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Alert Programme

The Alert Programme is one of our favourite programmes at Skillbuilders. We have been successfully supporting children to learn about self-regulation using this programme for a number of years now. Some of the resources to support the programme are listed below. If you're new to the Alert Programme we recommend you look out for an OT with experience in using it to help you get started.


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  • "How Does Your Engine Run?" - Leader's Guide

    $75.50
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    The Leader’s Guide is a comprehensive gold mine of Alert Programme information for use in school, clinic, or home settings. It will provide everything you need to teach self-regulation with confidence, including:

    • Overview of the underlying theory and concepts of sensory integration and self-regulation.
    • Unique methods to teach other adults (teachers, parents, etc.) about the Alert Program® and the importance of self-regulation.
    • Twelve detailed steps to teach independent self-regulation.
    • Lots of low-budget activity ideas.
    • Personal stories that clearly illustrate the programme.
    • All worksheets, charts, and pictures needed for the programme (permission to copy Appendix pages is included).
    The Leader’s Guide is intended for individuals who are familiar with sensory processing techniques. Those who are unfamiliar with this theory can implement the program with consultation from an occupational therapist trained in sensory processing. We recommend those not familiar with self-regulation concepts to begin by reading the Introductory Booklet and Take Five! book. Or take the Alert Program® Online Course (the Leader’s Guide is included in the price of the course).
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  • Alert Programme CD Set

    $39.00
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    The Alert Program® CD is a double CD set. One of the CDs is an introduction to the program with excerpts from the 
    Introductory Booklet (read by the authors). The second CD has fun, playful songs that help children change their levels of alertness at home or school. All songs are kid-tested, therapist/parent/teacher-approved, with titles such as “Slo-Mo,” “Thumb Wrestling,” “Swamp Balomp,” “Hawk,” and “Hokey OT.”
    As children get familiar with the Alert Program®, these songs will help them to self-regulate. For instance, a child might say at bedtime, “My engine is running high. Could we play the ‘Hawk Song’ to help me fall asleep?”
    Take a listen here…
    Sample from “Flea Market”


    Audio Player

    Sample from “Stop-N-Go”


    Audio Player

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  • An Introduction to "How Does Your Engine Run?"

    $17.00
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    The Introductory Booklet can be shared with parents, teachers and therapists who want to enhance students’ self-regulation. For example, parents use it as resource to share with their children’s teachers so school staff understand how the parents are teaching the Alert Program® concepts at home. Likewise, therapists share this booklet so parents understand what their children are learning in therapy sessions. And teachers appreciate this concise summary, emphasising the importance of self-regulation for all learning.

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  • Keeping on Track (Alert Program Game)

    $86.50
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    This is not your ordinary board game! All players are drivers with engines, traveling around a course, set to check in regularly on their internal engine speeds. Are they speeding or idling? What can they do to run “just right?” You, the adult, are the Track Official, directing the action and discussion. All of this supports the players' cognitive, social, sensory, self-regulation development. Keeping on Track Board Game can be enjoyed at home and school, and in therapy settings.

    After children have been introduced to the Alert Program® concepts through the Leader’s Guide activities and Test Drive songs, they are ready for this one-of-a-kind game. The 45cm x 45cm board captures children’s imaginations with colourful illustrations and landmarks along their road trip. Four cars, one die, and three sets of cards are included in the game box. The game cards reinforce the three stages of the Alert Program® as taught in the Leader’s Guide. When answering Engine Speed card questions, children learn more about how to identify engine levels (Stage One). Using the Tools cards, children learn more about the five ways to change engine levels (Stage Two). The Tune-Up cards ask questions that encourage problem-solving and independent self-regulation (Stage Three). Blank cards provided can be used to stack the deck with individualised questions. With your purchase, you’ll receive game instructions with “bonus materials” offering numerous ways to play and adapt the game. You’ll have everything you need to guide children to learn how to “keep on track” at home, at school, or in therapy settings. NOTE: This game will serve you well, if you are familiar with self-regulation and sensory processing theory. If you are a newcomer to the Alert Program®, you may want to purchase the Leader’s Guide to get the most out of playing the Keeping on Track Board Game or we recommend finding an Occupational Therapist to support your efforts.
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  • Take Five! Staying Alert at Home and School

    $75.50
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    Take Five! is chock-full of fun activities designed to support self-regulation in homes and schools. This book provides simple, low-budget activities that support children to be alert and focused.

    This book supports the Alert Programme. The chapters are organised around the five ways to change how alert we feel, ie Mouth, Move, Touch, Look, and Listen Categories.


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  • Test Drive: Introducing the Alert Programme Through Song

    $77.50
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    The Test Drive book and CD, with its appealing songs to support children's self-regulation, is full of practical ideas and suggestions. Whether or not you are familiar with the Alert Program®Test Drive is the simplest way to introduce the programme’s concepts to children in schools, homes, or therapy settings. Listen to a Test Drive song just once and everyone will be humming and tapping their toes to the catchy words and rhymes, perhaps not even knowing they are learning about self-regulation! 
    Everyone will enjoy the ease with which children learn and remember the Alert Program®concepts through these playful, yet educational song lyrics such as: “I do my best work and it's a great place to be. When my engine's just right, nothing's stopping me!” The Test Drive book walks you through exactly how to introduce the Alert Program® to a group or individual (in classrooms, therapy clinics, or homes). You can’t go wrong with the straight forward instructions given in the book. Here are some examples of how the songs outline the basic Alert Program® concepts:
    • The Just Right Song teaches students the engine analogy and sample ways to change how alert they feel.
    • The Best Work song, with its bluesy swing, piques students’ interest in learning how easy it is to focus and pay attention when engines are in a just right level of alertness.
    • The Five Ways song expands students’ awareness of how to change their engine levels and how to choose from a larger variety of engine strategies.
    • The Engine Song reinforces not only the engine vocabulary and strategies, but adds a self-monitoring, social-emotional dimension. With phrases such as, “make a good decision, yes I can!,” the song reminds children that they can make good self-regulation choices.
    • The Alive, Awake, Alert song offers an ideal movement break for children and adults at school, at home, or in therapy settings.
    • And the Transition Songs are instrumental recordings of selected Test Drive songs that can be used to support students in times of transition to better self-regulate. Teachers, parents, or therapists can use the songs to assist students to end one activity and begin another, perhaps explaining, “In two minutes, when the song ends, we’ll finish ____ and then start _____.”
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