September 7, 2012
Weekly Edition
Issue 28, Volume 5
It's All About the Choices!     
          

 
News Items:
  • Paralympics: Athletes with Learning Disabilities to Compete
  • Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy and Audiology Named Three of the Top Ten Best Paying Jobs of the Future
  • Our Ignorance of Learning Disabilities - Article and Link Newest NCLD Survey
  • 'Twice Exceptional' (2E) Children in the News
  • Feel Good Story of the Week: Amazing 11-Year Old Brazilian Footballer With No Feet, All the Rage in Rio (Video)
  • Scientists Design Molecule That Reverses Some Fragile X Syndrome Defects
  • Autism and Bullying Study in the News - Time Magazine Article
  • Education Department Gears Up to Oversee NCLB Waivers   
  • Nutritional Supplement Offers Promise in Treatment of Unique Form of Autism 
Therapy Activities, Tips and Resources
  • Therapy Idea of the Week - "Sport Stacking" (Also Known as 'Cup Stacking' and 'Speed Stacking')
  • Pinterest Pin of the Week: Get Up and Move Dice! 
  • Therapy Resource of the Week: The REAL Project

Articles and Special Features 

  • OT Corner: Benefits of Yoga for Kids with Special Needs
  • SLP Corner: How to Teach a Child to Understand Language and Follow Directions
  • Pediatric Therapy Corner: Video - What Is Executive Function
  • Worth Repeating: Autism & Back-to-School: What Do You Wish You Knew?
  • Also Worth Repeating: Audiocast - Not Just the King's Speech: Stuttering and its Causes
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Have a great weekend and Take Care!

Heidi Kay and the PediaStaff Team





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Disability in the News: Paralympics: Athletes with Learning Disabilities to Compete

[Source:  BBC]

 

For the first time in 12 years athletes with learning disabilities can compete in The Paralympic games.

The category was banned after the Sydney 2000 Paralympics when it emerged players on the Spanish basketball team had faked having a disability.   Athletes with learning disabilities were unable to compete in Athens 2004 or Beijing 2008.  In the London 2012 Paralympic games 10 British athletes with learning disabilities will compete.

 

Therapy Careers in the News:  PT, OT and Audiology Named Three of the Top Ten Best Paying Jobs of the Future

Editor's Note: While the Bureau of Labor Statistics attributes most of the expected job growth described below to the aging of baby boomers, we expect that increased demand overall will push up salaries and demand for pediatric therapists as well as those working with older clients.    In addition, while Speech-Language Pathologists did not make the BLS's "Top Ten" list, job growth is expected to be faster than average at 23%, with 28,800 expected new jobs created.

24/7 Wall St. identified the best paying jobs that also will have the highest demand for new workers in the future based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics' National Employment Matrix, which forecasts job growth between 2010 and 2020 for the bureau's more-than 1,000 listed jobs. The Matrix was used to identify the professions that are going to grow the most as a

 

 Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog

National Survey in the News: Our Ignorance of Learning Disabilities - Article and Link Newest NCLD Survey

[Source: The Washington Post]

 

by:  Jay Mathews

 

Raising the achievement of students with learning disabilities is hard, expensive, controversial and complex. School systems must pay private school tuition for students they can't adequately serve. Educators and parents sometimes disagree on what methods to use. Education writers like me rarely deal with the subject because it is difficult to explain and lacks many success stories.


Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog

'Twice Exceptional' (2E) Children in the News: What Exactly Is a "Twice Exceptional" Child?   

[Source: King 5]

With school just starting, here's something to think about. There is one type of student that traditionally confounds teachers and parents alike.  They're called "twice exceptional" children. Julie Ogata with ParentMap explains more.

What exactly is a "twice exceptional" child?
A twice exceptional child is one that has an IQ in the gifted range, really the top percentage of our population. That's their first exceptional quality.

The second exceptional quality is they also have a learning challenge such as dyslexia, dysgraphia, asperger's or ADHD.

 

Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog

Feel Good Story of the Week: Amazing 11-Year Old Brazilian Footballer With No Feet, All the Rage in Rio (Video)

[Source:  Huffington Post]

 

Gabriel Muniz may have been born without feet, but that hasn't stopped the 11-year-old soccer wunderkind from honing his skills as a formidable sportsman.

 

In fact, Muniz, who is from Brazil, is so good at the sport that FC Barcelona has invited the mini soccer ace to join their summer training camp, the BBC reports.

 

The Spanish La Liga soccer club has offered to fly Muniz to Spain in September, where he'll be able to show off his "fancy footwork" and meet his idol, Bar´┐Ża soccer player Lionel Messi.

 

Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog

Fragile X in the News:  Scientists Design Molecule That Reverses Some Fragile X Syndrome Defects  

[Source:  Science Daily]
 

Scientists on the Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute have designed a compound that shows promise as a potential therapy for one of the diseases closely linked to fragile X syndrome, a genetic condition that causes mental retardation, infertility, and memory impairment, and is the only known single-gene cause of autism.

 

The study, published online ahead of print in the journal ACS Chemical Biology September 4, 2012, focuses on tremor ataxia syndrome, which usually affects men over the age of 50 and results in Parkinson's like-symptoms - trembling, balance problems, muscle rigidity, as well as some neurological difficulties, including short-term memory loss and severe mood swings.

 

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog

Autism & Bullying in the News:  Autism and Bullying Study in the News - Time Magazine Article 

[Source:  Time Magazine]

 

Bullying can lead to depression, low grades, behavioral problems and even physical illness because of the stress it causes - and kids with autism may be suffering the brunt of the harm.

 

A new study finds that children with autism spectrum disorders are bullied far more often than their typically developing peers - nearly five times as often - but parents of autistic kids think the rate is even higher than that.

 

In the study, about 46% of autistic children in middle and high school told their parents they were victimized at school within the previous year, compared with just over 10% of children in the general population. Calling it a "profound public health problem," lead author Paul Sterzing of Washington University in St. Louis told the New York Times that the "rate of bullying and victimization among these adolescents is alarmingly high."

 

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog

Policy in the News:  Education Department Gears Up to Oversee NCLB Waivers 

[Source:  Education Week]

 

Now that more than half the country is operating with waivers of key mandates of the federal No Child Left Behind Act, the U.S. Department of Education must turn to overseeing a hodgepodge of 34 different state accountability systems and holding states to the promises they made to win the new flexibility.

As the school year begins, states are preparing to provide their first evidence that they are implementing their plans as proposed-and are already asking federal officials if they can tweak their proposals.

 

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

Autism Treatment in the News:  Nutritional Supplement Offers Promise in Treatment of Unique Form of Autism 

[Source:  Science Daily]

 

An international team of researchers, led by scientists at the University of California, San Diego and Yale University schools of medicine, have identified a form of autism with epilepsy that may potentially be treatable with a common nutritional supplement. The findings are published in the Sept. 6, 2012 online issue of Science.

 

Roughly one-quarter of patients with autism also suffer from epilepsy, a brain disorder characterized by repeated seizures or convulsions over time. The causes of the epilepsy are multiple and largely unknown. Using a technique called exome sequencing, the UC San Diego and Yale scientists found that a gene mutation present in some patients with autism speeds up metabolism of certain amino acids. These patients also suffer from epileptic seizures. The discovery may help physicians diagnose this particular form of autism earlier and treat sooner.

 

 Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

Therapy Idea of the Week: 'Sport Stacking' (Formerly Cup Stacking)

I found this video in my Google Alerts this morning showing off the amazing motor dexterity of three year old Nathan Robles, who is division champion of the World Sport Stacking Association

Seeing the video reminded me that "speed stacking" (now called "sport stacking") this is a super-fun way to work on eye-hand coordination with your kiddos.   They are also useful for developing sequencing and patterning skills.  

 

Read More and Watch Video on our Blog 

Pinterest Pin of the Week:  Get Up and Move Dice 

Editor's Note:   I LOVE this creative physical activity that received over 250 repins last week on our Pinterest site.

 

[Source:  Growing a Jeweled Rose]

After the fun homemade toddler games I featured for Tuesday Tots last week, I was inspired to create a fun toddler game for Jewel and Rosie.  I wanted to make a game that would be fun to play, age appropriate, and would get the girls moving.  While Perusing Michael's craft store, I saw small gift boxes, and the idea for these Get Up and Move Dice came to me.  

 

 Learn How to Make 'Get Up and Move Dice' Through a Link on our Blog

Therapy Resource of the Week: The REAL Project 

Editor's Note:  This blog entry started as a 'news' post.  The more I read about the Raising Early Achievement in Literacy (REAL) Project, the more I realized that this is an excellent resource worth sharing with our pediatric and school based speech-language clinicians!

 

[Source:  Science Daily.com]

 

A unique approach to early literacy work with families where children develop their language skills and their ability to read and write from an early age has had a huge success.

 

Researchers from the University of Sheffield funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) initially planned to use the approach with around 60 families, but discovered that around 6,000 had actually benefited from their work.

 

Professor Cathy Nutbrown of the University of Sheffield, who led the project, shared her approach to family literacy with Early Years practitioners including nursery workers, teachers, child-minders and family support units to help them plan and evaluate their family literacy work.

 

Read the Rest of this Article and Learn About the REAL Project

OT Corner: Benefits of Yoga for Kids With Special Needs 

by Sari Ockner, OTR/L   

 

Occupational therapists help children with special needs build the underlying skills necessary to promote their success and independence in daily activities.  This includes building their physical strength and endurance, while regulating their activity level, behavior, and emotions.  Additionally, occupational therapy facilitates and feeds each child's creativity and imagination.  

 

Now lets talk yoga:  
If you are a yoga enthusiast, such as myself, you can likely already imagine all the benefits of incorporating yoga into a child's life.  I have recently been trained and certified by Shana Meyerson, owner of mini yogis to teach yoga to children.  I have started to incorporate yoga activities within my typical OT sessions, and WOW, not only do the children love it but I clearly see progress in each child with a few simple additions to what we were already doing.

 

Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog

SLP Corner: How to Teach a Child to Understand Language and Follow Directions 

Editor's Note:  PediaStaff welcomes Kim Marino of TheSpeechMama.com to our guest blogging ranks.  This post was originally written for parents but also applies well to the work you may be doing in the classroom, natural environment, or clinic with your kiddos! 


by Kim Marino, CCC-SLP

So for today's post I have focused on improving a child's understanding of language and use of language.  By this I mean....the session below is an example of what I would be doing with a little one who is having difficulty in her understanding of words and also in her use of words to make her needs known.  I hope that you find this post helpful....and I will continue to add posts that describe a typical therapy session.

 

Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog

Pediatric Therapy Corner: Video - What is Executive Function? 

[Source: National Center for Learning Disabilities]

What is executive function, and how it is related to children with learning disabilities? How does executive function affect learning? What are the warning signs? Dr. Horowitz answers these questions, and more, in this Ask the Expert video.  For more information, read the NCLD article, "What Is Executive Function?"

 

Watch this Video on our Blog

Worth Repeating: Autism & Back to School - What Do You Wish You Knew? 

[Source:  Thinking Person's Guide to Autism]  

Does back-to-school make your stomach do backflips? Ours, too. So we asked some of TPGA's contributors what they wish they'd known - as parents, or as students - about the back-to-school season. Here's what they shared:   

 

by:  Mir Kamin


I knew it was okay to press for what my kid needed, but it took me a really long time to learn that it was also okay to admit when it's time to stop trying to hammer your square peg into a round hole (and go find a square hole). I never in my wildest dreams expected to be a part-time home-  


Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog

Also Worth Repeating: Audiocast - Not Just the King's Speech:  Stuttering and Its Causes 

[Source:  University of Melbourne]

Speech pathology researcher Prof Nan Bernstein Ratnerm Professor and Chair of the Department of Hearing and Speech Sciences, discusses the condition of stuttering, how research into stuttering informs models of language acquisition, and possible therapies for the condition. Presented by Dr Dyani Lewis.  (31 minutes)

 

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog

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