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RPM Explained

Learn about the RPM Method of Communication

What is RPM

RPM is a method that empowers students with the means to express their learning, understanding, reasoning, and thoughts.

The teacher learns how to access the open learning channels (auditory, visual, tactile, and kinesthetic) of the student and adapts the way the lessons are presented accordingly.

RPM is an academic-based method in which the teacher tries to create a “teacher-student response loop.”

The teacher states information, then asks a question, and then the student responds. This loop is intended to create alertness and improved focus in the student. They begin to expect their role (e.g., “I will respond immediately after the teacher finishes a statement and then asks a question”).

The rhythm created by this loop is aimed to overpower the student’s other engagements, such as stims, OCD, and impulses.

This type of method requires the teacher to be ready with a well-prepared lesson.

The lesson is the teacher’s tool. Through RPM lessons, the teacher presents information and questions designed to work on the four RPM objectives.

Why Choose RMP

We believe that all children on the spectrum are capable of learning and that they understand far more than most people assume. They simply struggle with the means to show us what they know. When a child is unable to demonstrate understanding in the way we expect, the standard belief is that he or she does not understand. This is not true.

RPM steps outside of conventional belief systems.

RPM steps outside of those conventional belief systems and has developed methods for EACH child to learn, grow, and communicate in meaningful ways that help them succeed.

This could be by utilizing multiple methods of communication. For example, your child may be quite advanced compared to another with advanced speech but shuts down when the body encounters stress. RPM provides alternative communication techniques that help the child express their thoughts and feelings during these situations.

RPM Practitioners adapt quickly to the child’s open learning channels.

The child’s open learning channels are key to their success, and RPM practitioners adapt quickly within a session, knowing that those open channels can change quickly. Over time, we work to develop those channels that are more difficult to use.

The rhythm between teacher and child is personalized to your child.

The rhythm between your child and the RPM teacher is very important and personalized. The sessions are structured to be a friendly back-and-forth exchange based on the individual needs of the child. Lessons are structured to prevent fatigue and help build tolerance.

RPM practitioners work with all children regardless of individual challenges.

RPM practitioners commit to working with any child, regardless of “behaviors” or challenges. Our training involves techniques like scrambling and diluting to deal with a wide range of issues such as stimming, OCD, etc.

Some final thoughts about choosing RPM

It is important to understand that RPM is a teaching method that requires time, commitment, and regular practice to build skills just like any other meaningful educational program.

While some days we may accomplish more than others, you can be assured that EVERY day your child will be loved and respected, nurtured and heard.

What to expect from each session

During the consultation, we will have an opportunity to get to know each other a bit, allowing me to understand your goals and answer any questions you may have about RPM. I will also meet your child to determine the best starting point for lesson plans.

During a regular RPM session, I will work with your child on each of the following four objectives. Every lesson is prepared to meet the child’s needs on a per-session basis.

The four objectives of each RPM session:


The teacher will cover an academic topic based on the student’s age, learning exposure, interests, or concerns. This topic will be used to enhance the student's reasoning and comprehension skills.


Based on the motor, sensory, and emotional readiness of the student, the teacher will ask the student to respond by selecting between correct and incorrect choices, or by spelling on either the large letter stencils, full letter stencil, full letter board, keyboard/device, handwriting, or speech. All of these choices are different skill goals that can be developed through RPM.


Each student has different levels of visual, auditory, tactile, performance, and time tolerance. Initially, the teacher adapts to the student’s sensory and performance tolerances. Over time, the teacher gradually helps the student increase their tolerance in all these areas.


Communication is the outcome of learning. Learning and communication are integral parts of RPM. Communication goals include single words, sentences, paragraphs, essays, short stories, or poetry compositions.