Showing posts from January, 2020

Extracurricular activities for kids with autism.

It is a well-known fact that most of the waking hours of a child with autism are spent in some kind of therapy. It feels like there is no life outside of therapy. We feel the need to provide intervention to our kids at every available time. It is very important for us to provide our kids with a chance to be kids because that is exactly who they are. It is vital we help our kids to take part in different extracurricular activities outside of therapy which can help in their overall development. Most of our kids have  poor motor and social skills. Engaging in these activities can help with this. I was very keen on Aarian to participate in different activities right from the beginning. I enrolled him in a gym program since he was four years old. He continued the program until he turned twelve. The program was very unique as it gave Aarian an opportunity to integrate with typical kids. They had relays, noncompetitive gymnastics as a part of a one hour program which Aarian attended on the

Advocating for your special needs child.

Autism is a spectrum disorder wherein the majority of our children are nonverbal. They have difficulty in letting people know about their thoughts, feelings, and the amount of knowledge they have within them. Even though they are nonverbal most of these children have average or above-average intellectual abilities. It is normal for people to judge children on their verbal abilities. If the child speaks they are considered to be smart and capable. Most of the people are ignorant when it comes to a nonverbal child and automatically assume they are not capable of thinking and doing things. So here we as parents come in as we are our children's best advocate. It is our responsibility to help people understand the amazing potential our children have. I personally experienced this as well as you all know our son is nonverbal. I used to think about how will I teach Aarian the letters and letter sounds. One day he amazed us when we came to know he had thought himself to read. Most of t

The struggle of raising a child with special needs.

We all have dreams and aspirations when our child is born. We all want to do the best for them. The whole dynamic changes when you realize your child has special needs. All of a sudden you feel there is a big responsibility on your shoulders to provide the best possible care for your child. It is a journey you have to undertake for a child you have not for a child you thought you will have. There are many challenges a family has to face when they have a child with special needs.  All of a sudden your life revolves around your child. One of the big struggles is your friends and family do not understand your situation and all of a sudden you feel so lonely and isolated. They talk about different milestones their kids have achieved but yet those milestones seem to be so far away from our kids. It hurts at times even though we are happy for them as to why our child has to struggle to achieve the things we take for granted. They talk about how their children cannot stop talking whereas mo

Needs and Skills Assessment Report.

In Canada the Intensive Behavioral Intervention (IBI) is offered through the Central East Autism  Program. IBI is an evidence-based practice designed to improve core learning skills in the areas of language, cognitive, and social development. It involves the use of individualized teaching techniques based on principles of Behavior Analysis. Aarian was 7 years old when he started with IBI as in Canada there are long waitlists to get Intensive therapy. We had already started Aarian on ABA since the time he was diagnosed with autism at age 3. He was receiving 3.5 to 4 hours of ABA therapy at home on a weekly basis. An ABLLS assessment was done in March 2009. The scores obtained from this assessment reflected the student's ability to perform identified target skills independently across various domains of generalization. As a part of the IBI program a Needs and Skills Assessment was done in May 2012 when Aarian was 6 years and 6 months in age. It is done to get the child ready to t

Back to school after winter break.

The winter break is over. It is back to school for all children. This can be especially challenging for kids on the autism spectrum as they crave structure and routines which helps them feel secure as they know what is expected from them. Going back to school especially the first day of school after the break can be very difficult for most of the kids on the spectrum. The most important thing we as parents can do to make it easier for our children is to start preparing them for back to school a few days in advance. This can be done in a few ways you can talk about it to them. The other strategy you can use is to cross out days in a calendar so your children can understand after how many days they go back to school. The third strategy can be to read a social story of going back to school. All these can help to reduce the anxiety many kids on the spectrum struggle with. In the winter break the children might sleep in as there is no school it might help to wake them a bit early to eas