Vacationing with Your Child with Autism

vacationing with your child with autism
Vacationing with children with autism can be a challenge, but that doesn't mean it's impossible. For a child with autism who insists on consistency, a new hotel room, new rental car, new food and new sights is anything but relaxing. These changes in routine often trigger very challenging behaviors in children with autism. We have six tips to help your child maintain appropriate behavior during new and changing activities of a vacation: 1) Make a visual schedule of the day’s activities t...
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Encouraging Daily Independence in Your Child

The desire for independence is within each one of us. All of us, at some point in our lives, (whether we were 5 years old or 55 years old) have said, “I want to do it myself!” or “I don’t need help!” Independence gives us a sense of purpose, accomplishment, and pride. The movement towards independence, in daily living skills, is a typical developmental milestone for children. A child will go from crying every time they are hungry, to waddling towards the refrigerator, to trying to get her own dr...
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Let’s Have a Poop Potty Party!

So you have decided to potty train your child? Or maybe your child will go number 1 but will not go number 2? We can help with the BM. To prepare you will need the following items: food, bathroom entertainment, reinforcers, a social story about pooping in the potty, a team of at least two adults, plenty of clean diapers (if your child asks for a diaper only to have a BM), potty visuals, and data charts. You will need to develop some very special key words such as “Its time to…”, and “you need to...
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Smooth Sailing with Your Kids this Summer

Summertime is the perfect time to kick back and relax with your kids. Special trips, vacations and summer camp are all apart of the summertime break. But sometimes, things get very relaxed and kids start to act out. A great way to help maintain structure and to avoid chaos is to keep on using behavior charts, like during the rest of the year. Keep the behavior charts going! Give a ticket, star, or other item intermittently for following directions the first time, or for kind words, or any...
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Make transitions a success

Visuals are great, once again, and when paired with a reinforcer you're golden. To give kids advance notice of an upcoming transition (for example, when its time to come out of the pool), show a VISUAL timer.  At the least, count on your fingers down from 10.  Saying "five more minutes" is too abstract for most kids who don't have an understanding of what that means. After you've given the visual preparation of when it will be time to transition, present the transition in a "First, the...
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Autism Survival Guide

Understanding the behavior of a child with Autism can be challenging, especially since many behaviors (good and bad) are specific to that child. However, when disaster strikes, here are some simple “go-to” solutions that can make a big difference. The first thing to do is use visuals.  Get your child accustomed to a "first/then" chart.  "First, then" will show your child exactly what is expected now and what preferred activity will follow.  If he is not familiar with this visual, start using ...
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Mornings Made Easy

In a recent facebook poll we asked: With your neurotypical child, or child with an Autism Spectrum Disorder, what do you struggle with most in the morning? The majority answered that they struggle the most with either "Getting out the Door on Time" or "Having the Kids Dress Themselves Independently". Read on for ways to make both these struggles a thing of the past! Winter Gear on and Out the Door: How to make the morning winter gear routine quicker and easier Winter is upon us and that me...
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Winter Break is Over: Getting Back on Track

For many kids, winter vacation ends tomorrow and that means it’s back to the daily grind. Back to getting out the door on time for school (with winter bundling no less), doing homework, eating dinner, and getting to sleep at a decent hour.  Are your kids still in vacation mode?  Here are some ways to help the transition back to school go a bit smoother.   Visuals for Routines Bring out those schedules/routines/lists that you don’t use anymore, or create new ones to get your kiddos ...
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