Nonverbal Facts and Ideas (From a Mother)

Here we are again, progress made with Antonio, then no progress. I’m not even mad though. We are making progress so much more than ever before. He is meeting goals after goals. He is a master when it comes to fine, gross, and even receptive language. The problem remains the same, how do we get him to talk?

We are using sign language now more than ever before. I can’t complain, we are all doing so well with the growth Antonio is having. There are still three things that lay into this nonverbal factor.

  1. Occupation Therapy (if he holds the spoon properly, he will be able to eat correctly!). Right now, when he does attempt to use his utensil, he licks whatever is on it, so he doesn’t use his full oral movement. By not having his motor movement here, it can affect his talking. We have to keep working with him; there’s no real way to prevent or make this happen otherwise.
  2. Physical Therapy (this is exactly what it sounds like). No, he doesn’t need it because of some accident. He needs it because he has sensory issues. The sensory problems affect his learning. If he is stimming, he can’t learn. If he focuses on getting sensory input, he simply isn’t going to be receptive at all to where we need him to be. (Read more about stimming here.)
  3. But, more importantly, we are trying to get him to speak. He’s in speech; how do we get this to work? I’m sick of hitting a wall. I’m sick of trying new things. But not really; I just want SOMETHING TO WORK. We are working day and night to get him to imitate our sounds (because he mimics everything else). It’s only a matter of time I keep telling myself.

We have a few actions that we are going to try out, so be on the lookout as we share our journey with these ideas. I know there are other moms out there struggling and going through this, so I want to share our experience so that you can have a good outcome, too.

“Good things happen to those who wait” is my current saying, along with “nothing will happen overnight.” Let’s face it it’s how I am feeling.

Put on your mama bear and move on girl, you need to try new things and take risks. I’m a business owner, right? So, I’m always taking risks, and it’s no different for my son now either, let’s do this!

Put on your mama bear and move on girl, you need to try new things and take risks. I’m a business owner, right? So, I’m always taking risks, and it’s no different for my son now either, let's do this!


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The Top Six Preschool Learning Digital Learning Activities

I know so many times people say that the teachnology can be bad for their kids. I get it, it can be. However, I think that they can learn so much from technology as long as they don’t abuse it. You are the parent, so you can control that.. Since my son is getting ready to enter preschool soon (not super soon), I want him to be ready. He is incredibly behind as it is, so I want to make sure that we have all the things handy to help him be successful. Here are some of our favorite digital learning activities.

  1. Top 30 Award-Winning Preschool Songs
  2. Preschool Circle Time Songs 
  3. Preschool Songs
  4. I’m a Book Lover 
  5. I’m Gonna Read a Book Someday 
  6. Pre-School Learning Songs-80 Classics

Let us know what you think about these options, we love to hear what our audience thinks. Make sure you allow your child to have fun, while learning. This really helps them to become successful. Happy learning!

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8 Fun Activities For Kids

I don’t like having my son watch tv or play on the iPad all day – or even simply just play with the same toys every day…. I was having a hard time finding what to do to keep him occupied, so I created a list of activities/exercises that we have enjoyed.. and they are SUPER simple.

Try These For a Fun Screen-Free Time:

  1. Create a Gymnastics Area in the House. Lately, Antonio has been loving the gymnastics thing and likes to pretend to walk on a balance beam + do somersaults so we set up an area and take it down as needed.
  2. Paper Plate Ring Toss. This is super easy and enjoyable. Just cut the plates in the middle and toss on to an old paper towel roll. You could even color the plates and make it more fun and colorful if you’d like!
  3. Masking Tape Car Track. This is uber entertaining for boys especially. You just grab masking tape and put it all over with a line in the middle. Have the kids put their cars on the “tracks” and play away.
  4. Under Hammock. You put a hammock under a table, square, bed, or even a playground. This will be a sure hit for warm days; let them bring a toy or book with them.
  5. Pool Noodle and Rubber Band Activity. This is a cinch, a delight, and great for fine motor skills. Cut pool noodles in half and let the kids put rubber bands on the noodles. You could even get creative and have different colored rubber bands!
  6. Cardboard Tube Drop Chute. Collect all the paper towel rolls throughout the week and put the little brown pieces on a wall, or floor, etc. Allow them to create a chute with about 5-6 of them. You will need to tape them together, so make sure you aren’t worried about possibly losing some paint on the wall. Once again, have a good time with painting the paper towels!
  7. Cardboard Bead Threading Activity. All of those extra toilet paper rolls now have meaning and a purpose. Save them and allow the kids to make a really large thread. You will need to put the paper rolls on a really long and strong piece of string or yarn.
  8. Pool Noodle Stringing Activity. Cut the pool noodles into about 10-15 pieces. You will need to put the noodles on a really long and strong piece of string or yarn just like you did with the toilet paper rolls.

When you get done with these fun activities, there are so many other great and engaging activities:

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How ABA Has Helped My Autism Child

With Antonio going to ABA full time now, I find myself seeing some prgression and regression at the same time. I can’t beat myself up about it and I can’t study why or how because it is only natural and will happen. I have to be patient and let things just happen.

All of these small milestones that he has accomplished this week seem like it would be common for kids at a much younger age than Antonio’s age, but we can’t compare kids like this. I like to share our milestones for others who might be going through something similar.

  1. He can brush his teeth!! Without actually hating it!! I still guide his hand a little bit but before we had to literally hold him down. We are now working on adding in new steps soon (like putting it away, etc). This has been a HUGE help!
  2. He does the sign for more then points at what he wants!! This is mega huge he could either do one or the other but never both at once. It is a two step process which is great and is a form of non-verbal communication.
  3. He sits (when asked and for long periods!!!). His attention is is there and he sits when asked, this makes me so happy knowing that her can sit and do some activities together. He can hold attention longer if something new is introduced and is exciting.
  4. He picks up toys and puts them  away when asked. We make him clean up his toys by picking up toys and putting into his toy box. We can do this for a ton of toys and actually be attentive! So we end up turning it into a fun game!!

All of these things we tried to do when he wasn’t in ABA, but it wasn’t consistent. Now, we are able to communicate non verbally! It is amazing how things have progressed and I can’t wait to see more of what will happen!

Purchase Antonio’s Favorite Toys:

 

 

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SPEAK A NEW LANGUAGE WITH CONFIDENCE WITH BABBEL

Tackle your New Year’s resolution to speak a new language with Babbel, the fun, effective, and easy way to learn a new language. Learn real-life conversational skills through lessons that are crafted by language experts and actual native speakers. Choose from 14 languages and go at your own pace, be it on the daily commute, in between appointments, or waiting in line. The 10-15 minute bite-sized lessons easily fit into your busy schedule and can be played from your desktop, smartphone, or tablet.

Registration with Babbel is free and the first lesson in every course, in every language, is free too! Once you’re ready for full access to courses, choose from monthly subscriptions as low as $6.95/month. Find out how Babbel stacks up against other language-learning apps and start today.

 

 

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Learning is fun with the right tools

Ever since Antonio has been diagnosed with autism I am constantly doing research and trying to find things to help with us. It is hard to get him to have fun and learn all at the same time. I mean learning shouldn’t be boring.. right? It shouldn’t have to be a chore and I shouldn’t to constantly think about activities to do with him to help him grow.

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That is why I was so glad to find M is for Monster! It is the perfect thing that I needed for Antonio. Each month it covers different themes or topics. It covers letter recognition, fine motor skills, number recognition and so much more.

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I love how everything I need is included in the box. I don’t have to be running around trying to find the crafts needed such as glue, markets, crayons, etc. IT IS ALL INCLUDED FOR ONE PRICE!! You can get these boxes monthly, or however often, but I really love having them monthly so that I don’t have to worry about it. One of the things most parents pride themselves in is making sure their little one is constantly learning and experiencing new things. But that takes time. Time most of us don’t have.It takes hours to plan out activities to do with your child to help them learn and have fun at the same. You have to go shopping for the supplies, always having to buy more than needed. And then you have to prepare and set up for the activities. Ugh. So exhausting.

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How does this help with autism? Well just the simple fact that there are fine motor activities helps Antonio a lot. He loves the quiet ended stuff.. meaning the stuff that is simple and easy to do on his own. He can’t color on his own but anything that has cars is super fun!!! PLUS.. the best part is that he loves to read and you can get books included in your box!

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So what are you wanting for? Order your kit today and see how excited you AND your child get when they receive their M is for Monster box in the mail! Or find out more info here. 

Happy learning!

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Bedtime activities that will have your kids saying ‘thank you’

“Your children are so polite and well behaved!” This is a statement every parent wants to hear! Without a doubt, we all want our children to be respectful; to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’; and to grow up to be competent teenagers and adults worth every “good citizenship” medal the world has to offer.

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Unfortunately, children don’t just grow up being honest and gracious. These are character traits that must be purposely taught (and practiced) in order to be mastered. And while school focuses on teaching math, history, and science, it is at home where children learn to be thoughtful and well mannered, to show sympathy for friends, and to understand the meaning of community.

Our job as parents is to cultivate and teach positive character traits at home… every single day. But teaching life lessons to our kids doesn’t have to be burdensome nor undesirable.

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Really… who wants to be that parent who’s always lecturing and nagging the kids about this type of stuff? We sure don’t! Instead, we’ve found an easier (and more gratifying) way to teach our children the personal skills they need, and have some fun while we’re at it: Bedtime activities games. That is why Koala Time is the best option for parents! 

Mini Board Games – There is something magical about board games. Starting with the set up of pawns, cards, and special components, there is always a feeling of adventure about a board game. Even after having played the same game before, there is always a new path, a different method, a unique ending. This is probably what makes board games such an excellent teaching tool! You can spark up conversations about decision-making, planning techniques, and even life strategies! All while your child is carefully listening and strategizing her next move.

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Card Games – Card games are a great way to challenge thought-process and reasoning speed.   ‘Memory’ style games encourage children to think fast while recalling images and pictures. This is a skill parents can use to teach how to make connections or to encourage the appreciation of different points of views. Card games are useful with topics on emotions, character training, and making good choices.

Puzzles – From paper-and-pencil, to mechanical and 3D widgets, every puzzle requires the understanding and recognition of patterns, which reinforce problem-solving skills. Puzzles games are a great way to introduce conversation topics on creativity, communication, and perseverance.

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We love this quote from Joseph Cornell: “Children understand and remember concepts best when they learn from direct personal experience” This is why we choose to teach character, work ethics, and relationships through “playthings” It works!

Their eyes light up and immediately their playful and learning senses are turned on when they hear “let’s play a game!” Of course our goal as parents is to nurture their development, guide their behaviors, and bring out the best in them along the way. But who said it had to be boring? Actually, it can be lots of fun!

We can instill character values and create memorable experiences for our children if we purposely incorporate playfulness and amusement into their lives. Kids are ready to play. Kids are ready to learn. It is up to us to embrace that opportunity and live out our parenthood to the fullest. Sharing fun bedtime activities is a great way to do just that. Have you tried playing games as part of your bedtime routine yet? Sign up for your Koala subscription today! 

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