July 2, 2014
Talking to Children about Talking

A couple weeks ago, I was with my 12-year-old daughter and 15-year-old son at a public park pool in our community.  It's generally a great place to connect with friends from school.  But not all children are friendly -- or at least they say some pretty unfriendly things.  One group of 14ish-year-olds made my son […]

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January 28, 2013
Getting Off the Sidelines

By the time students are in middle school, those who want to be athletes are getting comfortable in their sport(s) of choice.  Whether the involvement is meant to be just exposure to the activity or full-on competition, between the school's and community's offerings (outside of rural areas), typically-developing adolescents can generally find something that suits them. Those […]

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October 1, 2012
Bullying Prevention Month

A couple of my Facebook friends have sent me the same meme, which says something along the lines of, "I don't think the worst thing in the world is raising a child with autism, but raising a child who is cruel to someone with autism." Bullying is not a problem of childhood.  It's not a […]

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September 10, 2012
Blaming the Victim

An article published online in the Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine last week regarding autism and bullying set the news and social media ablaze with headlines and commentaries.  As a parent, professional, and advocate, I noticed a disturbing but familiar pattern about the "angles"; there was a lot of victim blame going on.  Just read […]

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August 13, 2012
Back-to-school Top 10 List

I was all excited recently to see a top 10 word list regarding autism and bullying.  And I will admit that I was a little disappointed when I read the list.  While I understand the desire to teach specifically students with autism what negative social things are out there, I don't find it helpful.  So […]

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May 7, 2012
Lead by Example

The past few days have offered Denise and me wonderful opportunities to communicate Good Friend's Awareness-Acceptance-Empathy message.  As parents and professionals, we absorbed the teachings of dozens of speakers at the Autism Society of Wisconsin Conference.  The closing keynote speaker on Sunday, Nicole Beurkens of Horizons Developmental Resource Center, offered one of my favorite "a-ha" moments […]

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January 16, 2012
The Silence of Our Friends

As we were doing the research for our middle school film, Choosing To Be a GFF, we noticed a heart-breaking trend.  Typically-developing students who were friends with a child with special needs in elementary school treated their differently-abled peer as if he or she were invisible in the great chaos of blending friends in middle […]

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November 23, 2011
Happy Thanksgiving!

First, a warm welcome to our new friends we met at the OCALI Conference and Exposition in Columbus, Ohio, last week!  Whether you came by our booth, attended our breakout, and/or purchased one or both of our DVDs, we appreciate your interest in creating a culture of acceptance at your school. This is a great […]

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