Monday, February 28, 2011

February Positive Autism News

Autistic pupil who 'would never speak' records single

Local recruit turns disability into advantage
By Jeffrey Wolf
Colorado News 9

'American Idol': James Durbin overcomes Asperger's, Tourette's and more to rock out
By Andrea Reiher

They're assets at work — and they're autistic
By Frederick Melo

Newark airport program helps autistic children cope with air travel
 By Steve Strunsky/The Star-Ledger

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Advice for Parents of Newly-diagnosed Children

From an Interview with Association for Science in Autism Treatment Board Member, Cyndy Hayes
Interview by David Celiberti, Ph.D., BCBA-D

"Any advice for parents of newly-diagnosed children?

Yes, I do have a few suggestions:

Become an autism expert. Learn as much as you can.

Be a discriminating consumer of products, programs and services. Examine outcomes – require and make sure you understand the data.

Understand and challenge any assumptions about your child that limits him or her. You are the expert on and voice of your child. Build an effective team of professionals for your child, but you drive the process.

Work with other families; they have similar needs and can be a great source of information and support. Together you can do more.

And even though this is a huge challenge and it often feels like you have to take it one day at a time, find those moments when you have just a little bit of reserve energy. Use this time to take the long view.

Autism is a lifelong disability. Lifelong planning is critical to providing quality lifelong support. This means seeking legal and financial advice. It also means creating a vision for what your child’s life can look like at its best and creating a plan to make that a reality.

And finally take a deep breath; take lots of deep breaths. Take care of yourself and if you have a partner in this journey, take care of each other. You can do this!" 

Copyright © 2010. The Association for Science in Autism Treatment (ASAT). All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Terrific Traits of People with Autism

I wanted to include these articles this month, as our focus is on parents receiving a new diagnosis. I wanted as much positive information to be included as possible. However, I think these articles share a unique perspective and are good reads, not just for new parents, but for anyone touched by autism.

Top 10 Terrific Traits of Autistic People:

Autistic Traits: A Plus for Many Careers:

Friday, February 25, 2011

Top 10 Treatments for Autism

Top 10 Top Treatments for Autism
By Lisa Jo Rudy, Guide

From the introduction to the article: "As you start to dig deeply into the literature on autism treatments, you'll find dozens of available options. Which are the 'best' treatments? As the professionals will tell you over and over again, every child's needs are different. The treatments described in this article are among the best known, best researched, and most likely to produce positive results." Read the complete article here:

As with any autism intervention, please review the research summary on each intervention method on this website before using it with your child. This website provides information on whether research shows various treatment methods are considered helpful, harmful, or simply not yet supported by research.

Be sure to ask any professional that you hire for his or her qualifications, as well as for information on research supporting their intervention method. Ideally, an intervention should be supported by experimental studies, not just anecdotal reports and testimonials.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Autism Overview: What We Know

A helpful factsheet from The Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Finding an Autism Support Group

There are numerous support groups available for parents and families of children with autism. Some of the groups that I have had the most experience with are the following organizations.

Autism Society of America:
Main website:
Local groups:

Families for Early Autism Treatment (FEAT):
Main website:
Local groups: on the main website, scroll down on the left side of the page, and look under the heading "Other FEAT websites."

Autism Speaks:
Main website:
State resources:

Yahoo Groups (find an online support group):

Autism and PDD Support Network (a very active online support group):

Another way to find a local support group is to do an online search (such as with Google or Yahoo) for "autism support group YOUR LOCATION."

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Recommended Reading Following a Diagnosis

These are my personal favorite resources for families new to autism. Please feel free to leave a comment on this post and share yours.

Online Resources:

Autism Spectrum Disorders Fact Sheet:
El Espectro del Autismo en español:

Autism Speaks 100 Days Kit ("created specifically for newly diagnosed families to make the best possible use of the 100 days following their child's diagnosis"):
Manual de 100 Días de Autism Speaks en español:

Asperger Syndrome and High Functioning Autism 100 Days Tool Kit ("a tool kit to assist families in getting the critical information they need in the first 100 days after an Asperger Syndrome or High Functioning Autism diagnosis"):


The Autism Checklist: A Practical Reference for Parents and Teachers (J-B Ed: Checklist)
The Autism Checklist: A Practical Reference for Parents and Teachers by Paula Kluth and John Shouse

Emergence: Labeled Autistic
Emergence: Labeled Autistic by Temple Grandin and Margaret M. Scariano

Overcoming Autism: Finding the Answers, Strategies, and Hope That Can Transform a
Overcoming Autism: Finding the Answers, Strategies, and Hope That Can Transform a Child's Life by Lynn Kern Koegel and Claire LaZebnik

Not Even Wrong: A Father's Journey into the Lost History of Autism
Not Even Wrong: A Father's Journey into the Lost History of Autism by Paul Collins
(Note: this book is more of an interesting story than a facts, strategies, and information book).

Recommended support groups and organizations will be featured in our next post.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

What to Do After an Autism Diagnosis

What to Do After the Autism Diagnosis
By Lisa Jo Rudy,

A brief intro article for parents receiving an autism diagnosis. One of my favorite suggestions from the article:

Remember That Your Child has not Changed
"Yesterday, your child was not labeled autistic. Today, he or she has been handed that label by a professional. But the label doesn't change your child or your love for him or her. All the good things you saw in your child yesterday are still there today -- and will be there forever. Part of your job will be to help him or her build on those strengths to compensate for the challenges of autism."

Read the entire article here:

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Positively Autism's February Focus

This month, Positively Autism will feature resources for parents receiving a new autism diagnosis for their child. Additionally, we'll have our regular features of new printable materials and positive autism news.

If you'd like to share a resource (books, articles, websites, etc.) that you think would be helpful for the family of a newly diagnosed child, please e-mail it to . Thanks!

Be sure to check out the Daily Autism Freebie this month for Valentine's Day resources.