When teachers, therapists, or parents use these simple words to begin the Alert Program®, they enter an exciting adventure with children. The journey unfolds easily with the Alert Program®'s clearly defined steps for teaching self-regulation awareness.
The book, How Does Your Engine Run?® A Leader's Guide to the Alert Program® for Self-Regulation
(Williams & Shellenberger, 1996), describes an innovative program
that supports children, teachers, parents, and therapists to choose
appropriate strategies to change or maintain states of alertness.
Students learn what they can do before a spelling test or homework time
to attain an optimal state of alertness for their tasks. Teachers learn
what they can do after lunch, when their adult nervous systems are in a
low alert state and their students are in a high alert state. Parents
learn what they can do to help their child's nervous system change from a
high alert state to a more appropriate low state at bedtime.
Leaders of the program not only learn what they can do to support
self-regulation, but how to share the underlying theory so all can
understand the basics of sensory integration. By reading the book or
attending a conference, adults increase awareness of their own
self-regulation thereby improving their ability to facilitate students'
optimal functioning. The Sensory-Motor Preference Checklist (for Adults)
is a tool used to support this learning process. For example by filling
out the checklist, adults may discover that before work, they may drink
coffee, take a brisk walk, or listen to jazzy music to get their engine
up and going for the day. Or others may find that they drink hot
chocolate, rock in a rocking chair, or watch the glow of a fireplace to
get their engine slowed down after a busy day. Bringing to awareness
what most people do automatically in their daily routines, fosters the
understanding of how important self-regulation is for students'
Although the Alert Program® initially was intended for
children with attention and learning difficulties, ages 8-12, it has
been adapted for preschool through adult and for a variety of
disabilities. If children are intellectually challenged or
developmentally younger than the age of eight, the program's concepts
can be utilized by staff to develop sensory diets (Wilbarger &
Wilbarger, 1991) to enhance learning.
Join the group of teachers, occupational therapists, speech-language
pathologists, physical therapists, adapted physical educators,
educational assistants, counselors, social workers, and parents who are
enhancing children's lives using the Alert Program®.
For more information: http://www.alertprogram.com/