December 21, 2012
Weekly Edition 
Issue 38, Volume 5
It's All About the Choices!     
          
Greetings and Happy Holidays to All!!

Please enjoy our weekly newsletter.   We will not have an issue next week so that our team may enjoy time off with their families.   We will be back on January 4th!   Have safe and Happy Holidays.  See you next year!
 
News Items:
  • Research Explores How Children Reason, Think About Others
  • Dantrolene May Help Fight Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy
  • Video-Based Test to Study Language Development in Toddlers and Children With Autism
  • Feel Good Story of the Week: Globe's Autism-Friendly 'Grinch' Steals Hearts
  • Don't Blame Autism for Newtown - Articles to Share
  • Speaking Skills Crucial for Hearing Impaired Children in the Classroom
  • Toddlers' Language Skills Predict Less Anger by Preschool
  • Neuroscience: The Extraordinary Ease of Ordinal Series
  • Mistaking OCD for ADHD Has Serious Consequences

Therapy Activities, Tips and Resources
  • App Review of the Week: Jolly Jingle
  • Holiday Gift Guide: Best 10 Toys, Games and Books That Spark Fun and Encourage Language
  • Video Resource: How to Teach Handwriting
  • PediaStaff's 2012 'Best of' List: Our Favorite Pediatric Therapy / Special Needs Resources of the Year

Articles and Special Features 

  • OT Corner: Teaching Colors Using Multi-Sensory Instruction
  • Pediatric Therapy Corner:  Did You Know You Could Lose Everything on Your iPad?
  • The SLP Professor's Corner: Project Showcase - /f�bjuləs fənɛtɪks/ 
  • Worth Repeating: Coping with Crisis - Helping Children With Special Needs; Tips for School Personnel and Parents
  • Also Worth Repeating: The New Science Behind Children's Temper Tantrums
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Have a great weekend and Take Care!

Heidi Kay and the PediaStaff Team





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Social Learning in the News: Research Explores How Children Reason, Think About Others

[Source:  Science Daily]

 

As social creatures, humans must constantly monitor each other's intentions, beliefs, desires, and other mental states. A particularly important social skill is the ability to take another person's perspective and understand what the person knows, even when that knowledge may ultimately be false. Past research has shown that before the age of 4, children fail to pass standard tasks designed to measure false belief; however, new research has shown that very young children can pass nonverbal versions of false-belief tasks.

 

DMD Treatment in the News:  Dantrolene May Help Fight Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

[Source:  Medical News Today]

Drugs are currently being tested that show promise in treating patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), an inherited disease that affects about one in 3,600 boys and results in muscle degeneration and, eventually, death.

Now, scientists at UCLA have found a drug, already approved by the U.S. Food &Drug Administration and being used in humans, that provides a powerful boost to the therapy currently being tested in clinical trials. They hope this one-two punch used in combination will overcome the genetic mutations that cause DMD, restore a missing protein needed for proper muscle function and allow those affected by the disease to lead relatively normal lives.

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

New Testing Methods in the News:  Video-Based Test to Study Language Development in Toddlers and Children With Autism

[Source: Science Daily.com and JOVE.com]

Parents often wonder how much of the world their young children really understand. Though typically developing children are not able to speak or point to objects on command until they are between eighteen months and two years old, they do provide clues that they understand language as early as the age of one. These clues provide a point of measurement for psychologists interested in language comprehension of toddlers and young children with autism, as demonstrated in a new video-article published in JoVE (Journal of Visualized Experiments).

 

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

Feel Good Story of the Week: Globe's Autism-Friendly 'Grinch' Steals Hearts

[Source: UT San Diego]

 

The Grinch may rest his rep on separating people from their Christmas presents, but Saturday at the Old Globe Theatre, the comical Dr. Seuss villain came bearing a rare gift indeed.

 

The Balboa Park theater presented a special performance of its popular holiday musical "Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas!," geared toward people with autism and their families.

 

The performance, the first of its kind at a major local theater (and inspired by similar initiatives on Broadway), featured modified sound, lighting and other effects in deference to sensory sensitivities.

 

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

Autism in the News:  Don't Blame Autism for Newtown - Articles to Share

Editor's Note:  Regardless of whether the shooter in the Newtown massacre had Asperger's Syndrome,  it is important to debunk the rapidly spreading myth that Autism Spectrum Disorders and violent behavior are somehow intrinsically connected.    As pediatric therapists, let's do our part to correct this damaging notion.   Please share some of these excellent articles that have appeared over the past week: 

 

 Read these Articles Through a Link on our Blog

Hearing Loss in the News:  Speaking Skills Crucial for Hearing Impaired Children in the Classroom  

[Source: Science Daily]

 

Current special education laws are geared towards integrating special-needs children into the general classroom environment from a young age, starting as early as preschool. Prof. Tova Most of Tel Aviv University's Jaime and Joan Constantiner School of Education and the Department of Communications Disorders at the Stanley Steyer School of Health Professions says that these laws present a unique set

 

 Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

Language Development in the News:  Toddlers' Language Skills Predict Less Anger by Preschool  

[Source: Science Daily]

 

Toddlers with more developed language skills are better able to manage frustration and less likely to express anger by the time they're in preschool. That's the conclusion of a new longitudinal study from researchers at the Pennsylvania State University that appears in the journal Child Development.

 

"This is the first longitudinal evidence of early language abilities predicting later aspects of anger regulation," according to Pamela M. Cole, liberal arts research professor of psychology and human development and family studies at Pennsylvania State University, who was the

 

  Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

Neuroscience in the News:  The Extraordinary Ease of Ordinal Series  

[Source:  Science Daily]

 

Familiar categories whose members appear in orderly sequences are processed differently than others in the brain, according to new research published by David Eagleman in the open access journal Frontiers in Neuroscience on December 20th, 2012. The study suggests that ordinal sequences have a strong spatial quality and activate a region of the brain not thought to be directly involved in language acquisition and production. Also, sequences shown in the correct order stimulated less brain activity in comparison to sequences that were not in the correct order, implying that the brain could predict what was coming and needed less activity to understand it.


 Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

ADHD & OCD in the News:  Mistaking OCD for ADHD Has Serious Consequences   

[Source: Science Daily]

 

On the surface, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) appear very similar, with impaired attention, memory, or behavioral control. But Prof. Reuven Dar of Tel Aviv University's School of Psychological Sciences argues that these two neuropsychological disorders have very different roots - and there are enormous consequences if they are mistaken for each other.

 

Prof. Dar and fellow researcher Dr. Amitai Abramovitch, who completed his PhD under Prof. Dar's supervision, have determined that despite appearances, OCD and ACHD are far more different than alike. While groups of both OCD and ADHD patients were found to have difficulty controlling their abnormal impulses in a laboratory setting, only the ADHD group had significant problems with these impulses in the real world.

 

 Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

App Review of the Week:  Jolly Jingle   

Reprinted with permission as appeared on TherapyApp411.  Thank you to Jessica Chase of Consonantly Speaking for this review.  Check out her blog for more great app reviews.

App Name/Developer:  Jolly Jingle by Hompimplay

 

Christmas is on its way and the school halls are full of music! Every afternoon when I am walking down the hall, I hear first and second graders practicing Christmas songs for their Chrismas musical! It's definitely a great time to sing along with your children and help them learn various carols full of cheer, and Jolly Jingle is just the app to do so! With written lyrics, fun animations, and multiple versions of various Christmas carols, this application is non-stop fun for the Christmas season! Continue reading to learn how to incorporate it into your therapy room!

 

Read the Rest of this App Review Through a Link our Blog

Holiday Gift Guide:  Best 10 Toys, Games and Books That Spark Fun and Encourage Language   

[Source:  Play on Words]

 

Sustained interaction with children guides Playonwords founder, Sherry Artemenko, to a unique subset of the best toys, games and books that have the chemistry to develop language while delivering great play. Today, Playonwords is announcing the Top 10 picks in each product category of 2012 winners.

Providing parents and educators with the TOP 10 PAL Award Picks for 2012, takes guess work out of gift giving for the holidays. Each product has been tested and reviewed by Sherry and her team of parents, kids and educators. Observing kids in action, combined with her critical eye for language potential, Sherry awards products and writes insightful reviews offering practical tips on how to 

 

Read the Rest of this Article and Gift Guide on our Blog 

Video Resource of the Week:  How to Teach Handwriting   

This is an excellent video series is geared to parents to teach foundational handwriting skill development to their children.   Please join NYC-based Occupational Therapist and certified  Handwriting Without Tears specialist, Lauren Stern, in learning these techniques by clicking on the link below.

 Watch this Video Through a Link our Blog

Best of the Year:  PediaStaff's 2012 'Best of' List: Our Favorite Pediatric Therapy / Special Needs Resources of the Year  

'Tis the season for 'top ten' and "best of" lists!   I thought about listing my favorite speech-language, OT, and PT blogs, but I just can't bear to choose.   There are so many!  Perhaps after the New Year I will compile a list of my favorites without picking a best.   After all, we follow almost 200 blogs and have featured articles and posts from a great many of them!

After further thought, I came to the conclusion that since PediaStaff is a resource for all pediatric therapists, (and more recently parents as well), perhaps our contribution to the "best of" lists this year could reflect our favorite general and all inclusive special needs and disability resources ideal for pediatric and school based therapists.   So here they are!

 

Learn About These Great Resources on our Blog

OT Corner: Teaching Colors Using Multi-Sensory Instruction   

by Anne Zachry, OTR/L

This article reprinted with permission of the author as it appeared in the Pediatric Occupational Therapy Tips blog

If you are working with a student who is having difficulty learning his colors, implementing a multi-sensory approach might be effective

Pair each color with a song. The following songs are nice because each color song has a different tune:

Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog


Pediatric Therapy Corner: Did You Know You Could Lose Everything on Your iPad?

by Barbara Fernandes,  The Geek SLP
reprinted with permission of the author as it apppeared on the Geek SLP blog

Did you know that if you buy a new iPad or if your iPad gets stolen you could lose all the data from your SLP apps? In my presentations I spend a great deal of time making people aware that the vast majority of SLP apps used for tracking data do not use the cloud (due to privacy) and the data is stored on the device itself. What that means is that it is very easy for you to lose that data. Here are some not so fun ways you could lose the data on all those apps you have been using to track student progress:

 

Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog

SLP Professor's Corner: Project Showcase - /f�bjuləs fənɛtɪks/

by:  Karen Clark, M.A. CCC-SLP

 

Editor's Note:  Please enjoy this wonderful and refreshing post by Lisa Geary of Live Speak Love as she shares some of her favorite projects that her phonetics students completed during her first semester as Clinical Assistant Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Towson University!

Today I gave my last final exam of my first semester at Towson University! Now to grade the stack of ~ 80 exams.  I can honestly say that I absolutely LOVED teaching the two sections of Phonetics class I was given in addition to my other clinical responsibilities. The Phonetics of American English class is one of the very first classes TU students take after they are admitted into the Audiology, Speech-Language Pathology and Deaf Studies major (following pre-major status and a competitive application process that allows only the top 70 students officially into the

 

 Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog

Worth Repeating: Coping with Crisis - Helping Children With Special Needs; Tips for School Personnel and Parents

Editor's Note:  The National Association of School Psychologists has several excellent resources for helping children cope with tragedies like the horrific events at Sandy Hook.   Please visit their website which has a series of relevant links on their homepage at this time.     We would like to call your attention to one article in particular on helping children with special needs cope with crises.
 
[Source:  National Association of School Psychologists]

When a crisis event occurs-in school, in the community or at the national level-it can cause strong and deeply felt reactions in adults and children, especially those children with special needs. Many of the available crisis response resources are appropriate for use with students with disabilities, provided that individual consideration is given to the child's developmental and emotional maturity. Acts of healing such as making drawings, writing letters, attending 

 

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

Also Worth Repeating: The New Science Behind Children's Temper Tantrums

Thank You to the folks at Beyond Therapy Pediatric Clinic for featuring this article in their Kids@Play Scoop It newsletter!

[Source:  Time Magazine] 

by Bonnie Rochman

 

There are distinct advantages to being a writer covering parenting, who just happens to have three kids from whom to draw inspiration. On Monday, within minutes of my editor asking me to write about a new study that scientifically diagrams the patterns of children's temper tantrums, my very own 4-year-old offered herself up as Exhibit A.

 

The study, published in the journal Emotion, finds that the "vocalizations" involved in tantrums - the screaming, shrieking, wailing and general unhappiness that make up a meltdown - actually follow a rhythm. Far from being the flailing, unprogrammed events we'd previously assumed they were, tantrums actually have recognizable peaks and valleys that can be analyzed in hopes of cultivating a better response from parents and teachers.   

 

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

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