ABOUT

Education and Communication

Communication, inclusion in life experiences, and age appropriate education are often missing pieces in the lives of those who are underestimated because of autism and many other diagnoses that involve communication/movement deficits. Who first called information POWER?! Bravo that person! We strive to emPOWER our students with academic lessons that incorporate a choice based opportunity for a responsive exchange between instructor and student.

Ours Is A Four Corners Approach

1) Academic Lessons are KEY.

Providing age appropriate instruction is a platform that creates interest and the opportunity to utilize higher order thinking skills. Academics can calm the protective nature of the lower brain when the academic level of the student is met with information that fires the upper, more logical thinking brain. Keeping the flow between instructor and student interesting allows the student to demonstrate understanding through our choice based delivery methodology which utilizes choosing between words as well as letters to choose or spell responses pertaining to lessons.

3) Life Experiences are KEY.

We delve into the great outdoors (and indoors) to experience life in a fuller and bigger, more purposeful way, taking our communication out into the community, volunteering services, and moving the body in purposeful ways as we climb, hike, and row and move the body in cross brain motor activities!

2) Communication is KEY.

The result of respecting a student’s intellect by presenting age appropriate academics, and offering that student a method of responding and participating in the lesson is foundational in becoming proficient in communication. Students learn to choose between letters to spell responses in a back and forth exchange between teacher and student. This academic approach often leads to more open communication.

4) Purpose in Movement is KEY

Experiencing life in purposeful movement may seem like a no-brainer to some, but it is actually an all-brainer! Besides getting the brain involved in cross-body movement in the community and outdoors, we will help you implement a full brain/body movement program that will aid in calming anxiety and in integrating primal reflexes. (Details coming soon)

OUR TEAM

JOSHA.jpg

JOSHA SMITH

Co-Founder and CEO

Josha, a licensed special educator with ongoing training in Rapid Prompting Method and certification in Natural Play Therapy, is your partner in parenting and in teaching. Bringing 21+ years of experience in both parenting and home schooling along with a BSed with specialty fields of early childhood, special education, and English as a second language to the table, she shares in goal setting and planning for the accomplishment of those goals through age appropriate lesson and game planning. From preschool through adulthood, autistic individuals can be taught age appropriately and with confidence.

KMAN.jpg

KAEGAN SMITH

Co-Founder & Community Outreach Coordinator

Kaegan enthusiastically directs his efforts toward supporting others who lack consistent, reliable communication. Having gained the control required to spell his thoughts to communicate at the age of 18, he has focused on aiding others through co-founding Keys 4 Autism which is an organization providing inspiration and guidance for families who seek to understand their non-speaking/minimally-speaking/unreliably speaking loved ones. Kaegan is the creator of an online mentorship project called, Dear Me. He has presented at conferences and for school staff, enlightening his audiences concerning what it is like to be misunderstood and how to better support and understand those with apraxia. He is currently serving a second year on the Colorado Special Education Advisory Committee, where he seeks to make an impact within the school systems regarding special services and communication access. He also pursues excellence on behalf of students at Hirsch Academy, Atlanta, where he sits on a visionary board and assists with a school mentorship group. Kaegan has studied environmental sustainability online through the University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign, receiving a certificate in the subject. His next endeavor is to earn a University certificate in assistive technologies- a study that begins January, 2022.

LN_edited_edited_edited_edited.jpg

ELLEN MCKAMEY

Chief Operations Officer

Ellen has over 15 years of experience working in domestic and international special education, including applied behavior analysis, play-based therapy, public awareness, child advocacy and most recently became a certified RPM provider as well as earned her Assistive Technology certificate from California State University Northridge. Ellen served in the United States Peace Corps as a special education teacher trainer in Belize. Ellen’s love for adventure and helping those in need has taken her all over the world from studying chimpanzee behavior in South Africa to backpacking through southeast Asia. She has volunteered with local schools in India to increase their knowledge in working with students with autism. She has her master’s degree in sustainable living and has spent the past four years coordinating international therapy services. She recently moved to Fort Collins to partner with Keys and we're thrilled to have her on our team. 

PXL_20220707_235016128_edited.jpg

KARL EGGERS

Activities Coordinator

Karl has lived in Colorado for the majority of his life. He enjoys spending time wrenching on cars,
camping, going outdoors and is interested in pursuing an education in computer science. His goals with Keys are to help facilitate purposeful actions as well as foster meaningful relationships with our community members. He is currently training in RPM and will be helping schedule activities around Fort Collins that involve purposeful movement. Karl is looking forward to his future with Keys and this new chapter in his life.

584 W. Douglas Rd Fort Collins, CO

Mail: josha.smith@keys4autism.com

Tel: 832-465-8808

Important Disclaimer: All information in this site is presented for support and educational purposes only. It is not intended to substitute for medical treatment or visiting a licensed medical physician. Visitors who desire to apply or use any information listed herein are urged to consult with licensed healthcare professionals first. All information is deemed reliable but its accuracy can't be guaranteed.

SOCIALS

  • Facebook
  • Instagram

© 2023 by KEYS4AUTISM.
Proudly created with Wix.com