I could not find any existing tools to teach my own son or others to BE SAFE, so I decided to create one (or two) myself! My life as a mother and career as an advocate inspired the why to do this project. Amazing experiences personally training thousands of police officers about ASD provided insight into what needs to be taught. Working in Special Education as a college professor solidified the decision about how to do it: through video modeling and visual supports, engaging tools to teach positive, safe social behavior.
The final link in this process was meeting Joey Travolta, Dale Oprandy, and the young adult film makers of Inclusion Films, who were the right people to transform the script into a movie. The time was finally right to create BE SAFE The Movie. We tailored BE SAFE to meet the needs of teens and adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Yet while making the movie, the film makers (who have various disabilities) convinced us that BE SAFE could be a helpful tool for teens and adults with a wide range of disabilities or conditions. They are right! So while the message remains the same, BE Safe can support a person of any age who needs to learn the skills and can benefit from it, whether they have a diagnosis or not, and whatever the diagnosis might be.
BE SAFE The Movie is a user-friendly tool for parents, teachers, specialists, coaches and staff working with teens and adults. BE SAFE is especially useful to prepare transition-age students for life after high school, focusing on independent living skills and safety goals. BE SAFE may also be helpful to adults who need to learn safety skills to support independence and access to the community.
BE SAFE has the potential to improve outcomes in police interactions, and may even help prevent tragedies. You can use BE SAFE in the way that best meets the needs of the person you are working with. Repetition may be needed to accommodate different language and comprehension levels. The ability to repeat is an excellent feature of video modeling!
As a parent and a college professor, I realized that parents, teachers and staff would want more information about how to use BE SAFE The Movie as a teaching tool. This need inspired the creation of this Companion Curriculum Guide. Activities and resources in the Guide can help adult facilitators ensure understanding, expand on concepts, develop an active vocabulary of safety terms, and apply what is learned in real-life situations.
You will notice that the Curriculum Guide is “green,” on a CD-ROM. Besides making the Guide more affordable, the electronic format lets you print as many copies as you want of the pages you need, and avoid getting “stuck” with pages you don’t need. Of course you can print out the entire Guide if you want a hard copy of all the information.
How do you picture yourself using BE SAFE The Movie and Curriculum materials?