance, training, presentations, and consultations to child or adult programs, educational staff, therapists, mental health professionals, the child welfare system, universities, families and organizations.
I have developed a full day workshop focusing on Mental Health for people with ASD or other developmental or intellectual issues. We have seen in the news that the lack of mentally healthy thinking patterns have led to undesirable consequences. Although we cannot always prevent mental health disorders, we CAN recognize thinking and learning patterns that do not support mental health. In addition, we CAN teach people skills that can lead to healthy thinking and behavior. I hope you will be able to join me for one of these special workshops this fall. Be sure to check my upcoming events pages for information.
I continue my very specialized focus into 2013 providing more supports to children and adults on the autism spectrum who are also deaf or hard of hearing. Autism with hearing impairment is challenging, but over the years I have developed effective strategies for learning, teaching, supporting and improving communication for this group of dually challenged individuals. My ideas are appropriate for school/educational staff, families, adult services providers, teacher training programs, mental health programs, and state and private schools for the deaf. If you have an interest, let me know. I will be working on more handouts and informational papers for this population this year so check back often for new information and ideas.
Thank you for visiting this web site
and please come back soon! New Materials and ideas added frequently.
Barbara Thompson Doyle, M.S., is a Special Education professional and award-winning author with 44 years of experience in developmental disabilities, autism, deafness, deafblindness, and mental health services. Ms. Doyle is a consultant in private practice and is well known for her practical and positive approaches to addressing the needs of children and adults with disabilities across their life times. An enthusiastic and engaging lecturer, keynote presenter, teacher and trainer, Ms. Doyle travels extensively to bring her holistic, humane and effective approaches to others. Ms. Doyle is "Aunt Barbara" to Tom, who has an Autism Spectrum Disorder and is a licensed CPA in California: GO TOM! There are now four more children with autism spectrum disorders in Barbara's extended family.
Autism Society of America
Premiado por la Sociedad de Autismo de America