Aluna Behaviour Consultancy Newsletter Number 2, May 2022
Welcome to Aluna Behaviour Consultancy’ 2nd Newsletter
The majority of my work is supporting children and schools to make a difference to a child’s behaviour; first by understanding where the issues originate and then planning the interventions that will have a positive impact.
Aluna Behaviour Consultancy provides:
A wide range of training packages and workshops delivered to schools, children, parents, groups and professionals
Practical, hands-on work in schools and other educational settings
A Learning Walk around the setting observing the impact of behaviour on pupils' learning, with a detailed report
Advisory discussions about Nurture Provision
Working alongside Social Care, School Health, Educational Psychologists, Early Help and other agencies
Staff development opportunities for all staff
PHSE sessions and assemblies
Individual and small group pupil support
Parent and family support
Bespoke support for each setting in collaboration with the staff
Much of my work recently has been supporting children with Autism Spectrum Condition in their learning. Some of this work has been regarding how best to make provision in school settings. Additionally, working alongside parents who make the difficult decision to home educate their child who is on the spectrum. A school that has a truly inclusive ethos for all pupils, though it is sometimes difficult, will celebrate the many talents that children in their classes have. If you’re a school that has, please let me know and celebrate your successes!!
Illustration courtesy of Molly's ADHD Mayhem
Working with adults
Recently I’ve had a number of queries from adults who are looking to explain their behaviour traits. Some are genuinely baffled about the way they have behaved at different times in their lives. Others are aware that an autism diagnosis would explain their behaviour since early childhood. There are also adults who have been diagnosed in adulthood who are unsure about what to do with this knowledge. I have devised a programme of support for adults which is a combination of:
an understanding of what autism means to them, some of it research and personal discovery and
a coaching experience, how to work on improving social behaviours and relationships with others.
Evidence indicates that autism is genetic. Scientists have been attempting to identify which genes are connected to autism for some years and the belief is that autism is likely to have multiple genes responsible rather than a single gene. However, it is not caused by emotional deprivation or the way a person has been brought up and there is no link between autism and vaccines. Much research has been devoted to this issue over the years and the results have comprehensively shown there is no link. Find out more on the NHS website.
Illustration courtesy of the Communication and Autism Team
There are many adults who claim to be “a little bit autistic” which isn’t actually possible. But we can see that in neurotypical behaviour (not having autism) there are noticeable patterns; such as lining things up, only eating beige food and anxiety about new experiences. In the same way that we don’t necessarily have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) if we wash our hands a lot, avoid cracks in the pavement or prefer even numbers.
However, it is commonplace for some adults with autism to have innately found ways to regulate their particular behaviours so that they manage their neurodiversity to “blend in” in the majority of situations. This status quo may have resulted from years of challenging and distressing incidents in childhood and adults with autism are working hard to prevent current and future children on the spectrum having such negative and damaging experiences.
Illustration courtesy of Autism All Stars
Many children and a significate percentage of adults with autism will mask their behaviour to appear as neurotypical as possible when in social, work and school situations. It is also known that only 1 in 20 autistic women are diagnosed in childhood. Masking for children may reduce anxiety in the moment, but often leads to major meltdowns when the child is at home or away from the anxiety-inducing environment.
With the right support and information, educational settings and workplaces can become much more inclusive. There are many organisations that provide training in this area and, whilst every person with autism has differing traits, it is invaluable to hear from autistic people or the parents of autistic children to know how their needs have been met.
If you’re an adult who feels this way, please contact me. I’d like to work collectively to make a difference for our children with autism now. I’d like to lead a drive to support schools in ensuring that children with autism have much happier and fulfilling experiences as learners. Your input would be welcomed and much appreciated.
Email AlunaABC@outlook.com, via the Contact Page, on Facebook or Twitter