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RISE Therapy Program

RISE Therapy Program Overview

RISE is an intensive, kindergarten-like therapy program for children with autism that are typically 5-8 years old, or functioning at an equivalent kindergarten level. The RISE program is a complement to our IGNITE pre-school-like program. It follows more advanced programming, and the kids in rise have mastered the foundational IGNITE skills. Higher level social, communication, and learner skills are worked on in RISE.

RISE blends social activities and group exercises with individualized programming. Working 1:1 with an ABA therapist, children are able to master their own developmental goals while building the social skills that will enable them to succeed in a more traditional school setting. RISE puts a heavier emphasis on kindergarten and elementary school skills, including, interacting appropriately with peers, following instructions and routines, and engaging in both individual and group work.

RISE Schedule

RISE is a year-round therapy program and runs at the same time as IGNITE. There are two sessions – morning and afternoon – are part of the daily schedule.

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Full-Day Program: 9:00 am - 3:00pm

5

Morning Session: 9:00 am - 12:00 pm

5

Afternoon Session: 12:00pm - 3:00pm

RISE is run on weekdays, and the schedule may vary by clinic. Extended scheduling options beyond 3pm are available for families seeking additional therapies later in the day. The schedule provides for flexibility in the number of days and sessions that a child may elect to attend each week.

picture of a child with a therapist at Westside Children's Therapy therapeutic preschool program IGNITE

RISE Curriculum

Your child’s RISE curriculum is a combination of structured group activities and individualized therapies. A primary goal of the RISE therapy program is to prepare a child for the social and learning skills required in a traditional school environment. The skills that are worked on are more advanced than the skills taught in IGNITE, and children in RISE must have mastered the foundational skills that worked on in IGNITE before joining this group. Below are the primary skills that are emphasized in RISE:

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Expressive communication (conversation, appropriate small talk, descriptive language, etc.)

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Appropriate social interactions

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Fine motor skills (e.g. writing and cutting)

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Independently completing routines

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Basic social-emotional skills

As a result, RISE includes common group activities:

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Circle Time

$

More Advanced Social Skill Activities

$

Group Lunchtime with Peers

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School Readiness Development (Taking Turns, Lining Up, Raising Hands, etc.)

Throughout the RISE therapy program, each child has their own programming goals. These goals are aligned with the specific needs that were identified by the BCBA. These goals are worked on throughout the program but are facilitated in a social environment with peers that are functioning at a similar skill level.

Children in RISE can choose additional therapies that can occur during their normal RISE schedule that emphasize more specific developmental areas. For, example, if there are significant communication deficits that need extra work, speech therapy can be included in the child’s daily schedule. Therapies that can be added to a child’s schedule include:

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Occupational Therapy

$

Speech Therapy

$

Feeding Therapy

$

Counseling

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Physical Therapy

Benefits of the RISE Therapy Program

A primary benefit of RISE is that it allows to group kids by skill level. The kids in the RISE therapy program have a similar foundation of skills that can be applied collectively to work on higher level group and social skills. With school environments being so dependent on communication and social skills, this advanced learning is effective for making the transition to a school environment easier for children with autism. For children who completed IGNITE, it allows them to continue their school readiness preparation in a more advanced setting.

Graduation from RISE

RISE is the therapy program that directly bridges the child to their traditional school environment. A successful program exit is that the child begins attending first grade and that they find themselves prepared for the demands of the school environment. It follows that most of our RISE participants graduate the program when they start first grade. Because RISE has specific programming, and each child’s progress is tracked daily, therapists and parents will know if a child has mastered the RISE goals earlier than expected.

If a child enters the school environment, and finds themselves struggling, the FOCUS after-school therapy program is a way for kids to get extra support during their transition time to a school environment.

picture of children interacting with the therapist during a RISE therapy program session at Westside in Illinois