Autism News

ICARE4AUTISM PROCLAMATION 

 

WHEREAS, ICARE4Autism: National Apprenticeship Training Program recognizes the urgent need to prepare and maintain a highly skilled workforce that is capable of meeting the demands of the industry we serve; and

 

WHEREAS, the United States currently faces a skills gap in the number of qualified and available workers to supply the needs across all industries, our goal to is to ensure high school graduation of each participating student with a general education degree and the readiness skills needed to pursue higher education and/or a well-paying job that will enable them to live full and independent lives. Additionally, to promote the program’s advantages of neurodiversity and to ensure inclusion in the workplace the ICARE4Autism: National Apprenticeship Training Program aims its training at both the typical high school students and students with special abilities to better help them enter the workforce.

; and

 

WHEREAS, apprenticeship programs participating in the ICARE4Autism: National Apprenticeship Training Program are uniquely capable of providing the academic and work-based learning required to develop in-demand skills in conjunction with employment; and

 

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Joshua Weinstein, Ph.D., M.B.A., CEO and Founder of the ICARE4Autism, call upon apprenticeship partners to recognize the value of apprenticeships, and to promote industry awareness and expansion during the fifth anniversary of:

 

NATIONAL APPRENTICESHIP WEEK
November 11, 2019, through November 17, 2019

 

IN SUPPORT,

Joshua Weinstein, Ph.D., M.B.A.

Founder & CEO

 

International Center for Autism Research & Education

1140 Avenue of the Americas, 9th Floor,

New York, NY 10036 

www.icare4autism.org | info@icare4autism.org

A new study by researchers at McGill University in Montreal, Québec, reveals for the first time that children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), who are also bilingual, may have greater facility with transitioning between tasks than those who are monolingual.

Their findings were based on the comparison of 40 children (20 with ASD, 20 typically developing) between ages six and nine, and who were either bilingual or monolingual and the ease at which they were able to shift tasks in a computer-generated test using images of blue rabbits and red boats.

Bilingualism may boost cognitive flexibility in Children with Autism
Positive Impact of Theater and Peer Mediation on Youth with Autism

For theater performers, an afternoon or evening under dimmed house lights provides a brief and presumably welcome respite from the routines of everyday living. For children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), however, an innovative program seeks to use theater to boost children’s self-confidence and comfort with everyday social interactions amid different surroundings.

Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and delayed language development learn and experience their world differently than their typically developing peers.  A recent Kanazawa University study reports that they children ages three to five in particular, also appear to process voices differently.

Symptoms of ASD are many and vary dramatically from individual to individual.

altered voice processing in children with autism

According to the research conducted by the University of Wisconsin-Madison, playing video games that involve striking and holding various static poses can help children with autism improve their balance and posture.

People on the spectrum experience problems with balance more often than other individuals. In fact, challenges with postural stability often point to a more severe condition that negatively impacts their everyday life. Researchers believe that a video game helping autistic individuals master their balance control techniques can become a powerful tool for dealing with this issue.

A long-awaited holiday may become an overwhelming experience for anybody, especially a child with disability. Paying a visit to friends, setting on a journey, or having a family dinner can turn into exhaustive, stressful experience. This may sound a little discouraging, but don’t let the anticipated difficulties bring you down.

Here are some tips that will help you to breathe through this holiday season:

 

1.  Prepare: discuss the upcoming event with your child. Try to be descriptive and use short, simple sentences. Try to go over every detail to make sure nothing takes your child by surprise.

Tips for Celebrating Thanksgiving for parents with Children with Autism

Children with autism are not capable of predicting what would happen next when are being repeatedly subject to the same type of stimuli.  These findings have been recently presented at the 2017 Society for Neuroscience annual meeting in Washington, DC. They comply with the “magical world” theory, in which an autistic individual cannot focus on essential details and filter out less important information. Researchers studied brain activity in a group of autistic children and a control group of neurotypical children by exposing them to the repeated stimulus – beeping sounds.

Mutations in a gene linked to autism in people causes neurons to form too many connections in rodents, according to a new study. The findings suggest that malfunctions in communication between brain cells could be at the root of autism.

A defective gene linked to autism influences how neurons connect and communicate with each other in the brain, according to a study from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

In autism, too many brain connections may be at root of condition

A man living with autism is faced with the possibility of losing the only home he has ever known - and the remarkable 50-room structure he's built in the backyard.

DOC NYC is America's largest documentary film festival, with over 250 films and events. The eighth annual event happens Nov 9 – 16th at IFC Center, Cinepolis Chelsea and SVA Theatre

Amazon Alexa Can Help People With Autism Do More On Their Own

 

Fortune, by Barb Darrow  | April 17, 2017

Amazon’s Echo connected speaker—and Alexa, the device’s voice controlled brains that let users order pizzas and Ubers—is a hit. But the technology underlying Alexa can do more important things like helping people with special needs do more things on their own.

Witness this recent blog post from Amazon that explores how Troy Larson, a senior architect for Amazon (AMZN, +6.93%) Web Services, used two software tools for third-party developers to program a virtual assistant..

What Is Stimming?


MedicalNewsToday, by Lori Smith BSN MSN CRNP | October 17, 2017

Autism or autism spectrum disorder is a medical condition in which a person experiences certain social and communication challenges.

These challenges may include things such as social, speech, and nonverbal communication difficulties, repetitive behaviors and learning differences.

Repetitive body movements or repetitive movement of objects is referred to as self-stimulatory behavior or stimming.

Although stimming is very commonly seen in those with autism, people without autism may also stim.

It’s no secret that a child with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder may have coexisting conditions such as depression and anxiety. However, each person’s situation varies – from genetic factors to environmental issues and everything in between – which can potentially muddy the waters for parents seeking a clear diagnosis.

ADHD and autism spectrum disorder present one such example. Maybe your child just has ADHD. Perhaps it’s ASD instead. Then again, it could be that he or she exhibits traits from both.

Social Class May Influence Autism Diagnosis

 

disabilityscoop, by Michelle Diament | October 17, 2017

Even as autism prevalence has increased, new research finds that the likelihood of getting diagnosed with the developmental disorder remains largely tied to socioeconomics.

Children from lower income neighborhoods are less likely than those from wealthier backgrounds to be diagnosed with autism, according to findings published online this month in the American Journal of Public Health.

Autism-Focused Business Venture Expanding

 

disabilityscoop, by Nancy Dahlberg, The Miami Herald/TNS | October 9, 2017

MIAMI — Rising Tide Car Wash, a unique social venture with a mission to employ adults with autism, has opened its second South Florida location.

Rising Tide has operated in Parkland since 2013. The new Margate location, located at 2970 N. State Road 7, is estimated to create about 50 new jobs in the community.

“By opening the Margate location, we are not only giving more young adults with autism opportunities to realize their capabilities, gain confidence, make friends...

From Our Founder: Autism and Motor Functions
by Dr. Joshua Weinstein

 

June 12, 2017

A toddler just learnt to wave good-bye. Their brain had to formulate a new neural pathway and communicate with their body and use signals of the environment to successfully learn this new trick. Every new motor skill that a child learns hinges on the brain’s capacity to formulate significant networks between very different parts of the brain. Like a machine functioning effectively different neural networks have to work together. The part involved in regulating movement, the capability to use sensory material from the environment and from the body and the ability to calculate what is going to occur next are all necessary in order to coordinate motor activities and adjust actions as needed.

Normally developing children make these brain connections, and acquire new motor tasks, straightforwardly in the development of daily experience. They are inspired to undertake new challenges and constantly discover different ways of attaining their objectives. In anticipation of mastering new skills they engage in constant repetition which provides them with a sense of self-efficacy and confidence.
Children with autism and individuals with developmental coordination disorder, do not learn new motor skills in the same easy way, possibly because of differences in the way their brains form new connections.

Learning and motor skill performance is contingent on developing solid contacts between diverse portions of the brain that connect:
sensory data from the body – skin, joints, muscles, vestibular system
sensory information from the atmosphere: vision and hearing
processing objectives, goals and outlooks

When learning to wave good-bye the child feels their muscles moving, they see their parent’s cues and have a goal to please the parent and get the yummy reward of success. All the various parts of the brain are working synchronously to help the child master every new motor skill. Even after the brain has coordinated all the tasks necessary to learn to wave good-bye it continues to assess the consequence. Was there success? Have I reached my goal? What needs to be altered to improve?

Since there are dissimilarities in the wiring of the brain, individuals with autism don’t incorporate all the material required for task learning, and may use less effective ways and may need to be given additional training and direction to acquire new motor skills.
Nevertheless, if they receive enhanced, clear-cut opportunities, all individuals can progress with their motor skill abilities: it may take time, perseverance and knowledge.

How Early Can You Tell?

Research studies show that the level of early motor impairment forecasts the severity of primary ASD indicators. Delays in early developmental milestones such as lying, sitting, crawling and walking were exhibited by each of the children studied who were all later diagnosed by definitive means when they were age three or older. Some of the findings indicate that motor growth in infancy relates to the frequency of language and communicative deficiencies in children who were later identified with ASD.

Additional studies have taken this research further by looking at babies being treated in neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). They found that babies who had higher instances of abnormal muscle tone and differences in their visual processing were later diagnosed with autism. At one month of age these infants were more likely to show “persistent neurobehavioral abnormalities” than other babies, while 40% exhibited difficulties visually tracking objects. At 4 months, these infants preferred heightened amounts of visual stimulation. Study co-author Ira Cohen explained, “It fits in anecdotally with what we see later-on, kids with autism like looking at moving things in front of their eyes, such as flapping hands or following contours.”

Cohen and his team suggested that more research is needed in this area to confirm if babies not checked into the NICU exhibit the same pattern of behavior because most children with autism are not born prematurely.
Although the existing diagnosis measures have a nominal description of motor impairment in ASD. Motor irregularities and delays in motor indicators often show up within the first year of life and ordinarily appear prior to communicative or social deficits, assessments on children’s motor functioning can help with early identification and monitoring intervention development.

Moving On

Research is currently exploring the positive benefits of physical activity interventions that will improve motor functions in individuals with autism and perhaps carry-over to other areas as well. Nonetheless, every individual should have a specifically designed treatment plan to improve motor control. In some cases, a child may excel in gross motor with significant impairments in fine motor, or vice versa. Some may have impairments in both areas. Each treatment plan needs to address the specific needs of each child.

The most effective approach is to break down tasks into small steps. Once a task is mastered, the child moves to the next goal. The child achieves success in small increments, each building on one another. This method is applicable to gross motor, fine motor and speech therapy. Eventually, proper motor control is acquired through practice.

Children with autism are not as good at exploring different ways to achieve a goal. They have difficulty sorting through and selecting the right sensory information for a task. They also do not extract lessons from the past and thus have a harder time learning through experience. All of these deficits in brain functions hinder motor development. Yet, they can be addressed with proper treatment.
Autism research is experiencing a growth in the immeasurable area that covers the link between the neural circumstances that interrupt motor development and other salient features of autism. Very soon, research may offer more exact early interventions for improving motor functions and development.

Joshua Weinstein has been an educator and administrator for over four decades. He holds a Ph.D., two Masters Degrees in Educational Administration and Supervision and an MBA in Executive Administration. He has been the CEO in healthcare, social services, and business corporations. He’s the president and founder of Shema Kolainu-Hear Our Voices and ICare4Autism- International Center for Autism Research & Education- a global leader in autism research & education. He can be reached via email at jweinstein@skhov.org

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