Caregiver Support

Schools are closed and keeping up with the education of children who have special needs can be daunting. Parents are trying to figure out how to balance working, teaching, supervising, and providing therapies for their children. For caregivers, here are some helpful tips.

  • Create a routine or schedule. You can ask your children’s school to help create a schedule based on their typical day at school.
  • Use pictures to help explain the schedule. Visual schedules can help kids to know what to expect and can be helpful for kids who have a difficult time understanding verbal directions.
  • Be flexible.
  • Take care of yourself.

View our interview with an Occupational Therapist and Simons Searchlight parent on how she is handling her child’s therapies from home.

Below are various websites with activities that are aimed at childhood development.

Pathways is a resource for parents to help describe children’s developmental stages and lists games, videos, and other resources based on different abilities of your child.

OT Plan has occupational therapy ideas that can be done at home.

TEIS Early Intervention and Vroom have activities that children can do to help develop different skills at home.

Go Noodle has a collection of movement and mindfulness videos targeted for kids and designed by experts in child development.

 

View our short webinar on visual schedules and how this might help your child navigate their day at home.

Click here to get more information on how a visual schedule can help with communication between you and your child, how you can make story strips for your child and help them with reciprocal communication.

Helpful Resources

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General support

Autism Society
The Autism Society has many useful COVID-19 toolkits and an ongoing Coronavirus Information Webinar Series.

AFIRM or Autism Focused Intervention Resources & Modules
AFIRM has strategies for supporting people who have autism through uncertain times.

CART or Center for Autism Research & Treatment
CART maintains a broad list of up-to-date resources, including topics such as mental health and managing a child’s free time.

CDC or Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The CDC provides guidelines for at-risk individuals based on currently available information and will update as they receive new information.

Epilepsy Foundation
The Epilepsy Foundation continuously updates information on contracting COVID-19 for people who have epilepsy.

Unique
Unique has advice for individuals with rare genetic disorders concerning COVID-19.

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Psychological support

Child Mind Institute
The Child Mind Institute is helping us and our children cope with COVID-19 by providing Facebook Live video chats with expert doctors everyday at 10 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. EST.

Mental Health America
Mental health during this time is just as important as our physical health. Visit Mental Health America for resources that might help, including helplines that can provide immediate mental health support.

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Educational support

Stages Learning Resources
Stages Learning is offering their Language Builder ARIS Resource Kit for FREE. This kit includes lessons, materials, activity sheets, data tracking sheets, behavior management tools, and a basic overview of how to use the system.