Pick of the Week: “The Asperkid’s Secret Book of Social Rules” – A teen’s guide to not-so-obvious social codes

It’s not easy for any teen or tween to fit in, but it can be especially tough for Asperkids. Jennifer O’Toole knows this first-hand, and has written a book she only wishes she had when she was a teen with Asperger Syndrome.

This week only, save 15%* on The Asperkid’s (Secret) Book of Social Rules by entering promo code ASPERKID at check out!

In The Asperkid’s (Secret) Book of Social Rules, O’Toole doesn’t offer advice on what Asperkids should not do, but on what they should do with witty and wise insights into baffling social codes. With helpful tips, practice scenarios, checklists, and quizzes, Asperkids will learn how to:

  • Thank people, apologize, and offer compliments
  • Build and maintain genuine friendships and how to deal with bullying
  • Actively listen and have a meaningful conversation
  • Step back and see the “big picture” instead of focusing on the details
  • Make a correction and let go of the need to be right

With over 30 social rules and logical explanations, this illustrated handbook offers information that tweens and teens can truly digest. And having been there herself, the author shares her experience and points out the potential pitfalls with humor and sensitivity.

Don’t forget to save 15%* on The Asperkid’s (Secret) Book of Social Rules this week by using our promo code ASPERKID at checkout!

*Offer is valid until 11:59pm EDT on September 16th, 2014. Not compatible with any other offers. Be sure there are no spaces or dashes in your code at check out!

Modified Instructions for Parachute Play

We’re excited to bring you the sixth installment of our series of Modified Instructions, created by Sam Blanco, BCBAIn this installment, we’re introducing Sam’s Modified Instructions for Parachute Play. Our bright and colorful parachutes are perfect for motivating young learners during the summer holidays.

   6ft-Parachute 12ft-Parachute

Continue reading

Pick of the Week: I Can Do That! – Learn prepositions and self-awareness with a Dr. Seuss classic!

Practice motor skills, learn prepositions, and develop self-confidence with the award-winning Cat in the Hat I Can Do That! Game. This week only, save 15%* on your order of the I Can Do That! Game by entering or mentioning promo code CATHAT4 at check-out!

This wacky, fun-filled game will have young players moving all about as the Cat in the Hat comes to play. Flip over three cards to create a new challenge. Can you slide under the Trick-a-ma-stick with the toy boat on your head, or jump up and down with the cake between your elbows? Players will have a blast as they practice early reading skills and develop motor skills, understanding of prepositions, and self-confidence.

The game comes with: 1 Trick-a-ma-stick, 9 game pieces of objects straight from the Cat in the Hat story (e.g. cake, fish, boat, ball, book, gown, fan, toy man, rake), 1 sand timer, 33 game cards, and 1 manual.

Remember to redeem your 15% savings* on the Cat in the Hat I Can Do That! Game this week by using promo code CATHAT4 at check-out!

*Offer is valid until 11:59pm EDT on July 22, 2014. Not compatible with any other offers. Be sure there are no spaces or dashes in your code at check out!

Pick of the Week: Parachute Play—Reinforce a Variety of Skills with Summer Fun & Games

Parachute-6footThe end of the school year means more sunshine and fun outdoors. Start the summer holidays with our bright and colorful parachute, and save 15%* when you order it this week with promo code PCHUTE2! The parachute comes in two different sizes—our 6-foot parachute fits up to 6 (pictured left) and our 12-foot parachute (pictured at the bottom) fits up to 8 children for play.

Parachute Play has something for every child. You can teach colors, peer play, and basic prepositions of “over” and “under”. Children love sweeping the parachute up in the air and watching it flutter down. Best of all, it’s just plain fun for all of us!

And if you’re feeling like you should be focusing on school readiness and not play, the Parachute can help there too! You can download a copy of our Modified Instructions for Parachute Play written by our BCBA Sam Blanco for a variety of games modified for learners of different levels. Below are also some of Sam’s tips on various skills that can be reinforced with the simple yet wondrous parachute:

  • Manding (Requesting) – I frequently use a parachute to have my early learners mand for actions. For example, I’ll have the learner lie down on the parachute, then they have to mand for me to “pick up the handle,” “swing,” “ready, set, go,” or “stop.” I also use the parachute (or a blanket) to teach early learners with autism how to request a parent’s attention. I will have the parent hide behind the parachute, and when the child says “Mommy” or “Daddy” the parent will drop the parachute so he/she is immediately visible and give the child lots of attention in the form of tickles, kisses, verbal praise, etc.
  • Comparisons/Adjectives – To help students understand the concept of big and little, I will have the children stand around the sides of the parachute holding onto it with their hands. I will place an object on the parachute, and we will bounce the parachute up and down to try to get the object to fall into the hole in the center of the parachute. Some objects will fall, but some will be too big to fall into the hole. I will ask the students why the object fell or did not fall.
  • Sorting – I will place several colorful objects on the parachute. We will then bounce the parachute up and down playfully. After a 30 seconds to a minute, we will put the parachute back on the floor, and the student will have to move each object onto a panel of the parachute that matches in color.
  • Identifying Body Parts – Because the parachute has a hole in the middle, I will sometimes use it for identifying body parts. The learner can lie down on the floor. Then I will put the parachute on top of them. I’ll pretend I’m looking for them (for example, “Where is Charlie?”) Then I’ll position the parachute so that one part (such as their hand or their nose) is clearly visible. I’ll lightly touch it and say “What is that?” and have the student label nose or hand or elbow, etc. Once the learner has an idea of the game, I may let them initiate it, or have them say “Find my nose” and I’ll place the parachute so their nose is visible.
  • Song Fill-ins – I like to sing songs while shaking or spinning the parachute. For students with autism or other language delays who struggle with this skill, the parachute can be a great motivator to help with song fill-ins and other intraverbal skills. I will sing the song while shaking or spinning the parachute, and I’ll stop singing AND moving the parachute when I want the child to fill in a word. As soon as the child fills in the word, I will begin singing and moving the parachute again. For many students, this is more motivating than a high five or saying “good job.”
  • Quick Responding – If you are working with learners with autism, the absence of quick responding is sometimes a serious barrier to learning. I have found that using the parachute is a good way to motivate the student to respond quickly when presented with at ask by using it as described above with the song fill-ins. Once I am getting quick responding with the parachute, I quickly begin to work on generalizing the skill to other environments (such as the table or during a floor activity).

Don’t forget to save 15%* this week only on your Parachute when you enter or mention promo code PCHUTE2 at check out!

*Offer is valid until 11:59pm EDT on July 8th, 2014. Not compatible with any other offers. Be sure there are no spaces or dashes in your code at check out!

Pick of the Week: “The Cow Says Moo” – 10 Tips to Teach Your Toddler to Talk

Teach your child to communicate with words and expand his or her language skills with the new early intervention guide The Cow Says Moo. And this week only, you can take 15% off* your purchase of The Cow Says Moo by entering in our promo code MOO15 at check out!

The Cow Says Moo is an early intervention guide that teaches parents easy-to-use, common-sense strategies for helping their children learn to communicate. The 10 tips and appendices filled with songs, checklists, and resources rely on the same methods that practitioners use when providing direct home-based speech therapy to toddlers and their families.

Tips focus on things like giving your child a reason to talk, using sign language, oral motor exercises, finding the right word, pairing movement with sound and more.

This simple guide delivers speech therapy activities that any parent can implement right away.

Save 15%* on your order of The Cow Says Moo this week by mentioning or entering in promo code MOO15 at checkout.

*Offer is valid until 11:59pm EDT on July 1, 2014. Not compatible with any other offer. Be sure there are no dashes or spaces in your code at check out!

Introducing Little Mixers: A Weekly Social Skills Playgroup in Brooklyn

Little Mixers BklnStacy Asay, one of our wonderful and beloved consultants, is launching the Little Mixers series, a social skills group based in Brooklyn! Headed by Stacy and Sharon Alkalay, this weekly Little Mixers series will be a special mix of fun, food, and friendship for young children between the ages of 3 and 7. Sessions will be held at Beansprouts at 14th Street and 6th Avenue in Park Slope.

Each meeting will consist of a guided lesson, group discussion, interactive games and a cooking activity, all thematically focused around a particular social skill. Each week a new social skill will be introduced with the session, culminating in an expanded repertoire of social skills and perhaps a new friend!

Parents will be provided a hand-out with suggestions and strategies to practice throughout the week in order to facilitate carry-over of a target skill.

Little Mixers will be holding 2 sessions for Spring/Summer 2014:
Mondays: 4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. (ages 5-7)
Thursdays: 4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. (ages 3-5)

For more detailed information, please visit the Little Mixers website at www.littlemixersbrooklyn.com, or email Stacy Asay at littlemixersbrooklyn@gmail.com.

About the Group leaders

Sharon Alkalay, MS, CCC-SLP, is a speech-language pathologist with over 8 years of experience working with infants, toddlers and children. As a classically-trained musician, she enjoys incorporating multi-modal/multi-sensory techniques into her therapy sessions through use of music, art, movement, sensory integration and dramatic play. She believes that successful engagement with a child should be accomplished gracefully with creativity, humor and compassion. Her special interests include working with children with social-language difficulties, apraxia of speech, autism spectrum disorders and language/learning disorders.

Stacy L. Asay, LMSW, is a licensed social worker, providing home and school based services to children and their families in the New York City area. With nearly 16 years of experience, her work with special needs children integrates a strengths-based, holistic approach to child and family augmented with the tools of Applied Behavior Analysis, a methodology that allows for reliable measurement, objective evaluation of behaviors, and the systematic teaching of language and learning skills.  This results in an individualized curriculum that equips children with the tools they need for learning and living while honoring their unique spirit.

Pick of the Week: “Fitting In and Having Fun” Vol. 4: High School Life

There are many behaviors that high school students are expected to recognize and display. Students need to be aware of these implicit expectations in order to make good choices, become more independent, and form healthy relationships. This week only, we are offering a 15% discount off of the video modeling program “Fitting In and Having Fun”, Vol. 4: High School Life to help your high school student improve their social awareness. Enter BLOGFITN2* at checkout to apply these savings to your online order.

This video modeling DVD follows a teen named Jon as he learns to navigate high school by becoming more aware of the unspoken rules his teachers and peers expect him to know. The DVD includes the TD Social Skills exclusive “What they’re thinking” insight windows to help students realize the impact of their behavior on others. Actual high school peer mentors who offer advice on how to solve teen problems are also featured. “Springboard to discussion” questions explore each topic further to help students to better understand and improve social exchanges.

Watch the video below for a preview!

Fitting In and Having Fun, Volume 4: High School LifeThe social situations reviewed on this DVD are:

  • Getting Organized
  • Classroom Protocol
  • Sharing Conversations
  • Staying Calm to Problem-Solve
  • Showing Empathy
  • Manners Count
  • Dealing With Stress
  • Embarrassing Situations
  • Falling Head Over Heels

This week only, save 15% on your order of “Fitting In and Having Fun”, Vol. 4: High School Life by using the promotional code BLOGFITN2* at checkout!

*Offer is valid until November 5, 2013 at 11:59pm EST. Not compatible with any other offer. Be sure there are no spaces or dashes in the promo code at checkout!

Pick of the Week: “You Are a Social Detective!” CD

You Are a Social Detective! Interactive CD teaches children ages 7-12 to become better social thinkers by putting on their detective hats and deciphering both expected and unexpected social behavior. This week, we’re offering a 15% discount on the You Are a Social Detective! CD to help parents and professionals introduce the Social Thinking® Vocabulary to their students. Enter the promo code BLOGDTV4 at checkout to save 15% on your purchase this week.

DRM 840

Users will rely on their social “tools” — their eyes, ears, and brains — to make smart social guesses and investigate clues to see how others’ emotions and responses are connected to their own behavior. The program has 6 exciting levels with more than 200 video prompts to break down social situations into functional terms, including:

  1. Understanding Others’ Comfortable/Uncomfortable Thoughts
  2. Understanding Others’ Expected/Unexpected Behaviors
  3. Guessing Others’ Thoughts and Emotion
  4. Making Smart Guesses
  5. Using Your Tool Box Items (Eyes, Ears & Brain)
  6. Using Social Mapping

The software uses interactive video scenarios of real students to engage the user to answer questions, make smart social guesses and establish outcomes. All entries are scored over time so parents and educators can track progress and customize levels.

This software is compatible with Windows 98 or above and MAC OS X or above.

*This offer expires on October 1, 2013 at 11:59 pm EST. Not compatible with any other offer. Be sure there are no spaces in the promo code at check out!

Pick of the Week: Funny Faces

This week’s Pick of the Week features the interactive game Funny Faces, which promotes children’s recognition and awareness of emotions and expressions. Teaching student son the autism spectrum to recognize facial expressions is a key step in ultimately reducing their stress and anxiety by teaching them how to express their needs and wants and how to best interpret the actions of the people around them.

DRG 383 Funny Faces

This week only, SAVE 15% on your order of the Funny Faces game by entering in the promotional code BLOGFNNY5 at checkout!

Funny Faces requires players to take turns mimicking a face from a game card, while the other players try to guess the expression and match it to one on the board.

 

Kids will have fun while being asked to recreate and identify the game’s silly faces. The game includes 60 face cards, 30 face tiles, and a mirror so players may practice their funny faces!

DRG 383 Funny Faces_Opened

Take 15% off your order of Funny Faces by entering in the promo code BLOGFNNY5 at checkout!*

*Offer expires on July 15th, 2013 at 11:59 pm EST. Not compatible with any other offer. Be sure there are no spaces after the Promo Code when you enter it at checkout!

Pick of the Week: The Asperkid’s (Secret) Book of Social Rules

It’s not easy for any teen or tween to fit in, but it can be especially tough for Asperkids. Jennifer O’Toole knows this first-hand, and has written a book she only wishes she had when she was a teen with Asperger Syndrome.

This week only, save 15% on The Asperkid’s (Secret) Book of Social Rules by entering in BLOGASP7 at check out!

In The Asperkid’s (Secret) Book of Social Rules, O’Toole doesn’t offer advice on what Asperkids should not do, but on what they should do with witty and wise insights into baffling social codes. With helpful tips, practice scenarios, checklists, and quizzes, Asperkids will learn how to:

  • Thank people, apologize, and offer compliments
  • Build and maintain genuine friendships and how to deal with bullying
  • Actively listen and have a meaningful conversation
  • Step back and see the “big picture” instead of focusing on the details
  • Make a correction and let go of the need to be right

This week only, take 15% off The Asperkid’s (Secret) Book of Social Rules in your online order by entering in the promotional code BLOGASP7 at check out!*

*Offer expires on July 8th, 2013 at 11:59 pm EST. Not compatible with any other offer. Be sure there are no spaces after the Promo Code when you enter it at checkout!