- Welcome to our second webinar in our Autism in Education Annual Professional Learning webinar series.
And for those of you who joined us back at the end of October, you know that Annamarie Talbot joined us for part one of Healthy Sexuality Education for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities and ASD.
And she's back with us today for part two of that webinar series.
Annamarie is an educator.
She's joining us from the Strait Regional Center for Education.
Annamarie has been a teacher for 27 years.
She started out in the classroom, and then she moved to resource and then on to more specialized areas of special education, including autism.
And for the last 10 years, she's been working with the Strait Regional Board or the Strait Regional Center for Education supporting students with autism and intellectual disabilities and other diverse needs as well.
And her area of expertise, maybe not her area of expertise per se but an area in which she's developed a great deal of specialization is around healthy sexuality education for learners.
And most of that, as she will tell you, is from necessity because she has found herself working with many learners who had some difficulty figuring out the social morays around those types of behaviors and social situations.
So I won't take anymore of Annamarie's time.
I'll turn the webinar over to her and give you the opportunity to hear from her, some of what she's learned over the last number of years in that area.
- Good afternoon everyone.
Thank you so much for coming back.
Nice to be here again.
So I'm just going to do a brief recap.
Oh, hold on, start my video.
So the last session that I did, we talked about sexual health and anatomy and privacy.
And the big idea that came from that is that when we are teaching our learners with intellectual disabilities, is that we need to talk about all the body is private and some parts are special.
No one should be touched on any part of their body that they're not comfortable.
So that was kind of the big idea that came from my last session.
So it is available, as Shelly mentioned, and you can find it on the website.
I just put that there for you.
So we looked at, as I said, the first two.
And so today, I'm going to address consent, relationships and social skills and legal rights and responsibilities.
It's not necessary to think that this is a program where you have to do one section before something else.
And so typically I have been starting with public versus private, and I certainly would be working around the anatomy and sexual health.
But last week I was working with a learner who is a very high functioning student with autism.
He is actually more on the gifted end I would say, and so for him, because he didn't need any support with anatomy and sexual health or privacy, consent, the relationships and social skills and the law were really his area of difficulty.
So I jumped right to there, and I'm actually having him create a project on the law.
And that's really interesting to him, and I've tweaked his interest and so that's where I'm starting.
So I don't want you to ever feel that you have to go from one thing to the next.
It's where your learner is, and that's where we go.
So when we are working with our folks with intellectual disabilities, often when they come to school, we're always teaching them to comply.
That's where we start.
And I think we want them to be following, we're giving them choice, but we want them to be able to give us a yes and that sort of thing.
When we talk about healthy sexuality, we have to be careful because we have to be able to teach them no.
They have to be able to say no, whether it's verbally or with gestures.
They have to be able to do that.
And so often, the accepted belief is that they don't have this capacity to be sexual.
And so therefore, they can't voluntarily agree to do anything.
So we have to be careful in that area.
We have to remember that in the criminal code, there is no provision for capacity.
So those barriers that exist, we really need to be, as educators, teaching that.
So when I am teaching human rights and sexuality to persons with intellectual disabilities, we almost have to be careful of that overcompliance and the idea that they want to please everyone, but we have to be taught the fair most important in this situation.
They often feel they might get in trouble if they say no.
But they don't wanna hurt another person's feelings, so I think it's really important that we really teach to the no and practice.
As we know with many of our learners, they need to have the things taught to them on a regular basis.
So if you want them to say no, you have to give them examples on how to do that.
One of the most important skills in healthy sexuality and producing the risk of sexual violence is this ability to communicate no.
So when we talk about research, we know that perpetrators often will seek out victims who are more compliant and easily persuaded.
Not to disclose, they will tell someone not to say anything.
When you think about our students with intellectual disabilities, they are so vulnerable in this case that we have to really work on teaching no.
So when we're talking, how do we do that?
So role-playing is an evidence-based strategy in autism that we often use, and so that's been what I've been using, is practicing with them, giving them scenarios which they actually will need to say no.
So there are scenarios that you would use that when you would not want them to say no.
So for example, when we go back to our public versus private, we have a student who is in their bedroom and they've chosen to have some private time in the bedroom with the door closed.
While they're in their bedroom, someone might knock on the door.
And they need to be able to say no, you cannot come in, I'm having a private moment.
So we wanna practice that.
We wanna teach them, number one, it's safe to go to your bedroom with the door closed.
Parents, siblings, guests in the home need to respect the door is closed.
They have to knock.
And if the person behind the closed door says no, then they need to wait until it's a yes or they need to walk away.
So those are things that I feel we need to role-play with our students on a regular basis.
Your bedroom is a private place.
Someone knocks on the door, you don't want them to come in, you say no, it's not a good time, go away.
Practice, practice, practice.
So often what might happen, and this happens when I've been doing these role-play scenarios; and of course they're contrived because they're at school, they will say no but then they'll just open the door because they know it's you and they'll go make a joke about that.
So you really want to try to get it to be as real as possible for them.
And then what I've had some success with is when I have the parents engaging.
So I have the meta program planning team meeting.
I tell them that we're practicing having the child in the bedroom and that you're going to knock and then they're going to say no and you're going to respect that.
So that's been working very well.
Again, it's getting the parents on board and going from there.
So as I said, of course the field, in terms of the field of intellectual disability and sexuality, this capacity to consent is a big hurdle.
And I sit with parents all the time and they don't seem to want to talk about the idea of consent.
They're scared that something may happen to their child so they're fearful if they do teach what consent is, then that they might be more apt to be harmed when actually, in my opinion, it's more that if we don't teach them how to say no, they need to have that ability to do that.
So something that comes from Planned Parenthood is this.
I don't know if you've seen this before.
So this is something that I find students really like.
We'll give them this little picture of fries, and a lot of children really like fries and our youth.
And so when they see this, they get the idea of it has to be freely given, reversible.
The reversible is key, that a female or a male may say yes first and then they may say no.
And then they may say yes again, and it can go back and forth in terms of where they are and where they are comfortable.
Informed, has to be enthusiastic, it has to be specific.
So this is something that is a little piece of a power card that I've created sometimes.
I had a girl that I was working with and she really, really wanted to be able to hold this young boy's hand.
Some days he wanted to hold her hand and some days he didn't.
And so I had this little power card for her and I had to remind her you have to ask to hold his hand.
And if he agrees, that's fine.
But when he says no, you can't keep holding his hand.
And so that took a lot of role-play with the three of us to get that accomplished.
And now she has that little power card and it reminds her that if he says no, I can't hold his hand.
So that's been working.
The other thing is we have to make sure that when we talk about consent, it goes back to what is, that their body is private.
All of their body is private, and that's why I did that power card about the hand because for him, sometimes he felt like holding her hand and sometimes he didn't.
So it's simple things like that that we might think, well, it's just a hand but it is part of his body and it is private.
So skills to teach.
So this is where I start.
I was working on a plan the other day around what do we actually teach.
So as I was making the plan up, we went right to this slide and I was saying to the teacher, can they communicate, yes or no?
Well, yes, they're a verbal student.
Okay, so they're verbal.
I know they can say yes because if you ask them a question, they can say yes.
But will they actually say no was the question.
So she had to come back and she said I'm gonna explore that a little bit and see, right?
So that takes a little bit of assessment before you start.
We know they know how to say yes, but will they follow through with a no, especially if they really like someone or if it's a person in power or a teacher or someone they really respect or that sort of thing.
Are they able to make choices?
Many of our students really struggle with making choices.
And we've worked, sometimes we've worked with that all along, especially when they have breaks.
We might have break cards where they choose what their activity is going to be.
So we need to make sure that they can make choices of some kind.
Do they know what they are consenting to?
So this could be a lot of teaching depending on what they want in their relationship.
So like I mentioned, I had the young girl who wanted to hold the boy's hand.
And that's not a sexual activity, but it is something that needed to be consented to.
So what is it that they're looking for?
Do they know the possible outcomes and/or consequences to the activity to which they are consenting?
So if you think about holding the hand, that is a very simple thing.
It's a yes or a no.
Yes, I'll hold your hand; no, I won't.
However, if they're consenting to kissing or touching or sexual intercourse, then the outcomes can be potentially different.
The laws, my experience is that our students don't know the laws and they don't understand what can happen to them with the law.
We do see the RCMP in many of our schools, and I'm sure in your schools you would say the same and that's excellent.
They need to see these people that they're not scary, but they need to understand what those laws mean and if they break the law, what does that mean?
And for some of them, they think they're under 16, that they're safer.
But there still can be charges, they can still have charges pressed against them and so they have to really understand that.
That's not easy things to teach, I don't find.
So I'm trying to, what I'm doing with the laws is that I'm using social stories dependent on whatever their behavior is.
I'm using that specific law and then a specific social story and why we don't do that.
And then their rights.
They need to understand their basic human rights, and it goes back to the public versus private and the all the body is private and some parts are special.
They have to understand that their right is for their body to be safe and no one has any right to interfere with that.
This is, I find, very difficult as well.
They don't interpret facial expressions very well, some of our students.
And they may hear a no, but they might see, they might be smiling while they're saying no and they may think well, they really mean yes.
So they really need to make sure that they understand if the word no is given, it really means no, no matter how their face looks.
Or maybe if they were really enjoying what was happening and they still say no, they really have to be careful of that as well.
Those are very gray areas and need time and practice.
And I feel that role plays, we need to practice that in a role play scenario.
So if social skills are the key of course to interpreting consent and refusal, how do we know enthusiastic consent versus absence of a yes?
Is this no?
And again, often we think that consent must be verbal and so we need to teach every aspect of that.
And as you can see, this is going to take a bit of time and you have to go slowly and repeat.
I find that what I'm suggesting to teachers is that we start with maybe just one scenario with the beginning of the class.
We go on to some public versus private, we go on to consent, we do a little bit about the law and then we might come back.
And we might repeat that sequence for two or three weeks until they're able to verbalize that.
It may take longer than that, and we might need to add some more social stories and more explicit teaching.
I wanna send that home, have it practiced there as well.
So again, the consent piece, we need to spend time with it and not rush the students.
We need to make sure that it's not just compliance, and we don't want them to feel powerless.
We need them to feel safe and that it's okay to say no.
They're not gonna hurt somebody's feeling and they need to understand the respect for their own body.
So when we think about what are people thinking and what programs we're using in schools, for me, I find that in terms of programs, I like to use our pictures as often as possible in magazines or on the Internet, Google Images.
And I'll pick some out and put them in an array and we'll play with the easy ones at first and then add in some more difficult ones and get them used to looking at the eyes and what does the mouth look like and that sort of thing.
So just important to be able to do that.
Also the nonverbal piece is very important as well.
We need to remember about gestures and shaking of the head.
And then sometimes it can be crossed arms, somewhat physically moving away.
And those are things that just need role plays.
They need to actually see it so that they can they can learn it that way.
So again, it's just that we need to make sure that we're teaching this in ways that they're understanding.
So again, what are the person's behaviors and what are they saying?
So make sure that we're practicing with those cues.
Make sure that you're practicing again verbally and non-verbally, all back to role plays.
And social skills need to be talked for them.
Specifically, that's where the social stories come in, and that's what I've been working on.
That seems to be working the best for me.
So this is something I took from Emily Martinello's work, just all the different ways that you can say a verbal yes, a verbal no.
And then the other piece here about facial expressions and tone of voice and body language and behaviors, these are some things that you could work on one at a time.
So you might take a day and you might just work on eyebrows and what does that see.
Look in my eyes, we know many of our folks may not be comfortable looking in your eyes so you might wanna practice that a little bit.
And what I was doing, I had a teacher and a teacher assistant working together to do the role play, and I had the students watching.
And they of course were exaggerating at first with the eyebrows and the eyes.
And then as they went along, they got it to be a little bit more subtle.
But I found that after we exaggerated the role plays, when we went to the less exaggerated ones, they got more used to looking.
So I think if we can start with the role plays of the adults, again, when you're doing role plays, you have to be very careful to always, if you want them to be doing behaviors, you don't wanna be showing negative behaviors, right?
So you wanna be, we would never have them do any negative behaviors.
The adults can do the practicing of the inappropriate role plays, but then always the students should do the appropriate.
So if you're going to be working on no, they say no and the other person automatically is going to abide by that no.
So we wanna make sure that we teach to the appropriate behavior.
So this is just some ideas that I put together.
Practice, practice, practice is the key.
They have to practice all the time.
And they do get better with practice, but I find they do need to, it needs to be reiterated over and over again.
So one activity that I've had a lot of success with came from Emily Martinello's work.
And I've actually used this type of activity now.
I've used this format I guess for all of the activities because I find the students and the adults really like it and it gives a starting point about where to start.
So for this particular one, identify whether they would consent to an activity with a particular person in a particular location.
Now remember, you as the teacher are in control of who the persons are going to be, the activities and the location.
So some examples.
You might wanna have parents.
Mom, dad, brother, sister, teacher, stranger, doctor, any people that would be in their lives, friends.
You might wanna use particular names of their friends, that sort of thing.
You wanna be very specific.
Then you would pick activities, A, that that you know they would be engaged in.
Maybe they're skating, maybe they're going to 4-H, maybe they're going to basketball or whatever the case may be.
And then you would pick some activities that would be new to them.
So it might be a kiss on the cheek, a handshake, a high five.
It might be a hug.
And then you could add in things like vaginal intercourse, oral sex, anal sex, touching your penis.
You could do any of those activities that you would be explicitly wanting to teach.
Then you would pick the locations.
So could it be school, in your bedroom with the door closed, could be in the park, in the mall, any public and private location.
Again, from the previous webinar, I spoke about private being in their bedroom with the door closed, where no one else can see you.
So everything else that you would put in would possibly be considered to be public.
So now, how I've been working this is that that was a very long list I just gave you.
And you might not use all of those.
But on any given day, what I suggested to a teacher just last week was this might be your ice breaker.
So the first activity that you do when you walk in, you're getting everybody settled, you might decide that you're going to do three of these consent mix and match.
And this gives you a launching point for discussion.
While you're having these discussions, you will record what their answers are, and this will give you an area, okay, I'm seeing they have difficulty with the park.
Maybe they don't understand the park is really a public place because maybe in that community, the park is somewhere where kids go to hang out and they do all sorts of things there.
But really, we wanna make sure that we tell them this is a public place.
And this came right out of her teaching.
She's said, Annamarie, I started with this consent mix and match and it designed where I was going the next day.
So it can be simple.
These activities don't have to be complicated.
You just have to know your learners, and you start with this and it will design where you're going next.
You'll see me speak about this, but I wanted you to have this on a slide because I think this is a way for you to teach it repeatedly.
And again, you might take one of the same, you could use some of the same people and you can mix it up.
This could go on for, well, actually we figured it out, there are so many options that you could have, you could do this for a whole semester every day.
And so that's how we set up.
So I'm a fan of Google Images.
I find that I can get what I'm looking for when I put in the right thing.
And so those various facial expressions, having them sit with me and talk about are they consenting or not.
Again, we could put that up on a screen in a classroom.
We could pick two or three, have them ready to go and talk about it.
Again, that might come as something that you do every day.
Our students really need routine, and they need to know what to expect because sometimes when we're teaching this, they might be worried that it'd be uncomfortable.
But if you keep to the same format, if they know they're gonna do a consent mix and match activity and they're gonna look at some images on Google and they're gonna start interpreting things, they're gonna have a little role play.
The class is going to go by quickly and you're going to have a good plan about where you're going.
So again, you might wanna really focus.
So what I did with my teacher this week was we created eyebrows, eyes and mouths as visuals.
And so we put that on the desks in front of them.
And so one student was in charge of eyebrows, one in charge of eyes and one in charge of mouths.
And so she would go to each child and say, what do you think about the eyebrows of this picture?
And so they just kind of had one thing to focus on at first.
So then the next class, she would mix it up and then keep mixing it up.
And then the next time, so after we get through that, then we'll then give them two.
You're gonna look at eyebrows and eyes now.
And so then it was a bit of mixing and matching, but they felt comfortable with the strategies that we were giving them and it wasn't overwhelming.
So then we would go to two people engaging in an interaction, and then read and interpret their body language and then also work on some non-verbal strategies.
And so that's where we did the thumbs up or thumbs down or face visuals so that they could determine.
So instead of telling us that we think it was consent verbally or not, I would give them little cards on the little sticks and they would have to hold it up.
Consent yes, consent no.
Then they felt engaged and it's much like a game.
And then they feel really engaged with the learning and so that's worked really well.
Okay this I like.
I put this right in the PowerPoint because I wanted you to see how we could use this as a teaching strategy.
So what I was doing with my teacher was we decided that we would do this as kind of a pre-test when we started consent.
So we would ask all of these questions.
There are actually 20 of them and they're on both screens here.
And as you start, you would keep track.
So you might have to do it individually with each child first to see where they are.
And so you might go through that and say John had this many right and this many wrong.
And then after I did all the lessons on consent, the post-test would tell us a little bit is our teaching working?
And that's really hard to know if it is working, so I thought these questions really gave us an idea, a starting point if you will, if you wanna know where they are.
So number three, if you drink too much, it's your fault if someone sexually assaults you.
They would have seen some of that in the media I'm thinking.
And then of course, number two, men are sexual beings who cannot help themselves.
Once they're aroused, they have to have sex.
Again, I've heard that from students.
So we have to make sure that we teach them that this is not the correct thing.
And then the number four, if you wear certain clothes, we go back to, we always remind them all the body is private, some parts are special.
No one has any excuse to touch you or assault you.
It's not your fault.
So it does give a really good idea, these 20 questions.
So I think that might be a nice way to do a bit of a pre-test and then a post-test to see how you're teaching is going.
Again, you might wanna send it home.
They might wanna practice some of those.
So if you see some things that are difficult for them, they might want to work on that in an extra way.
I also have been putting, making some o comps for IPPs around consent.
After we did the pre and post-test, we could then have that as a goal in their life skills.
So that's the next questions there.
So again, just to reiterate, that's how I would do that.
I think that would be a good idea.
Well, the next section is around relationships and social skills.
And the program that I put together just last week was around using the PEERS program from Elizabeth Laugeson and taking the idea of the law and consent and public versus private.
And I wove them all together within lessons.
So they would do the relationship peace with Liz Laugeson, and then we would put the sexuality relationships in there as well.
We took them one step further.
So putting that together, because my teachers are using the PEERS program, then they added more time into their PEERS time and they were able to add this in.
And I think you need to be able to figure it out for yourselves what's going to work best.
In this particular school, that's how they were going to do it.
So I just came in and we mapped it out and gave them a bit of a curriculum, and that seems to be, she's really pleased with that.
So I think it's going to go well.
Of course our students should be participating in all sexuality education classes as often as possible.
We really want our educators to be able to complete programming that's at their level.
And sometimes, our parents aren't able to give permission for them to attend so what I would like, if parents have this question, why should they do that, it might give them ideas, that's often what they say to us, you really need to say that good evidence that equality education can help reduce the risk of sexualized violence.
So that's a little line there.
I want you to think about when you're sitting in a program planning a team meeting and parents are saying well, I don't think they need to attend those classes and you're really gonna try to encourage them to do so.
So really, when we talk about social skills, we need to remember that even though there are five pillars of this program, social skills are inherent through all of them.
They are the key that brings everything together.
So remember that parents often will just think that any kind of a relationship is in a form that they know.
But where our students with intellectual disabilities, their idea of a relationship may be more companionship, someone to go places with.
They're not thinking automatically of a sexual relationship.
So talking to our students about what it is they want in a relationship is really the key to starting there.
And teaching them about the different types of relationships, and it's not just about having intercourse, it's really about having a person in their life to do something with.
So really important that when students are involved in sex education classes with their peers, it does help to support positive self-esteem.
And also, their peers will see them as a sexual being as well.
We need to remove the stigmas that are attached to our folks with intellectual disabilities.
So that's very important.
Also, our peers, the peers of the students, when they're together, they do teach students very valuable information in terms of slang words.
And our students with intellectual disabilities need all of that as well.
They need to be able to use those words, understand what they mean.
And they're not going to get that from us.
They're going to get that from their peers, and they need to be comfortable with that so that they can, it will help to prevent them from being victimized in any way.
So chronological versus developmental age.
All too often, our students are treated at their developmental age instead of their chronological age.
And that can be very demeaning for our students.
And also, when it comes to sexuality education, because they have an intellectual disability, it doesn't seem that they should even be thinking about any type of sexuality education.
But we know that their bodies are ready and they have the feelings, just like everybody else, but they don't have the words.
And so that's why often our students get caught doing things they shouldn't be or get caught saying things they shouldn't be saying or looking at things on the Internet because they have those feelings and urges but they don't know how to deal with it, they don't have to talk about it, and they certainly are embarrassed perhaps.
And so that means that we have to start almost earlier and more explicitly with them so that they are ready when it comes.
So often what we say for best practices, that they start with their peers and they do as much with their peers as appropriate.
And then we need to increase their learning in the alternate setting with a small group, if you will.
And that's where we would use social stories and more explicit teaching based on whatever the individual needs at the time.
So often, we will see that many of our students will be interested in hugging others.
And although that's really cute when they're five, it's not cute when they're 15.
So we really need to stop that and make sure that it's appropriate.
So if they wanna touch others, how are they doing that?
Is it a high five?
Is it a fist pump?
Are they nodding at each other?
We have to make sure that if it's not appropriate for a typically developed student, it's not appropriate for a student with an intellectual disability because it's not cute.
And as they get older, it becomes much less cute.
So I always use the favorite line, having an intellectual disability is not excuse for bad behavior ever.
They need to follow the same rules as everyone else.
They just might need a little bit different of teaching to get there so that they can follow those rules.
So I was talking about an example the other day.
I have a young man who is wanting to still play with Dinkys.
And he enjoys Dinkys and he likes to play with them and he's 16 years old.
So we started him on a collection of Dinkys and a way to display them and a way to talk about them that is more respectful and appropriate for a high school student.
It doesn't mean that he can't have what he likes, but it can't be that he's walking around playing with his Dinkys.
We want him to have a collection.
And as students get older, they might collect things and speak about them.
So what we had in do for projects was, to get his interest, we used research about these types of cars, and that was something that he could talk about, and that was his preferred interest.
Instead of just focusing on the Dinkys, we moved it to a more mature level.
It's the same with anything that you do.
Think about their age, what is it that their peers are doing?
They need to be doing the same thing.
So if we talk about going on a date and how do we help them prepare for that.
So this is a little checklist.
And what I suggest to my teachers when I'm working with them is if you put this in a checklist and you give them on a piece of paper and you ask them who do you want to date, they will have answers for you about who they want to date.
We need to remember, we also need to teach at that point and ask them, do they want to date you.
Because as we learned from Liz Laugeson, we don't get to be friends with everyone, just like we don't get to date everyone.
So just because I want to date somebody doesn't mean they want to date me back.
So how do you ask them?
And what do you want to do when you go out on this date?
And for them, they might not know.
Maybe they're going to meet up at the hockey game or maybe they're gonna meet at Tim Hortons, or maybe they're gonna meet at the school dance or whatever the case may be.
So we need to teach them that these are all the different steps that you need to think about before you actually go on a date.
And so as you ask them these questions, you will have your starting point about where to teach.
So this is almost like a pre-assessment to your teaching about dating.
And how much it will cost and who pays, when will the date be over?
Again, sometimes some of these don't apply.
If they were going to a school dance, maybe there's no charge for the dance and there's a set time for it to be over, and maybe you're driven there and driven home.
But they need to think about those things depending on on where they live.
So this is a little idea about that.
The other idea you have to remember is about phone and texting skills.
Do they have the skills to be able to call somebody on the phone?
Or texting, which would probably be more important.
And then what if they text the person and they ask them something and they don't respond?
How many times do they text that person?
Is it okay to keep texting them every hour for three days?
Or do we text three times over three days, and then if they don't respond, we have to stop and move on?
So we wanna teach that that's creepy behavior, that's called stalking, and everybody has a right to refuse.
So that goes back to the consent.
They are not interested in dating you, they would have texted you back by now.
So when we talk about going on the date, you could talk about hygiene.
This is your opportunity to get into brushing your teeth, making sure you've had a shower, wearing deodorant, all that sort of thing, clean clothes.
All of that can be covered within your life skills.
So if you're wondering where does this fit, all of these topics can be fit into something else that you're working on.
So if we talk about transportation, you think about can they manage a taxi?
Is there public transportation they need to use?
Can they call and order that themselves?
All of these skills can be taught over a period of years, but we need to think about that as we go along.
Bank skills, managing their money.
I was working with a student the other day and we were talking, I was working on a T tap and we're talking about an activity about going to a movie.
And I said to him, I said so you're going to a movie and you're gonna take a friend.
How much money do you need?
And he said, oh I need $1,000.
And I said oh, I said that's quite a lot of money.
Oh no, he said.
Everybody has $1,000.
And I said okay, well now I know exactly where I have to start.
So we went online and I found where, we went on to the Cineplex website and I showed him, I said how much does it say there?
Oh, that's not $1,000.
I said no, it's not.
And he said well, my dad always says it's gonna cost $1,000.
And you know, probably he's heard that at home.
So we have to be careful with our folks, that when we're around them, we have to be more literal than sarcastic if you will because his father probably did say oh (mumbles) $1,000, or he's heard him say that a number of times.
And so he just assumed everything counts to $1,000.
We have to be careful with that.
Also, what could you do if the date is not going very well?
Do they know how to call 911?
Do they have a phone?
Some of them don't have a phone.
How do they get help if they need help?
What if someone's trying to take advantage of them?
So there's another whole situation that we could to teach.
And remember that dating is a social skill, and it's going to take practice.
This goes back again to our social stories and to our role playing.
All of those strategies would be key and how we would practice that.
And remember, we're only going special as necessary and moving towards independence when we start this.
So if they have some of the pieces, we're only going to focus in on the areas where they might be struggling.
So this might be an idea, excuse me, where you might start in what am I looking for in a relationship.
This could be a handout you could give them and talk to them about how are they feeling in a relationship.
Are they able to make choices and that sort of thing?
And what are they looking for with someone?
Do they want them to have a sense of humor?
Are they interesting?
What is it that they're looking for?
You could change this however you want it.
Sorry about that.
You could change this to be more specific to them if that was more appropriate.
But this is just some ideas.
You could then make this with them.
You could just have, that's the subtitles at the top and then they could fill in the bullets as they went along.
So what does it mean to be in a relationship?
And what are the things that you would do together?
So again, this is where you could have some things here, and then they could do that themselves.
Remembering its key, what have they actually seen in their own lives with their own people around them?
Their parents, maybe grandparents, maybe aunts and uncles, friends.
What types of relationships have they seen?
That would be key on how they would process this type of question, right?
So maybe they have parents that don't do a lot together because maybe mom works all day and dad works at night or something different.
So they may struggle with this.
So it'll be individualized how you would go about this.
Circles program is something that I've had great success with all developmental levels at all ages.
And this just comes from the Circles program.
I really think that we need to teach allowable boundaries.
My best advice has been the app that I give to teachers right now.
So I'll say put the app on the iPad and they can go through the Circles program with support, with a teacher supporting them.
Sometimes a TA can support.
Sometimes I'll have two students in a group.
And then I will create specific social stories based on whatever boundary issue they might have.
So teaching and respecting boundaries addresses the risk reduction and prevention of sexual violence.
So they need to remember it goes back to all the body is private and some parts are special and nobody has a right to touch me in any of those places.
And then we need to learn about the different relationships within that program.
So that's where you'll find, that's the link for the Circles programs.
And so this visual that you see is the picture that I'm using.
And I do have a social story right now that I'm going to show you, I embedded it within so I'm hoping it's going to work.
Oh, there we go.
So what I say is I call them safe people.
And usually I will put the name of the person.
So safe people for James, safe people for John.
And though they understand that these are people I can trust and speak to about issues that I'm having.
And I find when I address it this way, it helps them.
And they sit with me or with the teacher.
I sometimes will send the template and the teacher will sit with them.
So we talk about family first.
Remember, everybody's family is gonna look different.
So there is a circle around us that is our family.
These are the safest people, you can trust them.
So then where it says add in her or his people there, you would put in that names.
So mom, dad, my sister Jane, my brother Bob, that sort of thing.
And so you talk about the blue.
And so I like to color coordinate things.
So I had those, I would put things in blue on this particular page to match the visual that comes from the Circles program.
So close family friends.
So these are the people who are close to my family.
So you put the names in here.
So what I say to students, who's coming to your home to visit, who is close friends with your mom and dad, who are close friends maybe with your brothers and sisters, who comes to visit you on a regular basis?
These are people that are trusting and in your home, and they are safe adults.
So these two lists, the green and the blue, have to be people that rhyme right off, roll right off their tongue.
They would know them without a doubt.
Unfortunately, sometimes we don't have a lot of people to put in that list so you just have to be careful, wanna be very respectful of students when you're doing this activity.
And sometimes I will do it with moms and dads, family members first.
So in this case, mom has lots of friends who come to the house to visit, but she might not know all of these people.
So they might just be acquaintances.
So sometimes mom might have people that come over for a big gathering, for work or for social evening of playing cards, or maybe it's gonna be a Tupperware party.
Those might just be acquaintances.
They're not somebody that come, they're not people that come on a regular basis.
So that was the situation that was presented to me last week because he started naming all of these people that came to the house for, I think it was, it doesn't matter, some sort of a party, some sort of a big organizational party.
And so he thought he should name all of those people because they came to his house.
No, that's a one off.
So they need to explain the difference a bit.
Then we talk about the community people.
And certainly we can teach them that they can trust the dentist to look after their teeth and the doctor to look after their bodies and that sort of thing, but they are in the orange circle and they're not gonna be your first go to when you're out in the community.
And then red, these are the strangers or people that I don't know.
Many of my students get into trouble because they are approaching strangers and saying and doing things the wrong way.
And so this is where all of the students that I've been involved with that have been charged, this is what happens, they're out in public, they see somebody that interests them or that they think they like or is just novel to them and so they feel that they can go and talk to them like they've known them their whole lives.
And so then they exhibit creepy behavior or they're inappropriate with touching or they're inappropriate with words and then they get into trouble.
Or they've gotten into trouble because they do go up to these people and then they are victimized.
So we really have to do a lot of work around the stranger piece, and this is one way that I've found good success with the social stories.
Oh sorry, the last one just talks about, and they are important so we'll put that in purple and that you can trust these people the most.
The blue, and then you are safe when you remember your colors.
And so it's been a visual strategy.
I've used this picture on a power card and given that to students to have in their purse or on a backpack or whatever, and that's been quite helpful for them as well.
So just to help them remember, these are people I know, these people I don't know.
So when we talk about relationships, unfortunately many of our students with intellectual disabilities are confused about the difference between healthy, unhealthy and abusive.
And again, I am doing a mix and match activity.
And so what we have done with that is we put the healthy, unhealthy and abusive descriptions into an envelope and we start talking, bring them out one at a time.
And again, you might only pick two or three on any given lesson and you might bring that out.
You might have one healthy, one unhealthy and one abusive, and you might decide I'm just gonna talk about these three today and you might learn some things about what they determine, their own belief system around healthy, unhealthy and abusive.
The other problem is, when you start teaching this, you might realize that, a student might realize that they have been abused so you have to be very careful with that.
So I am going to show you another story here.
I put it it right in.
So this is a, oh I don't know why the cover didn't come in.
So this is a student I've been working with who has really been struggling with his friends and his potential boy friend that he wants to have at school.
And so we were trying to teach him about his inside and outside thoughts and we wanted him to understand about his own private thoughts need to be kept in his head and he can't say them out loud.
So I tried to use some pictures here.
You'll notice that I have some pictures of Disney.
Disney is his preferred thing that he likes to do.
So he's been using, I use that to kind of encourage him a bit.
So understanding the difference between inside thoughts and outside thoughts is a very difficult concept for many of my students so I've tended to adopt this story a lot.
I'm sure you all have students that way as well.
If something comes into their mind, it tends to come out of their mouths.
So we need to have them have a thought that stays in their head, okay?
So I'm friends with everyone, all the boys and girls in my class, and he does like one boy more than the rest of the students.
So we explained him, this is normal and okay.
And going back to his PEERS teaching, I don't get to be friends with everyone and I can't say that I want to have sex with everyone I have a crush on.
It is okay that I have a crush on a boy.
So we've been working on him understanding his homosexuality, which is totally fine.
However, he can't be talking to everyone about that.
It's not appropriate, that's a private discussion that you would have in a small scenario, not in a regular classroom.
So I like to talk about having sex with young boys to other people.
So the other problem with this young man was that he was in grade nine and the boy that he wanted to have sex with was in grade three.
So you can imagine how complicated that was for everybody.
And so we talked about this is not okay to talk about that.
We talked about the law.
And so we talked about how I have this thought, and we teach students that it's okay to have a thought, but it has to stay in my head.
It's not something that comes out.
And when I talk about having sex with people, it makes others uncomfortable.
When I talk about having sex with young boys, it makes my other friends very uncomfortable.
It is an inside thought.
It is creepy to talk about having sex with someone when they do not like you in the same way.
It is called sexual harassment, it is illegal.
So I did a whole section around sexual harassment and what that looks like.
And because this young man was running around the school, it was a P to 12 school so he had access to this young man, he was trying to get to him, we really had to work on how that might be problematic for a whole bunch of reasons.
Well, we changed a lot.
There's a lot of things we can do as adults in a school to make sure that he didn't have access, which is fine, but that didn't fix the problem.
So we had to do the explicit teaching with him so that he knew why I can't do this, not just that I can't.
And then we did have to teach him no that he can't, but then the explicit teaching was key after the fact.
So we went into the law very clearly, having sex with anyone under the age of 16 is illegal.
And so sexual harassment is bullying in a sexual way, and sexual harassment is illegal.
You'll notice I'm using the words illegal a lot here because I had visuals for him made that did have this sexual harassment picture on it.
And I did have a picture of illegal to remind him.
He needed those power cards to remind him, oh yes I have this thought, I can't say that.
So that really gave him a cue, I can't do that.
So we talked about someone who's under 18 years old can be charged and sent to jail.
So my parents, teachers and friends do not want me to get in trouble.
My parents, teachers and friends care about me.
So we tried to, he was very angry when we started this education with him because he felt that it was unfair and nobody else was having to do this and so on and so forth.
But after a while, it got to be, he was so angry, his behaviors were escalating and he was taking it on the adults that we're trying to help him.
So my suggestion came about to video tape one of the adults reading the stories and we put it on an iPad and then we would hand him the iPad first thing in the morning.
And on his schedule, it would say iPad time and he would have a quiet place to go and read his stories by himself.
The teacher would follow up and say, okay, you've read everything, you have your power cards, you know that's illegal.
Let's go through your thoughts.
Is there anything you want to talk about?
He'd say no, he'd get his package of power cards or his little kit for the day and he'd go off to class.
So it took away that sense of he wanted to fight everybody and he didn't wanna listen, but he was very happy to sit in the corner of the room with his headphones on and an iPad and he looked very appropriate, as you can imagine, just lots of kids look at YouTube videos with their headphones on.
He just looked, and well, we had on the schedule was videos so lot's of kids choose videos to watch.
So that was something that he felt very comfortable with.
And then the aggression stopped and the learning started.
So we just had to think outside the box a little bit, but I just thought of that and it worked.
The other thing I had the teacher doing is he put the videos on gNSPES, on their accounts, and so then they're able to go in and grab theirs, just theirs.
And so they can do that.
So I have a teacher doing, he has the students, the computers are set up so that nobody can see what's on their screen.
But the teacher knows what's on their screen so they can log into their own computers and then they do their social stories that way.
At different times throughout the day, they'll come in and they know that if they're struggling with a concept, they can come back and watch those stories at any time.
So I really like the idea of using gNSPES.
That's been working quite well.
I'm kind of mouthin' a tangent here folks, so (chuckles).
So anyway, that was the end of the story.
It's okay for me to like someone and have a crush on them.
It's okay for me to like boys.
I can still have inside thoughts about boys, and I have lots of friends including Chase and Mary and Cassie.
Those of course are just made up names, but you can see how the theme of Disney was incorporated through everything because that's what he liked and tried to keep it ending on a positive note.
Keep calm and smile, it's a happy day.
The other thing we did with his power cards because Disney was his preference, so the one card would say no sexual harassment, on the other side was a picture of Disney, any Disney character that he got to have.
So that really helped him to calm as well.
The power cards served two purposes.
So I have another story here on public versus private, which we did talk about last time but I wanted to go over it again because of some of the topics that we're here.
So when I'm doing the public versus private social stories, I really try to include where the students are going.
where are they around the community?
Are they going?
So it's key that you make a list that's relevant to them.
So they need to be involved with this.
This is the board maker picture that's here that we use, but you can use whatever is most common for them.
And again, this comes from the public versus private social story, and I believe that's up on the website as well.
So you can find the generic one, and then I make the personalized ones like this.
And again, it has to be what they do themselves.
So again, this particular student I spoke to about bathrooms and how I feel that they are not private at home because people share them, but bedroom of course being the most private.
In some cases, children do have access to their own bathroom.
I wanted to put in doctors' and nurses' offices because they need to have a place where they can go and speak freely about their thoughts, about their sexuality, about their concerns.
Doctors and nurses are trained in dealing with that.
So I always teach that here when we talk about private places.
And many of our schools do have nurses, and so that's why I put that here.
So you'll notice we talked about, I put a whole list here, this particular student had a long list of private activities.
And so basically, the goal of this one was he was touching his penis in public and so we did private parts.
And then if you remember, all the body is special and some parts are private and we talked about that earlier so we really want to force that.
So in this case, he was trying to touch, it was actually started with his principal's dresses.
And they were, you can see from the picture here, he helped pick these pictures out.
But this was the pictures he was attracted to.
And when he saw them, it was a desire to touch it.
He just felt oh my gosh, I wanna touch that.
But you can imagine, when a 16-year-old boy is running around touching women's clothing, it's creepy.
And so we got him to stop touching, but then he would just comment on it because he just couldn't control himself about that.
And so we had the social story and this was going okay, but then it got worse.
He went to younger girls and we just couldn't get it to go away.
Every time we thought we had it, we had to keep coming up with something different.
So what we ended up doing, we gave him a rule and it was on the power card, and the rule was that he could compliment a person on their outfit one time only.
He could say I really like your dress, Mrs. McDonald, and that's it.
But what he could do is that he would, we took him to a second hand store and he picked out the type of silk clothing that he'd like to touch.
So when he picked out that correct clothing, one of the activities he did was he made himself a bigger blanket and a smaller blanket.
And the smaller blanket was just something that could fit in his pocket of his pants.
And when he saw somebody with something that he wanted to touch, he just felt it in his own pocket privately, and it gave that idea that I'm not touching them, I have my own thing to touch.
And so we really talked about keeping his hands to himself, and we gave him the power card that said I can only compliment them once.
And so what would happen was, the next thing that happened was, so that day he would see that person in that dress but as we all know, we don't wear a dress just once.
And so if you compliment somebody on their dress once, that's it, you can't compliment them multiple times on that dress because that gets creepy.
So the next story was then I've already complimented Mrs. McDonald on her dress, I don't complement her again.
So we had to really work with him because there seemed to be a lot of nuances that kept coming back with this.
Again, I don't have any answers.
I have examples, and I work with where the students take us.
And so we're doing well now, so that's been good.
So this story is around some thoughts.
You saw a little bit about thoughts in my head and thoughts that I can say to others.
I find this is a big problem for many of our students talking about boundaries.
They get into trouble because they are saying things that are creepy and people get uncomfortable with.
Not all of my thoughts should be spoken out loud, and so I will keep a thought in my head, in my brain, if it would be hurtful or misunderstood by someone if I say it.
So we had a little power card for stop, and so the stop sign was to remind him I have to think before I say it out loud.
And that just helped him, he had that power card in his pocket and it was simple.
Even if he just touched that card, he would think, okay, is this something I can say or should I not say it?
And he tends to be a quiet young man anyway, and I fear that I've made him a little quieter.
But if it keeps him out of jail, I'm good.
(laughs) So his problem and his interest, I shouldn't say his problem, but he loved the sound of boots clicking on the floor and he loves leather boots, leather shoes, boots in particular, but shoes are a real love of his.
And he likes to try these on.
And so he would go up and say well, where did you buy your shoes?
And this gets him into trouble a lot because he's a six foot two big boy and he would go up to a woman and say where did you buy your shoes?
Well, probably they don't even have his size shoes at this place, but I always tell the adults it's a rational question, give him a rational answer.
I bought them at Naturalizer.
Or I bought them at Farwest or whatever the case may be.
Tell them where you bought the shoes.
Because that's not fair to him.
If you're asked a question, if a woman came up and asked you that question, you would answer.
So when I have a thought that's nice to tell someone, I will say it and I'm careful about what I'm saying.
So this has helped him a little bit.
We've had to revamp this a bit.
This was our initial one, but the reason I'm showing them is that these little icons and power cards I call them in their pockets, it helps to remind them about the social story.
The only way the social story is gonna work is if we do them repeatedly.
And so for this young man, he has a variety of them and he watches them on gNSPES actually.
And he then he chooses which power cards he might think he's gonna need that day.
And he has access to them, and it's a nice compliment to the social story when they're not with them.
And I've been finding that to work, so anyway...
So now if we go up to the law, I find that many of our students, all our students, don't know much about the law.
I just had a phone call about trying to teach typically developing student about the law.
And many people at this age, they're ruled by their, not thinking through what they need to be doing.
And so we need to teach them about the law somehow, that it's clear.
And so I find we need to review it.
And what's happening with me, with these students, is that when something happens, I'm teaching it after the fact.
I'm not able to get out ahead of it yet.
I'm hoping that the more teaching that we do we'll be able to be preventative instead of reactive.
But right now, it's hard to predict what they might need.
So these are some of the laws.
So what I did, the last activity I did for my student with high functioning autism in high school is that I took all of these and had him do research and create a PowerPoint from these particular criminal codes so that he could do the research into it and then make a presentation for his classmates.
First of all, he's gonna present to an adult and make sure that it's accurate.
But that was an idea.
How do we actually teach that?
And when I've been doing the trainings, as I've been going around with different schools and working with teachers, many of us don't know these laws either.
I had no idea either.
So it's something we need to learn.
So this is the bottom one here, no one is allowed to have sex with you if you are asleep, unconscious, under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Many of our students don't know that.
And then no one in the position of power, if you think about our folks with intellectual disabilities, they very often have support people in their life.
And so they need to understand that that support person is not allowed to have sex with them or touch them inappropriately or anything like that.
This just goes through all of my next slides, and I'll talk about the different laws that I feel are helpful to teach to our students.
And again, this goes into the person of position of trust or authority so we need to make sure they cannot do, be forced to engage in any sexual activity.
Many of our students are watching all kinds of images on the Internet.
And this, child pornography, is something that once you get on to a porn site, it's very easy to get into those child pornography sites, and our students struggle with age in general.
They wouldn't be able to name the age of someone.
So to understand, is that an adult versus a child?
In terms of theory of mind, our students don't have that ability to be able to do that.
So we really need to work on...
There's some lessons that I've talked about with one particular student about how do you tell the age of someone.
And like that young man we did the social story about, we had a lot of work to do about how old is someone and what is appropriate.
So there is something that I've mentioned here that I really wanna point out and I don't want you to Google it because it is illegal, but a lot of my students I see really like to draw this Japanese anime.
You'll see them drawing that, but there is Japanese anime porn and it's called hentai and it is illegal.
And so many students could get into that.
So they are googling pictures that they wanna draw, which is very common.
And then they get into this, I call it a rabbit hole when you get on the Internet and you're looking for something, and then you get on to that.
So really important that you're careful that parents are monitoring them when they're on and that they don't get into that.
So it's really cartoon images of children engaged in sexual activity, and that is child pornography, which I wouldn't have known about if I hadn't done the program with Emily Martinello.
So that's a good point for all of you to know.
This happens a lot.
Publishing images without consent.
And I have had many experience with this.
I have had, unfortunately it's a sad story when we have.
This is happening a lot.
So you all know about that.
I've actually had a case where I've been dealing with a student who was luring another girl, two girls actually, to come to his place.
And he had placed a video camera somewhere that he could actually record them kissing and touching each other.
And so he had no concept that that was illegal and we had a lot of work to do with that.
So this is happening, and we need to be really careful about it.
And so they need to understand this.
I think how you're going to teach that, it's hard to teach, but I think I feel explicit teaching, clear, use the correct language, you may need to review it over and over again so that they understand it.
Use the words luring, and that's why it's there for you so you can use this.
Talk about one each day and go like that.
What is assault?
Again, you might want to be prepared that sometimes when you teach a student about assault, they may then reveal to you that they have been assaulted.
It's the same when we do our consent workshops.
Often, I will get a call when there's a consent workshop in a school and students realize that they hadn't given consent and it wasn't their fault and we will have a lot of people who will tell us things that have happened to them.
And so we need to be teaching that.
I hadn't really heard about digital sex either.
I mean, I didn't know that's what it was called.
So we need to teach students that as well.
So these are things that you need to be prepared to talk about.
I had a teacher say to me that she wasn't sure if she could use those words, and I said okay, it's good to know what our strengths and our challenges are so somebody is going to so it's not you who is going to.
So if we're not comfortable with some of this language, we need to find somebody that is.
And maybe you can tag team.
Maybe it's easier to have somebody else in the room while you're doing things.
That's fine too.
This is something that I've had to deal with a lot.
Many of my students are staring, or they're trying to, they're caught being what you call a Peeping Tom.
This again goes back to privacy and why we need to teach about their privacy and the privacy of others.
And often, this happens.
I've had one student who's often filming and video taping and taking pictures of people from afar, at school, during unstructured times of course, and then he would be uploading that to the Internet and that gets complicated.
So we've had lots of students working on that.
I've had many students, a funny story when I was teaching in junior high, grade seven, we had a day where we took the students to the beach and one of my students with Down syndrome knew that we got to the beach and everybody else had gone to the change rooms to put on their bathing suits but he didn't know, nobody had told him that you go to the change room.
So he just stripped naked on the beach and put on his bathing suit.
And it was over as quick as it happened and we were all kind of in shock, but then really, we didn't teach him.
It wasn't necessarily his fault.
So we have to think about that.
It was his first time to the beach.
Every other time he had gone to the beach, his mother had probably had him prepared.
But we couldn't have him come to school in his beach wear, so it's just little things like that we need to think about.
And of course we always teach that in the idea there is no shame.
You have to be prepared that this may be a learning moment for students and they may have experienced sexual assault from a family member.
So be very cautious when you're teaching this because there could be some things that are revealed.
This is a law that's actually under review about anal intercourse.
And currently, you're not allowed to have anal sex with another person until you're 18 or are married.
And so that is of course a troublesome area and it's very important that you do not teach heterosexist sexuality education.
Anal sex is a healthy expression of sexuality regardless of sexual identity, and we need not to put our thoughts and beliefs on that.
We need to teach it as it is.
So important idea here is that many of our students, because they are not with their peers often, they are learning about sexuality through pornography.
We don't want pornography to be the primary educator, but unfortunately that's often the case.
And so what they actually see on pornography is we need to teach them that it's about acting and it's make believe and pretends, right?
And then we need to use some replacement behavior.
So I had a student that was so fixated on breasts and bellies of girls, and sometimes clothing, the way the clothes are being worn.
The young man would have access to that.
So I told him, you can't be running around always gazing at girls' breasts and bellies.
It's inappropriate, it's creepy, it's all that stuff.
And so what we did was he was a teenager so we got him some teen magazines.
And so in his bedroom, in his private place, he can look at teen magazines as long as he wants.
And so that was his replacement behavior for instead of looking at girls' breasts and bellies in public.
This worked beautifully.
His mom, dad, they're so pleased with how it's worked.
And he has his magazines, his mom actually got him a subscription for Christmas now.
Comes in the mail so he gets a new one so he doesn't get bored.
He's made some collages.
It's private, it's his private business in his bedroom and he's not bothering and being creepy.
And again, I don't want to teach that people can't look at pornography.
I guess we're teaching for adults that it is.
If that's their sexual outlet, we don't judge that.
But we need to teach them how to navigate things safely.
And that would go to home.
We're not going to be doing that at school because we're certainly not going to be showing any of those things.
But again, that might be a goal for parents at home.
And then when I've been working with some adult service centers, this is something that they might take on.
This is another story that I had.
Again, you'll notice the theme.
Back to the same gentleman that I spoke about a little earlier.
So I like to go on the computer and look at Disney sites.
I like to look at pictures of the Disney princesses.
This is fun and an awesome way to pass the time.
So what happened at first was, instead of typing in, he was gonna type in princess, P-R-I-N, he typed in P-I-R-N instead when I went back through the history and up came Disney porn.
And so this happened at school and we actually had the site blocked.
But it was quite accidental, but you can imagine he was quite excited about it as well.
And so we had to teach him about pornography because what happened was the first time he came across it, he wasn't so forthcoming.
And so he was getting away with it for a little while before we actually figured it out because we innocently assumed that he was just looking at Disney princesses.
And that's fine to look at Disney princesses if that's your break time, but as you can imagine, it went down a rabbit hole again.
So we talked about, this was his social story, porn is illegal to look at and search on computers.
An adult can look at pictures in magazines.
Children and teenagers are not allowed to look at porn on the computer.
So we taught him all of that.
So that was the adults only.
And so then we gave him what it was okay to do.
So that was just a little story about that.
Recidivism is a theory, and it's unfortunately why some of my students, I shouldn't say some, I actually have one particular student that no matter what I have done, I started working with him and his sexual behaviors in grade four and he's now in grade 11 and we've been working on a variety of skills.
It started off with touching others, and it has gone to sending naked pictures of himself to being involved in the pornographic ring through Snapchat.
He's done some luring.
The list goes on and on with this young man.
So this young man, we at school, none of the things are happening at school that are against the law with this young man, but I feel it is our responsibility to help him as much as possible.
He is on an IPP and the program, when the RCMP were involved, when he was involved with the luring and the video taping, and of course when he posted that to social media, the parents of the girls that were videotaped were ready to press charges.
And they didn't.
And they didn't because he had a disability.
And I've said it earlier before that having a disability is not an excuse for poor behavior.
And I feel that I don't, not that I want him to go to jail but we have to learn somehow, I don't know what's gonna teach some of our students, so this young man, there aren't a lot of programs out there so they talked about the ISAY program.
That's the Intervention for Sexually Aggressive Youth.
But the therapy they use is cognitive behavior therapy as their main method of treatment.
And because he is intellectually disabled, that would not be appropriate type of therapy for him.
So when we talked as a program planning team and with the RCMP, it's just...
We have to keep on doing what we know is working and try to keep on with the social stories and the power cards and the video modeling and hopeful that as he matures, things will improve.
And I have many of these students that I see, great progress right off the bat.
We start with the power cards, we start with the social stories and things really improved.
So anyway, there are many of course sad stories but we try to improve as we go along.
So I have a few more social stories.
This is the one I was talking to you about the breasts and the bellies.
Again, I try to be as obvious as I can with the pictures so that they get the idea.
And they help me with these pictures.
They need to know that I like to do this.
So this is what I do instead.
I need to look at their face.
We wanna teach them that that's how we do it.
We look in their face.
We talked about breaking the law, that this is harassment.
And then this is what he's doing with the Seventeen magazines.
I'm not hurting or scaring the girls.
So that was just one of the ones that I spoke to you about.
This is another activity that you could do with your students.
Pick two or three in the envelope.
You will go through them talking about is this a law or is this a rule?
So I put them, embedded them right in the PowerPoint so that you could take them and use them.
And this is a way to review what is the difference between a law and a rule.
And many workplaces, schools, places if they're out on coop placements or work placements, they need to know, this would be a good discussion to have.
So I put all of those in there for you.
So important when you're talking about this.
Remember that how do your own values impact what rules and policies are created?
And is the rule fair and just?
And could it be replaced?
We have to remember that our judgment, our values, cannot impact how we teach, right?
So we have to be careful of that.
This was a story that I created for a young lady who was struggling with stalking.
And she put in that she likes to do that and we told her it's very normal.
So I really like boys.
I cannot follow them around.
And when you follow people around, it's called stalking.
We cannot be friends with everyone, and that goes back, you'll see that I've tried to incorporate the idea from PEERS and everything that I do because they're in the PEERS program and then that's how it works.
So stalking is against the law.
So just be clear with her.
And I used this visual because she had been into some trouble with some other things and I wanted her to to remember, she saw the handcuffs, it was a reality check.
So when I'm told to stop, I must stop, okay?
So I must stop stalking, it's not a joke.
It is against the law.
And stay away from boys who do not want my attention.
I will stop stalking and I will follow the law and the rules at school.
So this is another young lady who I've been struggling with, but we'll keep on, we haven't stopped.
And I've also been doing some education with a young man about how he needs to be more forceful with his no's.
Not more forceful, but say no.
He wasn't saying no at all.
He was just accepting it, and so he needed to have some teaching as well.
When you think about what is our duty as an educator and what is the duty, what is their right versus what is our duty?
So what is your professional responsibility in terms of the students that you're working with?
And do you think that there are gaps that emerge when we talk about some of the topics that we spoke about?
And do our values sometimes impact how we carry that out?
But if we can't do it, if we're uncomfortable, how do we get help?
Who do we ask?
And remember, it's your job but it's their life, right?
We wanna keep them as safe as possible.
When you go to the Education Act, and because I knew this was gonna be shown in four provinces, I looked at all four education acts and they all speak to the duty of a teacher and what our role is.
So what I've been doing with success is I start with a public versus private generic social story and a game.
That's what you find on set B, C.
I then create a personalized public versus private social story like I showed you earlier, that outlines their inappropriate behavior and I suggest alternatives.
The explicit teaching part happens when we address the laws associated and work and activities that bring about those discussions like the activities I showed you.
So then I talked about, I already explained about the videotape and the Google Docs, working with iPads.
I have some that do them on iPods.
I suggest they watch them daily.
But then I also suggest that an adult needs to sit and discuss it with them.
Sometimes our students aren't comfortable.
So for one of my teachers, we just pick one thing and she will talk about that one thing that week and then we'll go on because she gets uncomfortable and we have to be respectful of how much he can manage in terms of discussion as well.
So these are the strategies that are working for the majority of my students.
As I said, I have a couple that are the outliers.
But for the majority, this is what has been successful.
And the power cards and the videos with the social stories, it just seems to be, it's not anything fantastic but it's at their level and it seems to be working well.
So just to end, I'm not an expert by any stretch.
I've just had an experience that I've had to deal with and I've been trying to support teachers and students to be successful with this topic.
And I hope this was helpful for you, and I don't know if anyone has any questions.
I know I'm very close to time.
But there is a bibliography where I found everything, and hopefully if you have questions, I'll take them now for a few minutes.
- [Shelley] Okay, if you do have a question for Annamarie, feel free to go ahead and type that in the chat box and we'll make sure that we can answer as many of those as possible.
There were a couple of questions already, Annamarie, if you don't mind addressing those.
One question was around obtaining copies of the social stories and being able to use those to tweak and adjust for other students.
So if I may, if folks have an interest in getting copies of the social stories separate from the PowerPoint presentation, if you'd like to email me, so firstname.lastname@example.org, I'll make sure to put you in touch with Annamarie so that, she's very kind and generous in sharing her materials.
Another question was around would you teach these topics even if it's not an issue at the moment?
Or would you wait until the topic or situation arises personally for the student?
- That's an excellent question.
That's one I get asked a lot.
So I always say public versus private is a topic we always need to teach.
I feel that in terms of relationships, many of our learners struggle with relationships, and so the PEERS program addresses that and you can take the PEERS program and move that forward a bit.
But the consent issue, our typically developing students are dealing with consent issues at all ages, so I think consent is something you need to be working on.
So I think consent and the public versus private, you should be doing, plus the anatomy.
They have to understand, I think I spoke about that clearly in my last webinar, they need to understand about their anatomy and their body parts.
So yes, I think as much as you can do, you can't do everything.
But you can pick a topic or two to go on their individual program plan a year around life skills.
And so maybe in grade five you're gonna work on this and grade six and kind of map that what that might look like.
That's in a perfect world.
But if you can try to touch on some of those every year, I think that's great.
And then the social stories come into play when you do have a specific instance that you need to deal with.
- There is a question about nudity.
So there's a learner who rips and destroys clothing, and the result is nudity in public settings.
Do you have any suggestions for that type of a situation?
- I have dealt with that many times.
And what I'm using is what I call jumpsuits with the zip up the back.
And you can find those on Google.
If you google jumpsuits, you will find them.
I don't know the age of the learner.
But what we have done for older learners is that we will put them underneath their clothes.
So the parent will dress them in the jumpsuit before they come to school and it zips up the back.
Kind of like a scuba diver suit that zips up the back and then they can't get to it and get naked.
I've dealt with that lots of times.
- Great, thank you very much.
There was a question about gNSPES because not everyone is familiar with that system.
Maybe you could just share what that is for folks in other provinces who aren't familiar.
- Sorry about that, I wasn't thinking.
So gNSPES, it's a Google site I guess that we've adopted in Nova Scotia where teachers can put things for students to see, and every student has access to their own account.
So it's a student account I guess, and that's where they would access their social stories.
You could do the social stories on their own iPad and then have certain logins.
That would be the same sort of idea.
It's just an alternate way for them to look at their social stories instead of them being read every day.
- Thank you very much.
An interesting question about helping a student understand the difference between being naked in public and the problems around that versus the need to be naked in public to use a public toilet.
So how do you address that issue?
- So to use a public toilet, you wouldn't have to be completely naked and you could either be in a stall.
Or I would do a social story.
So for that particular thing, I would delineate the two topics and teach what the explicit thing is.
There's a rule for the home and a rule for public.
And I would practice and teach and model and take real pictures of bathrooms at wherever, the school and at home and talk about the differences.
Real pictures in this case might teach it.
So if it was, wherever he would go to the public bathrooms, we would use those exact pictures for the teaching PEERS and then hopefully generalize it over time.
- Excellent, thank you so much for that.
If you have additional questions for Annamarie, or if you are interested in accessing any of the resources, we have recorded today's webinar so we will be posting the recording on the website.
And hopefully most of you at least received the PowerPoint presentation slides in advance.
If you didn't, certainly email me and let me know and we'll make sure we find a way to get those to you.
We've had to be creative in some cases because the file is large.
So we will try to do that.
So with that, I just wanna thank Annamarie for all of her work on both of these webinars.
I know how much time, or I can guess how much time and how much effort and energy and research has gone into preparing both of these for us.
So we sincerely appreciate all of your work, the fact that you've driven here to APSEA to be with us for both of the webinars, and we look forward to being able to put the information that you shared with us to use within our own professional practice.
So thank you so much.
Thanks to everyone who joined us today, and we'll be in touch about future opportunities very soon.
Have a great day everyone.