A look at whether the mainstream education system is doing the best it can for children with autism. To decide if our schools are using the best model for our children, we need to think of the environment, the interventions, and the impact of both on our children. Most school interventions in the US are

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in Education and Classroom by Marcia Eckerd, PhD

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is characterized by difficulties in communication and language, understanding abstract concepts, gestures, and understanding the concept of time as well as engaging in social settings and creating interpersonal relationships, to name a few. Due to these difficulties, some children with autism lack the social or emotional ability to engage in conversations,

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in Education and Classroom by Andréas RB Deolinda, BA, BSC

Find out how a determined mom helped her book-loving son with autism learn to write. My son, Antariksh, is on the autism spectrum and was diagnosed with spastic cerebral palsy at the age of four. He is one of my twins. After birth all his milestones were late—in fact, very late, since the children were

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in Education and Classroom by Prodipta Soni

For most parents, virtual learning has been one of the biggest challenges this past year. I was constantly bombarded with photos of beautiful, magazine-worthy workspaces, yet all I wanted was for my child with autism to actually enjoy virtual learning. I wanted her to get excited about school like she was when she could attend

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in Education and Classroom by Caitlyn Viviano-Knoll, MEd

Many parents are currently having to make critical decisions on the education of their children with autism. Some students will be going to school full-time. Others will be staying home until parents feel it is safe for them to return to the classroom. Finally, some parents will be selecting a hybrid model for their child

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in Education and Classroom by Ron Malcolm, EdD

As soon as children receive an autism diagnosis, their parents grow concerned about what the future might look like for them. Will their child be able to function independently within the community? Will he/she be recognized for his/her talents or overshadowed by a label? Will he/she ever be able to live on his/her own? This

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in Education and Classroom by Kevin Gersh

Are you a parent who has realized that the traditional classroom may not be remunerative? If so, here you are, searching for ways to help your child with autism.  It can be wearying for parents trying to determine which form of education might work best for their children. However, there are a number of autism

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in Education and Classroom by Emily Ransom, MSE

Many students and parents think about college. Is college a possibility? How can we best prepare? Where do we look? What do we ask for? All good questions. Many students on the autism spectrum do well academically, and graduate high school with grades that make them candidates for college. We’ve all heard that one in

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in Education and Classroom by Marcia Eckerd, PhD

When it comes time for children with special needs to start school, there is perhaps no question more important than where they might go. For parents living in areas with multiple private schools available for students with special needs, making a firm and final decision can seem monumental—and stressful. Those parents should know two key

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in Education and Classroom by Julie Mower, MAEd

A beautiful day with the sun beating down on children darting around, cavorting and clapping with excitement. The day had been chosen for Orange Class to host a Color Day as a culmination of their achievements, and to practically demonstrate their emerging life skills. The class consists of eight children with a range of disabilities,

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in Education and Classroom by Jackie Moore

Transitioning from any break back to school can be difficult for children with autism and their families.  However, transitioning to middle or high school can be extremely challenging. Your child is not only transitioning to a new environment, but they are working with new teachers, a new team of specialists, and having to adjust to

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in Education and Classroom by Annette Nuñez, PhD

When it comes to understanding how their autistic child will be accommodated at school, parents have many resources at their disposal. But experts advise that preparations for performance in the classrooms must start before the bell rings, and that a focused student transportation plan can aid in their overall education. And, because the education equation

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in Education and Classroom by Megan Carey

The COVID19 crisis and the attendant shutdown has affected every one of us and will continue for some time to come. As a School Safety and Security Consultant, I am constantly watching for trends, changes in best practices and emerging threats; in this unique moment of our history my concern turns to our special needs

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in Education and Classroom by Joseph Pangaro

Public school does not work for everyone. For some students, especially those with disabilities such as autism, public school can be traumatizing. Imagine this scenario: Rob is a student with autism. He cringes and covers his ears as he walks down the halls of his high school. There are too many sounds and smells for

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in Education and Classroom by Crystal Gallagher

Going back to school after the long summer vacation is daunting. While most students feel a mix of excitement and nervousness at the prospect of having new teachers, new classes, new friends, or even a new school, autistic girls are likely to find these changes scary and overwhelming. To make matters worse, the uncertainty and

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in Education and Classroom by Siena Castellon, BCyA

In April, my article The IEP Process: 5 Tips for Success was the first of a four-part series supporting parents and sharing tips for empowerment. This article was met with great interest, as parents often ask questions of the special education process such as “What does this mean?”, “What do I do when…?”, and “I’m

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in Education and Classroom by Laurie Wellner, EdD

Autism Spectrum Disorder affects individuals differently, affecting a range of skills, from fine motor and language to social interaction and focus. As such, writing tasks can be particularly challenging for students with ASD. Yet, with the appropriate support and planning, students with autism are able to become fluent and successful writers. In order to help

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in Education and Classroom by Beatrix Potter

Many parents initially struggle when given the news their child has autism. Other parents are relieved there is an actual name for the situation they face every day with their child. Parents with autistic children have the same hopes and dreams for their children as other parents have. However, many parents struggle to know whether

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in Education and Classroom by Ron Malcolm, EdD

While children often experience a “summer downslide” after spending months away from school, teachers and parents have extra concerns about the impact of this year’s long break away from the classroom due to COVID-19. The abrupt shift from the daily routines of the school year into a time of uncertainty and constant change has already

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in Education and Classroom by Caitlin Koob

Collaboration between school representatives and parents is the foremost approach to accurate educational planning for children with special needs. This process rests primarily on the principle that parental participation is mandated under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). All parents can and should contribute meaningfully to their child’s education; as such involvement is integral

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in Education and Classroom by Laurie Wellner, EdD

As a parent of a child with autistic, I dreaded the after-dinner phone calls from my son’s general classroom teacher. More often than not, the conversation would begin with them saying how much they appreciated Ryan and enjoyed having him as a student, and although I very much appreciated these sentiments, I would steel myself

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in Education and Classroom by Kimberly Reeves, MEd

Determining the IQ level of a child with autism can be difficult. Diagnosis can be complicated as giftedness can be “masked” by the child`s autism. Seventy-five percent of people with autism score at 70 or below on intelligence tests and are therefore determined to be intellectually disabled. The other 25 percent presumably have average to

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in Education and Classroom by Ron Malcolm, EdD

It’s no secret that education for children with autism needs to improve. Globally, we’ve made progress in the last few decades. As the understanding of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has increased, so too has the appreciation of how it impacts education. And there is now a clear drive from educational institutions, governments, and researchers alike

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in Education and Classroom by Bilikis Banire

If you’re considering the homeschooling path for your child, chances are you’re not satisfied with your child’s current educational setting. Whether it’s a public or private school, some parents or guardians discover the typical learning environment there just contains too many factors that can negatively impact their children. What works well for some children with

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in Education and Classroom by Kim Barloso, AB

Which school subject has led to more parental gray hairs than all other subjects combined? It’s not too hard to guess that the answer is math. Math can be a struggle for any child, but students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) often encounter some unique challenges where math is concerned. Now that it’s summertime, it

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in Education and Classroom by Raj Valli

What is Forest School? Forest School is a type of outdoor education which takes place in natural spaces and encourages participants to develop personal, social and practical skills. The concept of Forest School was brought to the United Kingdom by a group of early years practitioners from Bridgwater College who visited Denmark and returned enthused

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in Education and Classroom by Michael James

Most parents of children with autism are actively and constantly seeking ways to help their children better. Not necessarily to “cure” them, but to help them better function in life and live it to the fullest. We spend a lot of time researching. We spend a lot of time at doctors’ offices, therapies, and Individualized

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in Education and Classroom by Calleen Petersen

“He doesn’t talk much. He reads at a 1st-grade level. We’re working on coloring and staying in the lines.” As a public school special education teacher, nothing upset me more than statements like these. An incoming 6th grader, the student gained three years of academic growth that year. By the end of 7th grade, he was

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in Education and Classroom by Brandi Timmons, MEd, BCBA, LBA

The Planning and Placement Team (PPT) room…it’s an intimidating scene for any parent to enter, stuffy with professionals defined by their never-ending acronyms: OT, PT, BCBA, SLP. Someone hands you your procedural safeguards, a maze of words defining your rights as a parent of a child with special needs.  On the table lies a stack

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in Education and Classroom by Meghan Cave, MEd, BCBA, LBA

Whether you call it special education or exceptional education, your expectations for its role in your child’s life are high, as well they should be. As parents of special needs students, we face decisions that parents of typical students rarely consider. Public, private, or charter school? Consider homeschooling? Individualized Education Program (IEP) or 504 plan? Standard diploma

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in Education and Classroom by Tara Bertic

As a parent, it’s natural to approach life’s tasks in familiar sequences. We hold our toddlers’ hands during those wobbly first steps, stand close by during ventures onto the playground, sit in the bleachers watching our children run on the soccer field, then wave goodbye when they run the local 10K. We walk our children

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in Education and Classroom by Pamela Quarterman, SLP

The world is constantly evolving. Technology and medicine are becoming ever more advanced, while society is constantly striving to become more understanding, compassionate, and accepting towards our fellow people. Historically speaking, this understanding and compassion have been less than giving towards those with special educational needs (SEN) requirements, fortunately as we as a population learn

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in Education and Classroom by Stephen Spriggs

No matter if you consider yourself aggressive, assertive, or the least confrontational person on the planet Earth, when it comes to our children, most of us have a special level of emotional intensity and defensiveness when it comes to defending their well-being. This can be magnified if we believe our children are not as capable

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in Education and Classroom by Brett Novick, MS, LMFT, CSSW

As the mother of six children, three autistic, three not disabled but in speech for a few years each in elementary schools, I have gone to way more than my fair share of educational meetings at school. Over the decades fighting that red tape, I have learned some ways to make the process less of

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in Education and Classroom by Ginger Strivelli

The sun rises and sets every day. It is a proven occurrence and can be documented by most human beings who live on this planet. Now if you tell a 70-year-old today he/she should have seen 25,550 sunsets and sunrises each during a lifetime, he/she will immediately tell you he/she should have but missed many

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in Education and Classroom by Maria Rohan, RN, BSN

Among school-age children, an estimated 11 percent are diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).  What most parents, teachers, and school counselors may not realize is that children with ADHD may also manifest symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Having two or more co-occurring diseases or disorders is defined as being comorbid or having comorbidities.

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in Education and Classroom by Alexis Anderson

When it comes to autism, there can be many misconceptions and misunderstandings in the classroom environment. Sometimes, parents of children with autism in mainstream settings are blamed for their child’s unusual behaviors; teachers may not accept that behaviors they are seeing are typical of autism. This is probably because autism isn’t always apparent when a

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in Education and Classroom by Leigh De Silva, MAS

Dear Rob… I sure hope you are able to give me some advice. My eight-year-old son has autism spectrum disorder (ASD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), depression, stress, and anxiety. The school will listen, but does nothing to help as far as changing his Individualized Education Program (IEP) for behavior issues. I am doubting myself

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in Education and Classroom by Rob Bernstein

Why do I have to tell you every day to brush your teeth?   Turn off the TV!  I said no electronics in the morning!  Where are your shoes?  How come we are always late leaving for school? Is this your home?  Are you pulling your hair out trying to get your autistic spectrum child or

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in Education and Classroom by Jim West, MA, LMHC

Able2learn is working to help struggling parents, teachers and schools – faced with limited budgets – educate children with autism. The CDC reports autism rates have increased more than 30% over the last ten years. The influx of children entering the school system has been challenging, with many teachers ill-equipped, lacking in training, supports and

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in Education and Classroom by Nina Jain