Behavior Strategies

Does Research Say that Weighted Vests & Blankets Help People with Autism, ADHD, and Anxiety?

Does Research Say that Weighted Vests & Blankets Help People with Autism, ADHD, and Anxiety?

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Working in public schools for over 10 years, I frequently saw occupational therapists utilizing weighted vests with students diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Autism Spectrum Disorder.(ASD). When I asked about the purpose of the vests, I was told that they have a calming effect because they give the wearer a sense ofContinue Reading

8 Major Principles of Positive Behavior Support

8 Major Principles of Positive Behavior Support

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While in graduate school for education and school psychology, I learned about the principles of positive behavior support, a research-based practice. At the time, I was working in a group home with individuals with a variety of emotional and behavioral needs. I knew this was the perfect setting to implement my newly learned strategies. I immediately sawContinue Reading

Five Helpful Fidget Tools for Kids with Autism & ADHD! (Fidgeting Improves Focus)

Five Helpful Fidget Tools for Kids with Autism & ADHD! (Fidgeting Improves Focus)

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A recent study on ADHD indicates that fidgeting actually improves, not hinders, focus. Maybe it is time to stop telling our kids to “sit still” or “stop playing with that.” Speaking from personal experience, I know that I actually focus better on verbal input when my hands or feet are moving in some way. What about you?Continue Reading

Please Stop Saying ADHD Isn’t Real! Here’s Why!

Please Stop Saying ADHD Isn’t Real! Here’s Why!

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If you are not familiar with the symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), below is an image of the the diagnostic criteria reported in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders-Fifth Edition (DSM-V), which is the manual utilized by doctors (i.e., psychologists, psychiatrists, pediatricians) to diagnose ADHD. After the image, I will discuss myContinue Reading

How to Handle Temper Tantrums (Home & School)

How to Handle Temper Tantrums (Home & School)

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This is Part 2 of a Series. Please see Part 1: How to Prevent Temper Tantrums in order for Part 2 to make sense. It is not recommended that you read Part 2 without reading Part 1 first. Continuation from Part 1: If your child argues, cries, begs, pleads, throw herself on the floor, etc., even afterContinue Reading

How to Prevent Temper Tantrums (Home & School)

How to Prevent Temper Tantrums (Home & School)

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The contents of this article are based on my graduate school training as a school psychologist and behavior specialist, research studies on behavior, and 20 years of experience working with children with a variety of challenging behaviors. You will find links to more information within the article.  This is Part 1 of a series. Part 2Continue Reading

An Interactive Story about What School Is Like and How to Behave

An Interactive Story about What School Is Like and How to Behave

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Below you will find an interactive social story about going to school. The story can be used to help children prepare for a typical school day including their first day of school. You can also read this story with your child to practice reading skills. Social stories are a research-based tool used to help childrenContinue Reading

How to Set Up the Classroom for Students with Autism and ADHD

How to Set Up the Classroom for Students with Autism and ADHD

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This article gives a number of strategies that you can use in the classroom (or at home) to create a physical environment that helps meet the educational and behavioral needs of individuals with autism or ADHD. Very young children or children who have trouble understanding language would also benefit from some of these strategies. Every person is a unique individual,Continue Reading

Top 10 Discipline Tips for Kids with Oppositional Defiant Disorder

Top 10 Discipline Tips for Kids with Oppositional Defiant Disorder

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Raising a child with oppositional defiant disorder can be extremely frustrating because you feel like everything is a constant battle. You just want your child to do his homework, pick up his toys, get dressed for school, etc. and you are constantly faced with refusal. As a behavior specialist and school psychologist I have hadContinue Reading

17 Ways to Get Your Kids to Listen to You and Show You Respect

17 Ways to Get Your Kids to Listen to You and Show You Respect

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This article gives you tips that teach you how to get your kids to listen to you, show you respect, and connect with you. Working as a residential counselor, school psychologist, assistant teacher, tutor, mobile therapist, and babysitter, I have used all the strategies in this article with my own clients and students (except the onesContinue Reading