Professional Development Days for Manitoba Educators and Support Staff

On The Spectrum Therapy Services will be providing half-day workshops for 2 separate school divisions in Winnipeg, Manitoba in September and October 2016.

If you would like to schedule a workshop on Autism in your school division, please call (204) 415-7656 for more information.

Thank you.

Back to School Success

Many parents of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder look forward to September when they can get back in to some sense of ‘routine.’

Finding adequate supports over the summer is a common challenge.  Keeping children with ASD ‘productively’ busy can be a real struggle for families.  September is a time for new beginnings which often includes: new teachers, new classrooms, new peers, new educational assistants and often new schools.  This may even be a time for new rules, new expectations and new challenges.  Despite the transition, most parents welcome the support of the school staff in engaging the child in new and innovative ways.

September is a time to enter into your child’s school with an open mind.

September is a time to set up new expectations with your child (particularly VISUAL rules) that may not have ‘gone over well’ last school year.

September is a time to facilitate that little bit of growth and independence in your child (for example: teaching your child how to participate in making his or her lunch for school).

September is a time to let go of last school year’s frustrations, annoyances, tears, irritations and fears and start with a fresh perspective.

September is a time to build relationships with those who support your child.

September is a time for parents to have some time to enjoy an uninterrupted cup of hot coffee or tea.

September is a time to be proactive and contact your child’s school to set up a meeting and get the year rolling in a positive way.

We all know that September brings with it a new set of parenting challenges because it is yet another transition from ‘free-time’ to ‘work-time.’ Understand that ‘newness’ is anxiety-provoking for your child and using transition objects (a favorite toy or snack) may be helpful to facilitate your child’s steps out of the house.

Encourage your child to share something special from the summer months with his or her peers, in whatever way he or she is comfortable.

Be kind to yourself, breathe deeply and try to be patient in September while the schools sort out how they can best achieve goals collaboratively.

Congratulations on making it through another summer! Best wishes for this school year!

 

CJOB RADIO INTERVIEW on Tuesday June 14, 2016 at 1:30 p.m.

http://www.cjob.com/audio-on-demand/

Click on the above link to listen to the interview that I did on Autism Spectrum Disorder with CJOB 680 AM.  Choose June 14, 2016 at approximately 1:30pm (scroll the time bar to get to the interview).  There are a few commercials throughout the interview so stay tuned. (Total interview was approximately 15 minutes).

 

Thanks!

 

 

Help, I’m an adult with ASD.

Many adults with ASD (either diagnosed or suspected) may come to a point where they are wanting to achieve certain goals but have limited awareness of where to begin.  The search for independence, autonomy and meaningful relationships and/or work can be strong yet there may be deficits in functional abilities that prevent a person from achieving success.

On The Spectrum Therapy Services assists adults with ASD in determining SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-oriented) goals and in building improved insight and awareness into the inner workings of the brain affected by ASD.  Helping an adult to become more self-aware and more in-tune with the surrounding environment (culturally, socially, physically and emotionally) provides an individual with an ability to begin to reflect on one’s behavior and the impact it may have on others.  Reading others’ emotions, body language, tone of voice, figures of speech, sarcasm and general mood is a skill that requires effort, concentration and a fair amount of emotional energy.

A key component to dissect is MOTIVATION.  Therapy sessions are geared towards identifying motivators (what provides ‘meaning’ to an individual?) and in creating a step-by-step action plan to facilitate an individual’s success in goal attainment.

Using a strengths-based approach, On The Spectrum Therapy Services works with adults of all ages to promote participation in meaningful occupations so that individuals with ASD can feel efficacious, proud and productive.

 

 

Relationship Struggles: Counselling Services for Individuals, Couples and Families

Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) may be challenged with interpersonal, relationship or family dynamics due to the often puzzling social nuances and miscommunication that occurs from time to time. What starts out as a small conflict can quickly escalate into an erupting volcano when the communication breaks down between individuals.  On The Spectrum Therapy Services assists individuals and families in opening up lines of communication by facilitating a deeper understanding of the potential perceptual differences and guiding the family to a common ground.  Other interventions may include supporting individuals in developing healthier coping skills, a better awareness of how one’s behavior can impact on others (perspective-taking) and practical strategies to manage ‘in the moment’ conflict.

Whether the struggles stem from parenting frustrations (not feeling heard), individual client perceptions (s/he is doing it wrong), poor coping strategies (meltdowns), issues with self-esteem (everybody hates me, I’m a failure), loss of perceived control (sensory overload, unpredictability of partner) or intimate relationship difficulties (intimacy, affection, expectations) speaking with a therapist who can help navigate the waters of ASD will provide clarity and thus more harmonious relationships overall.

Call to schedule your appointment.  Individuals, couples and families welcome.

Autism PACE Expo! October 17, 2015

Come out to see many of the Autism Service Providers in Winnipeg! Join us at the Convention Center on October 17 from 10:00 a.m to 4:00 p.m.  I will be presenting at 1:30 p.m.!

 

Hope to see you all there!

Check out this booklet for a sneak peek:

Here’s a clip from the news! The first picture in the clip is ON THE SPECTRUM THERAPY SERVICES booth with an OT student helping kids paint wooden fridge magnets and make beaded bracelets! It was a really fun day!

http://winnipeg.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=729336&playlistId=1.2615107&binId=1.1164782&playlistPageNum=1

I was also a speaker at the Autism PACE Expo!

Autism expo connects families with resources