View this email in your web browser
US Autism & Asperger Association
April 23, 2010

Welcome to USAAA Weekly News, an email newsletter that addresses a range of topics on Autism Spectrum Disorders and Asperger's Syndrome.


USAAA Aligns With TouchPoint Autism Services

Autism Awareness: There are more than just five senses

Workers with Asperger Syndrome or autism can fill workplace needs

Translating the Puzzle of Autism into Treatment

When language is blocked, music may offer detour

Shop Our Partners Now

USAAA Aligns With TouchPoint Autism Services
Prominent Autism Organizations Collaborate for USAAA 2010 World Conference

conferencelogoSALT LAKE CITY, UT - April 23, 2010 - US Autism & Asperger Association, Inc. (USAAA) holds its 5th annual World Conference in St. Louis, Missouri October 1-3, 2010. Some of the world’s most renowned autism experts will present new interventions and new research in both education and medicine. USAAA is collaborating with TouchPoint Autism Services to host the upcoming conference, which will be held at the Hilton St. Louis Airport Hotel.

"Featured speakers include Dr. Temple Grandin, Dr. Martha Herbert, and Dr. Stephen Shore, plus nine special panel workshops."

“USAAA is very excited to be aligned with TouchPoint Autism Services, a Missouri based non-profit organization whose mission is to make a real difference in the quality of life of individuals with autism,” said Lawrence P. Kaplan, PhD, author, researcher and CEO of USAAA. “The main focus of our conference is ‘Autism Education and Treatment: A Path to Wellness’ and bringing families together through support, hope, possibilities and solutions.”

Click here for the entire USAAA Aligns With TouchPoint Autism Services press release.
Click here to visit the USAAA conference web site.


Autism Awareness: There are more than just five senses

Posted by Lylah M. Alphonse

Sensory Processing Disorder, or SPD, is not technically an autism spectrum disorder -- making it difficult to address on an IEP -- but many children with autism also have some symptoms of SPD, which is why I'm writing about it under the "Autism Awareness" heading.

"Neuroscientist Dr. Jean Ayres compared SPD to a neurological "traffic jam,"

One of the things we learn early on in school is that we all have five senses: taste, touch, smell, hearing, and sight. But as Hartley Steiner, author of This is Gabriel Making Sense of School, points out on her blog, Hartley's Life with 3 Boys, there are actually seven. In addition to the five we learn about as kids (sight, sound, taste, touch, and smell) there are two more -- vestibular and proprioceptive. And those are the ones that pose a particular problem for some kids who have SPD and are on the autism spectrum.

Click here for more information on Autism Awareness: There are more than just five senses.


Workers with Asperger Syndrome or autism can fill workplace needs

Kansas City Star

Do you need a worker who pays attention to detail? Who will do tedious data entry job? Who won’t waste time gossiping?

You might find that you need someone with autism or Asperger Syndrome.

"But when advocates for hiring such individuals visit with employers, they often run into stumbling blocks

This is National Autism Month. Advocates have geared up to share sobering statistics about the increasing numbers of children with the diagnosis.

Adults with autism or its milder form, Asperger’s, have a hard time finding jobs now. What will the jobless rate be for that group when — if current statistics are correct — the 1 in 110 children who have autism try to become employed? “

As it is now, lots of people with autism or Asperger’s are looking for full-time jobs, but their gifts are not recognized,” says Sean Swindler, director of community program development at the Kansas Center for Autism Research and Training. “Our challenge is finding jobs that fit them.”

Swindler tells of a successful job placement: A man with autism works in a bank, running cash from the tellers’ windows to the vaults.

Click here for more information on Workers with Asperger Syndrome or autism can fill workplace needs.


Translating the Puzzle of Autism into Treatment

By Sarah A. Webb

After graduating from Yale University and earning her medical degree at Harvard Medical School, Shafali Jeste did a child neurology residency at Children's Hospital Boston. Toward the end of that residency, she realized she wanted to do research focused on autism. "I just saw these kids, and I was fascinated by them," she says of her young autistic patients. "I couldn't believe that we didn't understand what was going on in their brains to make them work like that."

"It's really one thing to read about a set of symptoms and symptom clusters, but it's a whole other issue when you see it actually play out in somebody's life." --David Shirinyan

So Jeste designed a clinical fellowship in behavioral child neurology, funded with a Researcher-in-Training Award from the Child Neurology Foundation, working with Harvard developmental neuroscientist Charles Nelson. In Nelson's lab, she learned methods for assessing brain activity -- electroencephalography (EEG) and eye tracking -- to help her understand the formation of neural connections in the brains of infants and toddlers.

Click here for more information on Translating the Puzzle of Autism into Treatment.


When language is blocked, music may offer detour

By Carolyn Y. Johnson
Boston Globe

Lee and Mary-Helen Black had nearly given up hope their son would speak.

Physically, Tripp was fine, crawling, standing, and walking on schedule. But language eluded him. Lee Black vividly recalled when Tripp, nearly 2, sat in his highchair and tried to sing a children’s song. He started to say “head,’’ then faltered, as if the word had crumbled out of his grasp.

"For his mother, that simple exchange was huge — Tripp had spontaneously used his voice, joining in a bedtime ritual.

“I watched him freeze,’’ his father said.“That was the ultimate moment.’’

Tripp was later diagnosed with autism, a disorder that can impair children’s ability to speak. Despite years of therapy, he did not talk.

Then last fall, at age 8, he began an experimental program that coaxes speech using singing, movement, and imitation. After 10 weeks, he could say “mama,’’ “dada,’’ “bubbles,’’ and “bye.’

Click here for more information on When language is blocked, music may offer detour.


Shop Our Partners Now

shoppingClick here to SHOP Our Partners Now! Donations from our partners will enable the US Autism & Asperger Association to enhance the quality of life of individuals and their families/caregivers touched by autism spectrum disorders and provide educational and family support through conferences/seminars and published and electronic mediums.


Click here and Become our Fan on Facebook! See new video clips from practitioners, parents, and specialists never shown before. New clips are introduced weekly.Also, click here to join our causes.

Visit our new look
home page!

The redesigned front page has some new features, loads faster and is easier to use.

home page

Submit a comment
Newsletter Archives

US Autism & Asperger Association 2010 World Conference & Expo
October 1-3, St. Louis, Missouri


The 2010 US Autism & Asperger Association Fifth Annual Conference will be held
October 1-3, 2010 in St. Louis, Missouri. Featured speakers include Dr. Temple Grandin, Dr. Martha Herbert, and Dr. Stephen Shore.


facebookFind us on Facebook, and discover our newest video clips, plus much more!

Click here
to join our cause.


Donate Now

donate now
Your support enhances the quality of life of individuals and their families/caregivers touched by autism spectrum disorders.


Stay informed by signing up for the USAAA WeeklyNews. Each week we'll share the latest ASD news, resources, research, tips, plus more.

Sign up for the newsletter
Read our past issues.


Join now

and receive many benefits including discounts on products from our sponsors.



The USAAA WeeklyNews® is made possible in part by a generous donation from Oxy Health Corporation.

oxy health


Send us your story about your experience with autism and Asperger's Syndrome on a specific topic each week. Whether you're a parent, grandparent, caregiver, individual with autism or have any experience with autism spectrum disorders, your stories help provide insight into the world of autism.

This week's topic is: "Comment on our newsletter articles today"

Please send us your story in 500 words or less. Include your full name, email address, and in the subject line include this week's topic. Submissions are condensed and edited. Because of the volume of mail received, not all submissions are published. Information other than your name are kept confidential.

Click here to submit your story.



Inbox Readers' Comments are opinions from our subscribers. USAAA is not responsible for the content, accuracy or opinions expressed in this section.

USAAA WeeklyNews encourages readers to send guest columns for publication in our WeeklyNews. These op-eds should address timely topics of autism and Asperger's Syndrome to readers and must not exceed 600 words. Not all we receive can be published. Those that represent a well-reasoned argument, supported by evidence, in a concise and readable manner will receive priority.

Click here to send in your comments to Inbox.




©2010 US Autism & Asperger Association, Inc.

1-888-9AUTISM (1-888-928-8476) , 801-816-1234