FEATure Summer
Relaxing in the Summer Sun, Just Letting Off Steam
5 Ways to Help Your Child Cope with Summer's Relaxed Schedule

Summer. Those precious sun-soaked, school-free weeks are, to most kids, a nectar. And let's face it: We parents don't mind the lighter load that comes with no homework or after-school activities. But that same relaxed schedule can be a challenge for children with autism and their parents.


"If you think about what autism is, there are two main areas of difficulty," said Lauren Kenworthy, the director of the Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders at Children's National Medical Center in the District. "One is around social interactions, and the other is around a strong need for repetition and stability and sameness. They tend to get a lot of that from school, where they have the same schedule each day."


I recently spoke with Kenworthy by phone and she offered ways for parents to help their child with autism learn to cope better when things are more fluid or don't go as expected. Here are her suggestions:

  • Use a calendar to label "typical" summer days, weekends, vacations and holidays. Then create a "typical day" schedule that follows the school schedule as much as possible in terms of lunch time and breaks. It can be very specific if you like, or it can be more vague. 
  • Talk to your child about having a Plan A, but also a Plan B in case things don't work out. For example, if you're planning to go to the pool, tell him that if a storm comes up or the pool is closed, you might do something else, and that is your Plan B. 
  • Avoid developing bad habits. It can be tough to stick to a schedule during the summer, when you just want to relax and let go a little bit, but the more you can keep to a routine for meals and sleep, and continue to limit screen time, the more well-regulated your child is likely to be.
  • Recognize the warnings. It's important to know the signs that your child is getting overloaded and remove him from challenging situations before a meltdown if possible, Kenworthy said. "Catch them at the rumble, not the rage stage."
  • Keep things positive, always. With any child, it's more effective to reward good behavior than to punish bad behavior. Kenworthy said parents should try to praise their child four times for every one time they correct something.
 Click here for free downloadable schedules, summer social stories, etc. 
Air Travel: Children with Autism
Tips to Make Air Travel Easier

Traveling with a child that has special health, developmental or mental health concerns may bring challenges and require extra planning.  


Tips from Other Parents

Parents who have children with complex medical conditions, developmental delay and autism share their tips:

  • Prior to traveling, find out where medical care facilities are located that can take care of your child in an emergency or provide special medical care (like dialysis).
  • Carry a typed list of your child's medications from their doctor. You can use this to show TSA agents, as well as have on hand if your child needs medical care in another city.
  • Ask for extra time for loading, unloading and going through security.

Tips from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) 

Special tips from Julie Dennis, TSA Customer Service Manager for SeaTac Airport:

  • Staff at the new TSA Cares Help Line can talk with you about your child's specific needs prior to your trip. They answer questions about screening, security, what and how to pack, and can make arrangements for in person support at the airport (best if calls are made 72 hours before travel). Contact TSA Cares toll free at 1-855-787-2227.
  • If you run into challenges at the airport or need extra help, ask for a TSA "Passenger Support Specialist" or a supervisor. They get additional training and can offer assistance.
  • When going through security, take out all medical and necessary liquids and put them in a bin. Be prepared to explain the need for these items to the security officer.
  • If you have challenges with a security officer, calmly ask to speak to their supervisor or a passenger support specialist. Some officers are new to their positions or have not had experience with particular needs or issues. 

Autism Friendy Places to Go This Summer!

Have you been somewhere on a vacation or staycation where the employees went above expectations to make your family feel  >>>>>>>? If so, please share with us on Facebook or Twitter #AutismVacation @FEATofLouKY

Henry's Ark
Indinapolis Children's Museum
Autism Friendly Resorts
Li sted as Autism-Friendly
Suggested by FEAT Parents

Li sted as Autism-Friendly

Resorts & Cruises
Listed as Autism-Friendly
Autism On The Seas
Autism Friendly Hotels
Royal Caribbean
Celebrity Cruises

Free or discounted local summer activity links
Bowling FREE
Louisville Cultural Pass - Many FREE Admissions

FEATure Activities
FEAT Provided Programs for You and Your Children

An email will go out later this week to parents with more information on this opportunity.

FEATure Program: Get Your FEAT Wet
We ran this FEATure last month, but felt it necessary to run in the summer issue.

FEAT's "GET Your FEAT Wet" Swimming Program offers one-on-one instruction with a qualified swim instructor along with an autism-trained behavior therapist.  Children are not only taught how to swim, but also learn water safety and appropriate behavior protocol for swimming in an inclusive setting. 

Availablitity is limited.  Please contact our l ocations for schedules & openings:

All About Kids - catie.davenport@allaboutkids.cc

Home of the Innocents - 

FEATure Parent Workshop:IEP

"Behavior, Assessment and Data: Using Methods of Applied Behavior Analysis to Drive Your Child's IEP"


Space is limited. REGISTER TODAY


Saturday, June 27, 2015

9:00am - 3:30pm 

$10 per person. 

Lunch will be provided. 

ARGI Financials 

1914 Stanley Gault Pky, 

Louisville, KY 40223


If your child receives special education services, he/she must have an individualized Education Program (IEP). That is the law. An IEP is an important legal document. It spells out your child's learning needs, the services the school will provide, and how progress will be measured.


Several people, including parents, are involved in creating the document. The entire process can be a great way to sort out your child's strengths and weaknesses. Working on the IEP can help a parent figure out ways to help him/her succeed in school. Creating an effective IEP often takes, time, effort, patience, and often, the help of someone who has written one if the parent does not have the knowledge or understanding of the document. With this workshop, the parent, the advocate for the child, will be able to understand the needs of their child and write it in a way to help them navigate through the school system with a plan that will help them succeed.


The parent workshop will be led by Jonathan Keefe, M.Ed., BCBA, BA. Jonathan is the BCBA Supervisor of Behavior and Education at Verbal Behavior Consulting, Inc. He has over fifteen years of experience working directly with children with Autism. Jonathan's primary areas of clinical interest and expertise include early verbal behavior intervention, teaching adaptive functional behaviors in the natural environment, the use of criterion-referenced curricula in IEP development, video modeling, self-monitoring strategies, and inclusion of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder in general education settings.


Specific Course Objectives:

- Identifying and understanding the basic principles of reinforcement and punishment.

- Determining specific examples of how providing reinforcement relates to effective advocacy in developing an IEP.

- Identifying and understanding different types of motivating operations.

- Determining specific examples of how creating motivating operations can improve outcomes in interacting with school staff and writing an effective IEP.

- Reviewing current special education law pertaining to problem behaviors in the school setting.

- Comparing and contrasting a Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA) and a Functional Analysis (FA).

- Outlining best-practice methods for conducting an FBA for problem behavior in the school setting.

- Using the results of an FBA to develop an effective Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP).

- Identifying different types of data and choosing the appropriate measure for a problem behavior.

- Relating BIP outcomes to IEP progress data.

- Reviewing common assessments (ABLLS-R, VB-MAPP, ESDM, AFLS) that may be used to guide the development of a criterion-referenced IEP.



FEATure Fundraising
YOU make a difference in Louisville's autism community.

3rd Annual Rev' N Roll for Autism Saturday, June 6
GET YOUR MOTORS RUNNING! RIde Through the Bluegrass for Autism
Excerpt taken from article in The Voice Tribune

Rev N Roll for Autism is a motorcycle event that benefits FEAT of Louisville. Rick Tallhamer and Debra Paulin approached FEAT of Louisville 3 years ago asking if they would be the benefactor of an event that they were already very good at promoting. 

The event, held on June 6, is a motorcycle run that starts at AMVETS Post 61, travels to Bluegrass Harley Davidson (Louisville), then to Loyal Order of Moose Lodge 1715 (Shelbyville), onto HalfTime's Sports Grill (Mt Washington) and finally back to the AMVETS Post 61. Along the way, participants can experience a dice run, 50/50s, door prizes and back at the AMVETS, a silent auction and pig roast. 

Rick says, "Our grandson has autism and we want to do whatever we can to help. We approached FEAT because we found that with a motorcycle run, it's really a great way to raise awareness and funds for the charity. Through our years of motorcycling we have found that the biker community has a giving heart. Many already have a connection to autism, which brings it closer to home."   

Rev 'N Roll benefiting FEAT insures those giving out of their pockets that the funds raised local, stay in Louisville and the surrounding communities.    "In addition to raising funds for this nonprofit organization we hope to raise awareness to families and individuals that may not know where to reach out for help. "

There are still opportunities available for volunteers. If interested please email support@featoflouisville.org asap.

Saturday, June 6, 2015
$25 Driver/$15 Rider
Event T-shirt with Pre-registration
Ticket price includes:
          Dice Hand
          Food Ticket for Pig Roast
Cars Welcome

AMVETS Post 61 @ 9405 Smyrna Pkwy. 40299
Registration the day of the event 9:00-11:15 AM
Kickstands up at 11:30 AM

Jim Ball: 2015 Outrunning Autism Extreme 24 Hour Run

Jim Ball finished his 7th Outrunning Autism Extreme 24hour Run Sunday, May 31 at 9AM. Despite the humidity and heat, Jim finished a staggering 81 miles for children with autism.  Jim ran many of these miles with friends and family running by his side and raised $2700 for FEAT of Louisville!

Thank you Jim, for your commitment to FEAT's mission of easing the autism journey for families.

We would like to extend our gratitude to
the Barth Foundation & the Cralle Foundation for awarding FEAT grants to support our programs for children with autism.

We would like to humbly thank the Barth Foundation for awarding us $2500 for our Dreams in Motion Summer Camp.

We are also grateful for the Cralle Foundation award of $5000 toward our Get Your FEAT Wet Swim Program.

It is through the generosity of grants and donations that FEAT is able to continue to develop, support and offer programs for children with autism in the Kentuckiana area.

Thank you!

2015 Outrunning Autism 5K

We would like to thank all that sponsored, volunteered and participated in the 2015 Outrunning Autism 5K. Thanks to  your efforts, this was FEAT's largest 5K ever! 
We had 24 sponsors, 100+ volunteers, 20+ vendors and a most impressive 950 runners/walkers. Together, we raised over $60,000 for FEAT of Louisville!

Thank you for allowing FEAT to continue to ease the autism journey. Proceeds from this event go toward growing our existing programs and developing new ones for families in our community.

CLICK HERE for race results by Headfirst Performance

Go to our Facebook 2015 Outrunning Autism Album  to see pictures from the race.

for information about any of the listed dates contact Deborah at deborah@featoflouisville.org


Saturday, June 6 
AMVETS Post 61 @ 9405 Smyrna Pkwy. 40299
Registration the day of the event 9:00-11:15 AM
Kickstands up at 11:30 AM
$25 Driver/$15 Rider

CASKS FOR A CAUSE at Goodwood Brewing Company, 636 E. Main St.

Saturday, June 20, 2-11 PM

presented by Tailspin Ale Fest, Goodwood Brewing Company and My Old Kentucky Homebrew

Local media teams will compete in a beer-creating competition as part of a new street festival. Kevin Gibson, from Insider Louisville, is competing and has named FEAT of Louisville as his charity of choice. Three winning teams will receive donations for their favorite charities.

The Festival is free, but tasting cards are available to try the competing beers for $20. The card will get you samples from 12 teams' casks as well as some from professional breweries. 

Voting closes at 7 p.m. and the charity winners are announced at 7:30 p.m.


BAGS FOR CHANGE at Lucky's Market
Starting July 1
F EAT has been selected as one of the non-profits to participate in Lucky's Market Bags for Change. More information will be in the July newsletter.

Back to the FEATure - Totally 80's Gala
Friday, September 25
If interested in becoming a sponsor or donating an item to the auction, please email Deborah@featoflouisville.org




Wednesday, June 10 at 7:00PM
at Home of the Innocents campus in the Open Arms Building on the lower level.
Speaker: Pat Gubois is a Board-Certified Music Therapist and also trained in Neurologic Music Therapy. Pat has also worked at the Dreams in Motion Summer Camp for FEAT, DSL teens & youth and Pitt Academy. Childcare will be provided.

Behavior, Assessment and Data: Using Methods of Behavior Analysis to Drive Your Child's IEP
Saturday, June 27 - 9:00AM-3:30PM
at ARGI Financial 1914 Stanley Gault Pkwy, 40223 Enter through the door in the rear of the building.
$10 per person  Lunch is provided



Gluten Free Key Lime Bars Gluten-Free Summer Recipe
Lemon Bars
Dairy Free too!

- 1/2 cup  almond flour  
- 1/2 cup  tapioca flour
- 3 Tbsp.  raw honey
- 2 Tbsp.  ghee  or  coconut oil , warmed if solid
- Zest of 1/2 lemon (optional)

- 5 large eggs
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp.  tapioca flour
- 1/2 cup  raw honey , warmed if solid

1. Preheat oven to 350F (175C). To make the crust, mix the  almond flour tapioca flour raw honey  and zest together in a medium sized mixing bowl. Press into the bottom of a 8x8 glass baking pan with your fingers. Bake for 15 minutes or until light golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for at least 20 minutes.

2. To make the filling, whisk the eggs in a medium sized mixing bowl. Mix the lemon juice and  tapioca flour  together in a small bowl until fully combined, and then whisk in with the eggs, being careful not to over-whisk. Whisk in the  raw honey and then pour the mixture over the crust. Place in the oven and bake for another 23-27 minutes or until just set (firm one the outside but slightly wiggly in the center). The bars will continue to firm up as they cool. 

3. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely, then refrigerate until full set, or about 4 hours.

Schedules FreedownloadsSUMMER! 
Free Downloadable Schedules, Social Stories, & PECs

Below are links to tools that may help your child "cope with summer's relaxed schedule."

Daily Schedules
Daily Schedule 2  scroll down about 1/2 way
Daily Schedule 3 scroll til almost end of page
Specific Daily Schedule - this is not free, but could be of help setting up your own
Weekly Schedules
Summer Social Stories
Picture Exchange
  PECs for daily words, foods, activities, etc.  scroll down about 1/2 way

Support FEAT of Louisville
We remain dedicated to serving the needs of Kentuckiana's autism community. Our services and outreach activities are possible with the support of generous people such as you.

Make a donation! Please consider making a tax-deductible contribution online today.
Your generosity will help provide education, advocacy, programs and support to families affected by autism.
Stay Connected
1100 East Market Street
Louisville, KY 40206

Deborah Morton, Executive Director