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Digital Recordings

Autism Meltdowns in Children and Adolescents: Practical Strategies for Prevention, Intervention and Post-vention

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Kathy Kaluza Morris, MEd, BS
6 Hours 21 Minutes
Audio and Video
Jan 26, 2018
Product Code:
Media Type:
Digital Recordings - Also available: Digital Recordings | DVD


  • Techniques to develop self-control and self-management skills
  • Essential skills to defuse explosive behaviors and de-escalate meltdowns
  • Powerful incentives to change inappropriate behaviors
  • Activities for reviewing behaviors when calm
  • Case examples with dozens of strategies you can use immediately

Do you work with children and adolescents with autism who exhibit behaviors 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 behavior, which can send them spiraling into a meltdown. And, you feel frustrated, powerless and helpless after each meltdown.

Drawing on over 40 years of professional and personal experience, Kathy will lead you through dynamic discussion, video case examples and demonstrations providing dozens of strategies you can implement immediately with these children/adolescents—in any setting. Walk away with an array of practical strategies for:

  • Preventing and de-escalating meltdowns
  • Teaching and promoting appropriate behaviors
  • Providing instructional consequences/replacement behaviors
  • Developing self-control and self-management skills
  • … and more!

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



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. Demonstrate the connections and breakdowns between communication, social skills and behaviors.
  3. Employ a breathe card and emotions chart to develop self-control and selfmanagement 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. behavior issues
  • Meltdown video

Strategies for the Meltdown Cycle: Intervention, Prevention and Post-vention

  • Sensory Issues
    • Optimal learning environments
    • Easy-to-use sensory tools
    • Overstimulation and sensory breakdowns
    • Incorporate a sensory lifestyle throughout the day
  • Executive Function
    • Increase attention and focus
    • Strengthen motivation and engagement
    • On-task and task completion skills
    • Visual reminders for routines and predictability
    • Visual structure for organization
  • Self-Regulation
    • Develop self-control and self-monitoring skills
    • Tools for self-feedback
    • Use high focus and interest areas as powerful incentives to change behavior
  • Social/Emotional Communication
    • Communication for positive social interaction
    • Appropriate interactions with their peers
    • First-person stories for positive behavior changes and affirmations
  • Explosive Behaviors
    • Recognize the triggers
    • Alleviate anxiety
    • Modeling appropriate behavior
    • Defuse explosive behaviors
    • Decrease maladaptive behaviors
    • Increase appropriate behaviors
  • Special Considerations
    • Collaboration with parents/caregivers
    • Strategies for helping the parent/caregiver with grief

Techniques for After the Meltdown

  • Strategies for instructional consequences
  • Chart appropriate/inappropriate behaviors
  • Activities for reviewing behaviors when calm
  • Use cartooning to facilitate feedback
  • Strategies for providing systematic feedback
  • Reinforcement for communication strategies
  • Identify feelings and review behavior

Hands-on and Small Group Activities

  • Demonstration video
  • Small group exercises: Brainstorm appropriate and meaningful replacement behaviors

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, 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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