More than 80 typers, family members, and facilitators attended Saved By Typing’s first Training the Trainer Conference in Central Indiana on April 26 and 27, 2014. Training, which was supported by Syracuse University School of Education’s Institute on Communication and Inclusion (ICI,) was conducted by Master Trainers Marilyn Chadwick, Harvey Lavoy, and Tracy Thresher.
The conference packed a lot of information about Facilitated Communication (FC) into the two day event for both experienced typers and those new to the procedure. While the days were long, everyone was on their best behavior as they focused on the material.
The first day kicked off with an introduction from Harvey and a welcome message from typer Tracy, one of the stars of the documentary Wretches and Jabberers.
“i am so happy to be here let the games begin. i am tracy thresher with the marilyn chadwick training express with harvey lavoy worthy of many accolades we are here to rock the learning of competence. i am looking for you to step it up and get typing on the indy high road five hundred,” Tracy typed, which got the morning started with a chuckle from the audience.
Next, Tracy and Harvey presented the keynote address, “Opening the Window on Communication,” the story of how Tracy learned to communicate for the first time in 1990, at age 23, when he was introduced to FC by Alan Kurtz, a research associate at the University of Maine’s Center for Community Inclusion & Disability Studies. (Alan is currently the Center’s Coordinator of Education and Autism.)
“I was one lucky man to meet Alan Kurtz in 1990. Alan was motivated to unlock my wisdom,” Tracy stated. “Alan unlocked years of pent up chaotic thoughts. My intelligence was masked by autistic looping of hurtful labeling.
Targeted Training Provided Everyone With The Information They Need To Succeed
After a short break, the attendees broke up into two groups.
- Marilyn presented a skills building lecture, “Understanding Movement: How Is It That You Move?” to experienced typers and their facilitators. She then began an assessment of the typers’ skill level and what independence means to them.
- Harvey and Tracy presented an in-depth introduction to newcomers, their family members and supporters that discussed how to get started with FC training.
After the lunch break, Marilyn continued her assessment of typers’ skills, and identifying the goals they’ve set, in preparation for Sunday’s practice sessions. Tracy and Harvey continued their introduction of FC to their group.
The day wrapped up around 5 o’clock with a general feeling of accomplishment and an excited anticipation for the next day. Click here for details about Day Two’s activities.
We want to extend a special thank you to facilitators Laura Poorman, Carla Squires and Alicia Bingham. Certified Music Therapist Casey DePriest also provided invaluable assistance with the training throughout the weekend. Casey will be conducting our next training program, a one-day Neurologic Music Therapy Workshop on Saturday, June 21.
We also want to thank Bailey, Brooke and Brin Troutman who took care of the break room and kept everyone supplied with tasty snacks and beverages throughout the weekend.
SBT Program Director Jim Smyth thanks facilitators Alicia Bingham, Carla Squires and Laura Poorman for their help and support all weekend.[/one_third]
Thanks to Bailey, Brooke and Brin Troutman, who took care of the break room and kept everyone supplied with tasty snacks and beverages.[/one_third]
We also want to thank Certified Neurologic Music Therapist Casey DePriest for her assistance. Casey will be conducting a one-day Neurologic Music Therapy Workshop for SBT on Saturday, June 21.
Additionally, we extend our gratitude and heartfelt thanks to volunteers Chelsea and Bethany Poorman, Nancy Hobson, Karen Willman, and Laura Stutz, who took care of all the big and small details that helped make the conference the success that it was, as well as certified music therapist Casey DePriest, who will be conducting our next training program, a one-day Neurologic Music Therapy Workshop on Saturday, June 21.
For a report on Sunday’s activities, read Facilitated Communication Training Conference, Day Two.
Photo Gallery: Facilitated Communication Training Conference, Day One
Below is a small selection of photos taken on Day One. For more pictures of the entire event, check out the Training the Trainer Conference photo album on Saved By Typing’s Facebook page.