Reach For The Stars Pediatric Therapy Blog

Reach For The Stars with this pediatric therapy and autism services blog by the national early intervention company Achieve Beyond serving CA, CT, FL, MD, NJ, NY and VA continuing to expand. This blog features stories about special needs children, professional therapists and editorials for special needs parents.
Oct
07

Fall Activities for Kids


Autumn-lovers, your favorite season is finally here. As the weather gets cooler and the leaves begin to change color, it's time to start thinking about how you can help your kids get outdoors and take advantage of all that this amazing season has to offer. From fun arts-and-crafts projects to festive outings, this list of 20 fall activities for kids has something for everyone! Visit an apple orchard. Make a classic apple crisp . Build a scarecrow stuffed with newspaper. Have an apple cider "tea" party. Bake apple chips. Make an apple stamp. Make handprint leaves . Jump into a leaf pile. Play "I Spy" during a nature walk. Collect and identify leaves. Press leaves into a photo album. Visit a zoo. Check out a haunted house. Make a necklace with Halloween-colored beads. Take a hayride at your local pumpkin patch. Toast the pumpkin seeds from your carved pumpkin. Decorate...
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Aug
13

How to Best Prepare Your Child for Their First Dental Appointment


There are a lot of sensory elements at the dentist’s office like loud noises, bright lights, as well as new tastes and smells. While this can be difficult for a child at first, they usually become more comfortable at each appointment. However, these sensory issues can be much harder for children with autism. Despite these difficulties, there are many ways to help your child with autism prepare for the dentist. I have been practicing family dentistry for 17 years and have worked with many families to help prepare their children for dental visits. I’ve compiled a list of the best tips that you can try with your child before their first dental appointment. Ask plenty of questions One of the best ways to prepare for your child’s first dental appointment, is to ask your dentist a lot of questions. This is a great way for getting detailed information about what...
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Jul
15

Family Reunion Tips


As summer is in full gear, many family reunions take place that can be challenging for children with ASD. It is not uncommon to encounter some difficulties related to changes in our environment and how we deal with them. This article is intended to provide some helpful tips based on the principles of ABA to help you make a positive and successful experience during family reunions! Regardless if you have ASD, there will always be a mix of personalities when relatives gather together. Therefore, we need to be realistic with our expectations on what we expect from our children during the gatherings such as family reunions. Tip 1: Pair your relatives: If you are concerned that your child will refrain from engaging with relatives whom they don’t get to see as often, re-arrange the environment in such a way so that your child will want to interact with their relatives....
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Jun
14

Transition into Summer


The summer break provides great opportunities for families and children to experience new activities, explore new locations, relax and stay in, forget about homework, say no to early mornings, and take a break from the overall rigid structure an academic environment provides. However, completely removing those structures and routines may not be the best approach for all children with ASD. All individuals, regardless of disability status or age, must move (i.e., transition) between multiple tasks and activities throughout the day (Sterling-Turner & Jordan, 2007) . In addition to difficulties in social relationships and communication, some individuals with autism may exhibit behavioral difficulties associated with changes in routines (American Psychiatric Association, 2000) . For most families, summer schedules include changes in routines such as shorter days in summer school, new teachers, babysitters/therapy providers and overall longer unstructured times. Be prepared to tackle on this summer by utilizing some of these tips...
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Apr
24

Tips for Traveling


Practice makes progress! Practice visiting similar places in advance. Show your child pictures and videos of where you will go. Talk about the trip in the weeks prior to departure. Use a timer to practice for waiting. Contact guest services in advance! Many theme parks, airlines, and hotels will provide special accommodations for your child. Prepare for sensory issues, special diets, limit waiting time, etc. Provide choices! Let your child help to choose toys and snacks to bring with them. Let them choose which seat they will sit in or whose hand they will hold. Allow your child to take a break from the activity if they need to. Prepare for sensory concerns! Pack noise cancelling headphones/earplugs. On the plane choose seats towards the front for less noise. Bring a variety of fidget toys for your child to hold. Prepare to board first to avoid the crowds. Safety first! Consider...
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Apr
08

Children & Technology


Our children are born in a world where television shows can be watched any time they want on multiple devices around the house. Tablets, computers, & smartphones are accessible to even the most economically challenged families. The overwhelming options can be difficult for parents to navigate as they raise their family. Risks of too much media & technology use include negative health effects on weight & sleep, exposure to content that is inappropriate & issues of confidentiality. According to the American Association for Pediatrics, families should avoid digital media use (except video-chatting) in children younger than 18 to 24 months. For children ages 18 to 24 months of age, if you want to introduce digital media, choose high-quality programming & use media together with your child. Avoid solo media use in this age group. For children 2 to 5 years of age, limit screen use to 1 hour per day...
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Mar
18

Therapist Vlog - NET teaching

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Feb
20

Identifying language delays in young children

Children develop language skills at different times. Language development can also depend on a variety of factors including: their natural ability to learn language, other skills that they are learning at the same time, how much talking they hear during the day and what kind of response is given to when they do speak or attempt to speak ("Late Blooming or Language Problem?")

According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), there are several risk factors to consider when analyzing a potential learning delay

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Feb
12

Promoting Independence

Independent Child

Independence is a valuable part of our daily routines and significantly enhances the quality of life. Even at young ages, a child should be encouraged to develop independent living skills . As a children’s motor and cognitive skills increase, their ability to complete these tasks also increases. By fostering independence in a child’s early years, parents can help make daily living skills become part of a routine rather than a difficult chore. To accomplish this goal, parents can encourage their children by creating opportunities, providing choices, and reinforcing behavior.

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Aug
17

Clothespin Painting


Here is a great craft activity to do with your children where sensory issues will not be a problem. Painting with clothespins! This allows your children to be creative and play with different textures while staying clean at the same time. Who doesn't love an arts and crafts activity that keeps the clean up to a minimum? Watch this video by Whats Up Moms to get the full instructions.
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Aug
16

Family Fun


AMC Movie Sensory Friendly Movie Theaters: www.AMCtheatres.com/programs/sensory-friendly-films Locations: New York AMC 84th Street 6 AMC Bay Plaza Cinema 13 AMC Bay Terrace 6 AMC Crystal Run 16 AMC Levittown 10 AMC Loews Port Chester 14 AMC Loews Shore 8 AMC Loews Stony Brook 17 AMC Magic Johnson Harlem 9 AMC Maple Ridge 8 AMC Palisades 21 AMC Vestal Town Square 9 AMC Webster 12 Brooklyn Sensory Room at the Brooklyn Children's Museum (open year-round, Tuesday and Thursday 3-4:45pm and Saturday-Sunday 2-4:45pm) allows kids with special needs (especially ASD) to engage and explore their senses using interactive equipment. The museum is located at: 145 Brooklyn Ave. Crown Heights. For more info, call 718-735-4400 or visit brooklynkids.org . Long Island Ocean Olympics August 05, 2016 - August 26, 2016 Fridays, 2:30-4:30pm The Whaling Museum and Education Center of Cold Spring Harbor Cold Spring Harbor All Ages $8; $6 children ages 3-12; free...
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Aug
16

Clinical Corner


By: Michelle Segretto, LMSW, BCBA, LBA Clinical Supervisor Welcome parents to our Achieve Beyond Quarterly newsletter! I'm sure everyone is welcoming summer and adjusting to the new summer schedules. New schedules and changes very often lead to challenging behaviors in children (neurotypical and children with diagnoses alike!). This article is intended to provide useful information for your child to get optimal results from the insurance based ABA services. In the most recent publication of the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis (JABA), new evidenced based information was provided regarding how caregiver's preferences to different types of interventions influence the likelihood that the child's treatment will be effective. The more the parent/teacher agrees with the type of intervention that is being recommended, better results from the behavior intervention plan will occur. Any type of change in a person's life may elicit new behaviors. This is especially apparent with children diagnosed with Autism...
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Aug
16

Welcome!


Hello and welcome to our first newsletter for all of our wonderful families! We at Achieve Beyond are so grateful to be providing ABA for your child and we want to ensure that we are providing you with the best resources we have available! In keeping with that idea, we are going to be sending out quarterly newsletters that will inform you of any new policies and procedures, new research in the field, stories to make you smile, and activities and resources that your family may be interested in! Please feel free to give us suggestions and feedback in order to help us help you! Just as we get to know you and your family, I think it is important for all of you to know a little about our history! Achieve Beyond was founded in 1995 by Trudy Font-Padron to meet the needs of developmentally delayed and disabled children...
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Jun
23

Fundraiser for PeerPals.org & the NSASA on August 6th!


We would love to see you at our fundraiser for PeerPals.org & NSASA on August 6th at Croxley's Ale House in Farmingdale. There will be raffle prizes, a 50/50 raffle, children's entertainment and $5 draft beer specials from the Croxley's favorite list. 
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Nov
27

Achieve Beyond Pediatric Therapy Announces New Speech Therapy Clinic in Long Island

Achieve Beyond Pediatric Therapy and Autism Services, Achievebeyondusa.com , is excited to announce the start of its’ new Speech Therapy Clinic Melville, Long Island. Melville is conveniently located on the border of Nassau and Suffolk counties right off of the Long Island Expressway (Exit 49S). Achieve Beyond has a dedicated team of speech language pathologists and educational supervisors who work with children and families. At the new center, children can receive speech therapy services on site in one of their new speech therapy rooms. Each room has a different theme to engage children while providing the appropriate materials needed to further speech therapy goals. Families have the option to pay privately and Achieve Beyond will provide invoices for families to seek reimbursement via their insurance company. The company offers an array of payment packages with discounts up to 15% depending on the package acquired. Achieve Beyond is finalizing their speech...
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Copyright

© Achieve Beyond Pediatric Therapy and Autism Services

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Jun
20

Achieve Beyond and ASAT Autism Conference Video Slideshow

Achieve Beyond Pediatric Therapy & Autism Services and the Association for Science in Autism Treatment (ASAT) hosted their 2nd Annual Autism Conference at the Sheraton LaGuardia East Hotel in Flushing, New York. The all day conference featured a keynote presentation by Daniel W. Mruzek, Ph.D, BCBA-D , covering the topic of Scientist Practitioners in the classroom: Using Data to Guide Our Student's Programs, along with presentations by Mary McDonald, Ph.D, BCBA-D and Ruth Donlin M.S. The conference featured vendors within the Autism community including Eden II Genesis Outreach Autism Center, Discovery Toys, Achieve Beyond, ASAT and Inspiration Speaks. The BACB CEU conference was well attended by many behavior analysts, special educators, social workers and parents as well. This is a conference Achieve Beyond and ASAT will continue to work together to host in the years to come. Here is a photo slideshow of the Achieve Beyond / ASAT Autism Conference...
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Jun
12

10 iPad Apps for Children with Autism

Achieve Beyond Pediatric Therapy and Autism Services serves children with special needs nationwide on a daily basis. With the invention of the iPad and rise of tablets in general many apps have been created to aid in developmental therapies of children on the Autistic spectrum. Here are 10 that come highly recommended by Applied Behavior Analysts, BCBAs and special needs parents. If you have an app that has ben beneficial to a child with special needs please feel free to post links to these apps below. Feel free to share these apps on your favorite social networks as well. AutisMate AutisMate's is a great app for children with Autism because of it’s comprehensive approach that encourages users to develop communication and behavioral skills simultaneously, allowing each skill to build on the other through features like video modeling, stories, schedules and much more. Drawing Pad Drawing Pad is a mobile art...
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Jun
12

10 Signs Your Child Is Ready for Toilet Training

Toilet training is one of the most challenging acts for parents and especially for special needs parents with children on the autistic spectrum. One of the most important aspects is recognizing when the child is actually ready for this training to begin. If the child is not showing the signs of readiness for toilet training, they will not learn successfully. This usually happens in children anywhere between 18-24 months, but can vary depending on the child. Children with special needs may take up to a year longer than others to have the readiness for toilet training. Below are 10 signs that your child is most likely ready for toilet training. All of these criteria do not have to present to start training, but these signs show that the child most likely possesses the independence and understanding of going to the bathroom necessary for success. If you have any toilet training...
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Jun
12

5 Inspirational Videos on Autism Everyone Should View

Achieve Beyond Pediatric Therapy and Autism Services serves children with special needs nationwide on a daily basis throughout New York, California and Virginia. In this day and age of YouTube and the rise of video online, this medium has become a more powerful tool then ever to raise Autism Awareness in this country. Here are 5 inspiring videos on Autism that everyone should take a look at. They are exceptional videos that will most likely shed a new light on Autism for most that view them. If you have an inspirational video on Autism please feel free to post links to these apps below. Feel free to share these apps on your favorite social networks as well. The Face of Autism BBC - My Autism and Me Jake: Math Prodigy Proud of His Autism Autistic Girl Displays Unimaginable Intelligence What It is Like to Have a Brother With Autism Have...
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Mar
01

10 Summer Activities For Special Needs Children

Summer is here! There are so many great activities that can be done when the weather is sunny and warm outside. Here are some fun activities that can be done with special needs children that can potentially help them improve their social skills, motor skills and cognitive abilities. If you have more fun activities you would like to share with other special needs parents that read this blog please feel free to leave a comment below or post them on Achieve Beyond Pediatric Therapy & Autism Services's Facebook page Dig for worms This a great exercise to improve a special needs child’s fine motor skills. Re-home the worms next to that seedling you planted. The child can have fun getting their hands dirty and at the same time help your garden at the same time. Build a “fairy house” Create a miniature “fairy house” outside with your own yards’ twigs,...
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