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Tag: special needs children

Benefits of Using Autism Schools

If your child has been diagnosed with autism, your first response may be to find the right services to set your child up for success. Autism presents learning difficulties that will require extra attention and support to help children in school.

Children with autism can attend a traditional school and receive services du

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ring the day. Depending on where the child is on the spectrum, the child may spend half or even a full day in a special needs classroom. Children with autism will also receive services such as speech therapy if needed, but those sessions will take place once or twice a week, if available.

What about sending my child to a special school for autism?

An autism school could be an excellent choice for a child with autism for many reasons.

An autism school provides:

  • Smaller classrooms
  • A better teacher to student ratio
  • Trained staff
  • Carefully monitored and tracked progress
  • Tailored curriculum
  • More frequent therapy sessions

Students may also feel more comfortable because they are surrounded by other students who are like them. They are given the opportunity to be themselves and learn how they need to live to their highest potential.

Smaller Classrooms

By arranging smaller classroom sizes, children can receive more individualized attention during class. When children are given individual attention and instruction, they can then retain information better, develop new skills and live a well-rounded life. 

Teacher to Student Ratio

Smaller classrooms mean a better teacher to student ratio. Schools for autism are excellent at providing students the resources they need because they make sure enough teachers give students the attention needed to understand a task or assignment.  

Trained Staff

Having trained staff on campus can make all the difference when teaching or dealing with behavioral issues. If a teacher or staff member is not qualified, teaching a class can become complicated, and other students may become distracted by another student’s behavioral issues. The student displaying the problems can then become frustrated because their teacher does not understand them. This can become a cycle that needs to be addressed.

Trained staff will know when to intervene and how to bring the child back into focus. They will also learn the best ways to teach them not to become frustrated and succeed in the classroom environment.

Progress is Monitored and Tracked

Every child progresses differently. Both traditional schools and schools for autism provide children with autism IEPs or Individualized Education Plans. An IEP is “a written document outlining how to tailor an educational program to a child with special needs. It is usually created as a cooperative effort between parents, teachers, and educational specialists.” 

Throughout the school year, teachers and educational specialists will monitor their progress and adjust when necessary. The parents also review adjustments. The goal is to have accomplished specific goals within the IEP. 

Tailored Curriculum

Children with autism have unique learning disabilities that may hinder them from understanding an assignment or lesson plan in a traditional classroom. Autism schools will provide them with a tailored curriculum. A tailored curriculum should fall in line with their IEP and provide them with the resources and tools they need to achieve their goals.

Frequent Therapy Sessions

Therapy sessions may be needed to help with speech or behavior difficulties. Depending on where the student is on the spectrum, therapy sessions may be required more frequently. Autism schools know this is important for children with autism and provide more frequent therapy sessions. Lexington Services provides a separate therapy services center for sessions, if needed. 

Traditional schools may have therapy for autistic students, but those sessions may be limited to only once or twice a week on campus, depending on availability.

Overall, it is the child’s and parents’ choice to attend a special school for autism or a traditional school. Carefully consider your child’s experience at the school they attend now, any frustrations they may be encountering, and any services they are not receiving. Also, consider the benefits of attending a special school for autism for not only them but for yourself.

Lexington Services provides more than just therapy services. We provide students with these benefits for children with autism, plus much more. Lexington administers Pre K-12 education and the crucial elements for every student to develop their academic, behavioral, and social skills in the classroom and during after-school programs. We are unique in giving students the same opportunities as traditional schools while also catering to their individual learning styles.

We have multiple school locations for children with autism, providing various life skills that are accomplished through evidence-based practices, structured learning, standards-based curriculum, sensory integration, and behavior modification.

 Check us out and schedule a tour with us today. See if Lexington is the right place for your child to thrive!

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Disclaimer: This post attempts to publicize ideas and comments that we find would be useful for our community to know. Our post is by no means intended to prompt you to handle your challenges in any specific way. We desire to bring helpful information to all our audiences and shine a light on popular topics.

Tips on How to Teach Children with Autism

Teaching a child with autism can prove to have its challenges. Autistic children have unique learning needs and will require extra guidance and support to succeed in the classroom. To best understand how to work with a child with autism, you must first take the time to understand what the child needs and then learn how to help them best. Here are some tips for working with autistic children.

Simple InstructionSimple Instruction

Providing simple instruction is one of the best ways to work with children with autism. Communication can be difficult for autistic children, and giving hard to follow instructions with figurative language is sure to frustrate them. Break down instructions into steps, then provide those steps one or two at a time. Don’t forget to allow them time to process the information and clarify when needed. 

Easier Communication

Communication can be difficult for children with autism. Along with simple instruction, simple communication can also provide less confusion and more productivity. Keeping sentences short and language clear is one of the best ways to ensure that kids with autism understand what needs to be accomplished. Avoid vague and abstract language.

Give Extra Time 

Sometimes even simple direction may not be sufficient even for a child with autism, and that is okay. Giving them extra time to process the instructions allows them to work at their own pace. In the Therapist Spotlight with Sarah-Jane, one of our Speech Language Pathologists mentions patience as the key to working with autistic children. Rushing through activities and assignments will only bring frustration and to both the teacher and the student. 

Eliminate Stressors 

Kids with autism are typically used to a routine. When things disturb their routine, they can become stressed and agitated. This can also be true if items are rushed and misunderstood. As mentioned earlier, communication can be difficult for children with autism, and the same goes for routine disruptions. Eliminating stressors in a child’s day can lead to greater success and more streamlined learning in the classroom.

Use Visuals

Visuals are an important tactic used by teachers and therapists working with autistic children. Materials such as line drawings, photographs, and picture cards can help teach a lesson or clarify an instruction. Picture books are also a great way to get reading and literature into their daily activities. Pictures of a child’s schedule can also help bring structure to an environment.

therapists working with autistic children

Tech for Teaching

With advances in technology, it’s no wonder parents are beginning to use it to help their children. Specific apps can successfully address developmental delays in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Apps such as Otsimo and Proloquo2Go help with speech skills, while apps like Grace App help empower nonverbal people to communicate. Some use games, like SuperWhy! while others are websites that provide adaptive products for children with autism to use. These methods and more can help children with autism in the classroom to better understand lessons and activities. Our list of technological tools is the perfect start to incorporating technology into everyday activities.

Structured Environment

A structured and predictable environment will make a child with autism more comfortable when learning. A routine with minimal distractions paired with a structured lesson plan and environment is the best way to work with kids with autism. Lesson plans and instructions should include what to do, how to do it, when it needs to be completed, and what comes next. Providing this structure will bring out the best in the student. 

Structured ActivitiesStructured Activities

Structured activities also provide the comfort and predictability students with autism need to stay focused. Visual schedules can help to keep kids on track with their actions. Implementing a timer can help them know how long a project will take. Don’t forget to schedule a time for social interactions to improve social skills with their peers.

Teach Social Skills

The classroom is the perfect opportunity to teach social skills as it should encourage kids to practice communication. Activities such as arts and crafts or even eating lunch together in the classroom can encourage students to interact and begin to feel comfortable communicating and playing with their peers. These social skills can also include interpreting facial expressions or learning how to respond to a specific situation.

Avoid Sensory Overload

Children with autism can experience over sensory stimulation or under sensory stimulation without others even knowing. Things such as smells, lighting, or even echoes can trigger an autistic child and give them sensory overload. It is essential to be aware of a child’s triggers and eliminate them as much as possible for a productive learning environment. 

Incorporating Sensory Activities

Sensory activities are fun and engaging for kids with autism. Incorporating sensory activities such as finger painting, play-doh, and picture books help bring students back into focus while also enjoying play therapy.

Play Therapy is another great way to add sensory activities into daily routines. Although it may just seem like playing, children with autism are given the opportunity for language development and working through social skills. It allows children to learn and develop the best way they know how; by playing. Play Therapy can be done with role play, obstacle courses, or even play-doh. The possibilities are endless!

Working with autistic children may require extra attention and extra support, but seeing them thrive and be successful in school is a different kind of joy. Here at Lexington, our schools are designed to help children with autism reach their full potential inside and outside the classroom. 

Lexington is committed to creating the best quality of life possible for our students. With multiple school locations for children with autism, we provide evidenced-based practices, structured learning, standards-based curriculum, sensory integration, and behavior modification.

Our Pre K-12 school educates children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) by providing the critical components for every student to develop their academic, behavioral, and social skills. This is made possible by tailoring to every child’s needs and building a foundation for students to achieve their highest potential. Contact us today to learn more about us. 

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Disclaimer: This post attempts to publicize ideas and comments that we find would be useful for our community to know. Our post is by no means intended to prompt you to handle your challenges in any specific way. We desire to bring helpful information to all our audiences and shine a light on popular topics.

A Parent’s Guide to Autism Treatment and Support

If you are learning your child has autism, figuring out your next steps may seem complicated. No one is prepared to hear their child is anything but happy and healthy, and hearing Autism Spectrum Disorder can come across as frightening, so let’s define it.

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is defined “as a developmental disorder that affects communication and behavior.” Children do not “grow out” of ASD, but they can receive treatment to help them develop new skills and overcome these developmental challenges. Early intervention is the most effective way to help your child find the right treatment and program type.  

Common treatment plans include 

Lexington Services offers autistic support services to kids with autism and other disabilities. Lexington Therapy Services provides children with skilled therapists and individualized plans for children to achieve their goals and thrive in life.

Lexington also provides an After School Program, Adult Program, and a Summer Program for individuals with Developmental Disabilities. Members can take advantage of several types of therapies in a center or in a home environment. 

Support is an essential part of you and your child’s journey. The right kind of support can bring together answers and ease in the same setting. Support groups and respite are great forms of autism support. 

Support groups allow parents to share information, receive advice, and really lean on each other for things emotional. Respite, which is provided by Lexington, can give parents a break from time to time. Lexington would match your child with a caregiver who will take over temporarily for a few hours or even days and provide autism help.

Another essential thing to remember is your own self-care. Raising a child is not easy, and raising a child with special needs provides more challenges. Making sure you are taken care of will bring out the best in your child too.

When looking for treatments, you will also come across programs.

These programs may include:

  • Government programs
  • In-Home Behavioral
  • School-based programs

Government based programs can begin as soon as a parent suspects something. Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), children with disabilities are eligible to receive free or low-cost services. Infants through the age of two years old are eligible for early intervention programs. These early intervention programs are tailored to your child’s unique needs. 

To qualify, a child must undergo a free evaluation. Once the assessment is complete and if a developmental problem is found, the parent will then work with the providers to determine an Individualized Family Service Plan to describe the needs and specific services for the child.

Children three years and older are eligible for school-based programs. In school-based programs, children with ASD are placed in small groups with other children of the same level to receive more individual attention and specialized instruction. Depending on their abilities, these children may still spend part of their day in a regular classroom.

To receive school-based services, your local school system will have to evaluate your child. After the evaluation, an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) is created to address your child’s needs and the educational goals for the school year.

Lastly, in-home behavioral programs are also available. In-Home Behavioral Services “offer support to a youth who has a challenging behavior that interferes with everyday life.” Here, a team works with the child and parent to create a behavioral plan to improve their functioning. 

Although a diagnosis for your child may seem frightening, taking the first steps don’t have to be. With the right treatment and programs, your child can thrive. Lexington Services is committed to tailoring to every child’s needs and building a foundation for students to achieve their highest potential. Learn more about us today. 

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Disclaimer: This post attempts to publicize ideas and comments that we find would be useful for our community to know. Our post is by no means intended to prompt you to handle your challenges in any specific way. We desire to bring helpful information to all our audiences and shine a light on popular topics.

4 Special Needs Resources You Can Consume Today

These days many of us are quarantining and are very aware of meeting social distancing guidelines. Consequently, we have found new ways to keep ourselves busy. With a little more time to ourselves, many people have taken up new hobbies, learned new skills, or are exploring new topics and insights..

Whether its online videos, TV shows, or social media, the digital age has become an innovative path to learning about any subject.

Lexington Services offers premier special education services. Helping your child meet their milestones and achieve their goals is something we are very passionate about. We also believe that learning happens outside of our centers as well, so we culminated four resources you can check out if you want to learn more about your special needs child, or if you are just simply interested and want to follow along with current special needs topics.

1. Unexceptional Moms – Podcast
Bringing parents with special needs children comfort and advice, mothers Ellen Stumbo and Erin Loraine cover a range of topics going through the journey of raising special needs children. Anything from going to school, anxiety, friendships, and so much more, Ellen and Erin’s kind and sensible style make listeners feel like they are talking with a friend.

Check it out here!

2. Atypical – TV Show
Chronicling the life of Sam Gardner, an 18-year-old boy with Autism, this Netflix series follows the struggles and desires of what it is like to be a teenager on the spectrum. Easy to root for and hard to dislike, Keir Gilchrist does an amazing job of portraying Sam while not falling into a stereotype. Additionally, the inclusion of autistic actors and writers showcases amazing representation for the special needs community.

Check out Atypical on Netflix!

3. Emilie Weight: 3 things I learned from my intellectually disabled son – TED Talk
Discussing the wows and woes of having a son diagnosed with Fragile X syndrome, Emilie Weight gives a joyous take on children with special needs claiming they make our society more well rounded with their simplistic optimism. Weights simple explanations and witty style of talking make this 9 minutes video worth the watch.

Check it out here!

4. Hopeful Parents – Blog
Hopeful Parents.org brings light to an incredible group of parents who note their experiences with their special needs children. there is truly something every parent with a special needs child can relate to. You will smile, laugh, and tear up as you read the words and feel the emotions of these parent’s experiences.

Check it out here!

For more information on Lexington Services email us at info@lexingtonservi.wpengine.com or give us a call at (480) 900-1009.

How Your Special Needs Child Can Still Receive Therapy During Coronavirus

Whether it’s the expressive methods used in speech therapy, the clinical development process of occupational therapy, or the creative process of music therapy, Lexington Services is here for you. We are constantly making sure we are able to provide the best care for our members and help them reach their milestones.

But unfortunately, as we inch our way through a worldwide pandemic, it has become increasingly harder for children with special needs to receive the therapies that are essential to their learning, development, and growth.

Though times may be challenging, Lexington continues to persevere, and provide ways that your child can get the adequate learning and support they need.

Because we live in a digital world, Lexington has been able to find this perfect balance of social distancing while also issuing our therapy services to people from the safety of their own homes.

We have implemented teletherapy based services into our curriculum. Teletherapy services allow our clients to remain safely at home, while also making sure their children don’t fall behind and regress in their learning.

Teletherapy is a great option for parents who don’t feel comfortable sending their kids back to Lexington in-person yet. In addition to keeping parents at ease, teletherapy keeps parents connected while our providers can focus on improving your child’s learning and growth, so they can achieve those #SoTheyCan moments.

Many parents are skeptical about implementing online and remote special needs services. Perhaps there is this idea if you are not doing these services in person, it is not effective. But, as our Director of Therapies Dallin Webster will testify “I encourage all parents to try it at least once.” As parents get used to the idea and the convenience of these amazing services, they will see that they are still getting the same great service all from the comfort of their own home.

Times may be uncertain, but your child’s continued development doesn’t have to be. As we progress through the digital age, now more than ever it is easier for parents to ensure that their child’s growth is not compromised.

Would you like to know more? Email us at info@lexingtonservi.wpengine.com

For an overview of all the therapy services Lexington offers, check out our video!

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