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Children with Autism and SPD: Behavior=Sensory=Behavior

Most children who are diagnosed on the autism spectrum have behavioral issues and sensory integration issues as well.  But when and how can we tell which is which? Well in a nut shell……you can’t and for the most part its usually one and the same!  Children with autism and special needs go through similar emotional […]

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“Look What I Did!” Developing a Child’s Artistic Skills in Art Therapy

  Art Therapy as opposed to Art Education generally emphasizes process over the finished art product.  We as art therapists are not instructors in artistic skills, but rather facilitators of artistic media to help clients express themselves and project internal issues in order to gain self awareness and insight. However, recent sessions with a client […]

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Family Art Therapy and the Child with Special Needs

Family members are not independent of one another. We need to view the family as a part of a system of specified relationships, adopted roles of behavior and unconscious and conscious rules of communication. In the case of a special needs child with limited communication skills, it is even more important to identify the dynamics […]

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Creative Group Work with Children on the Spectrum

When working with groups, it is just as important to always remain flexible and to adapt to the different levels of functioning displayed by each child. Sometimes providing a theme to the art making helps give the children a focus while still allowing for changes and flexibility. Here is an example of a group art […]

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Art Therapy and Autism: Working with Parent and Child Together

Within my private practice with the Autism population, I have discovered that the parent-child dyad can be a wonderful way to  work if the circumstances are right. It enables me to model for the parent and  offer creative strategies and techniques for their child. But even beyond that  it is an enriching experience for me as the […]

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Playtime for Children on the Spectrum

Children with Autism have many challenges with socialization and communication. They find it extremely difficult to relate to others; especially to their peers.  Instead of playing with toys in imaginative ways (such as pretending a doll is really “my baby”) they may use toys for self-stimulation, perseverate on objects, and become entirely self-absorbed. For typical […]

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Art making and Sensory Integration

Very often my goals as an art therapist will focus on the creative expression in developing the child’s imagination, communication and socialization skills. These are all areas that the child with Autism Spectrum Disorder is working on in school, home and other therapies as well. However, sometimes art can simple be used in a more […]

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