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By Denise Decker
When I look back at my extensive career as a special educator, I have had many opportunities to work with children on the autism spectrum. I found them both challenging and fascinating. These children definitely required a unique approach to unlock their potentials.
Many children with autism lacked social, communication and motor skills which alienated them from the rest of the student population. Others had hypersensitivity to sound, smell, and tactile stimulation. This made the school environment inhospitable. Their interests were restrictive and they were resistant to change. One of the most puzzling behaviors I observed with some of these children was hyperlexia. They could decode anything I put in front of them, but with no comprehension.
After searching for answers to resolving these many challenges I came across a program called The Listening Program by Advanced Brain Technologies in 2006. ABT’s programs offer my students help with their struggles with sensory dysfunction and other issues by listening to music of certain frequencies, intensity, and duration. This could address many of their challenges through the auditory system.
The Listening Program improves their ability to process information and deal with their sensory issues giving them the opportunity to participate in situations that were unbearable.
The program could be done in any setting, including at home, and only takes 15-30 minutes, 5 days a week. I tried it on many of my students and watched their positive transformations. Children who had poor focus, sensory overload, anti-social behaviors, motor weaknesses, and communication issues showed improvement. They made friends, participated in school and after school activities, and improved academically. I found the ABT programs complemented the other remedial work I was doing with my students which enhanced their ability to learn.
One student who comes to mind had repeated 4th grade and was diagnosed ASD, ADHD, Sensory Processing Dysfunction, and Dyslexia. His parents were doing everything they could to help him but hadn’t found the right program that would assist with his ability to succeed in a variety of environments.
This child was riddled with low self-esteem and anxiety. We decided to try TLP Level One and the family observed improvement within a few weeks. His fine motor skills had improved and he was able to use scissors to cut designs. His stimming was reduced as well as his anxiety levels. He was eager to work with me to help him overcome his reading challenges. Now he loves to read, has friends, builds computers, and enjoys many activities. Their parents felt that “The Listening Program was life changing” for their son.
I am delighted to join the ABT Team as an Adjunct Faculty Member!
Denise is certified in Special Education after graduating with a B.S. from The College of New Jersey in 1980. However, she began working with special needs individuals in the 1970’s in academic and recreational settings. She has worked in private and public schools, and has worked privately since 2001.
Denise founded the Tri-Learning Center in 2009 which enabled her to design and implement individualized programs to meet the particular need of each client. She has trained in a variety of programs such as Orton-Gillingham, Visualizing and Verbalizing, Seeing Stars, Irlen, and Brain Gym.
She has been a Certified Provider of The Listening Program since 2006, then added Learning Ears in 2011, and The Movement Program 2017, when she observed that her students’ underlying needs were still not met completely by the more traditional approaches. The Listening Program, Learning Ears, and The Movement Program complemented her remedial programs ideally because of their design. Denise also studied Essential Oils and Children’s Yoga to benefit her clients’ overall well-being.
Tags Autism, Special Education, The Listening Program, TLP Provider, TLP Success
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