Tag Archives | children

How to Maximize Learning in Autistic Children?

Children with autism usually have difficulties in learning because of the impairment in their social communication and interaction with others. Moreover, the repetitive tasks and restrictive behaviors and interests also prevent them to integrate to the learning process. Children with autism are best described as children having their own world” so allowing them to learn in a conventional way will not be effective.

learning in autistic children

Parents of autistic children will do the best way they can and try all possible things just to help their children learn. Parents would usually seek help from experts on autism regarding the treatment of their child. If your one of those who has an autistic children or just a concerned individual wanting to help children with autism, here are the following tips to maximize learning in autism:

Seek early intervention

The first thing that autistic children need is early intervention. Autism usually can be observed even during infancy. Parents need to monitor the growth and development of their child to identify possible delays in the language and social development of the child. The earlier the diagnosis will be, the earlier the interventions are, which significantly dictates the outcome of the treatments. Before the age of 3, children with autism require one-on-one therapy in order to improve behavior, language, self-help and social skills of children.

Expose the child to different social settings

An autistic child should never be confined at home because this will just limit their worlds to the home. Children with autism need exposure to the community, school and other social settings to maximize environmental effects to learning. Through social exposures, autistic children will be able to adapt in some way with the presence of other people.

Seek speech therapy

Autistic children will eventually develop language difficulties, which prevent them in dealing with other people. In this line, speech therapy will help children adapt to social interactions although they really do not develop the learning and language abilities of average children.

Undertake auditory integration therapy

Auditory integration therapy is a means by which autistic children are exposed to sounds in order to reduce sensitivity to sound frequencies. Autistic children are usually sensitive to various sounds, which prevents them from their learning. Auditory integration therapy also involves music therapy to enhance and stimulate communication abilities. Parents can employ music therapy even at home such as playing neutral and soft melodies to help children to be calmer.

Special Education

Autistic children also require special education rather than having them in regular schools. Special education caters to the specific needs of autistic children and also improves the mechanism by which children adapt to learning. Special education does not focus on teaching children the basic reading, writing and arithmetic skills, but focuses on improving the social interaction, language development and behavioral modifications. In order to maximize learning in school, parents should choose carefully the school that will provide the best education to their autistic children. For maximizing learning, the author recommends ABC mouse which features books, songs, games, puzzles, art activities and even printables. Read ABCmouse Review to more about it.

Life skills education

Eventually, autistic children will be left on their own especially when their parents will eventually age. In this line, life skills education is also essential to help children go about with the everyday tasks such as self-care and feeding.

Aside from these learning techniques for autistic children, they need unending love and guidance more than anything else. Autistic children who are loved and guided appropriately by their caregivers are able to adapt more and learn more. Those who seek love and attention most often experience deterioration in their cognitive functioning that will eventually make learning more difficult.

Guest Author Bio

Dr. Amarendra, the author writes for www.ordersciencebooks.com which contains Naturepedic Promo codes. Naturepedic provide natural, non-toxic, waterproof, and organic crib mattress and bedding products that are safer and healthier sleeping materials for infants and children.

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Detecting Autism in Children

Autism is a condition affecting the neural development of a child that may lead to problems in social interaction and behaviors. Every parent would want their children to grow normally and knowing that your child has autism becomes very difficult to accept.

Children who are found to exhibit autism as early as eighteen months have better treatment outcomes to help them thrive, grow and learn to be the best that they can. Nevertheless, parents should never lose hope no matter what the child’s age is because treatments for autism always help children if treatments are coupled with good parenting and understanding the condition of the child. In this line, it is important for parents to understand autism and how to detect it early in children.

All about Autism

Autism includes a spectrum of disorders that include similar symptoms that vary on the extent or severity. Autism may affect the child’s ability to interact with others, play or talk. Children with autism have varied impairments from a single impairment to several problems that give children a lot of obstacles to meet. Despite the differences in children with autism, the most common characteristics of children with this disorder include:

  1. Problems in communication, either verbal or non-verbal
  2. Problems in establishing relationships with other people and the environment
  3. Problems in behaviors

Detection of Autism

The detection of autism relies greatly on parents. Parents are the child’s companion 24 hours a day and seven days a week so warning signs of autism is usually observed by parents more than anyone else. Parents may also see some problems in their child that a pediatrician may not see so parents really have a huge role to play in the detection of autism. The following are the important tips that you can do in order to detect autism early in your child:

  • Observe your child’s developmental milestones

Since autism may lead to developmental delays, although not relative, observing the milestones of your child is the first thing that you can do while the child is still an infant. Observe when your child first smiled, giggled, talked, and others. You may want to inform your pediatrician all these things to tell you if it is normal or not. Also, look into some types of regression in your child because this may be a very serious sign for autism. For instance, your child already started to say mommy or daddy and as she grows, she suddenly stopped using those words. This may be a warning sign of autism that you need to refer to your pediatrician immediately.

  • Take action in every problem you see

Any delay that you see in your child requires actions. It is important to have an idea on what are the normal milestones of children in order to compare your child’s achievements to normal development.

  • Trust your intuitions

Never underestimate your intuitions if you see problems in your child. Sometimes, even doctors miss to see red flags in your child so you should always refer to your doctor any instincts that you have.

  • Never wait for your child to outgrow it

Waiting for your child to become normal like other children just makes you lose the right time for your child to improve. If you see some problems today, this is the right time for your child to have some therapies to maximize their growth and development.

To make it easier to detect autism symptoms, here are the most common manifestations of a child with autism:

  • Absence of eye contact
  • Does not smile
  • Does not respond to sound or name
  • Does not visually follow objects
  • Does not wave goodbye or make other gestures
  • Does not make noises if he or she needs your attention
  • Does not imitate facial expressions and movements
  • Does not respond to or initiate cuddling
  • Does not share enjoyment with other people
  • Does not reach out to other people
  • Does not ask for help for basic needs

These are important signs to be observed in children in order to detect autism early in life and improve treatment outcomes.

About the author

Dr. Amarendra is a regular contributor to AccessRx.com,  a safe and secure online medication facilitator and health blog.

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Dear HP, I have a proposal for you

I have an idea for HP and their TouchPads, but first…

First, a bit of back story

HP-Touchpad-TabletRecently, HP found that their sales of the TouchPad tablet were less than satisfactory and decided to scrap the whole project. Not just the tablets, but their entire computer making efforts… computers, tablets.. the works. To prove their point, they dropped the price of the TouchPad from $399 to just $99 to get them out of the stores.

Not only did they go out of the stores, they left burning trails behind them (you know, because they left so fast). People scrambled like mad to get themselves some discount technology.

As a result of that, plus, some rumours of a need to use up remaining inventory and parts and such… HP announced just a couple weeks later that they’d make some more TouchPads for sale in the last part of this year.

My Proposition

One would assume that HP is going to be selling these for $399, or at the very least, higher than $99. They can’t possibly be intending to run all this manufacturing to churn out tablets that will make less money than it costs to make.

If that’s true, and keep in mind, I have no background in business or marketing or anything but, wouldn’t that be some really bad business thinking? To take a tablet that couldn’t sell, drop the price insanely low so that the people that did want one got it… and then to put more out there right back at the same price that they were before and didn’t sell?

My idea is this… donate them to special needs programs/schools. Or at the very least, sell it to them at a great discount.

Did you know that Apple used to market their computers to schools? They even donated (and still do) old computers that were used or no longer current to schools that could use them.

Not only is it great for public image, not only is it great for the company (donations are always beneficial) but when you think about it, how brilliant is it?

Well, think about all of those students using those machines for several years… when they need something similar at home, what are they going to use? When they graduate and need to use a computer.. what will they want to use?

Granted, that’s not really the focus for HP since WebOS probably won’t be around much longer nor will HP’s computer/tablet devices. But still, the idea is sound.

Special Needs schools, teachers and students need your help

Special needs schools have very little funding… certainly less than colleges. There is simply never enough money to get all of the supplies they need, sometimes they even can’t take as many children as they’d like.

And if there’s anything we’ve learned since the release of the iPad, special needs children can work miracles on a tablet!

They learn quicker, more easily and generally have more fun doing it when they have a device that they can touch and interact with.

I believe the number of apps on the iPad makes it the best choice but not the only choice. Any tablet would work.

If a school was given tablets, they could even hire developers to make what they need… since they could divert some funds from other supplies which would no longer be needed due to the tablets.

Please consider it

You’d be helping the special needs, helping the future and best of all, putting these devices to the best possible use they could ever have.

Don’t put them on a shelf where they’ll sit until you’re forced to drop the price again.

I’m not asking for me, I don’t need one. I’m asking for the community, for many communities… for the future.

Do something really great with this. It’s your moment to really shine.

 

If you work at or are involved with HP, thank you for reading.
If not, can you help me in getting this message to HP? I’d like for them to at least consider it. Thank you! 

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Conversations with the boys today

I thought I’d share a couple of examples of what conversations are like with my boys… both of these examples happened just this morning.

Conversation #1 – I want to be the grown up

While watching cartoons, Cameron saw an episode where the kids wanted to be the parents and the parents had to be the kids. As you can expect, it didn’t go so well. However, this idea intrigued Cameron enough for him to want to try it… his top priority, video game time!

Cameron: “Dad, we’re going to be the grown ups and you and mom will be the kids, ok?”

Me: “Ok, so you’re going to work all day long then?”

Cameron: “Yup, and you go to school… but then I get to play video games.”

Me: “No you don’t. After work, you have to make supper for everyone.”

Cameron: “but then I play video games?”

Me: “No, after supper the kids get to play video games… that’s me.”

Cameron: “but then I get games?”

Me: “No, after that, you have to give the kids a bath and then bed time.”

Cameron: “And then I get games right?”

Me: “No, then you have to do dishes, clean up and do more work and then go to bed.”

Cameron: “oh… ”

Me: “You might want to reconsider being the grown ups Cameron. Trust me, you get way more video game time than I do.”

Cameron: “ok ok ok… we’ll keep being the kids.”

Conversation #2 – Which colour is your favourite?

Tyler wanted to play trains with me after Cameron got on the bus, so he got a train he wanted and then wanted to be the big helper by getting me a train as well. Holding the blue train in his hand, he looks over at me….

Tyler: “uh.. Dad? What’s your favourite colour? Blue or…. red?”

Me: “Red.”

Tyler looks through the trains, can’t find a red one. Comes back to me…

Tyler: “uh… Dad? What’s your favourite colour? Blue or… orange?”

Me: “Orange.”

Tyler looks through the trains, can’t find an orange one. Comes back to me…

Tyler: “Dad? What’s your favourite colour? Blue or… purple?”

Me: “Purple.”

Tyler turns to the trains, gives it a quick glance and then comes back to me.

Tyler: “Uhmm… what’s your favourite colour? Blue or… pink?”

Me: “Blue”

Tyler: “No, sorry… you can’t have blue, this is my train!”

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Teaching Children About Inclusion

Starting a conversation with “Please don’t take this the wrong way” or “I hope this doesn’t upset you” doesn’t mean that you can then go on to be cruel, insensitive or intolerant.  It just means that really you know you are about to make a wrong decision but haven’t bothered to find an alternative.

Now it is likely that I am preaching to the choir.  I am not writing this for the other parents of children with special needs who have seen their children be politely excluded from play dates and apologetically not invited to birthday parties.  I am writing to those other parents.  The ones who seem to have forgotten that their job is to teach their childen about diversity, tolerance and problem solving skills.

So for those parents, let me make a few suggestions.

If your child says  “I don’t want Bobby coming to my party because I don’t want to worry about him acting weird”, try to find out what the actual concern is.  Is there a specific triggering behavior that you could prepare Bobby for?  Maybe you could suggest that Bobby’s mother stay nearby in case there is a problem.  Maybe you could remind your child that there will be plenty of other children at the party and not to focus on Bobby.  Maybe you could remind your child of the positive characteristics of Bobby and that the world is made up of all types of people.  We don’t have to like them all but we need to be tolerant of them.  If this is a child that you would otherwise invite, a family friend’s child, a neighbor or a classmate, then you should expect your child to include this one.  The best way to teach your child tolerance is to model it yourself.  Help them problem solve a way to make the party work for all the kids invited as well as your own guest if honor.

If your child says I don’t want to play with Sally anymore, again try to find out why.  Does your daughter think that Sally is boring, stupid, selfish, or some other characteristic that may be challenging because of Sally’s disability?  Help her to see that this behavior is not intended to be malicious but rather that Sally may need help learning to be a good friend.  Maybe you could suggest alternate activities that they could enjoy.  Try taking them to a neutral place such as a park or a movie.  Maybe in a new environment Sally might be interested in new ideas or  possibly in a neutral territory you could consider a situation where she doesn’t have to share.

Ultimately if you want your child to grow up being not only tolerant but inclusive then you need to expect that from the very beginning.  Don’t expect them to learn these values as adults if you haven’t encouraged it of them as children.

Here are a few more suggestions for encouraging tolerance and inclusion:

1.  Encourage your child to include children with disabilities, to play. If the child cannot play the same as other kids, come up with creative ways to accommodate the child’s challenges. Making up games can be lots of fun

2.  Teach the golden rule; Treat others the way you would want to be treated.

3.  Help your child find commonality — a hobby or interest — between him and this child with disabilities.

4.  Don’t label the child with special needs.  Referring to other child as “that child with hearing aids” or “the girl who stutters” only points out differences, issues that may not even concern your child.  Use “people first” language.

5.  Empower your child.  Let them know that they are allowed to feel safe and valued in a friendship as well.  They should not accept being physically or emotionally attacked by a child with special needs just because the child has a disability.  Nor should they feel like they always have to do what the other child wants if it is not a mutual choice.

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