Artwork for podcast Get That Good Life! Conference Replay
Get that good life by supporting new behaviour with Kate McGinnity and Anna Nikolay
Episode 1522nd August 2022 • Get That Good Life! Conference Replay • Imagine More
00:00:00 00:42:35

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People with sensory/movement differences and diversity may process the world around them in a manner that can result in behaviour that causes them trouble. In this conference session, Kate McGinnity and Anna Nikolay share their experiences of understanding and supporting individuals with sensory and movement differences. Their focus for every individual is on finding the root cause of their behaviours.

Kate and Anna will

  • explain different types of sensory processing
  • describe how the method of processing may provide clues about the function of the behaviour
  • explain how we can better support an individual’s processing so they may live their best lives.

When people see unusual behaviours, they tend to make assumptions that may be unhelpful. So Kate and Anna will share a framework for thinking about behaviour from a processing perspective. You’ll see examples and hear descriptions of how to

  • support the processing
  • support new behaviour
  • support bigger lives.


This session was introduced by Sethmi Lekamarachchi

Hello, my name is Sethmi. I am a high schooler, sister and a dancer. I am here to tell you about Kate McGinnity and Anna Nikolay. They both live in the USA. They help people with Autism to enjoy the good life.

Today they will tell us why some people behave differently. Sharon Hammer and Lisa Ladson work with Kate and Anna. They will join us later for the Q&A.

Please welcome Kate, Anna, Sharon, and Lisa.

Meet Kate McGinnity

Kate is an international presenter and author as well as a nationally recognised consultant/coach and teacher in the field of autism. She has over 35 years of experience working with individuals with autism and their families.

During her tenure as a teacher, Kate was recognised as the National Teacher of the Year by the Autism Society of America. She is currently involved in private practice providing training and consultation/coaching to professionals and parents. She also provides counselling and yoga to individuals on the autism spectrum. Kate has taught graduate-level autism-related courses, through a variety of universities.

Kate is the co-author of three books. She is committed to bringing her passion and compassion to every aspect of her work and life.

Meet Anne Nikolay

Anna Nikolay is a special education teacher and Autism consultant in Wisconsin. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2018 with degrees in Elementary and Special Education. She has taught special education in Wisconsin since then.

Anna was selected early in her career to be a member of an esteemed group of colleagues on a district-wide autism support team. After one year, Anna began co-leading the team.

Anna develops and presents trainings for staff and families on a variety of autism and other special education-related topics. She is known for her ability to collaborate with individuals and students who cross her path.

In 2019 Anna started her Autism consulting business Nikolay Consulting, LLC. Through Nikolay Consulting, she helps support and amplify the voices of individuals with Autism. In 2020, Anna started in the Education Policy and K-12 Leadership Masters program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Resources related to Kate and Anna’s presentation

  • Autism Processing video - A basic visual and description of how the retrieval, processing, and storage of the autistic neurology functions.
  • Lights! Camera! Autism! 2 by Kate McGinnity, Sharon Hammer and Lisa Ladson (2013) - This book addresses the “how” around using ‘video modelling’ to assist people with Autism with learning. Available from CRU