Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Autism Walk April 23rd!

Hello again!!!

A lot of you have been asking how to join our team for the Autism Walk on April 23rd. Here are the details on how to join:

1. Go to:
2. Find "Join or Support a Team) and type in: "CSULA" and press Submit
3. Click: CSULA National Student Speech Language Hearing Association
4. Click Join Our Team and you're in!!

Hope to see a lot of you with us at the walk!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

February 15th Meeting Notes

Hello you guys!!

Our meeting was a success! Thanks so much to all of you that made it and especially to our guest speaker Gwendolyn Meier.

As always, here are our notes from the meeting:

February 15, 2011 NSSLHA Meeting

Guest Speaker:
Gwendolyn Meier, MA, CCC-SLP, MT-BC
Speech Therapist & Music Therapist

  • Works for Villa Esperanza Services School
    • the clinic is open for the public
    • opened primarily to students who attend this school
    • several services are provided here including speech language therapy
    • can LIKE Villa Esperanza on Facebook
    • Villa Esperanza primarily serves children with moderately to severely disabled children; several have Autism and are non-verbal.
  • Autism
  • is a neurological disorder that affects 1 in 150 or less births; 4:1 boys: girls
  • no single cause- multiple, unknown factors combined
        • -perhaps there are genetic and environmental factors
  • defined by behavior- no medical test for autism
  • no cure
  • severity falls on a spectrum
        • -there’s high functioning (like Aspergers)
  • various treatments options
  • the earlier you can get good intervention, the better
  • Difficulties in:
  • Social interaction (difficulty with eye contact, sharing enjoyment, reciprocity
  • Communication (language delay, lack of make-believe play challenge in back-and-forth conversation
  • Behavior (repetitive, insistence on sameness)
  • it’s not Schizophrenia
  • Symptoms and Characteristics
    • Social interaction
      • differences in: sharing/showing (don’t share and show,) connecting with others (do not connect with others), relationships/emotional reciprocity
      • differences in social-imitative play
      • back-and-forth play: children with autism tend to play around other kids and not with others
      • differences in using language like others do
        • to share interests
        • to give and seek information (tend to not ask, “What’s that?”)
    • Communication
      • differences in understanding expectations
        • waiting your turn, keeping hands to yourself, etc.
        • reasoning of why things are done is usually lost
      • differences in understanding and using nonverbal communication (point, shrug, hand signal, facial expressions, tone of voice)
      • differences in learning and using language like others do
        • i.e., children with autism tend to get into their own dialogues over the past
        • for example like the movie in Temple Grandin
          • Temple had autism who got her Phd in Agriculture and Cattling
          • She learned through pictures
      • differences in make-believe (using one object for another,) social-imitative play , and conversation
      • abstract concepts
        • dates, time
        • why? how?
          • can’t answer why and how questions
        • emotions
        • What will happen if? What can you do to help?
          • hypotheticals and inferences are difficult
    • Social interaction
      • differences in seeing others’ point of view, making and keeping friends (i.e., sharing, doing what others want to do)
    • Behavior
      • differences in preoccupation with parts of objects
        • i.e., instead of driving a toy car, the child may just spin the wheels only
      • differences in motor mannerisms (flapping hands, stimming, etc.) and sensory sensitivities (do not like getting dirty, sensitive to light and sound)
      • differences in
        • intensity of focus
          • i.e., focus on bubbles themselves except for asking for bubbles to be blown
        • inflexible routines
        • self-control/impulsivity
  • Helping people with Autism
    • More than Words Hanen program
      • designed for children with autism
      • TIPS: say less, and stress and go slow and show
        • Say less:
          • keep it simple but grammatical (i.e., “Turn page,” to “Turn the page.” This provides an intact model.)
          • be direct and tell what TO do (don’t use negative words and direct them to what they should do)
        • Stress:
          • highlight the most important words (sometimes say the target word at the end)
          • repetition
          • carrier phrases, “The __ is ___.”
        • Go slow:
          • add pauses (allow for auditory processing time)
          • be natural (use natural prosodic speech pattern)
        • and Show
          • provide a model
          • provide pictures (like a choice board)
          • provide a video
            • can use an iPod application Model Me Kid (free)
            • most children with autism are visual learners
    • Choice boards
      • these are pictures options
        • which do you want? (break, book, toys, etc)
    • Cue Cards- receptive and expressive
      • Remind them what to DO and/or to SAY in a given setting or activity
    • Social Stories online
    • Increasing expression
      • can use Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC)
        • may supplement existing speech or replace speech that is not functional (ASHA)
    • Visually-based communication
      • picture exchange communication (PECs)
        • exchange pictures for communication
        • a low tech AAC system (without batteries)
      • voice output devices
      • GoTalk 4+
      • Tech Talk 32
      • touch screens
        • Prentke-Romich (PRC) Vantage Life
        • Dynavox V
        • Apple iPod touch and iPad
          • ProLoQuo2Go
          • TouchChat HD by Silver Kite
    • Resources Online:
    • Villa Esperanza Services
      • event on Saturday February 26, 2011
      • will be at Autism Walk on April 23rd at the Rose Bowl
        • can get free bags
        • look for jobs
        • games and prizes for kids
  • Autism Certificate
    • requires 4 classes
    • see Special Education Department at CSULA on the first floor of King Hall

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

February 15th Meeting

Happy February!

I have a few announcements to give you lovely COMD people!

1) Our second meeting of 2011 is coming up!

When: February 15, 6pm
Where: KH B4016
Who: Gwendolyn Meier
What: Gwendolyn Meier will discuss about working with children with severe communication disorders, specifically autism.

Again, food and drinks are provided, only to members who have paid their dues, and a raffle for a gift card for Starbucks OR a text book: 50 cents a ticket!

2) The Autism Walk is coming up (April 23rd) and we'd love to have all of you join us! Our goal is ultimately $2000, and any thing you or your friends/family can contribute truly helps.

How to join our team for Autism Walk
1. Go to:
2. Find "Join or Support a Team) and type in: "CSULA" and press Submit
3. Click:
CSULA National Student Speech Language Hearing Association
4. Click Join Our Team and you're in!!

3) Join our new Facebook PAGE:!/pages/Nsslha-at-Csula/188094447878024
**See posted pictures of NSSLHA last year at the Autism walk!!!