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Showing posts with the label Child development

Ten Things About Autism

10 Things About Autism  1. Behaviour is communication. All behaviour occurs for a reason. It tells you, even when my words can't, how I perceive what is happening around me. Negative behaviour interferes with my learning process. But merely interrupting these behaviours is not enough; teach me to exchange these behaviours with proper alternatives so that real learning can flow. Start by believing this: I truly do want to learn to interact appropriately. No child wants the negative feedback we get from "bad" behaviour. Negative behaviour usually means I am overwhelmed by disordered sensory systems, cannot communicate my wants or needs or don't understand what is expected of me. Look beyond the behaviour to find the source of my resistance. Keep notes as to what happened immediately before the behaviour: people involved, time of day, activities, settings. Over time, a pattern may emerge. 2. Never assume anything . Without factual backup, an assumption is

Autism Research Study - Institute of Psychiatry

By being a member of the National Autistic Society, I receive a quarterly magazine from them called Communication. A very interesting magazine packed with heaps of information, articles and advise. It was in the Summer 2010 edition that I first saw an advert by the Kings College London, Institute of Psychiatry looking for Autistic children to take part in a 3 year research study. I thought what a fantastic opportunity and promptly called the number advertised. I was put through to a wonderful young researcher who gave me the low down of what was involved and required from us. at the time we were currently living in rented accommodation while our house was rebuilt after the van parked itself in our front hall. (See When House Met Van post and blog for a recap). The Institute was studying how the brain develops, in particular the development of the white matter that builds connections between brain regions. They were studying this in children with and without Autism, to fin

Sleeping on the Window Sill

The build up to moving from Primary to Secondary school became more and more apparent as the months rolled by and the time crept ever closer. Ryan's meltdowns increased and he took to regularly sleeping on his window sill. In his bedroom he has a lovely deep sill that we made into a window seat. He spent a lot of time sitting, contemplating and so it appears, sleeping. Unfortunately Ryan was once again excluded during year 5 for violent behaviour, which although is inexcusable the reasons go back to that metaphorical fizzy pop bottle . The instances of bolting from school and becoming angry with the world once again escalated, but we now knew why these were happening and the SENCos from both schools where in close contact helping us all to prepare for Ryan’s next biggest challenge. Ryan was given extra ‘transition days’ in his new school to prepare him and make it a little less daunting, but the stress was too much and Ryan developed Shingles. He was really poorly for

White Rabbits

Mental Health Concerns. We didn’t have the best start to 2009 either. Ryan’s violence continued to escalate as did my concern for his mental health. He was still very violent & disruptive. He wanted to kill everyone or himself. His head was ‘Full of zombies & voodoo’ (no he wasn’t playing computer games at this point). Several more instances and meltdowns resulted in him bolting from the house and school. This is where the Education Psychologist (EP) comes in (remember I mentioned her in Horror Friday ). She first met Ryan in March 09, he was seven at this point, and she agreed that he was a very challenging boy. The EP provided a very detailed report on her day spent observing him and offered some excellent advice and strategies for managing the situation going forward. Things did improve slightly for April and one of the strategies of Ryan being moved ‘up’ a class for his Maths seemed to work well. Giving Ryan some much needed boost to his self esteem. Oh I do have a knack

Conners Questionnaire

Autism Ryan saw the Paediatric Team for the first time on Wednesday 12 November 2008, two days after his 7th birthday. The paediatrician we saw was the first person to take me seriously and agreed that we had a right to be concerned about Ryan’s development and mental health to date. That day was the first time that the term Autism was used officially. The paediatrician made an urgent referral to the Educational Psychologist team, gave me a bunch of questionnaires to complete and some that the school needed to do and off we toddled with a further appointment for 6 months time.  I make this episode sound light, but it really wasn't. We had spent over an hour with the Paediatrician who had taken an in-depth history of our lives thus far (fortunately I had kept diaries which really helped answering the myriad of questions). The reason I make this sound light hearted was simply because of the relief we felt that we were finally being taken seriously. Remember I had first raise

Classroom Meltdown

May 2008 Ryan, now six years old, completely trashed his classroom. This was the biggest most violent episode we have seen to this point. I started a food diary and once again turned my attentions to my suspicions that several food colourings, but particularly the preservative E211 Sodium Benzoate, seem to cause him to be extremely hyperactive. I paid for Ryan to have a full set of allergy tests done on Wednesday 25 June 2008. We found from those that Ryan has many intolerances to food, the worst of which is Gluten, closely followed by Wheat and all Dairy products. Also Oats, Barley, Oranges, and Yeast. I took this information to my GP as I wanted to request a more detailed assessment for behaviour due to recent developments in school. The GP however did not agree that food intolerances even exist let alone have any impact on behaviour. He did try a refer Ryan for a behaviour assessment but was told they would not see someone as young as Ryan. Unfortunately Ryan trashed his classro