July 29, 2016
Issue 30, Volume 9
It's All About the Choices!     
Greetings and Happy Friday!

Please enjoy our weekly newsletter!
News Items:
  • Majority of States Missing the Mark in Special Ed
  • Pokemon Go Sparks 'Miracle' Transformation in Boy with Autism
  • In First, United Healthcare to Offer ABA Coverage Nationwide 
  • Background Noise May Hinder Toddler's Ability to Learn Words
  • Children on Vegan Diets Run Risk of Malnutrition, Illness
  • Hearing Test May Identify Autism Risk
PediaStaff News and Hot Jobs 
  • Hot Jobs! Special Education (RSP) Teachers - San Jose, CA
  • Hot Job!  Residential School-Based SLP  - Aurora, IL
  • Hot Job! Part-time Pediatric Occupational Therapist - Rockville, MD
Therapy Activities, Tips and Resources
  • 7 Tools For Exploring Water Play 
  • Teaching Phonics Using Pool Noodles
  • Handwriting Idea of the Week: Minute Mania
  • Summer Olympics Freebie Activity
Articles and Special Features 
  • Autism Corner:  Pokemon Go and Autism
  • OT/PT Corner: Awesome Backyard Olympics Ideas for Kids
  • School Nurse Corner: USDA Dictates Final Rules on Smart Snacks in School Program
  • SLP Corner: Embracing 'Translanguaging' Practices: A Tutorial for SLPs
  • AAC Corner: PrAACtically August: Resources for A Year of Core Vocabulary Words
Feel free to contact us with any questions about our openings or items in these pages. Have you discovered our RSS feed? Click on the orange button below to subscribe to all our openings and have them delivered to your Feed Reader!  Don't have an RSS Feed Reader set up? Sign up at Blogtrottr and have our blog posts delivered right to your email.

Have a great weekend and Take Care!

Heidi Kay and the PediaStaff Team

The Career Center

The links to the right are "live" and reflect the most recent SLP, OT, PT and related assistant jobs, and ALL our Bilingual and School Psychology Jobs. 
To further narrow your search by state,
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Recent Occupational Therapist and COTA Jobs 

Majority of States Missing the Mark in Special Ed
[Source: Disability Scoop]

Federal education officials are calling out more than half of states for failing to meet their obligations under the nation's special education law.
The U.S. Department of Education determined that just 24 states qualified at the "meets requirements" level. The rest of the states were identified as "needs assistance" or "needs intervention" for the 2014-2015 school year.

Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog
Pokemon Go Sparks 'Miracle' Transformation in Boy with Autism
[Source:  The Today Show]
The "Pokemon Go" craze has been linked to car crashes, grim discoveries and even reports of people falling off a cliff. But the wildly popular mobile game has also led to a beautiful awakening in a 6-year-old boy named Ralphie.
Ralphie Koppelman has autism spectrum disorder and hyperlexia. He struggles socially, doesn't usually make eye contact with strangers, has difficulty holding conversations and panics when his routine changes.
But playing the game for the first time unlocked something special inside him

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog
In First, United Healthcare to Offer ABA Coverage Nationwide
[Source:  Disability Scoop]
The nation's largest health insurer says it will soon include coverage of applied behavior analysis in every group plan it offers.
UnitedHealthcare said that starting next year, every small and large group plan it sells across the country will feature coverage of the autism therapy.
"We recognize the growing interest in ABA among many consumers and in the marketplace," the insurer said in announcing the change. "Beginning on or after Jan. 1, 2017, UnitedHealthcare will be extending ABA benefit coverage to new and renewing fully insured small and large group plans in the few remaining states that do not mandate ABA coverage."

 Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog 
Background Noise May Hinder Toddler's Ability to Learn Words
[Source:  Medical X-Press]
The environments children are in, including how much and what kinds of stimulation they are exposed to, influence what and how they learn. One important task for children is zeroing in on the information that's relevant to what they're learning and ignoring what isn't. A new study has found that the presence of background noise in the home or at school makes it more difficult for toddlers to learn new words. The study also found that providing additional language cues may help young children overcome the effects of noisy environments.

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog
Children on Vegan Diets Run Risk of Malnutrition, Illness
[Source: Education News]
In Milan, Italy, a 14-month-old toddler was taken to the hospital earlier this month because the child weighed slightly more than an average three-month-old. The child, who had been kept on a vegan diet with no dietary supplements, was dangerously malnourished and suffered from precariously low levels of calcium.
Physicians were appalled by the child's condition when his grandparents showed up with the boy. Even worse, the baby had to have an emergency operation because of a  congenital heart condition that had 

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog
Hearing Test May Identify Autism Risk
[Source:  Medical X-Press]
Researchers have identified an inner ear deficiency in children with Autism that may impact their ability to recognize speech. The findings, which were published in the journal Autism Research, could ultimately be used as a way to identify children at risk for the disorder at an early age.
"This study identifies a simple, safe, and non-invasive method to screen young children for hearing deficits that are associated with Autism," said Anne Luebke, Ph.D., an associate professor in the University of Rochester Medical Center Departments of Biomedical Engineering and Neuroscience and a co-author of the study. "This technique may provide clinicians a new window into the disorder and enable us to intervene earlier and help achieve optimal outcomes."

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog
San Jose is rich in culture, history and opportunity.  PediaStaff has openings NOW for Resource Specialist Teachers (RSP), Special Education with the Moderate/Severe (MOD/SEV) credential to start in August.
* Location is San Jose
* We offer excellent pay rates based on your experience and the location
* Non-taxed / Per-Diem Wages available for qualified applicants (in accordance with IRS guidelines)
* New graduates are welcome!
Qualifications: Possess the State Of California Commission On Teacher Credentialing's Education Specialist Instruction Credential Moderate / Severe Authorization.

Learn More and Apply Through a Link on our Blog
Full time Speech-Language Pathologist needed to work in residential day school in the vicinity of Aurora, IL
* Experience working with children on the autism spectrum preferred
* This opening is at a residential facility located near the Aurora area of IL
* This is a Psychiatric Residential Treatment Facility (PRTF) for kids ages 8 - 21.
* Caseload is approximately 40 students.

* The facility is open year round.  The school does have typical breaks, including several weeks during the summer and four day work weeks during the summer
* School hours are 8:30-2:30, prefer therapist to work 8-4 but flex is available
Salary is competitive for the area and a full benefits package is offered.  This position is home to a "happy staff"!  Employees, teachers, and therapists have wonderful things to say about their employer and turnover is rare!  If you're looking for a long term fit and an environment where you can grow and learn as a therapist, look no further!

Learn More and Apply Through a Link on our Blog
This is not your average therapy clinic! We have a need for a dynamic Occupational Therapist to help us fill a part-time maternity leave position starting the end of September/early October and running for 12 weeks. This position is 12 hours per week, mainly afternoons. It's perfect for school therapists looking for additional hours! You would be joining a pediatric facility that uses a nonclinical model. There is no traditional therapy equipment - they believe in helping children in the natural environment and showing parents what they can be working on during the week with the children. Here you will find a synthetic ice rink, bike riding, canoeing, kayaking, time spent in nature and music programs.

Learn More and Apply Through a Link on our Blog 
Sensory Activity of the Week:  7 Tools For Exploring Water Play
[Source: No Time for Flashcards]
The summer is a time for preschool teachers to review what they have in their classrooms, and what they still need. As a preschool teacher, my main focus after providing a safe, secure place that my students fee they can be without their primary caregivers is to give my students fun new experiences that spark their thirst for learning at their developmental level.

Last week was Water Week ( click it for eve more ideas) for our summer camp program Camp Learn & Play and it sparked my interest in water play, and its role in the preschool classroom. So often we wait 

Read More Through a Link on our Blog
SLP Activity of the Week:  Teaching Phonics Using Pool Noodles
[Source: We Are Teachers]

Pool noodles are available everywhere during the summer, and they're inexpensive, too. So it's a great time to stock up for fun, hands-on classroom activities, like Pool Noodle Phonics.
What You Need:
To make this hands-on activity, which can be used at a center or for independent word work, all you need is:
  • Pool noodles in at least two different colors
  • Glue stick
  • Construction paper
  • Broom handle
  • Cutting board
  • Knife
  • Permanent marker
Learn More Through a Link on our Blog
Handwriting Activity of the Week:  Minute Mania
by Katherine J. Collmer, M.Ed., OTR/L

I have found that games that prove to be the most beneficial to students who are challenged by speed and fluidity are those that encourage them to compete against themselves.   Writing races can be a fun way to help writers work toward their "personal best" without the anxiety of matching or exceeding another person's strengths.  Minute Mania  has served that purpose in my clinic for a number of years.  I have implemented this racing game in individual sessions, as well as in handwriting clubs.  It can be adapted for beginning, intermediate, and advanced letter formation skills and is an efficient tool to include in home programs.  And it only involves 10 words.

Learn More Through a Link on our Blog
Visual Perception Activity of the Week:  Summer Olympics Freebie
[Source: Your Therapy Source]
The Summer Olympic Games are only a few weeks away!  This Summer Olympic games freebie activity, Find and Color is a fun way to encourage visual discrimination and visual motor skills with a Summer Olympic theme.  Find the medal winners and color them the correct color.  This visual perceptual puzzle is just one from the new Summer Olympic Games Packet that is filled with sensory motor and visual perceptual activities and games.  There are 40 Summer Olympic sport cards including:
Learn More Through a Link on our Blog 
Autism Corner:  Pokemon Go and Autism
[Source: Autism Speaks]

This post is from school psychologist Dr. Peter Faustino and member of the Autism Speaks Family Services Committee.

Pok√©mon GO is all the current rage.  And even if you are not an aficionado or think that the game is too childish, or even surprised that it is making a vigorous come back, the concept of GPS-based augmentative reality games are something that could be a promising new intervention for young adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog

OT/PT Corner:  Awesome Backyard Olympics Ideas for Kids
Article and Image Source: Melissa & Doug
by Kristina Buskirk
I have always loved watching the Summer Olympics. As a little kid I would glue myself to the TV watching gymnastics and cheering on my favorite athletes. Now as a mom I love to find ways to share Olympics fun with my own kids through simple games.
Today I am sharing four more simple Olympics themed activities that you can do in your backyard. These activities are easy to put together and a whole lot of fun. For our backyard Olympics each team was given an activity to do.

School Nurse Corner:  USDA Issues Last Rules on Smart Snacks in School Program
[Source:  Education News.org]

A USDA has announced to all US schools that unhealthy snacks for students must be eliminated in the 2016-2017 academic year, a move that completes the Smart Snacks in School program which began in 2014. Healthy snacks will be provided at schools to take the place of junk food.

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

SLP Corner: Embracing 'Translanguaging' Practices: Tutorial for SLPs
[Article and Image Source:  Smart Speech Therapy.com]
If you have been keeping up with new developments in the field of bilingualism then you've probably heard the term "translanguaging," increasingly mentioned at bilingual conferences across the nation.  If you haven't, 'translanguaging' is the "ability of multilingual speakers to shuttle between languages, treating the diverse languages that form their repertoire as an integrated system" (Canagarajah, 2011, p. 401).   In other words, translanguaging allows bilinguals to make "flexible use their linguistic resources to make meaning of their lives and their complex worlds" (Garcia, 2011, pg. 1).
AAC Corner: Resources for A Year of Core Vocabulary Words
[Source:  PraAACtical AAC]
The summer is flying by here in Florida and we're starting to think about heading back to school. Teachers, therapists, and aides play a pivotal role in helping AAC learners develop skills with core vocabulary so that they have a body of words that can be used across activities, environments, and communication partners. There are lots of 'right' ways to support these students. Among them is an instructional approach in which a new set of core words is introduced every few weeks in order to build their experiences with AAC. 

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

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