Friday, December 25, 2015

10 Signs Your Child May Have Asperger’s Syndrome

Asperger’s syndrome is a neurological disorder in the family of autism spectrum disorders. Because every child exhibits a different set of symptoms, there is no precise checklist of behaviors that must all be present for a diagnosis. Instead, there are many behaviors that may be signs of Asperger’s syndrome. Here we’ve rounded up 10 of the common behaviors to watch for, as shared by moms whose kids have the condition.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

20 non-toy holiday gift ideas for kids

Children everywhere have already begun to give serious thought to their holiday wish-list while parents everywhere have already begun to cringe with the realization that in just a few weeks more toys will be invading their home.
The good news is that not all gifts need to involve toys.
There are plenty of alternatives that children will enjoy just as much as new toy but won’t add to the clutter. Even better, many non-toy gifts lead to enriching experiences, learning, and valuable family time.

12 Tips for Helping Individuals with Autism Have a Happy Holiday Season

While many happily anticipate the coming holiday season, families of people on the autism spectrum also understand the special challenges that may occur when schedules are disrupted and routines broken. Our hope is that by following these few helpful tips, families may lessen the stress of the holiday season and make it a more enjoyable experience for everyone involved. The following tips were developed with input from the Autism Society, the Indiana Resource Center for Autism, Easter Seals Crossroads, the Sonya Ansari Center for Autism at Logan and the Indiana Autism Leadership Network.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

15-Year-Old With Asperger's Syndrome, May Be Smarter Than Einstein...

Jacob Barnett, 14-Year-Old With Asperger's Syndrome, May Be Smarter Than Einstein - Teenage genius Jacob Barnett wants you to stop learning and start thinkingWhen Jacob Barnett was 2 years old, he was diagnosed with moderate to severe autism. Doctors told his parents that the boy would likely never talk or read and would probably be forever unable to independently manage basic daily activities like tying his shoe laces. But they were sorely, extraordinarily mistaken.

Today, Barnett -- now 14 -- is a Master's student, on his way to earning a PhD in quantum physics. According to the BBC, the teen, who boasts an IQ of 170, has already been tipped to one day win the Nobel Prize.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

The unique connection between a mother and child

6 Blindfolded Children Were Asked To Find Their Mother, The Result Is Heartwarming
There's something unique about the bond between a mother and child. The bond can be found with fathers too. But the video below highlights the beauty of motherhood. 

As a small experiment of women’s uniqueness and the special bond between a mother and child, "Pandora" met up with 6 women and  their six children. 
The Result Is Heartwarming
The Result Is Heartwarming

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

The Activities a Baby Needs for Development

During the first 18 months of your baby’s life, you’ll see them grow and change more than during any other period of their life.
Sometimes they’ll seem like a different person from one day to the next! And because their needs and interests are changing so rapidly, you’ll need to be flexible to keep up with their learning and growth.
These simple, fun activities are entertaining for both you and baby, and they support development as they grow.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

How can you help to foster your child's self-esteem?

How can a parent help to foster healthy self-esteem in a child? These tips can make a big difference:
  • Be careful what you say. Kids can be sensitive to parents' and others' words. Remember to praise your child not only for a job well done, but also for effort. But be truthful. For example, if your child doesn't make the soccer team, avoid saying something like, "Well, next time you'll work harder and make it." Instead, try "Well, you didn't make the team, but I'm really proud of the effort you put into it." Reward effort and completion instead of outcome.

Monday, November 16, 2015

What Parents of Autistic Children Want Educators to Know

Several Parents of children with Autism and Asperger's have written what they would like Educators to know about having a child with autism in their class:

  1.  Please let us know if our child has had a good day.  It means SO much to parents to receive encouragement.  Just simple things like our child participating in a group discussion can be the highlight of our week!

Friday, November 13, 2015

The signs of Autism during childhood

Although autism is present at birth (congenital), signs of the disorder can be difficult to identify or diagnose during infancy. Symptoms of autism are usually noticed first by parents and other caregivers sometime during the child's first 3 years.
Parents often become concerned when their toddler does not like to be held; does not seem interested in playing certain games, such as peekaboo; and does not begin to talk.
Sometimes, a child with autism will start to talk at the same time as other children the same age, then lose his or her language skills.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

10 Reasons To Build Our Children's Moral IQ

 Dr. Michele Borba

Moral Intelligence is what helps youth act right with or without our guidance, and the best news is that this critical intelligence can be nurtured, modeled, reinforced and taught. Here are 10 reasons why we must build our students’ Moral IQ and recognize our children must have hearts as well as minds!

Saturday, October 17, 2015

7 Tips To Build A Strong Parent-Teacher Relationship

The relationship between a parent and their child’s teachers is important for that child’s development and fostering a life-long love of learning. It helps children relax when they know the various people they spend all day with are on the same page. Also, you don’t want to be known as a rude, absent or obnoxious parent!

Apparently there are many parent-teacher relationships that go well, but there are also many others that go very, very badly.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Robots Help Teach Social Skills to Kids with Autism

It is well known that individuals with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) often have social anxiety. Experts explain that learning social interactions via a less threatening interface, a robot, may help individuals with autism better identify emotions and use specific social skills with humans, like holding a conversation. 

Friday, October 9, 2015

How Do You Help Your Child Develop His Creativity?

Creativity might be defined as putting things together in novel ways, or seeing the world, or a given problem, with fresh eyes. All of us need access to creativity to solve the problems of daily life, and  everyone is creative, although some people are born with talent in certain mediums: an artist’s eye, for instance, or perfect pitch, or a writer’s way with words.

We can’t give people talent, but we can train the eye and the ear and the mind, and we can help our children gain access to a creative way of seeing. We can also help them gain the concentration, competence, perseverance, and optimism necessary to succeed in creative pursuits.

Recognizing ADHD Warning Signs in Kids

ADHD Warning SignsObserve Your Child’s Behavior for these 4 ADHD Warning Signs

Kids with ADHD often show warning signs and symptoms early in life before they are diagnosed with the disorder. Brain Balance Achievement Centers recommends that parents look for the following ADHD warning signs in kids with behavioral issues. These signs of ADHD should be observed frequently and to a degree that is not developmentally appropriate for the child’s age:

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

"The Misunderstood Child"

 A poem about children with hidden disabilities,  
by Kathy Winters

 A great poem,  with such true words, fantastic for autism awareness, to show people who just don't understand these special children. And so important as well, to always have it in the back of your mind. Because every child is precious and born to be loved no matter what...

I am the child that looks healthy and fine.
I was born with ten fingers and toes.
But something is different, somewhere in my mind,
And what it is, nobody knows.

Monday, October 5, 2015

How to deal with Tourette syndrome in children

A six-year-old boy has multiple tics and has been diagnosed with Tourette syndrome. His behaviour is challenging and his parents are worried about the  boy's future, but they don’t want to go down the medication route. How can parents help their child cope with the condition?

The key feature of this inherited neurological condition is uncontrollable and entirely involuntary movements (such as blinking, facial twitches and shoulder shrugging) and sounds.

Does My Child Need Special Education?

Which children can get special education?

The law is very clear about when children can get special education.
  • First, your child must have one of the disabilities in the law.
  • Second, the disability must cause your child to have trouble at school.
How do I know if my child has a disability?
The following chart lists the disabilities that are in the law.
If you think your child might have one of the problems listed in the chart, talk to your child’s doctor and the school.  Ask them to test your child for special education.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Why You Shouldn't Let Kids Use iPads

 Surely you've given a bunch of thought as to how to raise your own children in this day and age. Especially with technology, so much has changed since our childhoods in the 90s or before...
Well, here's one question: Would you introduce the technological wonder/heroin that is the iPod and iPad to your kids? Steve Jobs Apple CEO wouldn't, and for good reason too. In a Sunday article, New York Times reporter Nick Bilton said he once assumingly asked Steve Jobs, “So your kids must love the iPad?” Jobs responded: “They haven't used it. We limit how much technology our kids use at home.”

The Top Ten Qualities of a Good Teaching Candidate

by Lori Soard, Demand Media

Principals seeking a teaching candidate may have a hard time deciding between several highly qualified people. Fortunately, there are some qualities that skilled teachers tend to possess that school administrations can look for during the interview process. These qualities may not guarantee that the teacher is the best fit for a particular school, but they show a propensity for the teaching profession and make the likelihood of a good match more likely.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Assistive Technology for Children with Autism

by Susan Stokes Autism Consultant

For years, different modes of technology have been used to improve the quality of life of people who have various developmental disabilities. However, the varied use of technology for children with autism continues to receive limited attention, despite the fact that technology tends to be a high interest area for many of these children.

Structured Teaching: Strategies for Supporting Students with Autism

North Carolina TEACCH Autism Program
 by Susan Stokes Autism Consultant

Structured teaching is an intervention philosophy developed by the University of North Carolina, Division TEACCH (Treatment and Education of Autistic and related Communication Handicapped Children). Structured teaching is an approach in instructing children with autism. It allows for implementation of a variety of instructional methods (e.g., visual support strategies, Picture Exchange Communication System - PECS, sensory integration strategies, discrete trial, music/rhythm intervention strategies, Greenspan's Floortime, etc.). The following information outlines some important considerations for structured teaching to occur. It is one of many approaches to consider in working with children with autism.

Effective Programming for Young Children with Autism (Ages 3-5)

by Susan Stokes Autism Consultant


The positive outcome of early intervention programming for any child with developmental delays/disabilities has been documented in numerous research articles and publications. However, unlike many other developmental disabilities, children with autism are typically not diagnosed until between the ages of two and three, as there are no medical tests to make a definitive diagnosis of autism at an earlier age. Many medical professionals prefer to take a "wait and see" approach, due to the wide range of "normalcy" in early developing children. Thus early intervention programming can often be delayed for these children, resulting in the "loss" of several critical years of intensive intervention during which significant developments in the brain are occurring. Due to this time factor, once a diagnosis is given, early intervention programming becomes crucial to appropriately address the child's needs in all developmental areas and, most importantly, to develop the child's ability to function independently in all aspects of his life.

Features of successful intervention strategies for children with autism

An intervention programme developed in Manchester which focuses on teaching social communication skills to autistic children at an early age, has actually been shown to reduce the autistic symptoms of the children. 
Effective interventions for young children with autism are based upon the presence of certain fundamental features.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Why parents should talk a lot to their young kids — and choose their words carefully

In 1995, the now famous Hart/Risley study was published on the impact of language on young children, revealing that  low-income children are exposed to 30 million fewer words than their higher-income peers before age 3. The study, and others that followed, found connections between poor early literacy skills and lifelong academic, social and income disparities, leading to a number of initiatives to help low-income parents understand the importance of language.

Children And Lying

Honesty and dishonesty are learned in the home. Parents are often concerned when their child or adolescent lies.

Lying that is probably not a serious problem:

Young children (ages 4-5) often make up stories and tell tall tales. This is normal activity because they enjoy hearing stories and making up stories for fun. These young children may blur the distinction between reality and fantasy.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Violent video games can alter children’s personality and in fact lead to violent/aggressive behavior

video-games-kids-140324With the advancements in technology, various forms of entertainment were produced, one of the most popular one amongst all ages is video gaming. About 90 percent of U.S. kids ages 8 to 16 play video games, and they spend about 13 hours a week doing so (more if you’re a boy). 

Various studies suggest that young kids that play violent video games tend to display an increase in more aggressive behavior in real life.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

What Causes Autism?

People have been searching for the cause of autism for decades. For most of this time, autism was looked at as an affliction—something that is acquired, as a disease would be. But autism isn’t something that you catch, like influenza. Rather, it is something that you are, like tall or left-handed or female. 

Autistic people were born that way. They will die that way, after living an autistic life. It is a characteristic of who they are. Having said that, there is no single expression of autism. More than a spectrum, autism is a varied landscape.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Schools in Finland will no longer teach 'subjects' | EDUcation CHANGE | Teaching by Topic

Schools in Finland will no longer teach 'subjects' | EDUcation CHANGE | Teaching by Topic | Differentiated and ict Instruction |
For years, Finland has been the by-word for a successful education system, perched at the top of international league tables for literacy and numeracy.

Pasi Silander, the city’s development manager, explained: “What we need now is a different kind of education to prepare people for working life.
“Young people use quite advanced computers. In the past the banks had lots of  bank clerks totting up figures but now that has totally changed.
“We therefore have to make the changes in education that are necessary for industry and modern society.”

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

How to spot autism in school children

There is no genetic or blood test for ASD; diagnosis is based on behaviour. But, we look specifically for three things, when deciding whether someone has an Autism Spectrum Disorder.