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Newsletter - Summer 2012 Photo Contest for Kids to Win $$
June 24, 2012

June-July Newsletter 2012

Unfortunately, I am still adjusting to life with three children and have not been able to devote as much time to as I would like. However, now that our newest arrival is finally starting to sleep more through the night (9-11 hours if you can believe it!) and more routine naps (4 months old marks daytime organized sleep!) I’m hoping to get back into the swing of things.

What’s New at updates

New Summer Trip 2012 Photo Contest for Kids!

This summer I am doing another photo contest for kids with a summer trip theme. Whether you are going on a trip to the zoo, spending the day at a museum, or heading down to Disney world, you could have a winning photo of your kids/family! Grand Prize wins $100 to Target!! Click below to submit your entry…

Photo contest for kids

Bonus Child Behavior Tip


Getting children to communicate at times can be more than frustrating. When they are young, you are working on building their vocabulary and trying to recognize the sounds they are making as words. For a child with autism, you may be working on using sign language or a picture exchange communication system which both can also be used for children of all abilities to help assist with language. As they get older you may be trying hard to get kids to appropriately communicate their feelings instead of using other negative ways to express themselves.

What’s important to remember is there is no shame in getting help from a speech therapist. Especially when they are young many states offer free services. Why wait until your child is about to start school and realize they are far behind their peers? If in doubt, check it out. Other ways to improve communication in children:

• Hold objects to your mouth while saying what the object is. This helps them see how you are moving your mouth to pronounce the word and pairs that, the sound of the word and the object all together.

• Work on building muscle strength in the mouth by blowing bubbles, drinking from straws, making fish faces, and practicing whistling.

• When a child screams or does other inappropriate behavior to communicate, model the appropriate words to say, such as “Help” or “Eat” and use the sign for these simple words as well. Prompt them to say or sign before helping, or giving food.

• For older kids you may consider using my free feelings charts to assist children in communication of their feelings.

Finally, I want to share some sign language videos that I absolutely love for children. I even find them fun myself! She does songs to incorporate the signs in each video that really helps to learn each word. My son loves her!

What’s in the News?

Specially Bred Mouse that Mimics ADHD

Researchers at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) and OHSU's Oregon National Primate Research Center have developed a specially bred mouse that is intended to mimic ADHD more closely than any other bred model created in the past. The research found that mice carrying a certain mutated form of gene displayed the human-like symptoms of ADHD. The scientists believe that mice bred with this unique genome can greatly assist in research to combat ADHD.

The specific gene that was studied is called SynCAM1, which is found in glial cells -- a type of cell in the central nervous system involved in cellular communication, which it appears that mice carrying a dominant/negative form of the gene were hyperactive. The mice displayed enhanced and more frequent activity during rest periods. In addition, the mice exhibited reduced anxiety, similar to children diagnosed with ADHD. The mutated gene caused these conditions because it blocks the actions of the normal gene.

Hopefully, with this research we might be able to find more information about the causes of ADHD in order to prevent the condition from occurring in the first place.

Click here to read more

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