What exactly is Modern Day ABA?

ABA Myths and Misconceptions When you hear the phrase “Applied Behavior Analysis,” what is the first thing you think of? Most people would say “Autism” or “a type of therapy”. The main reason for writing this article is to debunk any misconceptions or myths about ABA and explain how it has evolved over the years. The first myth is that it is a “therapy”. ABA is a Science devoted to the understanding and improvement of human behavior, which focuses on objectively defining observable behaviors of social significance (Cooper, Heron & Howard, 1987). The principles of the science, or rather field of study, are applied in an ABA therapy program. The reason it’s important to point out that it’s a Science is to give it significant credit as “empirically validated”. There have been over a thousand studies published, revealing significant changes in the increase of language, communication, socialization, and appropriate behavior and...
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Routines During the Pandemic

Although places are starting to open around us, many child-friendly venues such as playgrounds, amusement parks, and schools will remain closed for quite some time. This time of uncertainty can be both scary and, at times, frustrating for everyone involved. It can be helpful to give your little ones some structure. We all benefit from having structure and routines. Routines help our little guys understand what we expect from them. Routines that are organized and predictable can be beneficial for all children, especially children who struggle with transitions. You may have seen a spike in your child's problem behaviors during the Pandemic, as things have quickly changed for them without any warning. Creating schedules for your little ones can be helpful for parents, as well. Some parents are working from home, and providing activities for your children to engage in while you are working is essential. Daily Home Schedule BreakfastFree playLearning...
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Tips to Build Communication

Using gestures or language can be challenging for many children with developmental delays, language delays or Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). It is important to remember that with help and understanding, your child can develop communication skills. Children can often find it hard to relate and communicate with others especially when it is difficult for them to understand language or use language. Many children will learn unconventional ways to communicate such as using made-up words, repeating words or using them in the wrong context, pushing or pulling caregivers to what they want or using undesirable behaviors to access what they want. It is important to remember to help your child communicate and meet them at their skill level now, not where you want them to be. The more successful your child feels when learning new ways to communicate, the more often they will begin to use these new skills. Here are 4...
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What's Priming?

Priming is an evidence based ABA intervention that is used to prepare children for possibly challenging activities or events. It can be difficult to predict how your child will react to some situations, such as visiting the dentist or taking an airplane for the first time, but priming beforehand can help familiarize them with the new setting and ease transition. Priming is most effective when it is built into the child's everyday routine at school and home. It typically involves presenting the materials that would be naturally found in the new setting. This can be through social stories, books, video modeling, a related toy or an actual item from that environment, such as a toothbrush for the dentist or a stethoscope for a doctor's visit. This can reduce the child's stress and anxiety and increase their sense of predictability and success. Some Guidelines for Priming: Develop a Routine- If priming for...
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Reducing Holiday Stress with Children

For many, the holidays represent a time of love, family, giving, joy, and excitement. For those with children with developmental disabilities, it can also mean an increase in stress and chaos. Time off of school, change in routines, unstructured time, addition of family visitors, and sensory overload are all potential stressors for our children. In order to help your child(ren) prepare for this holiday season, here are a few tips to keep in mind! Try to keep some routines: Even if you are traveling or have family over, try to keep a few routines for your child so that they can have some structure still. Keeping the same morning or evening routines, lunch time, etc. can help your child remain familiar with some of their day. Plan ahead: If your child gets anxious and perseverates on events, try to notify them only a few days in advance of big events. If...
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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 pumpkins with paint, markers or stickers.Enter your decorated pumpkin into a local contest, or have your own contest!Roll down...
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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 of...
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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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Family Fun

AMC Movie Sensory Friendly Movie Theaters: www.AMCtheatres.com/programs/sensory-friendly-films Locations: New York AMC 84th Street 6AMC Bay Plaza Cinema 13AMC Bay Terrace 6AMC Crystal Run 16AMC Levittown 10AMC Loews Port Chester 14AMC Loews Shore 8AMC Loews Stony Brook 17AMC Magic Johnson Harlem 9AMC Maple Ridge 8AMC Palisades 21AMC Vestal Town Square 9AMC Webster 12BrooklynSensory 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 IslandOcean 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 for children younger than 3Long Island Family Fun Fest: www.lifamilyfestival.com The Ninth Annual Long Island Family Festival is...
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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 Spectrum...
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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 and...
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