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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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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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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Children With Autism: Habits for a Good Sleep

Children within the autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are more vulnerable to sleep disturbances. According to research, 44 to 83% of people with autism have sleep-related problems. These disorders adversely affect the behavior and emotional well-being of the child and the family by increasing the frequency of temper tantrums, irritability, and stress.

That is why it is important to help children learn and maintain good sleep habits. Here we offer you some advice on how to accomplish this.

 

Problematic sleep habits

 

Regular sleep cycles are influenced by daily routines, and children with ASD sometimes have trouble understanding and following them. Sometimes, they might get attached to unusual sleep habits and have trouble fitting into the regular family routine.

So the first thing you need to do is working on your child’s understanding of routines in general.

 

Bedtime routines for children within the autism spectrum disorder

 

  • Use a schedule and visual aids showing the bedtime routine, so your child can understand every step.
  • Praise your child for understanding and completing each step.
  • Put a sticker on the schedule every time your child completes a step correctly. This can help children see the situation as a game and will motivate them to follow the routine.

 

Appropriate bedtimes for children with ASD

 

Having an appropriate bedtime is essential for establishing a good routine. But, as we all know, children may have some trouble adapting to it, and it can be even harder for those within the spectrum. Here are a couple of things you can do to help them adopt good sleep habits:

  • It is convenient to create a short and simple bedtime routine. Structured activities help children with autism calm down, anticipate what is going to happen next, and think about what they need to do. So, we should create a simple routine consisting of 4 or 5 steps that need to be carried out before going to bed. Something like this, for example:

1-. Brush your teeth.

2-. Drink water.

3-. Read a story in bed.

4-. Turn off the light.

5-. Go to sleep.

  • Avoid highly stimulating activities at least two hours before bedtime. Limit things like watching TV or playing videogames, and try to propose relaxing activities, such as reading, listening to classical music, and taking a hot bath.
  • Adapt the stimulating conditions to the child’s needs. Some children with autism are extremely sensitive to things like light, sound, and touch. This hypersensitivity can interfere with their sleep, so we must regulate the light entering their room and avoid making loud noises.

It is all about finding the right information and tools to learn what to do. Remember, you must be patient and understanding throughout this whole process, adopting new habits can be a difficult task for your child.

Source: https://raisingchildren.net.au/autism/health-daily-care/sleep/sleep-for-children-with-asd

A good sleep and rest can do wonderful things for a child with autism.

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Teens With Autism: The Transition to Adulthood

Becoming an adult is a big step for teens with autism or special needs, so their transition to adulthood needs careful planning.

If your children present additional needs, helping them through their development is essential. Early planning will give you plenty of time to work on the skills they need to reach their goals for adulthood. It will also give you time to figure out how to support them when they need it.

Design a plan for their transition to adulthood

Teenagers have to be ready for their transition to adult life. To help them, you must take into account several factors, such as:

  • Their short, medium, and long-term goals for the future.
  • Their strengths, interests, and weaknesses.
  • Their current skills and abilities. Knowing them can help you decide what other skills to teach them and which ones should be improved with practice.
  • Your needs and how to balance them with theirs.

Talking with teachers, support staff, therapists, siblings, relatives, and friends is ideal to complement this plan.

Every teen’s transition plan should be different and tailored to their needs, but you should also consider these areas:

  • Education.
  • Work.
  • Developing an autonomous life.
  • Social interaction and community participation.

How to prepare them for transition periods

  • Let teens play an active role in their health care. It is important to explain their condition to them at a young age.
  • Make sure they can explain their condition to others. As they grow, teach them specific self-care routines, such as pain management, proper rest, and nutrition. Help them develop a relationship with their physician and encourage them to ask questions and participate in the appointments.
  • Consider their interests when seeking training and vocational programs.
  • Be a good role model. Remember that you, and other family members, are your child’s most important teachers.

Each one of our tips should be applied according to the condition of every teen. At this stage, we also recommend seeking the help of professionals, who will be able to tell you what to do and how, and will be by your side throughout the process.

Let’s remember that we must be patient, try to understand them, and inform ourselves about the way they see the world. Going into adulthood may not be easy for them, but with our help and support, it can be more bearable.

Source: http://bit.ly/38x9knw

Help your teen with autism become an adult.

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