March 1, 2013
Weekly Edition 
Issue 7, Volume 6
It's All About the Choices!     
          
Greetings and Happy Friday

Please enjoy our newsletter offering.  Have a great weekend!
 
News Items:
 
  • Children With Brain Lesions Able to Use Gestures Important to Language Learning
  • Fragile X Makes Brain Cells Talk Too Much  
  • Music Therapy Improves Behavior in Children With Autism, Study Suggests
  • Giving a Voice to Kids With Down Syndrome
  • 'Network' Analysis of Brain May Explain Features of Autism
  • New Studies Link Gene to Selfish Behavior in Kids, Find Other Children Natural Givers
  • Sleep Reinforces Learning: Children's Brains Transform Subconsciously Learned Material Into Active Knowledge
  • High Fat Diets Maybe Linked To ADHD And Learning Problems
  • A Message from the SPD Foundation Regarding Adam Lanza
  • News Worth Repeating:  See Y'all in Texas! Come Meet PediaStaff at TSHA 2013 

Therapy Activities, Tips and Resources
  • SLP Resources of the Week: Praxis Resources Curated by Praactical AAC
  • Pinterest Pin of the Week: Simple Cues for the 'S' Sound
  • App of the Week: Dr. Panda's Veggie Garden
  • OT Activity of the Week: St, Patrick's Day Fine Motor Craftivity

Articles and Special Features 

  • OT Parent's Corner: As Mothers of Blind Children, We Want an OT Who...
  • Speech Therapy Parent's Corner: Judge Not...A Mother's Journey 
  • Pediatric Therapy Corner: How to Sneak Fine Motor Skills into Gross Motor Play   
  • Worth Repeating: Why Girls May Be Protected Against Autism: Time Magazine Feature
  • Also Worth Repeating: The Critical Encounter - Facilitating Positive Parent Adaptation to CAS
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Have a great weekend and Take Care!

Heidi Kay and the PediaStaff Team





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Language Development in the News: Children With Brain Lesions Able to Use Gestures Important to Language Learning

[Source: Science Daily]

Children with brain lesions suffered before or around the time of birth are able to use gestures - an important aspect of the language learning process- to convey simple sentences, a Georgia State University researcher has found.

Seyda Ozcalıskan, assistant professor of psychology, and fellow researchers at the University of Chicago, looked at children who suffered lesions to one side of the brain to see whether they used gestures similar to typically developing children. She examined gestures such as

Fragile X in the News:  Fragile X Makes Brain Cells Talk Too Much

[Source:  Science Daily]

 

The most common inherited form of mental retardation and autism, fragile X syndrome, turns some brain cells into chatterboxes, scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis report.

 

The extra talk may make it harder for brain cells to identify and attend to important signals, potentially establishing an intriguing parallel at the cellular level to the attention problems seen in autism.

According to the researchers, understanding the effects of this altered signaling will be important to developing successful treatments for fragile X and autism.


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

Music Therapy in the News:  Music Therapy Improves Behavior in Children With Autism, Study Suggests

[Source:  Science Daily]

 

Weekly music therapy sessions can have a positive effect on behaviour in children with autism, reports a paper in Pertanika Journal. In a study of 41 children, improvements were seen particularly in inattentive behaviours over a ten month period.

 

Weekly music therapy sessions lasting just an hour can have a positive effect on behaviour in children with autism, reports a paper in Pertanika Journal this month. In a study of 41 children, improvements were seen particularly in inattentive behaviours over a ten month period. The researchers hope that their

 

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

Stuttering and Down Syndrome in the News: Giving a Voice to Kids With Down Syndrome

[Source:  Science Daily]

 

Researchers from the University of Alberta are helping children with Down syndrome who stutter find their voice and speak with ease.

 

Stuttering is a common problem that affects almost half of all children with Down syndrome, yet despite the scope of the problem, little research exists about preferred treatment options - or even whether to treat at all. Researchers with the U of A's Institute for Stuttering Treatment and Research (ISTAR) point to a new case study that shows fluency shaping can indeed improve a child's speech.


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

Autism Research in the News:  'Network' Analysis of Brain May Explain Features of Autism 

[Source: Science Daily]

 

A look at how the brain processes information finds a distinct pattern in children with autism spectrum disorders. Using EEGs to track the brain's electrical cross-talk, researchers from Boston Children's Hospital have found a structural difference in brain connections. Compared with neurotypical children, those with autism have multiple redundant connections between neighboring brain areas at the expense of long-distance links.

 

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

The "Generosity Gene" in the News:  New Studies Link Gene to Selfish Behavior in Kids, Find Other Children Natural Givers  

[Source: Science Daily] 

 

Most parents would agree that raising a generous child is an admirable goal - but how, exactly, is that accomplished? New results from the University of Notre Dame's Science of Generosity initiative, which funds generosity research around the world, shed light on how generosity and related behaviors - such as kindness, caring and empathy - develop, or don't develop, in children from 2 years old through adolescence.

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

The Importance of Sleep in the News:  Sleep Reinforces Learning: Children's Brains Transform Subconsciously Learned Material Into Active Knowledge  

[Source:  Science Daily]

During sleep, our brains store what we have learned during the day - a process even more effective in children than in adults, new research shows.

 

It is important for children to get enough sleep. Children's brains transform subconsciously learned material into active knowledge while they sleep - even more effectively than adult brains do, according to a study by Dr. Ines Wilhelm of the University of Tubingen's Institute for Medical Psychology and

 Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

ADHD in the News:  High Fat Diets Maybe Linked To ADHD And Learning Problems   

[Source:  Daily Mail UK]

A high-fat diet may be linked to the hyperactivity disorder ADHD and learning disabilities, new research suggests.

The effect is so profound that eating lots of fatty food for even a week can cause behavioral changes - even before any weight gain sets in.


It's thought that too much fat may alter how the body metabolizes dopamine, a chemical with a key role in regulating mood.

 

 Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

SPD in the News:  A Message from the SPD Foundation Regarding Adam Lanza    

[Source: SPD Foundation]

 

On February 19, PBS aired an investigative report that stated Adam Lanza, the young man who killed 20 children and six adults at a school in Newtown, Connecticut in December, had been diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) as a young child. ABC.com contacted the SPD Foundation the day before the story aired asking us to provide information about SPD. Dr. Lucy Jane Miller, founder and research director of the SPD Foundation, explained SPD and the vital importance of support for the individuals and families impacted by this disorder. Read the full story at ABC.com.

 

Read the Rest of this Message on our Blog

News Worth Repeating:  See Y'all in Texas!  Come Meet PediaStaff at TSHA 2013   

Are you a Texas-based Speech-Language Pathologist?
 

PediaStaff loves Texas and can't wait to meet you at the 57th Annual TSHA Convention and Exhibition!   This year it's in Dallas from Thursday, March 7-March 9th at the Dallas Convention Center.

We will be at Booth #313 and will have Toobaloos (of course) while supplies last!   Come meet our entire Texas team to hear what PediaStaff can do for your pediatric or school based speech-language pathology career in Texas.


 Learn More Through a Link our Blog

SLP Resources of the Week:  Praxis Resources Curated by Praactical AAC     

Studying for the Praxis?  Check out this collection of resources and materials curated on ScoopIt by the folks at Praactical AAC

 Check out these Praxis Resources Through a Link our Blog

Pinterest Pin  of the Week:  Simple Cues for the 'S' Sound  

This great post by Communication Station Speech Therapy is our Pinterest Pin of the Week with almost 250 repins so far.   

 

[Source: Communication Station Speech Therapy]

 

Difficulty producing the "S" sound is a typical parental concern.  It is not uncommon for children to use interdental placement (i.e. tongue between the front teeth) to produce the "s" and "z" sounds.  The question many parents have is "How do I get my child to make the "s" sound correctly?"


 Check out this Pin Through a Link our Blog

App Review of the Week:  Dr. Panda's Veggie Garden    

[Source:  Speechie Apps]

I've been neglecting you Android users lately, so I wanted to share a little love and tell you about a relatively new app that works on both Android and Apple operating systems! It's also one of the few kids' apps available on Google Play to measure up to what is available on iOS, in my oh-so-humble opinion. :)

App: Dr. Panda's Veggie Garden (Android) (Apple) (Amazon)

What It Is: An app for growing fruits and veggies in an interactive garden by TribePlay.

 

Read this App Review on our Blog

OT Activity of the Week: St. Patrick's Day Fine Motor Craftivity   

Editor's Note: We love this fine motor craft which involves threading beads, fine motor manipulation of pipe cleaners, and hand strengthening (squeezing glitter glue)

[Source:  Carrots are Orange]

I received this great package of craft supplies from Craft Project Ideas filled with green goodness. As you know I have been a bit obsessed with exploring green. What can I say? I get inspired by the holidays and traditions.  Honestly, I am not a super crafty person but I do try my best. So I took the lovely, soft emerald green pipecleaners and the cute green pony beads and decided to make a St. Patrick's Day shamrock craft.

 Learn More About this Great Craft Through a Link on our Blog

OT Parent's Corner: As Mothers of Blind Children, We Want an OT Who...

By Amber Bobnar, Wonderbaby.org

When my son, Ivan, was born we lived in Hawai'i. Ivan was born blind and with multiple syndromes resulting in the need for intensive Early Intervention therapies.

 

Our EI team had experience working with kids who had low muscle tone or kids who had speech delays, but blindness was new to them. As we heard over and over again, "Visual impairment in a low incidence disability." In other words, blindness wasn't something they had ever had to deal with before.

 

Our therapists often told us that they were "learning along with us" or that they were happy to be having this "new experience" (as if we should be proud to be lending them a new line to their resume), but in the end we became frustrated with their lack of knowledge and we decided to move.


Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog


Speech Therapy Parent's Corner: Judge Not...A Mother's Journey

SLPs, educators, parents, and anyone needing a bit of inspiration in life today - please join me in welcoming featured contributor, Gretchen Hines. Gretchen graciously agreed to share this very personal, heartfelt account of her journey as a mother of a child with apraxia. Perhaps you are on a similar journey with your own loved one, or perhaps you are working to make a difference in the lives of families like Gretchen's. Whatever your story,  I hope that you will find inspiration in this mother's words. I know I did. ~Lisa Geary, LiveSpeakLove

by Gretchen Hines

 

It has been a few months since I have posted, but September came, school and sports started and my time became sparse. But, I'm back! Hoping to catch up on and continue to post about the happy happenings of our large household.

 

What got me started tonight has been weighing heavy on my mind for a few weeks and I thought it best to make a post, in hopes that it may change, if only one persons perspective on what I am about to approach.

 

Sixteen years ago this past October, we were blessed with our first born son, Tyler. As any first time parent would do we carefully marked milestones...first smile, sitting, crawling, walking, first word... Tyler made all of those milestones mostly right on time. right around a year or so old he spoke "mama" and "dada" for the first time. His brother Ben was born when

 Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog

Pediatric Therapy Corner: How to Sneak Fine Motor Skills into Gross Motor Play

by Christie Kiley, M.A., OTR/L
 

Parents and teachers often ask me how they can incorporate more fine motor practice into their child's or student's day.
 

Well, try this one thing: Sneak fine motor practice into their gross motor play!
 

Many kiddos I work with struggle to sit still, focus, or follow adult-directed tasks, and their fine motor development suffers as a result. That's why they're getting OT! Asking them to sit at a table and transfer color-coded clothespins from one paper plate to another for a few minutes? Forget about it! Not gonna work for these movers and wigglers.

 

Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog

Worth Repeating: Why Girls May Be Protected Against Autism: Time Magazine Feature

[Source: Time Magazine]

Boys outnumber girls when it comes to autism diagnoses, and researchers may have uncovered one reason why.

 

Boys are four times more likely to be diagnosed with autism than girls, but whether that trend is rooted in biological differences between the genders or the fact that girls might simply hide their symptoms better, hasn't been clear.

 

The gender-based difference could be due to factors that increase the risk among boys, or, alternatively, factors that protect girls. Researchers led by Elise Robinson of Harvard Medical School decided to investigate the latter, and determine whether there might be something about being female that protected girls from the the developmental disorder. The team analyzed data from two large samples of twins, one from Sweden and the other from the U.K. They theorized

Also Worth Repeating: The Critical Encounter: Facilitating Positive Parent Adaptation to CAS

by Colleen Miron, Ph.D.

For a long time, researchers endorsed a very negative view of how parents adapt (or more accurately, how they felt they did not adapt) to having a child with a disability. This model was to a large extent influenced by the negative social-cultural beliefs toward individuals with disabilities that persisted through the 1970s. Examples of positive adaption found in research and practice "were frequently dismissed as denial or as an attempt by parents to alleviate their guilt" (Stainton & Besser, 1998, para. 2). This resulted in a negatively biased framework, which emphasized pathological maladjustment and defense mechanisms in psychological functioning of parents and families of children with disabilities.

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

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