Author archives: Kenny Oliva

3 Documentaries That Will Help You Better Understand Autism

Autism spectrum disorder is a complex condition, there’s a lot of things about it that people don’t know; but once they have a better understanding of what living with autism is like, they’ll realize is not a simple thing to live with. It is important to know that many of the things that are said about people with autism are not true, this way, it will be easier to sympathize and relate to them, which can have a very positive impact on the person who has the syndrome, as in the person who learns about it.

Documentaries that will help you understand autism

Sometimes, just reading about it is not enough to understand what living with ASD can mean. Luckily, documentaries can be highly educated. Here are 3 options that will give you a clearer view of the world of autism spectrum disorder.

Understanding Autism – A short documentary

On December of 2015, the humanitarian charity foundation Teebah Foundation, released this documentary to English people on what this life-long disorder is all about, as well as to shine a light on how it is to live with autism. The documentary offers an interesting perspective as it gathers information from an interview with a young girl living with ASD as her mother, who describe their own challenging experience throughout the years. It is currently available on YouTube and has more than a hundred thousand views, as it continues to inform and touch the hearts of many people all over the world, claiming that “it is non-autistic people that need to change, not the autistic ones.”

Autism In Love

One of the questions that come up when talking about people with autism is: how do they lead their romantic life? This documentary shows multiple personal experiences of adults with ASD, showing how they overcome the obstacles present when establishing a long term relationship even when their social skills are not the best. The purpose of the film is to demonstrate that having a neurobehavioral condition is not an impediment to have a romantic life the same way as any person.

Life, Animated

Based on a praised book by journalist and author Ron Suskind, this acclaimed documentary was released in 2016 by the Academy Award-winning director, Roger Ross Williams. The film tells the story of Owen Suskind, a kid who was diagnosed with autism at the age of 3. Owen’s parents were hoping that despite his condition, he would find some way to interact with the world in a meaningful way, but as time passed, they were slowly losing hope. A good day, that meaningful way came with the Walt Disney movies. That’s right, Owen battled with autism and learned how to communicate with other people through Disney films. An extremely touching story and a wonderful work to communicate what autism means for the person who has the syndrome and for their family; it results in an extraordinary documentary that is worth watching.

Understand autism

Use some art tools to make autism easier to understand.

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4 Videos That Will Make You Experience a Sensory Overload

Have you ever experienced sensory overload? Well, if you haven’t heard about it, your answer would probably be “no,” but after reading this article, you may change your perspective. The fact is that most of us have experienced sensory overload at some level at least once in our lifetime, although it is particularly associated with certain conditions like the autism spectrum disorders.

What is Sensory overload?

Sensory overload occurs when something around us stimulates at least one of our senses in an extreme way, making us feel highly uncomfortable. Have you’ve ever been to a party where the music is too high? Or a classroom where everyone is making too much noise? Sometimes in situations like those, we cannot help feeling deeply overwhelmed, the situation is just more than we can take, and we just want to get out of there and go to some place quite. That’s what sensory overload feels like.

Generally, it’s easy to escape the discomfort; if a smell is what’s bothering us we may walk away, if too many people are talking at the seam time we can use headphones or leave the room, but the fact is, when it comes about kids, especially kids with ASD, it’s not that simple to get away from these situations, because things that are part of our daily life can be the ones that make kids with ASD feel sensory overloaded.

In what situation can a sensory overload happen?

It is important to know that sensory overload triggers are not always the same for everyone, it depends on each person, but regardless, there are some common triggers when it comes to children with ASD and pretty much kids in general:

Noises

Rooms full of noises are a common factor that can trigger a sensory overload episode.It doesn’t necessarily have to be lound noises: certain people’s voices, the ringing bells of a church, the noise of the cutlery against the dishes on a restaurant, or even the unusual echo of a public bathroom can make a kid feel overwhelmed.

Bright lights

Bright lights can be more than annoying for kids; city lights or cars headlights are often usually a nuisance that depending on the sensitivity of the child, can be a strong trigger.

Unfamiliar surroundings and strangers

We should always keep in mind that sensory overload is linked with anxiety, unknown places tend to be a reason for kids with ASD to worry, also, these kids tend to feel intimidated by people that they haven’t meet before, even when they are been polite and kind.

Sometimes the things that can disturb them to the point that they feel sensory overload are not easy to perceive, therefore, we need to pay special attention to the way they react to particular surroundings and situations.

How can we help?

Talk to them: Pay attention to their usual triggers, once you’ve known them, let the kid know that you are aware of it, and you will be there to help them anytime they feel overwhelmed. For example: if you have realized that your kid doesn’t feel right on crowded places, make sure to tell him there’s no problem with going to a quiet place. Plus, the communication will create increase the bond of trust between the kid and you, and he will be more likely to try to let you know when he feels uncomfortable.

It’s important to be prepared: Kids with ASD doesn’t tend to enjoy unusual spontaneous activities, so try to avoid them every time you can, instead, make sure to have a plan and share it with the kid, that way he’ll be prepared for the upcoming event. For example, if you’re taking him to a store, let him know hours before, that way he can prepare himself for it, this way, you reduce the probability of a sensory overload episode.

It’s true that it can be hard to fully understand, and there are times where an image can say more than words, therefore, we are going to leave four links that will guide you to different videos, where each video will help you get a clearer idea of how sensory overload feels like.

Sensory Overload

 

 

Sensory Overload Simulation – What is it like to be extremely sensitive in daily situations?

 

 

Can you make it to the end?

 

Autism and sensory sensitivity

how to control sensory overload?

Sensory overload is not an easy thing for children, we have to help them to avoid hard moments and stress.

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Ayuda a tu hijo a desarrollar habilidades matemáticas

El trastorno del espectro autista (TEA) es una condición neuroconductual que hoy en día tiene una gran porción de la población, y a pesar de que esta ya no es tan poco común como hace algunos años, hay muchas cosas que la mayoría de la gente no sabe con respecto al tema; una de las dudas que abundan (en especial en los padres) es cómo asegurarse de que sus hijos con TEA tengan una enseñanza adecuada. En este artículo nos enfocaremos específicamente en el desarrollo de habilidades matemáticas.

Desarrollar habilidades matemáticas en pequeños con TEA

Antes que nada, hay que saber que no todos los individuos en el espectro presentan exactamente las mismas características. Es cierto que la dificultad para aprender habilidades sociales es una constante; sin embargo, la problemática en cuanto a la adquisición de habilidades matemáticas puede variar bastante. De este modo, existen niños personas que pueden entender sobre la materia sin problemas significativos, y otras que requieren que se apliquen diferentes métodos de enseñanza.

La principal razón por la que estos no aprenden mediante los mismos sistemas se debe principalmente a que su manera de percibir las cosas no es la misma. No es que el infante tenga problemas de aprendizaje a priori, es sólo que no aprende de la misma manera. El hecho de que su cerebro funcione de manera distinta al nuestro requiere que debamos aplicar métodos alternativos para poder educarlos de manera efectiva.

Mentalizarse

Lo primero que debemos tener en cuenta es que la comunicación no va a ser fácil. Dependiendo del nivel del TEA, el pequeño no suele expresar verbalmente cuando no entiende algo, pero reprocharle este hecho no será de ayuda; nuestra misión es prestar mucha atención no sólo a lo que dice, sino a las distintas expresiones que pueda manifestar y, de esta manera, deducir cuáles son las dudas que los inquietan.

Utilizar un método de enseñanza más visual que verbal

Hay que ser cuidadoso con el lenguaje a aplicar. Cuando se explican las matemáticas, se suelen usar muchas palabras para dar a entender cómo funcionan; mas, para un individuo con TEA, entender lo que las demás personas dicen de manera verbal es complicado. Por esta razón, debemos intentar utilizar la mayor cantidad de imágenes posibles: la ayuda visual les suele ser más útil que la verbal, por lo tanto, los ejemplos que ellos puedan visualizar al momento de impartir la enseñanza son esenciales para su correcto aprendizaje.

La tecnología puede ser de ayuda

Normalmente las matemáticas se enseñan implementando lápiz y papel, pero teniendo en cuenta que esto requiere que el niño deba aplicar habilidades motoras, se puede usar una alternativa tecnológica para facilitar un poco el proceso. Es más fácil y menos tedioso para él presionar botones y tocar pantallas táctiles, que escribir con un lápiz en un papel, y ya que buscamos que la enseñanza sea lo más efectiva posible, es importante considerar este método.

Mantenlo motivado

Estos pequeños pueden mostrar mucho desinterés en el aprendizaje de nuevas tareas, por esta razón es importante hacer que la actividad sea lo más dinámica posible. Felicítalo cada vez que haga algo bien, sonríe constantemente, muestra una actitud positiva en todo momento, lleva a cabo algún tipo de juego relacionado. Mientras más dinámica sean las sesiones, más motivado estará el alumno y, por tanto, aprenderá más rápido.

Lento, pero seguro

No hay que sobrecargarlo con complicados pasos a seguir; todo lo contrario, se debe impartir una cosa a la vez. De esta manera, aunque el proceso se torne un poco más lento, será más efectivo ya que tendrá menos cosas a las que será necesario prestar atención y consecuentemente se concentrará con una mayor facilidad.

Enséñale mediante la práctica

Si el infante repite tus acciones, este aprenderá a medida que lleve a cabo esta acción. Por ejemplo: ten tres manzanas y dale también tres al niño, haz que él observe y escuche la explicación de cómo si quitas una quedarán dos; luego debe repetir tus mismos pasos intentando concluir lo mismo que tú. De esta forma, poco a poco irá aprendiendo de tus acciones y deduciendo la ciencia de lo que le transmites por sí mismo.

Juegos para ayudar al aprendizaje

Una de las opciones más prácticas que se suelen aplicar no sólo a niños en el espectro, sino a los estudiantes en general, es el aprendizaje mediante juegos. Existen diversos juegos mediante los que se puede incentivar el aprendizaje aritmético. La dificultad de estos dependerá de la lección a tratar, la edad y los conocimientos del pequeño. Además de hacer el aprendizaje más dinámico, los colores que puedan contener estas actividades llamarán la atención.

El TEA no es un impedimento a la hora de desarrollar habilidades matemáticas; de hecho, muchas personas con el síndrome tienen habilidades aritméticas sorprendentes. Por ejemplo, sin el uso de una calculadora, pueden resolver problemas matemáticos en cuestión de segundos. Sólo hay que tener paciencia y motivación para educarlos de la mejor manera posible; de este modo, el día de mañana estaremos orgullosos de las metas alcanzadas por ellos.

habilidades matemáticas y autismo

Poco a poco, con paciencia y dedicación, todo es posible.

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8 Myths about Autism

The autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) is a complex neurobehavioral condition, which starts to be noticed since the first year of a kid’s life, and will last for as long as they live. The most recent data shared by the U.S. Center for Disease Control shows that 1 out of every 68 children are diagnosed with some type of autism, but even when this syndrome is more common than most people think, there’s still exist a lot of negative myths around it. Here we’re going to talk about 8 of those myth about the ASD.

True or false? Myths about autism

1) It only affects children

This is only half truth; the condition is usually diagnosed only on kids, but since it’s a lifetime condition, those kids grow up to be adults, and so, adults are affected by ASD too.

2) People with autism do not feel any kind of need for socializing with others

Not quite, although is truth that they do not have the same need that most of us have for socializing, they can enjoy time with others even when they don’t express their joy the same way we do.

3) People with autism do not feel any kind of emotion at all

This is false, it is truth that one of the most difficult things that someone with ASD can do, is to identify what they feel, but that doesn’t mean they are unable to feel any kind of feeling whatsoever, they all have Alexithymia, which is a personality construct characterized by the subclinical inability to identify and describe emotions in the self.

4) People with autism can’t express their feelings

Again, this is only half truth; they can’t express their feelings the same way we do, that is of course related to their alexithymia, meaning they can’t put in words what they feel because they don’t even know how they feel exactly. Nonetheless, they might express their feelings in particular ways, if we pay enough attention to their behavior, we should be able to find something unusual in the way they act, and so, try figure out what they feel.

5) The origin of autism is in a lack of affection

This is absolutely false, the ASD has nothing to do with lack of attention in any way, autism is just a neurobehavioral condition, a brain alteration, meaning that if you pay a lot of attention to a kid even before the autism’s syndrome can be noticed, the syndrome will still be there.

6) People with autism are geniuses

It depends on what you mean exactly. People with the syndrome shows different results when it comes about IQ, although, it is truth that a significant amount of them can show outstanding results, but it’s not something that always goes accompanied with being inside the ASD.

7) Kids with autism should not go to regular schools

Children with autism benefit greatly from integration into school life. Of course, there can be differences, but in most cases send them to school is a good thing; there they can learn about social skills, which is one of the hardest things to do for them. Although it’s truth that some kids can not face a classroom because of different reasons, and that sometimes their behavior can be harmful to other children, as noted before, this doesn’t tend to be the case.

8) They live in their own world

This is also false. A lot of times we hear those words, and though it can be just a manner of speech, it’s just not accurate; they live in the same world we all live in. Sure they can have unusual behaviors, but that doesn’t mean we should try to exclude them; the fact that they have a particular condition is not excuse for treating them as if they’re anything but people with rights and feelings. We should make things easier for them, not harder.

We hope that with this new knowledge, you have a more clear view about the autistic spectrum disorder, and remember, not everything we hear is true, sometimes the facts are a little more complicated.

are the myths about autism true or false?

Many myths about autism are completely false.

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