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The Challenges of Online Learning for Students With Autism and ADHD During the COVID-19 Emergency

In response to the spread of coronavirus, schools across the nation, are transitioning to online learning for a period of time. This adjustment can be a challenge for some students; particularly those with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) or Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

Online Learning for ADHD and Autism people 

Why students with autism and ADHD have difficulty with online learning? 

If online learning it is difficult for people, imagine how much more difficult it is for people with ADHD. Stay focused and stay on task can be a problem. And it’s also going to be more difficult to organize and plan your day.

In Autism and ADHD everyone has different challenges when it comes to executive function. All people, whether you’re neurotypical or neurodiverse, will have executive function challenges. That’s universal. But people who have ADHD or who have autism tend to have more executive function challenges, to the point where it can really interfere with their productivity, and ability to organize and set goals for themselves.

Tips for professors 

Individuals with autism or with ADHD, have needs that vary greatly. And so really as professionals and as professors, you need to ask them what are the specific things that you can do to be of help, and so make everything easier for your students

-Provide a bulleted list of the important things, and then in the email below or in the information below, provide the details.

Tips for students 

  1. Organize your time.

  1. Regularly enter the Virtual Classroom. It will help you familiarize yourself with the platform faster and understand the contents of the subjects.

  1. Don’t be left with doubts. Teachers, Academic Advisors, and Tutors are trained to resolve any concerns.

  1. Read the directions carefully.

  1. Investigate. Do not just stay with the information provided by the school, so you can learn more about each topic.

  1. Get comfortable. Condition a study place with enough light and good internet connection.

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The Best Career Choices for Teens With Autism

When Autism Spectrum Disorder is present in a person, they often have great difficulties in social interaction and some motor impairments (depending on the spectrum level in each person). All the factors related to Autism can limit the individual’s professional choices, but they can excel in those that they do manage to study.

Career for teens with autism

Because each individual with autism has different strengths and limitations, it’s very important that you choose a career that is in alignment with your natural interests and skills

Animal-related careers

Many children find great comfort in the company of a furry companion, and the animal often offers the child something to focus on, which allows them to stay calm and function better. 

So possible careers include:

  • Pet groomer.
  • Dog trainer.
  • Veterinary technician.
  • Pet sitter.
  • Livestock caretaker on a farm or even an actual veterinarian.

Technology

Some of the most successful and talented software engineers and computer programmers from all around the world have been diagnosed with autism; this career choice requires strengths that include strong mathematics skills, understanding of complex systems, and an appreciation for order.

Science

Those with autism are often very precise thinkers who are capable of paying attention to every small detail while adhering to strict procedures and practices, and this type of personality is critical to the success of many fields related to science. 

Career choices in this field may include:

  • Scientist.
  • Lab technician.
  • Researcher. 
  • Research assistant.

Journalism and Research

Print journalism may be an excellent career goal. Thorough attention to detail may also make several types of research careers a good choice, and these may include statisticians and textbook writers.

Manufacturing

For autistic individuals who do best with repetitive movements and an ordered environment. Working on an assembly line tends to involve repetitive motions that may be just the right thing for their needs. They may also enjoy rebuilding everything from cars to computers, sorting at a recycling plant or building special-made items.

Going through college can be the best experience if you choose a career that suits you.

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Cyberbullying: How It Affects People With Autism

Cyberbullying is a form of harassment that accompanies traditional abuse and amplifies it. It is a type of virtual harassment through social networks and messaging apps. The virtual world has opened up possibilities for action in many ways and also in the case of bullying.

What is cyberbullying

Cyberbullying is a form of harassment that is apparently silent and may seem more harmless than direct hits or insults, but it becomes real torture, as violence constantly stalks the victims.

The forms that cyberbullying can take are many:

  • Private messages to the victim through email and instant messaging apps or chat. These messages are loaded with insults and threats, so the victim cannot escape the situation.
  • Public messages on social networks or group chats, insulting and threatening the victim. In this case, the scope is greater and the damage can be very serious; on the one hand, by being written, they do more damage, as it can be read over and over again and has a greater scope. This increases shame, guilt, and discomfort.

According to an article in the specialized website WizCase: “People from all walks of life and all kinds of backgrounds fall victim to online bullying and cybercrime, but studies have shown that those with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are more susceptible to online threats than others.”

Consequences of cyberbullying 

Children are affected by cyberbullying because:

  • It damages self-esteem.
  • It makes social interaction difficult.
  • Promotes insecurity.
  • It affects school performance.
  • Somatization. This can range from impaired appetite and sleep to difficulty concentrating.

When cyberbullying occurs at an early age, the child is greatly affected. Hence the importance of seeking professional help. A good psychologist will know how to help and provide you with the necessary tools so that you can solve the situation on your own.

What can we do to help?

  • Family support is essential. Therefore, it is important to encourage communication, expression of feelings, and mutual support at home. In this way, the child will feel that he or she has a supportive and understood family. It is also recommended to seek professional psychological support.
  • It is not enough just to provide support at home; it is necessary to create a strategy of teamwork with the staff of the school. Teachers and assistants have to be attentive to both the victim and the bully in order to gradually resolve the conflict in a healthy and assertive manner.

In short, the best strategy to apply will be an interdisciplinary approach. Harassment is a reality that should not be ignored or minimized at all. On the contrary, the sooner and the better it is dealt with, the fewer consequences there will be for all parties involved.

Cyberbullying is a tough topic to discuss, but it needs to be fully understood.

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Social and Recreational Activities for Teens With Autism

Socialization and recreation are necessary for the development of children and teens with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder), but first, they need to learn how to approach other people. Many teens with autism don’t know how to play or participate in recreational activities with others, which can affect their social life and, consequently, their overall quality of life.

That is why we need to help them choose pastimes that are suitable for them. We should always consider their interests first and then determine which activities fit and will improve their capabilities.

In this article, we offer you some examples of social and recreational activities for your teen. Continue reading!

Ideal activities for teens with autism

For teens with autism, participating in group activities offers the opportunity to meet others with similar interests. That helps them feel included and reduces their feelings of loneliness or isolation.

But individual pastimes also helps them develop their creativity and improve their skills. So you and your child need to consider:

  • Activities they can do on their own.
  • Activities they can do with a group.
  • Events attended by teenagers with similar interests, strengths, and needs.
  • Starting a group themselves.

Being part of a social group

Teens with ASD might enjoy participating in:

  • The Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts.
  • After school clubs like chess, drama, maths, astronomy, computer coding, lego, dance, gymnastics, soccer, or music.
  • The student council or class representative.
  • Creative writing groups or fan clubs about science fiction, anime, or other genres.
  • Lawn bowling, archery, skating, or laser skirmish clubs.

There might also be organized groups for teenagers with a disability, including those with ASD. For example, they could go to summer camps.

Starting a social club, group or event

On the other hand, teens can start a club of their own or organize regular events for people with similar interests and needs.

Socialization encourages knowledge sharing, teamwork, and helps generate partnerships. People who are isolated can’t enjoy the benefits of socializing. As an example, some people who are afraid of being rejected usually refrain from attempting any social interaction. So help your child integrate and form bonds with others!

Some activities can help teens within the spectrum integrate into society and recreate at the same time.

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Is It Regular for People With Autism to Be Introverts?

With autism or not, a large number of people are introverted. Some with this condition may seem like they don’t want to interact with people they see or talk to regularly, but this isn’t always the case.

In this article, we’ll talk about the apparent connection between autism and introversion. Keep reading!

Does having autism also mean being introverted?

Since people with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) have different communication barriers, talking or interacting with others can be a strenuous endeavor for them. So socializing tends to be a difficult task, but it doesn’t necessarily mean they can’t enjoy it.

People with autism are more likely than not to be introverted, and some may find it challenging to open up to people around them. However, this doesn’t always mean they don’t want others around and prefer to spend all their time alone. Many enjoy being around their loved ones and make new friends.

Although some introverted people may present ASD, these two aspects don’t relate to each other directly.

Everybody has their peculiarities and, often, these can be confused with being introverted. For example, many people avoid some types of contact and social events or prefer to be by themselves sometimes, but they still like to share what they feel and think with others. Most of them even enjoy participating in different social activities. So this is a common misconception of people with autism.

Then, why is introversion associated with autism?

In an article published by the portal Verywell Health, Lisa Jo Rudy answers this question by explaining that:

Autism is a developmental disorder that is defined by difficulties with social communication. Those difficulties can range from the subtle to the extreme. People with high functioning autism may find it hard to maintain eye contact or distinguish friendly teasing from bullying, while people with severe autism may be completely unable to use spoken language. Expressive and receptive speech, eye contact, body language, and a command of the nuances of vocal tone are all critically important tools for social communication.

“Because social communication is so challenging for people with autism, most are not very good at it and many find it both frustrating and exhausting. That doesn’t necessarily mean that they don’t want to engage with others—but the process is neither simple nor natural,” clarifies the author.

So neither being introverted means you have autism nor ASD makes you an introvert. Introversion can be a regular trait in any person.

Source: https://www.verywellhealth.com/are-autistic-people-introverts-4691154

Being an introvert is a trait many people have, but is it more common in children with autism?

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Why Do Children With Autism Play Differently?

Autism is a developmental disorder that causes an impairment in the ability to communicate and interact with others while limiting some interests and activities.

Many children with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) present sensory issues, difficulties to socialize, and a preference for repetition and routines, so games and stimulation need to suit their condition.

In today’s article, we explain to you why kids with autism tend to play in a particular way.

How kids with autism play games

Children with autism are more likely than their neurotypical peers to line objects up, play by themselves, and repeat the same actions over and over again. They’re also less likely to engage in games that require make-believe, social interaction, or collaboration. Here are some of their usual behaviors when it comes to playing games:

  • They prefer to play alone most of the time.
  • They present an inability or unwillingness to grasp the basic rules of shared play.
  • They engage in activities that seem purposeless and repetitive, like lining up objects, opening or closing doors, and other similar actions.
  • They are unable or unwilling to respond to friendly proposals and invitations from both adults or other kids to play.
  • They present an apparent obliviousness to other children’s behaviors or words.
  • They have a difficulty to grasp the basics of symbolic play (pretend play).

Why do they play differently?

As we said earlier, many kids with ASD face challenges to communicate and interact, which affects the way they behave at games. But in addition to these, there are two other factors usually involved:

  • A lack of joint attention skills: this refers to a shared focus on a specific activity, and it occurs when one person alerts another about an object using visual or verbal indications. Joint or shared attention is necessary to engage in collaborative games. Although children with autism may have trouble developing these skills on their own, they can learn them with some help.
  • A lack of imitation skills: neurotypical children watch how others play games and with toys and imitate them. Kids with autism may not even notice that others are playing at all, and are very unlikely to observe others’ behaviors and intuitively begin to imitate them.

However, it is possible to teach a child with autism to play with others. Professional help and several therapeutic approaches can help them build these skills, but parents must also take an active role in the process.

Source: http://bit.ly/2GcIKmJ

Your children may find joy in different games than usual.

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Check out These Hobbies and Activities to Enjoy With Your Child With Autism

One of the biggest challenges for parents of children with autism is finding hobbies to enjoy with their kids. Keeping them active and entertained these days is a little hard since they’re getting more demanding and tend to be bored easily. But don’t worry, there are plenty of activities you can do with your child during your free time.

In this article, we show you some options to enjoy with your kid with ASD and your whole family. Keep reading!

Hobbies and activities for children with autism:

The first thing you need to remember is that children with autism do not spontaneously learn how to organize their free time. What to do during recess, weekends, or holidays can be a mystery to them, so you need to show them some activities they can do, either on their own, with you or with other family members.

Here are some hobbies and activities you can practice with the little ones:

Social and motor games

These are movements performed without the use of any objects. Adults need to take the initiative in this type of activity.

Some examples are tickling and spinning games, but there are many more. These are rewarding for children with autism because they encourage anticipation and improve their motor and interactive skills.

Role-playing games

These activities consist of pretending you are someone or something else, like an animal or an object your kid likes. Mimicry is a great way to stimulate children and get them interested in different things.

These games can be about making movements (like clapping or jumping) and vocal sounds to imitate a character.

Sensory games

Through the use of different materials, you can teach your child about colors, textures, and smells. Let them play with sand, clay, plasticine, waxes, finger paint, watercolors, fabrics, or paper and help them develop their creativity. They will love it!

Cause and effect games

You can present them toys that produce a sound or lights when pressing a button or a game where you have to fit pieces together. 

These kinds of games teach children with autism what to expect after doing certain things and help them build their tolerance to frustration.

Functional play with objects and dolls

Use toy tools, kitchenettes, dolls, action figures, cars, model trains, among other items, to stimulate your children and their imagination.

Of course, you need to adjust all functional games to the condition of your child within the autism spectrum.

Visuospatial games

Doing puzzles and playing with building blocks or legos are the best examples of these types of games. 

When playing with your child, you can help them find the missing pieces, fit the legos, and give them ideas to create different things. If they struggle a little, try to reinforce them.

Musical activities

Listening to music can help you bond with your kids. For example, you can play a song and then:

 

  • Dance, jump and move around the house to the rhythm of the music. You can either hold your children’s hands and guide their movements or let them dance freely.
  • Sing along and make gestures according to the lyrics.
  • Lie down next to your child while listening to it.

These hobbies and activities are perfect for spending time with your child with autism.

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Clothing for Children With Special Needs

When it comes to buying clothes for your child, you will always want the best, even more so when adaptive clothing is necessary for them. Taking into account concerns such as special needs will not stop your child from being fashionable. 

Today we will give you a list of clothing brands that create clothing for kids with different needs.

Clothing for special care

MagnaMini

MagnaMini is currently delving into the children’s market with easy-to-lock oxford shirts. The new line includes dress shirts with sturdy magnets instead of traditional buttons, which means a simple on/off process that is low on stress.

Kohl’s

This time, the company is working on special features like flat seams, longer lengths, abdominal access, and two-way zippers.

My Pipers

This underwear is shorter than average and is no-fly, with super soft organic cotton fabrics. It is confectioned with designs for kids.

Sensory Smart Clothing Co.

The owner and creator of Sensory Smart Clothing Co., Alison, began to pursue this idea by designing clothes for her own sense-sensitive child. Because when she began the design process, her experience led her to choose soft fabrics, outer seams, and pockets, and to get rid of the labels completely.

Billy Footwear

Billy Footwear’s universal design footwear has a simple design: a full-length zipper that runs from head to toe to open completely, making it easy for your feet to slide. A mere pull of the zipper closes them comfortably around the user’s feet.

Cat & Jack Adapter

From the time Target debuted its Cat & Jack adaptive clothing line two years ago, it has been the starting point for clothing options for children with different needs. From wheelchair options to clothing that offers abdominal access to seamless, unbranded apparel for kids with sensory issues.

Now you have a small list of options to choose from. Each brand has its own style, but they will make your little one feel comfortable!

There are many things to consider while interacting with children with special needs.

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Cooperative Behaviors in Children and Teens With Autism

Learning how to cooperate with others is an essential skill in life, but teaching this to children and teenagers with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) can be challenging.

Cooperation involves skills like sharing, taking turns, and following instructions. Kids need all these to communicate correctly and get along with others in social situations.

That is why cooperative behaviors are crucial for succeeding at school, in relationships with others, and extracurricular activities.

Why children and teenagers with ASD may struggle to cooperate

Some children and teenagers with autism have difficulties cooperating, and this can interfere with their everyday lives.

Generally, this is due to a lack of understanding of the instructions they receive. This problem can be caused by things like:

  • Receiving too many instructions: children and teens with ASD need extra time to process what you tell them and can feel overwhelmed if they have to do too many things at once.
  • A complicated instruction: in some cases, children don’t have the right skills to do what they’re asked.
  • Vague instructions: children might have trouble cooperating if it is not clear what they’re supposed to do. The best you can do is being as clear as possible and using simple language.

Children with ASD might be uncooperative because they haven’t learned the appropriate behavior for different social situations yet.

How to develop cooperative behaviors

Parents and teachers can help their children develop the skills necessary for a lifetime of positive friendships and social connections by stimulating cooperative behaviors early on. Here are some suggestions for teaching them how to cooperate:

Setting limits

Setting limits means sending a firm message to your children about what they can and cannot do. Having limits help them stay safe and cuts down on uncooperative behavior.

Setting an example in the house and with their friends

Parents must teach their children how to cooperate by modeling this behavior with family and friends. For example, parents can do things like asking for something in a friendly way, wait for their turns, and work with others. By setting the example, kids will learn to repeat these actions and value the importance of cooperation.

Playing cooperative games

Playing games can be an excellent way to teach cooperation because it allows parents to reinforce their children’s development, regardless of their abilities. Offering your kids the opportunity to practice their skills in a controlled environment will help them learn how to interact in other situations.

Cooperating is a vital skill that children will need throughout their lives. Parents and teachers have the responsibility to model their behavior and motivate them to work harmoniously with others.

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How to Help a Child With ADHD That Complains of Boredom

Complaining of boredom once in a while is part of being a kid. But for children with ADHD, this can be a frequent problem, and it can manifest in negative ways.

In this new article, we show how to help them deal with this state. Keep reading!

Boredom and ADHD

Children with ADHD are always ready for new and exciting things. They seek stimulation all the time, but this is not a personality trait. A growing number of research studies suggest that this may be due to the structure and chemical composition of their brains.

Let’s imagine a typical class where children are learning about some topics. Many of them may find the class a bit boring, but they know they need to learn and can consciously decide to sit still and pay attention.

Children with ADHD, on the other hand, do not have this kind of control. This may be because the parts of their brains responsible for paying attention, concentrating, and staying motivated are below the “level of excitability” needed to get them going. These parts don’t work as efficiently as their peers’.

But there is another factor that plays in ADHD and boredom. Children with this deficit usually have problems with their executive function, or the brain’s control system.

Often, they are full of good ideas and imagine many things they want to do. But most of the time, they lack the planning, organizing, and problem-solving skills to carry them out.

What to do when your child complains of boredom

During the development of children with ADHD, parents must teach them things progressively and naturally to encourage their creativity and ability to play. Here are some tips:

  • Teach the little ones there are other ways to have fun apart from playing with toys, board games, and electronic devices. Motivate them to read and exercise their minds.
  • Provide them the tools to learn, always according to their age and condition.
  • Spend time together. Take some time from your daily responsibilities to play with your child and share some family moments.

Children with ADHD need to feel constantly stimulated, so we have to offer them spaces for creation and opportunities to practice their abilities. Free, imaginative, and unstructured play is essential for every child’s development.

Source: https://bit.ly/2RO7qHG

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