Past Triumphs….Let The Words Begin

  Some children who are Autistic are verbal and others never become speakers.  This is one of the harder parts of being a parent raising a child on the spectrum.  As parents, we need to be able to communicate to our child as we raise them so being told during a diagnosis that your child…

Its Simple Just Comment And…..Wait!

Johnny is speaking very differently in different situations and depending on who he is with.  When Johnny is comfortable he speaks in complex sentences, often starts a conversation, and speaks clearly enough to be understood much of the time.  When he’s uncomfortable like in when he’s with his peers or in the classroom, he becomes  very quiet,…

If You Can’t Talk Do You Understand? If You Don’t Talk….

  Is speaking words by using your mouth a true measure of our  level of understanding?  If we have challenges doing oral reading does it mean we cannot read?  If we only answer questions with yes or no responses or with three word sentences does it mean we are not capable of more?  If it takes…

Looking Back At Speech Therapy

  I’ve been reading about other parent’s journeys with their children and navigating the system to access help for their child who they suspect has developmental delays.   I became reflective about the beginnings of our journey with Johnny.   Looking back at when Johnny was assessed for his speech delay at 2-1/2 he was not a happy…

What Changed? It Was More Than Words ….

When Johnny was 3-1/2 and was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, he began to start to say a few words again. We were very excited but after two blocks of 10 weeks of speech therapy provided by community health we felt like Johnny was at a stand still. The SLP’s meant well and were trying…

Communication Goes “Both” Ways

When Johnny first started going to Junior Kindergarten I wrote about the “communication gap” that happens between the classroom experience and home here:  https://sunflowercyn.wordpress.com/2011/10/26/what-id-like-to-hear-the-most/  What do you do when you have a child who is essentially non-verbal but who communicates with gestures, some sign language,  and some word approximations and you want to know about…

Star Marks The Spot

It’s Springtime and the city work crews and demarcation teams from gas, water, and telephone are busily marking up the city sidewalks to get ready to carve them up again to do more work. Sidewalk after sidewalk the cement is getting more colourful on our walking routes. Johnny is fascinated by all the colours and…

Apraxia of Speech Therapy – PROMPT

A few weeks ago we got a call from a clinic that treats Apraxia of Speech in children that Johnny was now at the top of their very long waiting list and that we should bring him in for another assessment.  What a difference three months can make from our previous visit.  Read about the…

First Foray into ABA

Johnny is now in 2 weeks of Group ABA Therapy for Communication (Applied Behaviour Analysis Therapy) . ABA is the primary way to teach people with Autism. He’s never worked directly with a psychologist and therapists trained in this but he is enjoying himself. I know the therapist from taking other courses so its kind…

Summer Camp ~ Let the Fun Begin

  Johnny started going to summer camp this past week for the second summer in row. He loved his experience last year so much that we thought we wouldn’t change things up. A nursery/preschool offers an integrated camp 5 mornings a week with a ratio of camper to teacher 4:1. Then on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursday…

Autism In Big Flashing Neon Letters

  Some days are just plain disappointing.  You know the days when you can see your child really fighting to keep some of the Autism symptoms at bay but he is  fighting a losing battle.  It always seems to be the day when you want someone to see your child for who they are and…

Apraxia of Speech Is The Answer

Children with Autism do learn to communicate but not all will be able to learn to speak.  Some children with Autism learn to speak by memorizing phrases and scripts of shows or movies and then repeating them over and over without understanding what they are really saying ~ this is called Echolalia.  Sometimes the cold…

One little victory at a time

“I want more oranges.” He said it. No he really did say it and he was not at home but at a birthday party at school. Johnny’s teacher was so happy and excited she called me to let know the big news. Big news? Yes, because one word at a time is a little victory…

Autism Spectrum Disorder

We received the diagnosis last Tuesday and our lives have been a whirlwind ever since. Why did this happen to our little boy? What do we do now? What IS this? What help does he need? How many forms so we have to fill out now? Do we switch schools? Who do we tell? How do you tell family? How much do you tell them? We don’t want him treated differently because he’s “our little Johnny” …. he’s STILL our little boy.