Jan Writer’s August 14th Webinar, “Talk WITH Me! Communication Strategies that Empower Students with Significant Disabilities”

Jan Writer's Talk WITH me webinar

When: Thursday, August 14, 2014, 2:00-3:45 PM Eastern time

About This Presentation

Interpersonal communication requires reciprocity — a “give and take” of information among participants in the conveyance of information. It necessitates that participants talk with each other and recognize that talking “at” is not the same as talking “with.”

This session presents practical, evidence-based strategies that can be used to enhance the meaningful communication skills, interpersonal interactions, and active participation of students with severe and low incidence disabilities (S/LID), including those with intellectual disabilities, autism, and multiple disabilities. Diverse procedures for communicating information and expectations to these students will be featured, along with tools and tactics for facilitating reciprocal, give-and-take conversations between these students and others. A wide array of low tech instructional supports and assistive devices that can be constructed from “items at hand” will be illustrated.

Eclectic strategies that adults can use to better understand the communicative intent of students with S/LID, to effectively communicate with those students, and to foster the meaningful communication of those students with peers and adults will be discussed. Tactics and materials that students with S/LID can use to enhance their understanding of the communication of others, to spontaneously express their desires and opinions, and to engage in social conversations with their typical peers will be highlighted and depicted throughout the session.

Learning Objectives

At the end of this presentation participants will be able to:

  • Plan strategies for enhancing the communication competence of both students with significant disabilities and the persons who interact with them (e.g., educators; peers; family members), through the use of diverse low tech supports and communication systems.
  • Identify and design varied tactics and low tech materials useful for facilitating the effective communication abilities of students with significant disabilities, within and across natural school, home, and community situations.
  • Identify a wide array of resources (e.g., web sites; print materials; resource agencies) that will aid in the selection, design, and application of effective communication strategies and systems for the children, youth, and young adults with significant disabilities that you serve.

Teachers, parents, paraeducators, school support personnel, college students, and other persons interested in the design and implementation of individualized low tech communication strategies and supports for students with significant disabilities. (The session will provide introductory and intermediate-level information on the topic.)

About the Presenter

Image of Webinar Presenter Professor Jan Winter

Jan Writer is the Director of Student Placement and an Adjunct Professor of Education at Benedictine University, where she teaches courses in special education. She is also the Principal Consultant for Visions & Dreams, an independent agency which supports programs that serve persons with severe, multiple, and low incidence disabilities. A 38-year+ member of TASH, Jan has worked with students who have severe and low incidence disabilities as a speech pathologist, a classroom teacher, the coordinator of public school programs for students with moderate and severe disabilities for a multi-district special education cooperative, a Deaf-Blind Regional Center education specialist, an onsite technical assistance provider, a parent advocate, and a university teacher educator. Over the past 39 years, she has consulted to programs serving persons with severe disabilities in over 34 states, the District of Columbia, Canada, the U. S. Pacific Trust Terri tories, and American Samoa. She has further served on the TASH Program and Legends Committees, and has presented at numerous TASH Conferences on diverse topics relevant to the organization.

How to attend

This is a live webinar that will be streamed over the web. The presentation will be about an hour and a half, followed by fifteen minutes for Q&A. Registered participants will receive an e-mail with instructions on accessing the webinar and the link and access code to log into the webinar site the day of the event. Members are $30; non-members are $50. The Member discount will be credited at the time of checkout. Registration closes Wednesday, August 13, 2014, the day before the event. For more information, please contact Donald Taylor at dtaylor@tash.org.

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