Monday, June 13, 2011

Review of "Outsmarting Explosive Behavior"

Outsmarting Explosive Behavior: A Visual System of Support and Intervention for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders


Outsmarting Explosive Behavior: A Visual System of Support and Intervention for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders is a "program is designed to help decrease - and in some cases eliminate - explosive behavior in children with autism spectrum disorders. Tantrums and meltdowns are among the greatest challenges presented by ASD, often leaving parents and educators searching for answers. Outsmarting Explosive Behavior is a visual program, laid out as a fold-out poster, that can be individualized for each user. Four train cars represent the four stages of explosive behavior: Starting Out, Picking up Steam, Point of No Return, and Explosion. By using visuals to appeal to children with ASD, this program makes it easy to help them identify their current state and take steps to decrease the chances of a meltdown."
- Description from the Autism Asperger Publishing website

  • Customizable to reflect your child or student’s particular behaviors and needs.
  • Uses a train theme, which is often a special interest area of students with autism.
  • Includes both a student workbook and an instructor’s manual.
  • The system includes visual supports, a plus since students with autism are generally visual learners.
  • Focus on students learning to manage their own behavior, a skill necessary for increased independence.
  • The manual includes case study examples, which may be helpful to instructors in implementing the system with their students or children.
  • Positive focus that allows the student to maintain a positive self-concept while working on improving his or her behavior. For example, on page 17 of the student work book it states, “Please remind yourself often: I am a good person working on ways to outsmart my explosive behavior.”

  • The positive behavior intervention strategies are written on red stop signs and the negative (not effective) strategies are written on green signs. This may just be my opinion, but this seems like it might be a little bit confusing, as “red” seems to have a negative or “stop” connotation. I would have expected the positive strategies to be on green signs and the others on red.
  • The product was slightly difficult to assemble.


Highly recommended for both parents and teachers. You can read more information about this product in our interview with Judy Endow or by visiting the product’s page on the publisher’s website here:

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