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In 2019 Knospe-ABA celebrates 15 years in service!

 

Knospe-ABA (pronounced Kenosspuh-ABA) is the home of Germany’s first "Board Certified Behavior Analyst." American born and educated, Robert Schramm, MA, BCBA, has lived in Los Angeles, California and worked with children since 1991 as a special education teacher and inclusion specialist, turning his focus to autism in 1997. In 2004 Robert started Knospe-ABA with his wife Nadine Schramm (maiden name Knospe) and has been offering workshop, consultation and education services to families of children with autism spectrum and other related disorders in Europe. The Knospe-ABA team has been responsible for the behavioral education of more than 1,000 children in Germany and its surrounding countries. In addition to family geared workshops, Knospe-ABA offers in-house workshops, trainings and supervision to schools, autism centers and other institutions interested in learning more about Applied Behavior Analysis and Verbal Behavior.


“We teach the science of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and Verbal Behavior (VB) to parents, teachers, therapists, psychologists and other professionals who want to give children with autism the best possible environment in which to live and learn.”
 

What does Knospe-ABA do?

We work to improve the quality of life for children with autism spectrum and related disorders. We support their development and help them overcome their daily challenges. We help parents and teachers better understand why a child is behaving the way they are so that they can teach the child more effectively. To do this we help parents and teachers to behave in ways that are easier for the child with autism to understand and benefit from.

What is ABA?

Education in Applied Behavior Analysis offers a way to help understand human behavior. When ABA is focused on autism intervention, our first goal is always to try to understand the child and their needs and then to teach all the child’s caregivers how to help them get their needs met in more successful and independent ways.

Our programs are individualized to help each child in our care maximize their potential and live a happier and more successful life. We don’t believe autism to be a disease that needs to be cured but rather a description of development and behavior that can, in some cases, cause individuals to face challenges in communication, behavior and social interaction. It is these challenges we try to help children and their families overcome.

What is Reinforcement?

The truth is you cannot teach anyone anything without reinforcement. This is because the behavioral principle of reinforcement is defined as “anything that follows a behavior and makes that behavior more likely to occur in the future.” By definition, all behavior that regularly occurs is being reinforced. The question becomes, “Do you know what the reinforcement is that is increasing this behavior?” If not, how can you be sure that the necessary reinforcement is available to increase important learning goals? How can we also be sure it is not available after inappropriate or harmful behavior? If children begin to demonstrate ineffective or problematic behavior, it is crucial that their educators know what reinforcement is responsible for this behavior development and what can be done to support more appropriate and effective communication tools instead.

What is VB?

Verbal Behavior is the part of behavior that deals with communication. ABA programs that prioritize the research related to VB are much more highly reliant on the use of a child’s naturally occurring motivation. We don’t teach skills that a child needs to learn, unless we know why the child would WANT to learn the skill. VB focuses on understanding a child’s motivation so that the teacher/parent can set up a teaching setting in which the child becomes a happy, active participant in learning. We call this “Motivated Learning.” Practically, this means that all learning is designed to be fun above all else. The first things we try to determine is what does the child find enjoyable or interesting and how can we set up our teaching to become a worthwhile part of that fun. When an ABA/VB program is up and running as it is designed, children will often choose to pick up their teaching materials and run to their teacher/parents requesting more time learning and having fun with them.

Who can we help?

Our ABA/VB program can help any parent, teacher, or therapist who has a child that they are not helping to maximize their potential. If a child is not learning to speak or has other communication deficits, we can help. If a child is running out of a classroom or into the street, we can help. If a child is aggressive to themselves or others, we can help. If a child is not learning necessary skills (anywhere from academic to social to self help skills), we can help. Our skill is analyzing behavior, identifying why it is useful to the child, and finding ways to teach valuable replacement skills. In the case of Autism, a child might have already developed a large variety of behavior that has proved problematic to the home or school classroom. They may also have a large number of learning deficits that are affecting the way they can enjoy their daily life. Our ABA/VB programs assess the child’s skills and analyze where the environment is not maximizing their learning potential. We can then help determine the most important goals to address. We can teach caregivers to use these goals to help bridge the gaps in communication between the child and others and find ways to improve the child’s life.  And we always strive to do this through Motivated Learning and fun.

How do we help?

When you contact Knospe-ABA for services, we will offer you an opportunity to attend an introductory workshop that teaches you the basic “what,” “how,” and “why” of ABA/VB. You can choose to schedule an initial 3-day consultation where we come into your home and begin the process of identifying the best individualized teaching program for your child. This includes the process of teaching you how to implement those program recommendations on a daily basis within your regular interactions with your child. We can follow that consult with periodic 1 or 2-day maintenance consultations where we check the progress of your child and your teaching skill as well as change the program to help you move forward. At some point, we will work with you to be able to spend part of our consultations in the kindergarten, school, and other important community environments so that we can help all of your child’s teachers and therapists maximize their work with your child. Additionally, between visits you can contact us at your discretion for email, phone and skype consults that will help you stay on track with your teaching, answer any questions, or address any expected issues that come up along the way.

Where do we help?

Our programs are designed so that parents and other adults can address learning goals important to the child’s development and independence within their normal daily interactions. We teach the adults how to interact successfully, based on the child’s motivation. This allows teaching to occur wherever the child wants to be. You learn to make good teaching choices whether you are in the kitchen, the bathtub, in front of the tv, at the playground, jumping on the bed, in the car, and any other location you might go to have fun. We teach you how to participate in your child’s fun activities without taking the fun out of them. This allows you to keep your child engaged in “motivated learning” and fun throughout their day. In the home, school, and community setting, adults are already trying to teach and address behavior issues. However, when they do this without an understanding of the behavioral principles they are likely to be unsuccessful. In fact, they can inadvertently make things worse for the child. We do not believe that clinic based programs can adequately address these problems that arise in the home and community setting. Only support taught in the natural environment can maximize a child’s learning opportunities throughout their day.

What can we help with?

A better understanding of the behavioral principles can be used to address just about any sort of behavior or learning skill your child might need help with. We can address language and communication goals, social interaction goals, academic goals, behavior goals and basic, home, and community self- help skills. In addition to parent and teacher recommended goals we have assessments such as the ABLLS, VB-MAPP, and AFLS among other sources to help guide our programming toward giving children a more successful and independent life.


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