A network to share best practices for children with special needs
I teach workshops around the country to train teachers, parents and even our staff about solutions for children with special needs. When I ask the audience if they know any child - family, friends, in their school or anyone in their neighborhood who is along the spectrum - there are many more hands nowadays. As we have seen, autism has shown a 78% rise of incidence in children in the U.S. alone this past decade. Last week I had a friend who shared with me that her 10-year-old son has recently been diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome. He is experiencing some of the challenges that are often associated with this spectrum disorder including poor transition skills (such as in the car pool driving from home to school) as well as subtle social/pragmatic skills like turn taking and cooperative play during sports. I promised to have a nice chat with my friend soon to review some of the sensory processing issues that may accompany this diagnosis. In the meantime, a couple of my favorite solutions came to mind:
Success Stories: These are social stories that are created online so can be customized to fit the individual needs of the child, and printed out for continuous use. They include topics such as Daily Routines, Feelings, My Day at School, Having a Conversation and more.
Every Child Wants to Play: This is a DVD and workbook that offers simple yet effective strategies for teaching social skills.
I hope these suggestions are helpful to my friend's son and for our cyber community as well. Please let me know your suggestions/solutions for social-skill challenges. I look forward to hearing from you!