A Student in High School Transitions to No School Aide

A Student with Autism Transitions to No School Aide   Our son wanted to not have an aide in high school. And, here’s how it’s going… How did we begin the transition? My son had a full time aide in 7th grade. As the year ended, the aide would give him “breaks,” she wasn’t with him during snack and lunch. She would meet him at the classes that followed snack and lunch. He did well getting to those classes on time. By the time 8th grade started, my son wanted more independence. At his IEP, we talked to his teachers, and made a … [Read more...]

A Child with Autism Attends the IEP

A Child with Autism Attends the IEP   We had our first IEP meeting last week. It wasn’t a “full” IEP meeting since we had requested to meet with our child’s Spanish teacher to discuss strategies for helping our son in that class. Our son’s annual IEP takes place during the winter, so we were okay to only have a “partial.” Luckily, besides our son’s case manager and the Spanish teacher, the school psychologist, his counselor, and another member of the special needs staff were also able to attend. I considered this valuable because we … [Read more...]

Autism and Learning a Foreign Language

Autism and Learning a Foreign Language Big time advice coming… A few times, when my son with autism was younger, I said to myself, “I should really get him into some kind of foreign language instruction soon.” But, I never followed through. Now, my son has just started high school and is finally taking a foreign language, Spanish. I wish he had started when he was younger. Why? Even with a typical kid, the earlier you start a foreign language instruction, the better. Now, add autism into the mix. What happened? Well, my son began his … [Read more...]

The TV show Atypical

The TV show Atypical Netflix has recently released a new television show called, “Atypical.” What is it about? (Spoiler alert) “Atypical” is about an eighteen-year-old boy with autism. The story revolves around him navigating high school and hormones. He is a super intelligent kid, who has social awkwardness and obsessions. The show also includes other storylines around the kid’s family, especially his sister, a typical girl who is a year or so younger. The boy’s sister is his best friend. They have a terrific relationship, one that is … [Read more...]

We Rock the Spectrum Photo

Guest Blogger Dina Kimmel writes this week... How Sensory Gyms Help Kids on the Autism Spectrum A trampoline, a zip line, and a climbing structure — these may sound like typical pieces of equipment at any regular kids gym. In actuality, they help foster an inclusive learning and play environment. They are some of the necessary pieces of equipment found in a sensory gym. A sensory gym is designed to serve and accommodate the sensory needs of children with sensory processing disorders, such as autism. Unique, specially-designed equipment helps … [Read more...]

Autism and a Canadian Trip

Autism and a Canadian Trip   I seem to think that my son should experience as much as reasonably (and financially) possible, even knowing that autism is going to tag along. What experience did he have this time? Well, some experiences are good (positive) and some are not so good. A year ago last winter my brother died suddenly. It was a difficult time for my family and the first family death that my son was really aware of. (His paternal grandfather died when he was six, but he didn’t really remember it.) He had enjoyed the time he … [Read more...]

Another Autism Conference   I recently attended my…well, I don’t really know how many conferences on autism I have attended. Let’s just say, it’s a double digit number. Anyway, I ventured down to Huntington Library in San Marino, California and attended the first day of the Profectum Conference (Honoring Individual Differences: The Gateway to Supporting Neurodiversity in Autism and Mental Health Treatment). I didn’t attend any autism-related conferences last year, so I was eager to get back to one. How was it? First of all, I was … [Read more...]