Combining Sensory Integration with Behavioral Strategies

FAB (Functionally Alert Behavior) Strategies synthesize sensory integration with behavioral strategies to help children and adolescents with behavioral, developmental, and sensory processing challenges.  Some therapists limit themselves to using only sensory integration or behavioral techniques.  However, combining these interventions provides opportunities for structure and child-centered movement that improve behavior in children with complex needs.  Sensory integration is addressed in FAB Strategies through environmental equipment, adaptive techniques, mindfulness, movement, touch, and traditional sensory processing intervention. The two major behavioral methods applied in FAB Strategies are Positive Behavioral Support (PBS) and Pivotal Response Training (PRT).

Positive Behavioral Support (PBS) is used extensively by schools to help children learn about feelings, practice self-regulation, and use environmental modifications to reduce behavior problems.  Sensory integration strategies complement PBS intervention by allowing greater consideration of the sensory environment (such as noise levels and adaptive equipment) for environmental modifications, and utilizing sensory movement activities in teaching self-regulation. <www.challengingbehavior.org> Pivotal Response Training (PRT), developed by a behaviorist and speech & language pathologist, is a research proven intervention that promotes attention, motivation, and communication in children with Pervasive Developmental Disabilities.  Sensory integration complements this approach by expanding the utilization of sensory strategies and equipment as naturalistic reinforcers (e.g., developing motivating sensory activities as naturalistic reinforcers).  http://education.ucsb.edu/autism

FAB Strategies are organized into four sections: environmental adaptations, sensory modulation, positive behavioral support, and physical self-regulation. The sensory modulation section emphasizes sensory integration activities while the positive behavioral support section addresses behavioral strategies.  However, both sensory integration and behavioral strategies are included in all sections.  For example, the fourth row of the positive behavioral control section includes reinforce using specific praise (a behavioral strategy) and sensory activities (a sensory integration intervention).  FAB (Functionally Alert Behavior) STRATEGIES

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