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What Are 'Special Needs'?

Portrait of a Boy With Down Syndrome

"Special needs" is an umbrella term that covers a wide range of issues, from medical problems to developmental differences, learning difficulties to food allergies. If your child benefits from accommodations, modifications, sensitivity and understanding, chances are you'll find useful information and support here

Children With Special Needs Spotlight10

Helping Your Child With Special Needs Enjoy Easter

Tuesday April 15, 2014

Easter BasketEaster is coming this Sunday, ending the string of candy-overload holidays that started with Halloween and ran through Christmas and Valentine's Day. If you have a child for whom treats can be trouble -- whether due to allergies, medical conditions, behavioral overreactions to sugar, or any other disaster waiting to happen -- the baskets and egg hunts and goody bags that hop into your house this time of year can be a challenge. The holiday can be tricky for other reasons, too, as anyone who's tried to get a wiggly kid to sit still during long church services, get a sensory-sensitive child to put on fancy Easter duds, or get through a family gathering without wanting to stuff a giant chocolate bunny down someone's throat can attest. For some holiday-handling advice, read my Easter Survival Guide and prepare for a "whatever works" kind of a day.

Also in the special-needs news today:

+ If you missed paralympian Amy Purdy on Dancing With the Stars last night, the video of her waltz with partner Derek Hough is up on YouTube. You can cast votes through Tuesday.

+ Around About.com, autism expert Lisa Jo Rudy offers "Five Reasons to Celebrate Our Autistic Children's Small Victories," Down syndrome expert Eliana Tardio writes about "The Challenges of Being a Working Mom of a Child with Down Syndrome," and celiac disease expert Jane Anderson has information on gluten-free Easter candy.

+ Mashable shares the story of a young cancer survivor who developed a video game to help kids with cancer feel better, have fun, and find fellowship.

For more special-needs news, check the dailyweekly, and topic folders.

Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Weekly Round-Up: Week Ending April 13

Monday April 14, 2014

Here's your listing of all the new content you may have missed from the past few weeks on About Parenting Special Needs.

New Blog Posts and Podcasts

Updated Pages


Waves, Science, and More Fun Things to Do

Saturday April 12, 2014

Stop by here every Saturday for a family activity, a site for the kids, a shopping site, a site offering humor or inspiration about parenting children with special needs, and a site that's just silly or fun, all designed to get you through your weekend with kids amused and spirits intact. Today's list:

  1. Activity: Wave Bottle Rocker
  2. Kids' Site: Science Made Fun!
  3. Shopping: Spina Bifida Shirts
  4. Humor: Family Gathering Bingo
  5. Just for Fun: 25 Iconic TV Theme Songs

Your Comments on Special Needs on TV and in the Neighborhood

Friday April 11, 2014

MegaphoneCatch up on what your fellow readers have been going on about, and add your own two cents, by checking out the comments recently added to these posts:

What's on your mind today? Share in the comments here or on any of the 7,000+ posts now up on this blog.

Also in the special-needs news today:

+ This week's Parenting Special Needs newsletter looks at some helpful depictions of children with special needs on kids' shows, from Sesame Street's upcoming "See Amazing in All Children Autism Initiative" to some classic "Arthur" episodes. You can read the newsletter online, but why not subscribe to get future issues right in your inbox?

+ On the Inclusive Class podcast this week, my cohost Nicole Eredics and I talked with special-education professor Megan Mackey about "How Inclusion Works in Middle School," including how important it still is for parents to volunteer and be a part of their child's school, even as kids get to an age where they're embarrassed to be around you. For more Inclusive Class podcasts you can listen to right now, check the episode index.

+ Around About.com, Assistive Technology expert Andrew Leibs writes about a screen reader for math students with print disabilities, and Autism expert Lisa Jo Rudy shares the story of how her son with autism learned to play the clarinet.

For more special-needs news, check the dailyweekly, and topic folders.

Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images


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