PML Autism Guide

Autism Resources

Libraries and Autism - We’re Connected
Source: http://www.thejointlibrary.org/autism/resources.htm

 

1 in 68: Autism Spectrum Resources for Families

NEWS!  The U.S. Center for Disease Control has released its most recent statistics for autism rates.  The new statistics show 1 in 68 children in the United States is on the autism spectrum.  One out of 42 boys is affected by autism. (March 2014)

Libraries and AutismAccording to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 68 children in the United States is on the autism spectrum. Youth Services Staff has compiled a list of autism spectrum resources for families. The best place to start, if you suspect your child might be on the spectrum, is to have your child screened. The earlier your child starts therapies, the better. If your child is under age three there are two local agencies, South Bay Early Intervention and Thom Anne Sullivan Center, that provide screening services. If your child is age three or older, contact the Lowell Public Schools for assistance.

Information contained on this web page does not constitute library endorsement of a treatment, agency or advocacy group. The library maintains that it is up to the parent/legal guardian to determine proper treatment for his/her child. This web page is solely a place of information for the huge array of materials related to Autism Spectrum Disorders.

If your family uses a service or has a favorite autism spectrum web site that is not listed, please let us know so we can share with others in the community. Contact Molly Hancock, Coordinator of Youth Services at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Happy Autism Awareness Month!  Look at what we have going at the library this April for Special Needs Kids and their families:


Autism Awareness Puzzle Activity: During the month of April there will be an ongoing activity in the Children's Department that all are invited to participate in.  A puzzle piece is one of the symbols of Autism Awareness.  Patrons are invited to put one puzzle piece in a jar for each person he/she knows with Autism.

Special Needs Lego Activity: Saturday, April 4, 2015 at 10 AM
Come join us for a morning of building!  Special Needs children of all abilities are welcome - children that can work independently and those that need lots of hand over help from their grownups; verbal and nonverbal children.  Stay for the whole activity or as long as your child wants.  We also put out large soft blocks for children with fine motor skills issues. Siblings are always welcome! Contact Molly Hancock at 978-674-1527 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Music Program: Featuring Music Therapist, Laura Micheli, MT-BC from Roman Music Therapy Services, LCC, Wednesday, April 22, 2015 at 3:30 PM
Special Needs children ages 3 - 7 years old and their grownups are invited to a lively and tuneful afternoon.  We'll have all sorts of fun with this interactive musical experience.  Join us for melodies, moving, and more!
Space is limited and sign up is required.  Sign up begins April 6, 2015.  To sign up stop by the Children's Desk or call 978-674-1529.
Funded by a grant from the Digital Federal Credit Union

News


Upcoming Events at the Library

An Activity for Special Needs Children: Lego Time
Saturdays at 10 AM - April 4 and May 2, 2015
Is your child on the Autism Spectrum or have another special needs challenge?  This  activity is especially for them.  Join us for a morning of  building and making new friends.  All special needs children are welcome - those that can build on their own and those that might need lots of hand over hand assistance; verbal children and non-verbal children.  Come and stay the whole time or for as long as your child wants.  We are flexible!  We want families to relax and have fun so do what makes your child comfortable.
For special needs children age 4 years and older
Sign up required.  Contact Molly Hancock, Coordinator of Youth Services to sign up and with any questions.  Call 978-674-1527 or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Music Program for Special Needs Children (ages 3 - 7 years)
Wednesday, April 22, 2015 at 3:30 PM
Featuring Music Therapist, Laura Micheli, MT-BC from Roman Music Therapy Services, LCC
Special Needs children and their grownups are invited to a lively and tuneful afternoon.  We'll have all sorts of fun with this interactive musical experience.  Join us for melodies, moving, and more!
Space is limited and sign up is required.  Sign up begins April 6, 2015.  To sign up stop by the Children's Desk or call 978-674-1529.
Funded by a grant from the Digital Federal Credit Union

Upcoming Events in the Community


Lowell Special Education Parent Advisory Council (Lowell Sped PAC)

Meetings are held on the first Thursday of the month from October to June at the Butler School.The school is located at 1140 Gorham St. between Rosenblooms and the Shaughnessy School. There is plenty of parking near the door. Meetings begin at 7:00 P.M. If door is locked, ring yellow buzzer. Visitors are always welcome.

~ All Meetings are on Thursdays ~

Sept. 18, 2014 - (3rd Thurs. due to start of school)
October 2, 2014 - Newcomers Night
November 6, 2014 *
December 4, 2014
January 8, 2015 -(2nd Thurs. due to holiday)*
February 5, 2015
March 5, 2015 *
April 2, 2015
May 7, 2015 *                            *Denotes a Speaker              
June 4, 2015                        

There will be a variety of speakers in the coming year.  Many of them play a key role in the education of your child. For specific speaker info, please contact the Sped PAC.

In the event of poor weather or other emergency, meeting cancellations will be announced through email and phone notification. If there is no school in  the Lowell Schools, there is no meeting.


Lowell Special Education
Parent Advisory Council
(Lowell Sped PAC)
Attn: Sped PAC
43 Highland Street
Lowell, MA  
(978) 454-1967  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Lowell Public Schools Special Education Department - Parent Survey

Over the past year, Lowell Public Schools has been working to group special programs in buildings, so that these students can remain in their assigned elementary and then corresponding middle school with their peers, as much as possible.  Stronger educational programming was also created by placing same specialized programs in some buildings, to improve teaching, learning and student outcomes.

Your opinion is important to us, we would like you to please take a moment and fill out our parent survey.
You can find the survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/M69YZZP . Thank you for your time.

The link for the survey can also be found on the Special Education Department website, under the News section - http://www.lowell.k12.ma.us/pages/lpsd/depts/Special_Education.

Food and Eating Study: The E.K. Shriver Center at UMass Medical Center is currently working on a special study.  The Children’s Mealtime Study is an observational study of children 3-8 years old focusing on children’s eating patterns, mealtime behaviors, and parents’ feeding practices. Parents and children are seen for one study visit and complete interviews, questionnaires, and dietary assessment surveys. Parents also record their child’s eating for three days. They are looking for study participants.  For more information about this study click here.

Sensory Friendly Showing of Home: Saturday, April 18, 2015 at 9 AM
Chunky's Cinema, Pelham, NH
Join Lowell Area Families of Austistic Children for a day at the movies!
Admission is 5.99.  Breakfast starts at 5.50.
Reserve tickets online at https://www.chunkys.com ad then e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Touch a Truck: Sunday, April 19, 2015 at 10 AM at Recreational Education Center, 83 Pine St. Peabody, MA  
This outdoor event features big vehicles like a fire truck and police car for children to visit.  The event is free.  For more information visit the Recreation Eduction Center's web page or call 978-717-5062.

“Morningstar Access” Boston Children’s Museum: April 21, 2015, 8 AM - 10 AM
Program offers children with special and medical needs the opportunity to enjoy the Museum in an uncrowded environment, with few other visitors and  less concern about infections and large crowds. Pre-registration is required and is limited to 100 guests. Fee $7.00, museum members attend free.
Preregistrater to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 617-986-3697 or visit the Morningstar Access Page.  Fees Apply.

Legoland Sensory Event: Sunday, April 26, 2015, 8:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Legoland Discovery Center, 598 Assembly Row, Somerville, MA  02145
During this event there will be special accommodations such as keeping the lights on during a 4D movie and lowered music in MINILAND.
Tickets are 18.50 per person.

Click here for more information.

Water Safety and the Autistic Child: Wednesday, May 13, 2015 at 6:30 PM
Lowell Day Nursery, 119 Hall St., Lowell, MA
Join Cindy from Angel Fish Swim Therapy to learn about water safety for children with autism.
Presented by Lowell Area Families of Autistic Children

Especially for Me at the Discovery Museums in Acton
Autism Friendly Afternoons, 1:30 PM - 4:30 PM

May 5, June 2, 2015
During ASD Friendly Afternoons, no school groups or birthday parties will be scheduled to avoid overcrowding and support accessibility of exhibits. A dedicated room will also be available to welcome families with a child with an ASD to orient them to the campus and programs, and provide a quiet space for children needing a break from the stimulation of the museums.

Evenings for Families with an Autism Spectrum Disorder, 5 PM - 8:30 PM
April 25, May 31, July 11, August 9
During our Free Evenings for Families of Children with an ASD, the Museums are closed to the public so families may explore with others with similar needs.  Food is generously provided by Not Your Average Joe’s of Acton.

For more information about these Discovery Museums events or to register, click here.

Upcoming Events at LifeLinks:
Sibshops
LifeLinks Family Support Center is having FOUR Sibshops (Saturdays, May 9, 16, 30, and June 6)—come to one or come to all! Sibshops acknowledge that being the brother or sister of a person with special needs is for some a good thing, others a not-so-good thing, and for many, somewhere in between. At these awesome events, Sibshops facilitator Nadine Briggs will have the kids playing games, making friends, and talking about being a sibling of child with special needs.

The Sibshops events are for siblings without special needs ages 8 and older. Children must be able to safely participate in a large group with only one staff.

They need a minimum of 6 siblings to run each workshop. Registration is required.

DATES: Saturdays, May 9, 16, 30 and June 6 (sign up for any or all)
TIME: 3:30 – 5:00pm
COST: $5 a session
LOCATION: LifeLinks, 285 Mill Road, Chelmsford
CONTACT: Email Christie at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to register. Please include the name and age of child registering and which dates they will be attending.

Meet the Experts: A Roundtable Forum at the Lurie Center

Christopher J. McDougle, MD, and Ann M. Neumeyer, MD, and Friends of the Lurie Center invite you to join them on Wednesday, April 29 for a unique opportunity to learn from and speak with leading autism experts from Mass General’s Lurie Center and Aspire Program. With a choice of roundtable discussions to attend – each focusing on a different topic and featuring at least two experts – this is an evening not to be missed. Choose the roundtable most pertinent to your interests and join the discussion! You will have the opportunity to visit several roundtables throughout the evening and also socialize with the Friends of the Lurie Center and other parents, grandparents, and friends who are living with autism.
Visit their website for more information.
DATE: Wednesday, April 29
TIME: 6:00 – 8:30pm
COST: Free!
LOCATION: Lurie Center for Autism, 1 Maguire Road, Lexington
CONTACT: Register here (on right side of page) by April 22.

Relationships and Sexuality Webinar

Do you have questions about ways to talk to your child about relationships and sexuality issues? Attend this webinar on Wednesday, April 29 and get answers! Presenters Nicole Murphy, LCSW and Paula Thompson, LICSW of EMARC have been running relationship and sexuality groups for teens and adults with developmental disabilities for five years.

This webinar will provide strategies for parents and professionals to learn new methods and ways to talk with your child, teen, or young adult about relationship and sexuality issues. Nicole and Paula will discuss relationships, feelings, self-esteem, social skills, boundaries, body rights, body parts and changes, sexual development and education, inappropriate and appropriate touching, and personal safety skills. A list of resources and suggestions that you can implement immediately will be given. There will be plenty of time for questions too.
DATE: Wednesday, April 29
TIME: 7:00 – 8:00pm
COST: $20
LOCATION: Your computer
CONTACT: Register here.

CARE Conference

Are you a family caregiver for a loved one with special needs, a chronic illness, or a disability? Attend the CARE (Connecting and Advocating Respite for Everyone) Conference, presented by the Massachusetts Lifespan Respite Project, on Thursday, May 14 for a day of renewal and inspiration. Hear from other caregivers and respite programs about how to get support for yourself while caring for others. There will be yoga, massages, art therapy, door prizes, and more!

Registration is required.

DATE: Thursday, May 14
TIME: 8:00am – 3:00pm
COST: $25 (includes continental breakfast and lunch)
LOCATION: Best Western Royal Plaza Hotel, 181 Boston Post Road West, Marlboro
CONTACT: Register here. Registration required.

Autism Awareness Day at Fenway Park: Sunday, May 24, 2015
Join the Red Sox as we all show our support for Autism Speaks and the valuable work they do for all with autism spectrum disorders. In addition to enjoying an afternoon of baseball at Fenway Park, we also hope to raise awareness for this important cause. A portion of the proceeds from each ticket purchased will be donated to Autism Speaks!

Tickets will be available on a first-come, first-served basis, while supplies last.

For Groups of 20 or more, please contact Matt Labossiere at 617-226-6834 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

For more information click here.


Sensory Friendly Films at AMC Theatres (Methuen, Tyngsboro)

The program provides a special opportunity for families to enjoy their favorite films in a safe and accepting environment. The auditoriums dedicated to the program have their lights up, the sound turned down and audience members are invited to get up and dance, walk, shout or sing!

Special Summer Camps

Hard to believe but it's time to start thinking about summer camp.  MA Sped Child & Teen has a summer camp resource page that includes information about summer 2015.

Autism in the News

From LifeLinks:
Planning for Life After Special Education: Transition Services Online Manual
 
The Disability Law Center in Boston has revised their manual 'Planning for Life After Special Education' and it is available online for FREE. They have made several significant changes, including new information on the following topics:
-Developing appropriate transition services for students with severe developmental disabilities
-Helping your student transition successfully into the adult workforce
-Knowing the various diploma options and determining which option is best for your child
 
The second edition of this manual also provides revised case summaries, thirteen new informational videos in English, Spanish, and ASL, and information on how to manage public benefits.
 
This amazing resource is available online for free. If you have a child approaching transition age, this is a must read!

Leading the Way: Autism Friendly Youth Organizations

Autism Speaks has created a guide for community organizations to help them better serve children with autism and their families.  This information is available online.

Autism Speaks has created the online resource, Postsecondary Educational Opportunities.

Blogs

Autism Blogger - Online Autism Support Group
Accepting Asperger's Syndrome - This is a crash course to accepting your Asperger's!

 

Parents of Special Needs Kids Meet Ups: This is an online resource of groups and meetings in the Boston area. Link: http://spclneedsparents.meetup.com/cities/us/ma/chelmsford.
 

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