Monthly Archives: June 2018

Tips For Implementing Behavior Management

Here’s a little insight to the ways that Beautiful Mind Center for Autism, a Los Angeles based Behavioral Therapy clinic, has put behavioral management programs into practice within their clients homes, schools and communities. While working with many forms of behavioral issues, and specializing in early intervention to help correct behavioral problems, our team at Beautiful Mind Center has put together a few tips to help parents set boundaries, goals, and stay consistent while working with their child on the spectrum to reach behavioral milestones.

1. Set A Schedule – It is important to make your child aware of what is expected of them. Work with your child’s teachers, therapists and other family members within your home to set up a daily schedule for your child with autism to follow. Leave a visual copy of this schedule in a place where your child can refer to it regularly and check off each activity as you go to show them what they are accomplishing.
2. Incorporate Breaks or Fun Activities – All children (with our without behavioral problems) have short attention spans. Remember to leave time for breaks throughout the day or to schedule activities you know your child will love and allow them to have some fun, play outside or with their favorite toys, watch a short video and just be a kid.
3. Create a Safe Environment – Your child on the spectrum will feel safer if there is structure within the home and at school. Work with your child’s teachers to incorporate similar rules at home so that structure follows your child throughout their day.
4. Redirect Inappropriate Behaviors – It is important to validate your child’s feeling or wants, but it is also very important to set boundaries and guidelines for your child with autism to follow. Let your child know what the consequences will be for inappropriate behavior and follow through with those consequences if they do not listen to you.
5. Recognize Progress and Good Effort – Set up a chart for your child with autism that tracks their progress. Reward their efforts with a gold star or a sticker of their choice and give them praise when they complete a goal, go above and beyond, or try their best at something (no matter what the outcome is).
6. Be Consistent – This is the most important thing you can learn and teach your child. Constancy in behavioral therapy is key. Do what you say you will do, be where you say you will be, and always follow through. By showing them that you are consistent with your actions and behaviors, your child with autism will learn by example and become more consistent with actions and behavioral as well.

Signs Your Child Has Asperger Syndrome

Asperger’s syndrome is a neurological disorder on the autism spectrum. There are many behaviors that may be signs that your child should be checked for Asperger’s syndrome. Here are ten common behaviors to watch for:

1. Fixation on One Activity
Many children with Asperger’s Syndrome tend to fixate on one activity and can spend hours upon hours of their time doing one thing.

2. “Little Professor” Speech”

Typically a child with Asperger’s tends to have advanced verbal skills, but due to the autism aspect of the syndrome they might seem fixated on a topic that they want to talk about constantly.

3. Difficulty Reading Social Cues
Social difficulties are another key sign of Asperger’s syndrome. A child with Asperger’s syndrome will have a hard time reading body language, taking turns or holding a conversation with their peer group.

4. Need For Routine
Many children with Asperger’s syndrome, need to have a very structured schedule, otherwise they get confused and can become stressed out or frustrated.

5. Emotional Meltdowns
Many children with Asperger’s syndrome can’t handle routines or plans going awry. They become easily overwhelmed and have an inability to control their emotions which leads to emotional breakdowns.

6. Lack of Empathy
Another sign your child may have Asperger’s syndrome is their lack of empathy. Many of these children have no clue that people around them have feelings or wants and needs. They live in their own bubble and tend to be totally aloof.

7Can’t Understand Speech Subtleties
Some people with Asperger’s syndrom have a hard time understanding speech tone, pitch, and accent. They tend to take words very literally and have a difficult time understanding sarcasm or jokes.

8. Unusual Body Language
Other signs that your child might have Asperger’s syndrome is their unusual facial expressions or postures, and either staring a lot at others or completely avoiding eye contact.

9. Delayed Motor Development

Poor or delayed motor skills, such as delays in handwriting, problems riding a bike etc can also be signs that your child may have Asperger’s syndrome.

10. Sensory Sensitivities
Many children with Asperger’s syndrome have heightened sensory sensitivity. As a result, they can be easily overstimulated by lights, loud noises etc.

If you think your child may have Asperger’s syndrome it is best to get an expert’s evaluation as soon as possible.

Bringing Applied Behavioral Analysis Therapy (ABA Therapy) Into Your Home

 

At Beautiful Minds Center for Autism we specialize in creating individualized programs for children who have been diagnosed with autism. Our therapists work with your child at school and the community; they also spend a lot of time practice autism therapy at home. They make an effort to work with items found around your house, as well as your child’s favorite toys and encourage each member of the family  to implement the ABA Therapy techniques outside of scheduled therapy sessions.

Along with the techniques you learn from our skilled Los Angeles based behavioral therapists, here are some ways you can make ABA Therapy at home fun for the whole family.

Although it is good to keep track of your child’s behavior and report it back to the therapist at each session, you can practice certain techniques without keeping score or collecting data.

Some of these techniques are

1. Eye Contact – When you talk to your child with autism and you notice them start to gaze off, it is best to stop and direct their attention back to you. Say things like “Look at my eyes” or “Look at me” and repeat this until you have their full attention before moving on with your question or conversation.  If they have a hard time looking at you for up to five seconds, you might want to find something more attention grabbing like bubbles or silly face masks.
2. Flashcards – there are many sites that sell flashcards, find the ones that work best for your child and purchase them. If your child loves cars, then use flashcards with cars to learn colors. Turn it into a game by asking your child to pick out all the blue cars, or all the red cars etc.
3. Emotions – If you have a child that struggles with regulating their emotions, find or make cards with clearly pictured faces (smiling, crying, laughing etc).  When watching a movie, video or TV show, have your child with autism hold up the card that best represents the emotions a character is expressing on the screen.
4. Following Instructions – When teaching your child things like getting dressed, brushing teeth, making breakfast, etc(basically anything that combines a sequence of events) it itbest to make visual guides and place them in a clearly defined area for your child on the spectrum to see. Put one on the bathroom mirror, on your fridge, in their bedroom etc. and work with your child on the steps need to complete these activities.

There are many other ways to practice Applied BehavioralAnalysis (ABA Therapy) at home. Make sure to talk to your child’s behavioral therapists regularly to see what will work best with the programs that they currently have in place.

We encourage you and your child give ABA therapy 100% of your time and focus. You will be so glad you did once you see your child start to thrive at school, in their community and within your home.

If you or someone you know is looking to learn more about ABA Therapy/Behavioral Therapy and Early Intervention, our team at Beautiful Minds Center is happy to answer any questions you may have. Please give our office a call at 310-247-8712 and they will connect you to one of our clinical directors.