Topic: Relationships

Parenting: When Being Consistent Backfires

As a psychologist, I frequently hear the same complaint from frustrated parents.  We have made every effort to be consistent in disciplining our child, they say, but our child’s problematic behaviors won’t go away. In other words, what should you do when consistency fails? Consider “Maya”, who as a toddler was pegged as a “spirited” […]

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Sensory Processing and Challenging Behaviors: Below the Iceberg

Grant, age four, was asked to leave two preschools because of misbehavior. With tousled brown hair, big brown eyes, and a playful spirit, he both charmed and confused most of the adults in his life. He had such difficulty following directions that his teachers had to reprimand him every few minutes. They described him as […]

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What Makes an Education “Appropriate”? Building It on Relationships

Every IEP team should assure that a child has the chance to develop emotional regulation through trusting relationships. Without that opportunity, meaningful learning is impossible.

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Relationships in Special Education: We Must Do Better

Far too often, children with special educational needs experience disruptions in relationships, including frequent changes in aides, teachers and school placements, causing stress.

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The Critical Ingredient that Should Be Part of Every IEP

My wish for families during this IEP season is that emotional regulation, supported by engaged relationships, finds its way into every discussion about a child. A child’s ability to feel safe and engaged provides a solid foundation for all areas of learning and socialization.

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Take Charge, Take Action on your Infant’s Development

A new study released today by researchers at the Mind Institute and published in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders found that early and intensive supportive interaction by parents (not therapists) diminished or took away signs of delay in almost all the children in the study.  Even though the sample size was very small, […]

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The Role of Parents in Developmental Treatment

The intuitive wisdom that parents are essential partners in their child’s growth and development has not always found a place in medical model therapeutic approaches. But in research circles today, when scientists talk about “critical ingredients” or crucial aspects of a treatment that make a difference toward a cure, the parent-child relationship is getting unprecedented […]

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Presuming Competence: Part Two

Valuable information can be gleaned from autistic persons writing about their educational experiences.  A common theme arising from such writings is that all too often,  behaviors are taken at face value and competence is not presumed.  Because the neural circuits connecting the motor system to ideas or intention can be seriously impacted in autism,  taking […]

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Presuming Competence: Raising the Bar for Autistic Individuals (Part One)

Information about the processing differences in autistic children is streaming in from researchers and scientists. Two examples are Elyssa Marco, looking at the sensory processing differences found in children with atypical neurodevelopment, and Stephen Porges, studying stress responses in autism and other conditions.  Researchers are now weighing in on what autistic individuals have been asking […]

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