Early Childhood Training Curriculum

The START Early Childhood training follows a curriculum developed by START based on recommendations from the National Research Council report (2001), the National Professional Developmental Center on ASD (2009), and the research literature on ASD as well as direct experience.

The training emphasizes effective practices for teaching and supporting young children in a classroom environment. "Increasing learning opportunities in early childhood classrooms" serves as the foundation for the training and includes: behavior support systems, classroom structure and activities, and effective instructional delivery. Basic training in applied behavior analysis (ABA) will be provided including: key components of ABA, instructional presentation, skills assessment, choosing instructional targets and data collection.


Early Childhood Modules

This module covers the primary components of the START program early childhood intensive training along with the evidence-based practices for supporting young children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in early childhood. In the presentation, we will define clear expectations for children and staff across activities with methods for assessing and teaching expectations. Participants will learn to collect data on child independence during routines.

This presentation emphasizes the use of evidence-based strategies for increasing learning opportunities and engagement for young children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and related disabilities across activities. Effective instructional strategies for teaching will be presented including pairing, prompting, and reinforcement. Participants will learn to incorporate learning and communication opportunities across the day through intentional planning of routines and visual supports. This presentation will provide classroom behavior support strategies to prevent, teach, reinforce, and respond to behaviors as a team. An early childhood assessment tool will be reviewed as a way to evaluate current program components.

This training module will provide strategies to address a range of child learning abilities and needs. Participants will learn a system for addressing multiple goals within learning activities and to differentiate instruction across activities. The module will present strategies to develop functional communication systems and teach communication skills, including manding and shaping new communication behaviors.

This module will address learning opportunities and engagement during circle time, including fun activities to incorporate into circle. Participants will learn about active child responding and utilizing strategies taught in previous modules, such as differentiating instruction and behavior support during circle and large group time. A problem-solving tool and data collection strategies will be introduced to assist teams to increase active responding. Participants will also learn strategies for teaching toileting behaviors and other adaptive skills that promote independence.  

This module outlines strategies used to increase learning opportunities to promote play skills in young children. Participants will learn to individualize strategies for specific children as well as creating activities relevant to an entire class. A variety of strategies will be presented including scripted play, video modeling, reciprocal imitation, observational play, structuring play centers, organizing free play, and peer training. In this module, we will share practices and strategies that promote inclusion and peer interaction. Activities for promoting learning opportunities and social interaction during meals will be presented. In the final part of the module, participants will review their learning from the training series and create a plan for continued implementation.


Early Childhood Team Binder


Early Childhood Videos

Early Childhood Independence Example: Putting on Shoes

Early Childhood Independence Example: Transitions from Preferred to Non-Preferred

Pairing and Instructional Control Part 1