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Bilingualism May Counteract Autism

Language Magazine – Staff Writer

“According to a new study published in Child Development, bilingual children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) are better at switching from one task to another than their monolingual peers. “This is a novel and surprising finding,” says Prof. Aparna Nadig, the senior author of the paper, from the School of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Canada’s McGill University. “Over the past 15 years there has been a significant debate in the field about whether there is a ‘bilingual advantage’ in terms of executive functions. Some researchers have argued convincingly that living as a bilingual person and having to switch languages unconsciously to respond to the linguistic context in which the communication is taking place increases cognitive flexibility.” (more)

Being bilingual may help autistic children

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

“Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) often have a hard time switching gears from one task to another. But being bilingual may actually make it a bit easier for them to do so, according to a new study which was recently published in Child Development. “This is a novel and surprising finding,” says Prof. Aparna Nadig, the senior author of the paper, from the School of Communication Sciences and Disorders at McGill University.” (more)

7 ways to effectively address challenging behaviors in children with autism

E-School News – Meris Stansbury

“Challenging behaviors can be difficult to address in children with autism. After appropriately identifying the behavior, a suitable intervention can be used to proactively, or reactively, reduce and replace it. Experts reviewed key points and effective ways to address these problem behaviors in the edWebinar, “Effective Approaches to Reduce and Replace Challenging Behaviors Exhibited by Children with Autism.”(more)

School exacerbates feelings of being ‘different’ in pupils with Autism Spectrum Conditions

Science Daily – Staff Writer

“Negative school experiences can have harmful long term effects on pupils with Autism Spectrum Conditions, a new study in the journal Autism reports. Researchers from the University of Surrey have discovered that experiences of social and emotional exclusion in mainstream schools can adversely affect how pupils with autism view themselves, increasing their risk of developing low self-esteem, a poor sense of self-worth and mental health problems.”(more)

Back to school, back to planning for kids with autism, ADHD

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

The start of a new school year isn’t always easy, especially for kids with developmental and behavioral issues, such as autism and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Parents of these children may also have concerns about what lies ahead for their youngsters. But keeping a positive outlook is important for a smooth transition, according to Dr. Anson Koshy.”(more)

Learn to recognize autism symptoms in girls

The Toronto Star – Dr. Meng-Chuan Lai

“We often associate autism with males. And while it’s true that more boys than girls are on the spectrum, parents, teachers and doctors have a harder time recognizing this condition in girls. That’s because autism symptoms can be different for girls — and because of stereotypes about autism, and about gender. It starts on the playground. A boy with autism may play by himself and favour games with structured rules. Girls on the autism spectrum are more likely to be near other children and talking — but you’d have to be looking carefully to notice their social struggle.”(more)