Tag Archives: Autism

Requesting And Reinforcement

Jack Riley

Meet Jack, a CARD ABA client that receives 25 hours a week. Over the last 2 years we’ve gotten to know and love Jack as another member of the #CARDFamily. In this episode, Jack Riley begins verbally requesting for things he wants. This is great! However, this also can prove difficult for his parents, as they are supposed to reinforce each request.

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February Smarty

February

This particular Valentine’s Day craft will help your child develop their pincer grasp while ‘sewing’ together their heart! Using shoelaces and the Autism Live template, your child will get the opportunity to practice their pincer grasp, which is a precursor to learning to write!

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Month Of Love

CARD Loves

Join the Center for Autism and Related Disorders (CARD) as we celebrate February with our “Month of Love” campaign featuring the hashtag #CARDLoves.

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We’re Hosting A Free Thousand Oaks Workshop for Parents to Learn About Autism Insurance Coverage

Capture

The workshop will educate parents on the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and the most effective ways to access coverage and treatment for autism.

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (Feb. 3, 2014) – Center for Autism and Related Disorders (CARD) presents a free two-hour workshop, titled “California Insurance Funding for Autism,” to help parents of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) navigate their way through the insurance coverage process. Parents will learn what must be covered under California law and the most effective ways to access coverage. The workshop takes place on Saturday, March 1, 2014, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., at the CARD treatment center in Thousand Oaks, located at 325 E. Hillcrest Drive, Suite 140. Refreshments and light snacks will be provided. Attendees must register by Feb. 27, 2014 to d.plump@centerforautism.com.

California is one of the 27 states that, effective Jan. 1, 2014, now offers autism insurance coverage for applied behavior analysis (ABA) therapy through its state exchange, the insurance marketplace created as a result of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly referred to as Obamacare. In addition, the California autism insurance mandate (SB 946), implemented on July 1, 2012, requires most health plans to cover ABA therapy for individuals with ASD.

“Many families are struggling to access the treatment that is mandated by California law,” said Bryce Miler, CARD director of contracts. “With this seminar, we hope to empower parents with the knowledge necessary to gain coverage for their children.”

Attendees will learn what insurance companies will and will not cover, types of plans and rules regarding coverage, effective strategies to maximize benefits, how to understand the complexities of different insurance carriers, which plans must comply with SB 946 and ACA, and what to know during open enrollment.

ABA is the only scientifically validated treatment for ASD, and research shows it is most effective when delivered early and at a high level of intensity. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in every 88 children in America is diagnosed with ASD, making it more prevalent than pediatric cancer, juvenile diabetes, and pediatrics AIDS combined.

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New Study Validates Skills® Assessment for Designing Customized Curricula to Help Children with Autism

Skills

The study validates the online Skills® Assessment, offering clinicians a state-of-the-art means to individualize treatment plans and maximize skill acquisition for children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder.

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How Can I Afford ABA?

Parent to Parent

As an autism therapy provider, one of the most frequent questions we get asked by families is about how to pay for services. Most families do not have the necessary income to cover a full-time ABA program for their child, so they look to their insurance provider for help.

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Potty Training

Potty Training

Watch how the principles of ABA can be applied to teach potty training to a child with autism. With the assistance of therapists from the CARD, as well as a reinforcers, and a pottylog, success is bound to happen.

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Autism Live: A Great Resource For Autism!

Autism Live

Autism Live is an interactive webshow providing support, resources, information, facts, entertainment and inspiration to parents, teachers and practitioners working with children on the autism spectrum.

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Planning & Organizing

Organize

It’s that time of year.
I’m shamelessly susceptible to commercial marketing. Candy corn never crosses my mind until midway through September when the backpacks and crayons disappear and Halloween candy floods retail stores. I’m first in line for a gingerbread latte on November 1. Right now, it is in the high 80s in Southern California and I still bought a pair of gloves last week.
According to the retail stores, we are currently in the three-week window (before the Valentine’s Day rush) when we should be organizing our homes as we pack away winter holiday paraphernalia and find places for the gifts we received.
If you’ve been bitten by the organizing bug, consider taking some time to organize your child’s home program.
Physical Space
Organizing therapy space is very dependent on the nature of your child’s program. I recommend checking in with the lead therapist or supervisor before making any major changes, as they may have some specific ideas that will improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your child’s home program. With that in mind, here are a few organizing suggestions.
Materials
- Create a home base for the therapist. This space should be large enough to store and organize therapy supplies that stay in the home, including pens, Post-Its, tape, scissors and stimuli. Ideally, it would also be a place where the therapist can store his or her bag during sessions. It should be inaccessible to your child and their siblings – with regularly used reinforcers kept here. If not, they need to be stored in another location that will not provide your child with free access.
- When organizing toys or clothes that you expect your child to use (and clean up) independently, use labels that your child understands. If your child is not reading, label bins or drawers with pictures or drawings rather than words. Adhesive business card sleeves are my personal preference. They stick to bins and drawers and you can easily change the label when you change the contents by sliding in a new picture or written label.
- Store toys and reinforcers in clear bins. Just as we might do an inventory of our pantry before going to the store, when children see the contents of their bins, it serves as a reminder of what they have. This increases the likelihood that they will mand for these items because they can see the options available rather than having to recall all their toys from memory. If for some reason the therapy team needs to store an item out of sight from the child, a clear bin can always be lined with paper or the item placed in a bag.
Therapy Space
- Find space in your home for the therapy team to store toys and materials that will be inaccessible to your child outside of sessions. Motivation is essential to an effective ABA program. If your child has free access to toys and materials used during sessions, they may quickly lose motivation to access those items during therapy. This can dramatically slow learning and shift the focus of therapy from learning new skills to identifying new items and activities that are motivating. Communicate with the therapy team to see which toys or materials they would like kept out of reach.
- Keep things close to the location where they will be used. This practical approach to organization isn’t always our first instinct. For example, you may currently store all your child’s homework supplies in her bedroom, but if your child always does homework in the dining room, it makes sense to keep those supplies in the dining room where they will be used. This reduces the task demand for doing homework because your child will not have the added chore of gathering and putting away homework supplies.
- Once you find storage locations that work, be consistent, especially if the therapy team and your child will be going to those locations to access items. Knowing where things are located reduces frustration and confusion for your child and increases their independence at home.
Paper Organization
- Some ABA programs, like Skills® are now web-based. Having worked in the field for many years before the advent of tablets and web-based data collection, I cannot overstate how fantastic this new technology is! No overflowing log books exploding during a clinic meeting, no need to file data, and no risk of losing valuable information because of leaky sip cups or a sibling who wants to “collect data” all over the behavior graph. If you aren’t already using web-based curriculum and program management such as Skills®, now might be the time to start.
- Store additional documents electronically with a scanner. Organize and save IEP records, school work, assessment reports and medical records on your computer or a cloud. If you have a large backlog, this might take some initial work, but getting rid of that foot-high stack of papers will be worth it, and it makes retrieval and sharing of documents much easier too.
Wishing you and your family a productive and Happy New Year!

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Ask Dr. Doreen

Dr. Doreen

Tune in to Autism Live on Wednesday’s at 10 am to see CARD founder Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh answer YOUR questions about autism!

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