Resources

Autism Society of America

A national organization that raises awareness about the day-to-day issues faced by people on the spectrum, advocating for appropriate services and providing the latest information regarding treatment, education, research and advocacy.

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What Works Clearinghouse

A central and trusted source of scientific evidence for what works in education to improve the outcomes in children. Aimed to inform those about research, educators, and policymakers as they work toward improving education.

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Autism Speaks

Is an advocacy organization, dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism; increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders; and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families.

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Pediatric Nutrition

Good nutrition is essential to good health. The Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) may help children on the Autism Spectrum. This website goes through the different stages of SCD.

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Do2Learn

Looking for fun and free activities to do at home with your kids? This site provides 1000s of free pages with social skills and behavioral  activities, learning songs, communication cards, academic material, and more.

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F.E.A.T LV

Families for Effective Autism Treatment, Inc. (FEAT) is a non-profit organization that offers a support network where families can meet each other and discuss issues surrounding autism and treatment options.

 

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Cognitive Milestones

Milestones for Age One

  • Follows moving object with eyes
  • Recognizes differences among people; responds to strangers by crying or staring
  • Responds to and imitates facial expressions of others
  • Responds to very simple directions
  • Imitates gestures and actions
  • Puts small objects in and out of container with intention

Milestones for One & Two

  • Imitates actions and words of adults
  • Understands and follows simple, familiar directions
  • Responds to words or commands with appropriate action
  • Is able to match two similar objects
  • Looks at storybook pictures with an adult, naming or pointing to familiar objects on request
  • Recognizes difference between you and me
  • Has very limited attention span
  • Accomplishes primary learning through own exploration

Milestones for Two & Three

  • Responds to simple directions
  • Selects and looks at picture books, names pictured objects, and identifies several objects within one picture
  • Matches and uses associated objects meaningfully
  • Stacks rings on peg in order of size
  • Recognized self in mirror, saying baby, or own name
  • Can talk briefly about what he/she is doing; imitates adult actions
  • Has limited attention span; learning is through exploration and adult direction
  • Is beginning to understand functional concepts of familiar objects and part/whole concepts

Milestones for Three & Four

  • Recognizes and matches six colors
  • Intentionally stacks blocks or rings in order of size
  • Draws somewhat recognizable picture that is meaningful to child if not to adult; names and briefly explains picture
  • Asks questions for information: why and how questions requiring simple answers
  • Knows own age
  • Knows own name
  • Has short attention span; learns through observing and imitating adults and by adult instruction and explanation; is very easily distracted
  • Has increased understanding of concepts of the functions and grouping of objects and part/whole
  • Begins to be aware of past and present

Milestones for Four & Five

  • Plays with words: creates own rhyming words, says or makes up words having similar sounds
  • Points and names four to six colors
  • Matches pictures of familiar objects
  • Draws a pers on with two to six recognizable parts, such as head, arms, and legs; can name or match drawn parts to own body
  • Draws, names, and describes recognizable pictures
  • Rote counts to five, imitating adult
  • Knows own street and town
  • Has more extended attention span; learns through observing and listening to adults, as well as through exploration; is easily distracted
  • Has increased understanding of concepts of function, time, part/whole relationships; function or use of objects may be stated in addition to names of objects
  • Time concepts are expanding; can talk about yesterday or last week, about today, and about what will happen tomorrow

Milestones for Five & Six

  • Retells story from picture book with reasonable accuracy
  • Names some letters and numerals
  • Rote counts to ten
  • Sorts objects by single characteristics
  • Is beginning to use accurately time concepts of tomorrow and yesterday
  • Uses classroom tools meaningfully and purposefully
  • Begins to relate clock time to daily schedule
  • Attention span increases noticeably; learns through adult instruction; when interested, can ignore distraction
  • Concepts of function increase as well as understanding of why things happen; time concepts are expanding into an understanding of the future in terms of major events
Social Skills Milestone

Milestones for Age One

  • Smiles spontaneously
  • Responds differently to strangers than to familiar people
  • Pays attention to own name
  • Responds to no
  • Copies simple actions of others

Milestones for One & Two

  • Recognizes self in mirror or picture
  • Refers to self by name
  • Plays by self; initiates own play
  • Imitates adult behaviors in play
  • Helps put things away

Milestones for Two & Three

  • Plays near other children
  • Watches other children; joins briefly in their play
  • Defends own possessions
  • Begins to play house
  • Symbolically uses objects, self in play
  • Participates in simple group activity
  • Knows gender identity

Milestones for Three & Four

  • Joins in play with other children; begins to interact
  • Shares toys; takes turns with assistance
  • Begins dramatic play, acting out whole scenes

Milestones for Four & Five

  • Plays and interacts with other children
  • Dramatic play is closer to reality, with attention paid to detail, time, and space
  • Plays dress-up
  • Shows interest in exploring sex differences

Milestones for Five & Six

  • Chooses own friends
  • Plays simple table games
  • Plays competitive games
  • Engages in cooperative play with other children involving group decisions, role assignments, fair play
Speech & Language Milestones

Milestones for Age One

  • Recognizes name
  • Says 2-3 words in addition to “mama” and “dada”
  • Imitates familiar words
  • Understands simple instructions
  • Recognizes words as symbols for objects (i.e. Car – points to garage, cat – meows)

Activities to Encourage your Child’s Language at Age One

  • Respond to your child’s coos, gurgles, and babbling
  • Talk to your child as you care for them throughout the day
  • Read colorful books to your child every day
  • Tell nursery rhymes and sing songs
  • Teach your child the names of everyday items and familiar people
  • Take your child with you to new places and situations
  • Play simple games with your child such as “peek-a-boo” and “patty-cake”

Milestones for Two & Three

  • Identifies body parts
  • Carries on ‘conversation’ with self and dolls
  • Asks “What’s that?” and “Where’s my ___?”
  • Uses 2-word negative phrases such as “no want”
  • Forms some plurals by adding “s” (i.e. book : books)
  • Has a 450 word vocabulary
  • Gives first name
  • Holds up fingers to tell age
  • Combines nouns and verbs such as “mommy go”
  • Understands simple time concepts such as “last night” and “tomorrow”
  • Refers to self as “me” rather than by name
  • Tries to get adult attention by saying things like “watch me”
  • Likes to hear same story repeated
  • May say “no” when means “yes”
  • Talks to other children as well as adults
  • Solves problems by talking instead of hitting or crying
  • Answers “where” questions
  • Names common pictures and things
  • Uses short sentences like “me want more” or “me want cookie”
  • Matches 3-4 colors
  • Knows big and little

Activities to Encourage your Child’s Language at Ages Two & Three

  • Repeat new words over and over
  • Help your child listen and follow instructions by playing games such as “pick up the ball, ” and “touch Daddy’s nose”
  • Take your child on trips and talk about what you see before, during and after the trip
  • Let your child tell you answers to simple questions
  • Read books every day, perhaps as part of the bedtime routine
  • Listen attentively as your child talks to you
  • Describe what you are doing, planning and thinking
  • Have your child deliver simple messages for you (i.e. “Mommy needs you, Daddy.”)
  • Carry on conversations with your child, preferably when the two of you have some quiet time together
  • Ask questions to get your child to think and talk
  • Show your child you understand what he or she says by answering, smiling, and nodding your head
  • Expand what your child says. If he or she says, “more juice,” you say, “Adam wants more juice.”

Milestones for Five & Six

  • Has a sentence length of 5-6 words
  • Has a vocabulary of around 2000 words
  • Defines objects by their use (i.e. you eat with a fork) and can tell what objects are made of
  • Knows spatial relations like  “on top,” “behind,” “far,” and “near”
  • Knows their address
  • Identifies a penny, nickel and dime
  • Knows common opposites like “big/little”
  • Understands “same” and “different
  • Counts ten objects
  • Asks questions for information
  • Can distinguish left and right hand on self
  • Uses all types of sentences, for example “Let’s go to the store after we eat.”

Activities to Encourage your Child’s Language for Ages Five & Six

  • Praise your child when they talks about their feelings, thoughts, hopes and fears
  • Comment on what you did or how you think your child feels
  • Sing songs and rhymes with your child
  • Continue to read longer stories
  • Talk with them as you would an adult
  • Look at family photos and talk to them about your family history
  • Listen to them when they talk to you

Milestones for Four & Five

  • Has sentence length of 4-5 words
  • Uses past tense correctly
  • Has a vocabulary of nearly 1500 words
  • Points to colors red, blue, yellow and green
  • Identifies triangles, circles and squares
  • Understands “In the morning,”  “next,” “not on time”
  • Can speak of imaginary conditions such as “I hope”
  • Asks many questions, asks “who?” and “why?”

Activities to Encourage your Child’s Language at Ages Four & Five

  • Help your child sort objects and things (ex. things you eat, animals, etc.)
  • Teach your child how to use the telephone
  • Let your child help you plan activities such as what you will make for Thanksgiving dinner
  • Continue talking with your child about their interests
  • Read longer stories to them
  • Let them tell and make up stories for you
  • Show your pleasure when they come to talk to you
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