We are dedicated to helping individuals on the Autism Spectrum reach their full potential by applying evidence based practices. We provide social and educational training to maximize the potential for our clients to lead satisfying, self-sustaining lives in connection with their communities. We strive to offer parents and professionals access to Applied Behavior Analysis based treatment tools. As well as improving access to effective treatment using an easy-to-follow web-based curriculum and proven teaching strategies.
Laugh and Learn makes use of processes of Applied Behavior Analysis with methods which are based on evidence-based methods of treatment. This includes Verbal Behavior techniques, Fluency Based and Direct Instruction and Natural Environment Training (NET).
Every child’s program is built specifically for his/her particular needs. To be able to undergo any kind of treatment from us, we first make sure that our clients have all the eligibility requirements needed for admission. We conduct initial assessments which may include Functional Behavior Assessments, Preference Assessments, VB-MAPP, AFLS, ABLLS, which leads the assigned BCBA to make a decision regarding which goals are most clinically appropriate for your case.
We are dedicated to providing the most effective and intensive treatment using research-based therapy to help our clients change their lives for the better. We make use of a team approach to assist our clients in gaining access to the services needed to meet their specific needs. Laugh and Learn Therapy continuously strives to make sure that children, as well as young adolescents/adults with Autism, receive the highest quality of services that they need. We focus on helping our clients achieve maximum individual potential whether it’s in the home, at school or any place else. We would like our clients to reach their highest possible outcomes and are dedicated to assisting in that process. Laugh and Learn follows all the ethical standards under the Behavior Analyst Certification Board.
New skills and behaviors are taught while existing behaviors are modified, if necessary. ABA focuses on behaviors that are observable and measurable, with respect to their function. This is determined through the collection of data that involves antecedents and consequences, which are events that occur directly before and after the behavior of interest. This approach utilizes principles of reinforcement, to increase skills that are functional and socially significant throughout the child’s daily life.
ABA not only teaches these skills but also promotes maintenance and generalization of the skills. ABA also serves to decrease behaviors that may interfere with learning, such as tantrums, aggression, or stereotypy when deemed necessary. Treatment plans are developed to facilitate learning based on the individualized needs of each child. Areas that we work on include (but are not limited to):
• Functional Communication
• Social Interactions
• Play and Leisure
• Activities of Daily living such as grooming, bathing and dressing
and much more based on your child's needs
The family should discuss their concerns with their health care provider, and the provider may conduct a screening and make a referral to the CMH for a comprehensive diagnostic evaluation to determine if the child has Autism Spectrum Disorder. While it is recommended that families contact their child’s primary health care provider, there is no “wrong door” to obtain a referral for a comprehensive diagnostic evaluation, and families may self-refer to the CMH.
To achieve success in a social setting, a child with autism should integrate all the skills they’ve learned from various areas of intervention such as speech, behavior, physical therapy, etc. For that reason, you will see social skills addressed directly and woven into other goals and objectives.
• Connect with people and form friendships with other classmates
• Learn to initiate and sustain back-and-forth conversations
• Enjoy both structured and unstructured playtime
• Empathize in interactions with others
Depending on a child’s behavioral spectrum, a child may find it difficult to understand the nuance of figurative language, to speak and express themselves clearly, as well as to produce spoken language altogether. Individuals with autism often take things literally, and most of them, especially individual with autism, find it difficult to see past the literal meaning of language to interpret its conversational use.
Communication interventions aim to help a child with autism:
• Develop and improve conversational skills for interacting with peers and adults
• Use and understand nonverbal communication like gestures
• Interpret facial expressions
• Become comfortable engaging in functional and spontaneous dialogue
• AAS Early Childhood Development
• B.A. English and History with Teaching Certification
• M.A. Special Education with Cognitive Impairments Certification
Lorretta enjoys reading, hiking, airsoft, cooking, and baking. She has two dogs Junior, and Fezzik with a new puppy joining soon. She has three cats and two Bearded Dragons. When she is not working she is home with her husband of 24 years, and 2 boys 22 and 19. She loves cheesecake and her favorite holiday is Halloween. When Lorretta is not helping others, she is typically spending time with her family.
One of her biggest accomplishments was working on her Ph.D. for Special Education Leadership. Then quickly realizing that it was not the path for her. Being able to put herself first, switch gears and take the leap into ABA was a huge accomplishment. Her biggest accomplishment of all is the Laugh and Learn clinic. She has worked diligently with the leadership team to create a state of the art facility for the Genesee County community. She is excited to invite the community to take advantage of all the clinic has to offer!