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autism specialist Archives - Education and Therapeutic Spaces LTD - Autism Specialist Dr Donia Fahim

Alternative Communication Training for Toddlers with ASD

By | Dr. Donia Fahim Blog | No Comments

In the last blog post, I talked about early intervention techniques which can help young children with ASD communicate, when speech and language are delayed. Most children with autism will develop spoken language, however they may experience a delay of a number of years. This causes frustration and emotional distress for both themselves and their caregivers, during the time when they are unable to communicate their wants and needs through language. As I mentioned previously, there is significant research to show that it is helpful to use alternative means for a child to communicate which not only facilitates communication, but …

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Importance of Playfulness Training for Toddlers with ASD

By | Dr. Donia Fahim Blog, Parenting Tips | No Comments

Hello, and welcome to my latest post, where I’m sharing expert advice around the importance of playfulness training.

I have been sharing posts about the importance of playfulness and using a theme inspired by, and rooted in, your child’s interests when playing with them.

What is systematic planning?

Systematic planning is a cornerstone in an early invention home-based programme and, as promised, over the next few months each newsletter will focus on an early childhood theme and ways to maximise your systematic planning.

This month, as we begin the summer holidays, I have chosen the theme ‘Under the Sea.’ If …

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Communication Training for Toddlers with ASD

By | Dr. Donia Fahim Blog, Parenting Tips | No Comments

vocalization-in-toddlers-with-asdThere is a significant difference between talking and communication. As most of us know, the inability to use speech does not preclude the ability to be understood by others. Sign language, body language, pictures, all facilitate non-verbal communication and these can provide an opportunity to work towards increasing and encouraging vocalization in toddlers with ASD.

For children who struggle to develop speech, learning to communicate through other means also offers an opportunity for them to eventually learn to use language to communicate their needs and enjoy the social pleasures of communicating with others.

According to the National Institute on Deafness …

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Tips for Therapists and Teachers – The Sacred Sound of Silence

By | Dr. Donia Fahim Blog, Parenting Tips | No Comments

It’s quite incredible what silence can offer. As therapists and teachers, we are trained to both listen and to speak with impeccability. We are taught to be aware of not just what we are saying but also how we are saying it and to be good role models for those we teach.

In my years of being a therapist and mentor, I am constantly learning from my students. My most recent, and perhaps one of the most profound lessons for me, came from a boy named AP, a little 4-year-old with Autism.

We have been working together now for over …

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Autism Treatment Questions – Hours of Treatment for Your Special Needs Child

By | Dr. Donia Fahim Blog, Everything Autism, Parenting Tips | 2 Comments
treatment-hours-for-special-needs-children

Among the most frequent autism treatment questions from parents to special educators and therapists is, “How many hours of treatment is best for my child?”

Of course, the answer will vary from child to child and parent to parent, based on the particular condition and the amount of participation the parents and/or caregiver are available and able to provide. In Chapter 7 of our book, Let’s Talk, we outline the recommendations from a variety of agencies and foundations that support families of children with special needs. It is important to remember that quality always trumps quantity.

Here is a …

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Early Childhood Best Practices – Thematic Planning

By | Dr. Donia Fahim Blog, Tips for Parents and Teachers | No Comments

I hope you’ve all had a wonderful January. January is my birthday month. I was born on January 1st on a cold frosty morning a few weeks earlier than expected. My mother, who is a doctor, was on call at the time and I was her New Year’s surprise! We were featured in local paper as I was the first baby born that year at the hospital, that was the equivalent of social media in the 70s. After spending my birthday with family, my bags were packed once again and I have been traveling and working in Cairo & Riyadh. …

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Evidence-Based Timing of Intervention for Special Needs Children

By | Dr. Donia Fahim Blog, Tips for Parents and Teachers | No Comments
early-intervention-timing

Scientific evidence is important, but it is not the only consideration when evaluating the type and timing of intervention programs for your child. Studies of young children with language delays not associated with ASD suggest that they usually learn effectively from interventions embedded in play and natural interactions, with clear models of language forms provided by adults for children to use the models in their own speech.

With this in mind, how can a family sift through the enormous amount of information available to find not only the most appropriate treatment for their child – but when such treatment should …

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