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Autism Resources and Community (ARC)

Welcome to the Autism Resources & Community (ARC)!

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      Winner of the Feedspot Top 50 Blogs on Autism Award

      Action Behavior Center's Top 25 Autism blogs of 2020

      Study.com Top Homeschool Blogs for Special Needs Resources

      Applied Behavior Analysis Programs Guide 30 Best Autism Blogs 2019

      Autism and Language

      Current News and Research

      Stages Learning Language Builder Cards: The Choice for Autism Researchers

      For over a decade, researchers have been relying on tools developed by Stages Learning to evaluate approaches that are most effective for children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Wide-ranging research topics span from assistive technologies to socio-emotional learning, and language development. Researchers turn to Stages products because of the company’s commitment to creating quality tools that utilize the latest technologies and evidence-based approaches.

      Updated on 11/5/17 5:07 PM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 11/5/17 5:07 PM

      Autism & Transitions

      Advice for Parents and Caregivers

      Tips and Strategies for Helping Children with Autism Develop New Routines

      With difficulty making sense of their surroundings and feelings of anxiety, children with autism often develop routines and rituals to have some form of order and structure to their lives. Everyday routines such as washing and teeth brushing are generally consistent. There are times, however, when routines change during events such as fire drills, field trips, and special occasions. During times of transition or change, children may be more likely to have tantrums, aggressive behavior, and show resistance. It is important to prepare children for the possibility of change and help them understand the procedures they need to follow during novel situations.

      Updated on 10/1/17 8:30 AM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 10/1/17 8:30 AM

      Autism & Transitions

      Advice for Parents and Caregivers

      Helping Children with Autism Develop Friendships

      5 guidelines for the class or the home

      Friendships can have a major impact on wellbeing and personal growth, yet building new relationships can be anxiety provoking for adults and children alike. So, imagine how hard it can be for children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), who may struggle to perceive social cues and respond in conventionally acceptable ways. As a result, they may have few friends and shy away from conversations or other interactions. Children with ASD need opportunities to build meaningful relationships and have many wonderful qualities to offer others. Using various strategies to help children with ASD build supportive friendships can help them live happier lives and realize their potential. Below are some approaches to consider and build upon:

      Updated on 9/11/17 8:44 PM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 9/11/17 8:44 PM

      Autism & Preschool Lesson Plans

      Link4fun Lesson Plan: Identify, Categorize & Communicate!

      Lesson Overview

      Students will use the Link4Fun Cards to practice identifying, categorizing, and communicating with vocabulary words. Students will interact with the teacher or therapist using vocabulary cards with interactive technology. Each part of the lesson plan can be extended or shortened depending on the needs of the child.

      Updated on 1/22/17 9:27 PM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 1/22/17 9:27 PM

      Autism & Preschool Lesson Plans

      Link4fun Lesson Plan: Early Literacy & Social Skills Development

      Lesson Overview

      Students will use the Link4Fun book and app to develop their literacy, social skills, and vocabulary. Students will interact with the teacher or therapist using a print-based picture book with a digital device for an interactive reading experience. Each part of the lesson plan can be extended or shortened depending on the needs of the child.

      Updated on 1/21/17 9:36 PM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 1/21/17 9:36 PM

      Autism & Preschool Lesson Plans

      Building Vocabulary with U-Play Mat Lesson Plan

      Lesson Overview

      Students will use the U-Play Mat to practice identifying, categorizing, and communicating with vocabulary words. Each part of the lesson plan can be extended or shortened depending on the needs of the child.

      Updated on 8/23/16 7:37 AM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 8/23/16 7:37 AM

      Autism & Transitions

      Advice for Parents and Caregivers

      Strong Start: Back to School Tips

      Tips for getting back into gear for the school year

      Summer is an important time to take a break from school routines, spend time with the family, and explore extracurricular interests. However, the transition from the more laid-back schedule of the summer to that of the school year can be stressful for students and parents alike. This article offers tips to help you and your child with your back-to-school transition.

      Updated on 8/20/16 2:11 PM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 8/20/16 2:11 PM

      Autism and Language

      Advice for Parents and Caregivers

      “What Happens Next?”: Strategies for Teaching Your Child Sequencing Skills

      Sequencing is the ability to logically order events, images, thoughts, and actions. Why is sequencing important for children?

      Updated on 7/24/16 11:12 AM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 7/24/16 11:12 AM

      Autism & Preschool Lesson Plans

      Sequencing Cards Lesson Plan

      Lesson Overview

      Students will use sequencing cards to review vocabulary words and practice ordering events.

      Download Lesson Plan:

      Skills Practiced

      • Picture identification and vocabulary
      • Fine and gross motor development
      • Conceptualization skills
      • Communication skills
      • Sequencing skills 

      Materials

      People

      This lesson is designed for 1:1 instruction with a teacher or therapist. It can also be adapted for use with a small group of 2-4 students.

      Updated on 7/23/16 12:30 PM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 7/23/16 12:30 PM

      Autism & Preschool Lesson Plans

      Bingo Generator Lesson Plan

      Lesson Overview

      Students will review vocabulary words and play bingo using Stages Learning Bingo Generator Cards. Students can also review vocabulary in foreign languages since the Bingo Generator Cards are available in Spanish and French.

      Updated on 6/22/16 2:17 PM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 6/22/16 2:17 PM

      About Autism

      Advice for Parents and Caregivers

      The Talk: Speaking with Your Child About Autism

      Approaching the discussion with your child

      Many parents are unsure about how to speak to their child with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) about the diagnosis. Parents may fear a number of reactions: that their child will not understand, become angry or depressed, or use ASD as an excuse for why he or she cannot do some things. While some children can find the news upsetting, the information can also come as a relief, as found by a group of researchers that interviewed 9 individuals with high-functioning ASD, aged 16 to 21. Most children reported feeling a sense of shock and disbelief when first informed of the diagnosis, but seemed able to incorporate the idea of “having ASD” into their identity by the time of the interview. Some expressed that learning that they were on the autism spectrum helped them understand why they had experienced various difficulties and had been treated differently. It also provided a reason for their behavior that they thought others might understand (Huws & Jones, 2008).

      Updated on 6/21/16 1:11 PM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 6/21/16 1:11 PM

      Autism & Preschool Lesson Plans

      Feelings Box Lesson Plan

      Lesson Overview

      Students will review the Emotion Flash Cards and create their own chart depicting various emotions. Students will then think of emotions they show outside and inside to make a feelings box.

      Updated on 5/30/16 11:35 AM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 5/30/16 11:35 AM

      About Autism

      Autism Goes to Hollywood: Our Favorite Documentaries, Movies and TV Shows Depicting Characters with Autism

      And…action! As there is growing awareness about autism, the media is also increasingly portraying characters with autism and those who are on the spectrum. How autism is portrayed in entertainment can have a significant impact on how our society understands people with autism. While some representations can be stereotypical and misleading, others can be more complex and realistic, showing the diversity and multidimensional humanity of people who are on the spectrum.

      Updated on 5/9/16 8:00 PM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 5/9/16 8:00 PM

      Autism & Preschool Lesson Plans

      Animal Cards Dance Party

      Lesson Overview

      Students will make an animal that they would most like to be or admire in some way. Students will then choose a song that their animal likes and move their animal to the rhythm of the music. Students will then listen to various types of music and choose other animals to move, following the rhythm of the song. Students will then see how different animals might interact with each other. This is an early childhood activity that can be adapted to special needs students by breaking down the activities and reinforcing the steps separately. Students can build skills that they can use to interact with their peers.

      Updated on 4/1/16 8:01 AM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 4/1/16 8:01 AM

      Autism & Preschool Lesson Plans

      What Just Happened?

      Lesson Overview

      Students will verbalize an inference about the events leading up to a visual scene by explaining “what just happened” in response to visual cues.

      Updated on 2/22/16 5:00 AM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 2/22/16 5:00 AM

      About Autism

      Autism and Art Therapy: Four Beneficial Treatment Options

      Finding the Form of Art Therapy That Works Best for Your Child

      For more than 70 years, creative arts therapies such as visual art therapy, music therapy, dance therapy, and drama therapy have been used in psychotherapy or counseling with individuals of all ages, particularly children. A credentialed professional who has completed an approved program in a specific creative arts therapy specialization can help build life skills and promote healthy self-expression in children with autism. Often used in conjunction with behavioral treatments and medication, these alternative or complimentary creative arts treatments have a broad range of options available.

      Updated on 2/21/16 5:10 PM

      Updated by Grace Chen on 2/21/16 5:10 PM

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      We want to know what you think! Please share your questions and comments about our articles or let us know about other topics you would like to see covered in our blog. --Angela Nelson, CEO, Stages Learning Materials and Editor, Autism Resources & Community