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Autism: De-Escalate Meltdowns and Diffuse Explosive Behaviors in Children and Adolescents

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Kathy Kaluza Morris, MEd, BS
6 Hours 11 Minutes
Nov 11, 2019
Product Code:
Media Type:
DVD - Also available: Digital Recordings  2


Do you work with children and adolescents with autism who exhibit explosive behaviours that interfere with their ability to effectively and efficiently navigate their environment?

They appear willful, obnoxious, over reactive, and unfeeling. They lose control of their ability to cope or regulate their behaviour, which can send them spiralling into a gut wrenching meltdown.

Watch autism expert Kathy Morris, M.Ed., B.S., and learn proven strategies and techniques to help children and adolescents with autism de-escalate before a full blown meltdown ensues, develop self-control and self-management skills to prevent future meltdowns and learn appropriate/replacement behaviours. Dozens of strategies will be taught through dynamic video case examples and demonstrations.

“Teach them in the way they learn” will be a mantra throughout the recording.

Walk away with these interventions and more:

  • Breathe card and emotions chart to develop self-control and self-management skills
  • Surprise cards, change of schedule cues and transition markers to alleviate anxiety
  • Video modelling and role playing to improve social/emotional communication
  • First person stories and visual cues to promote positive behaviour
  • Visual cues, music and software designed to increase attention and focus
  • Social stories, social scripts and emotions charts to develop self-regulation
  • SOCCSS, keychain rules and t-charts to target challenging behaviours



This online program is worth 6.25 hours CPD.



Kathy Kaluza Morris, MEd, BS's Profile

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Kathy Kaluza Morris has been a special educator for 52 years, serving as a speech therapist, self-contained teacher of students with behavior disorders, moderate to severe developmental disabilities, as well as a resource teacher and first grade teacher. She served as a diagnostician and supervisor in a district where she opened up the first two LIFE Skills programs in the state of Texas before becoming a consultant for autism, behavior and inclusion at a region service center in Texas. Starting her own business, igivuWings, in 1999 she provides seminars nationally and internationally. She served on the President’s Commission on Special Education, was Teacher of the Year and recently, she and her husband were honored by the ARC of Texas with the Lifetime Achievement Award Serving Persons with Disabilities.

A prolific and practical speaker, Kathy has traveled throughout the world since starting her own business in 1999, providing technical assistance, seminars, and consulting for school districts and service centers. She has made many videos that provide her full seminars as well as shorter versions. Her specialty topics for her seminars are autism, self-regulation strategies, executive function, moderate to severe disabilities, inclusion, co-teaching, mindfulness, and growth mindset.

She believes in possibilities and the power of imagination. Kathy and her husband, Guy, “walked the walk and talked the talk” since the birth of their twin sons with developmental disabilities, including autism, and cerebral palsy, in 1987.


Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Kathy Morris maintains a private practice. She has authored an audio product, books and a DVD product which are published by the Bureau of Education & Research. Kathy Morris is an consultant for Assistive Technology, Inc. She receives a speaking honorarium and recording royalties from PESI, Inc. All relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations has been mitigated.
Non-financial: Kathy Morris is the mother of adult children with autism spectrum disorders.


  1. Discriminate functions of behavior during a tantrum vs. meltdown.
  2. Draw the connections and breakdowns between communication, social skills and behaviors.
  3. Employ a breathe card and emotions chart to develop self-control and self-management skills.
  4. Design optimal therapy/classroom structure to prevent overstimulation and sensory breakdowns.
  5. Employ SOCCSS, keychain rules and t-charts to prevent, intervene or consequate targeted behaviors.
  6. Utilize surprise cards, change of schedule cues and transition markers to alleviate anxiety.
  7. Implement a “system” rather than a person dependent intervention.


Functions of a Meltdown

  • Tantrum vs. meltdown
  • Stages of a meltdown
  • Sensory issues vs. behaviour issues
  • Meltdown intervention video

Sensory Strategies

  • Easy-to-use sensory tools and apps to calm
  • Overstimulation and sensory breakdowns
  • Therapy session and classroom structure for optimal learning

Executive Functioning Strategies

  • Visual cues, music and software designed to increase attention and focus
  • High interest areas to strengthen motivation and engagement
  • Visual reminders for routines and predictability
  • Visual structures to promote organization

Self-Regulation Strategies

  • Video modeling, t-charts, social stories, social scripts, emotions charts to develop self-control
  • Tools that promote self-monitoring of behaviour
  • Power cards and visual checklists as powerful incentives to change behaviour

Social/Emotional Communication Strategies

  • Social scripts and social stories to develop social interaction
  • Video modelling and role planning to demonstrate appropriate interactions
  • First person stories for positive behaviour changes and affirmations

Explosive Behavior Strategies

  • Recognize the warning signs of a meltdown in order to prevent it
  • Surprise cards, change of schedule cues and transition markers to alleviate anxiety
  • Visual cues to depict expected behaviour
  • Converting the verbal to a visual

Techniques for After the Meltdown

  • Strategies for instructional consequences
  • Chart appropriate/inappropriate behaviours
  • Activities for reviewing behaviours when calm
  • Cartooning to facilitate feedback
  • Strategies for providing systematic feedback
  • Reinforcement for communication strategies
  • Identify feelings and review behaviour

Hands-on Activities

  • Demonstrate video of a child having meltdown
  • Appropriate and meaningful replacement behaviours for physical aggression
  • Instructional consequences for a meltdown

Target Audience

  • Speech-Language Pathologists
  • Speech-Language Pathology Assistants
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Occupational Therapy Assistants
  • Special & General Educators
  • School Guidance Counselors
  • School Administrators
  • Educational Paraprofessionals
  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychologists
  • School Psychologists
  • Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Physical Therapists
  • Physical Therapist Assistants
  • Other Helping Professionals that Work with Children



Overall:      26

Total Reviews: 26



"Thank you Ms. KATHY MORIS, I hope I grow up to be as cool and neat as you are. Your family values clearly inform your vocation. I hope I can help many families with what I learned today. Much health and light to you!!!! "


"This is very helpful information and directly applies to my school OT job and the students I serve"

Brittany G

"Ms. Morris did an awesome job! I loved her picture schedule! It showed HOW IMPORTANT schedules are even for adults! "

Sarah M

"Great course! Helpful to implement to use in the classroom"


"Great personal stories... made real connections with the attendees. Great resources and personal knowledge. "

Florinda C

"Kathy is a life-saver! Like Kathy, I am a parent of child with ASD and an SLP found her course both comprehensive, insightful and compassionate! THANK YOU:-)"

Tracy T

"Loved this course! Will recommend to coworkers."

Laura F

"excellent training!"

Laura M

"Great customer service!"


"Kathy Morris is an excellent teacher and used many modes of learning to teach."

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