Traumatic Brain Injury Resources from BrainSTARS

Recently we had a student who had a traumatic brain injury and we were looking for user-friendly strategies to use at school. Our speech and language pathologist suggested BrainSTARS. I hope you find it as useful as we have in supporting students with brain injuries.

Tools from the BrainSTARS manual:

The manual is available in English and Spanish. For more information or to order copies, call 1.800.624.6553, ext. 5470 or moores.christine@tchden.org.

Videos

Traumatic Brain Injury

A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is defined as a blow to the head or a penetrating head injury that disrupts the normal function of the brain. TBI can result when the head suddenly and violently hits an object or when an object pierces the skull and enters brain tissue. Symptoms of a TBI can be mild, moderate or severe, depending on the extent of damage to the brain. Mild cases may result in a brief change in mental state or consciousness, while severe cases may result in extended periods of unconsciousness, coma or even death.

About 1.7 million cases of TBI occur in the U.S. every year. Approximately 5.3 million people live with a disability caused by TBI in the U.S. alone.

  • Annual direct and indirect TBI costs are estimated at $48-56 billion.
  • There are about 235,000 hospitalizations for TBI every year, which is more than 20 times the number of hospitalizations for spinal cord injury.
  • Among children ages 14 and younger, TBI accounts for an estimated 2,685 deaths, 37,000 hospitalizations and 435,000 emergency room visits.
  • Every year, 80,000-90,000 people experience the onset of long-term or lifelong disabilities associated with TBI.
  • Males represent 78.8 percent of all reported TBI accidents and females represent 21.2 percent.
  • National statistics estimate between 50-70 percent of TBI accidents are the result of a motor vehicle crash.
  • Sports and recreational activities contribute to about 21 percent of all TBIs among American children and adolescents.
  • The mortality rate for TBI is 30 per 100,000, or an estimated 50,000 deaths in the U.S. annually. Of those who die, 50 percent do so within the first two hours of their injury.
  • Deaths from head injuries account for 34 percent of all traumatic deaths. Beginning at age 30, the mortality risk after head injury begins to increase. Persons age 60 and older have the highest death rate after TBI, primarily because of falls, which have a rising incidence in this age group.

Sources:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI): Incidence and Distribution, 2004.

Traumatic Brain Injury Model System, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Introduction to Brain Injury – Facts and Stats, February, 2000

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DiGeorge Syndrome at School

DiGeorge Syndrome

What is 22q11.2 deletion syndrome in children?

22q11.2 deletion syndrome (22q11.2DS) is a genetic disorder. In children with this syndrome, a tiny piece of chromosome 22 is missing. This can cause many health problems. These problems may range from heart defects and developmental delays to seizures. The child may also have changes in how the eyes, nose, or ears look. Or the child may have an opening in the roof of the mouth (cleft palate). Most children with the syndrome only have some of the health problems. In general, any of the health problems can be treated, especially if they are found early.

The name of the syndrome refers to the missing piece of chromosome 22. It is located at a place on that chromosome called q11.2.

The symptoms of 22q11.2DS can vary greatly from one child to another. For that reason, several disorders caused by 22q11.2DS have had other names in the past. These names include:

  • DiGeorge syndrome
  • Velocardiofacial syndrome (VCFS)
  • Shprintzen syndrome
  • Conotruncal anomaly face syndrome (CTAF)
  • Sedlackova syndrome
  • CATCH 22 syndrome

Some children with the syndrome had been diagnosed with Opitz G/BBB syndrome or Cayler cardiofacial syndrome in the past. Healthcare providers now know that these disorders all share the same genetic cause as 22q11.2DS. 

About 1 in 4,000 people have 22q11.2DS. But some experts believe this number is higher. Some parents who have a child with this chromosome problem may not know it because the symptoms are less severe.

What causes 22q11.2DS in a child?

Most children with 22q11.2DS are missing about 50 genes. Researchers don’t yet know the exact function of many of these genes. But missing the gene TBX1 on chromosome 22 likely causes the syndrome’s most common physical symptoms. These include heart problems and cleft palate. The loss of another gene (called COMT) may also explain the higher risk for behavior problems and mental illness.

About 9 in 10 cases of 22q11.2DS happen by chance (randomly). They occur when the egg is fertilized. Or they occur early in a baby’s growth in the mother’s uterus. This means that most children with the disorder have no family history of it.

But a person with the condition can pass it on to his or her children. About 1 in 10 cases are inherited from the mother or the father. When the condition is inherited, other family members could also be affected. A person who has this chromosome deletion has a 1 in 2 chance of passing the problem to a child. So both parents can have their blood studied to look for the deletion.

Which children are at risk for 22q11.2DS?

A child is more at risk for this disorder if he or she has a parent with the condition or is carrying the faulty chromosome. But most cases occur randomly.

What are the symptoms of 22q11.2DS in a child?

Symptoms of 22q11.2DS may vary widely, even among family members. At least 30 symptoms have been seen with this disorder. Most children have only some of the symptoms.

The most common symptoms include:

  • Heart defects. These are usually present from birth (congenital).
  • Mouth problems. These include cleft palate and a palate that does not close fully (velopharyngeal insufficiency). These can cause speech problems.
  • Ear problems. This includes middle ear infections or hearing loss.
  • Low levels of calcium in the blood. This is caused by problems with the parathyroid glands and can trigger seizures.
  • Immune system problems. These can increase the risk for infections.
  • Spine problems. These include curvature of the spine (scoliosis) and problems with the bones of the neck or upper back.
  • Learning problems. These include delays in development and speech.
  • Communication and social problems. This includes autism.
  • Increased risk for mental illness. This includes anxiety, depression, or schizophrenia in adulthood.
  • Feeding difficulties. These may occur because of a cleft palate, gastroesophageal reflux, or other issues.
  • Kidney problems. These may include an abnormally shaped kidney or a missing kidney.

Facial features of children may include:

  • Small ears with squared upper ear
  • Hooded eyelids
  • Cleft lip, cleft palate, or both
  • Uneven (asymmetric) face when crying
  • Small mouth, chin, and side areas of the tip of the nose

The symptoms of 22q11.2DS can be like other health conditions. Make sure your child sees his or her healthcare provider for a diagnosis.

How is 22q11.2DS diagnosed in a child?

Your child’s healthcare provider will look at your child’s prenatal history and complete health and family history. He or she will do a physical exam. Your child may need certain tests. These may include:

  • Blood tests. These are to look for immune system problems.
  • X-ray. This test makes pictures of internal tissues, bones, and organs.
  • Echocardiography. This test looks at the structure of the heart and how well it is working.
  • Fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) studies. This blood test looks for certain genes that are deleted. If the FISH test doesn’t find any deletion in the 22q11.2 region of the chromosome, but your child has signs of the syndrome, he or she will usually need a full chromosome study. This will look for other chromosome problems.
  • Chromosomal microarray. This is similar to a FISH test. But it looks at many regions across all the chromosomes, including chromosome 22. This is to find a missing piece in the 22q11.2 location.

How is 22q11.2DS treated in a child?

There is no cure for 22q11.2DS. But many of its related health problems can be treated. You can help your child by seeking early care.

Treatment will depend on your child’s symptoms, age, and general health. It will also depend on how severe the condition is.

Treatment may include working with specialists. This may include any of the below:

  • Cardiologist. He or she will look at any heart defects. The cardiologist may correct them with a procedure or surgery.
  • Plastic surgeon and speech pathologist. They will look at any cleft lip or cleft palate defects.
  • Speech and digestive specialists. They will look at any feeding problems. Some children with the syndrome have severe feeding problems. They need tube feedings in order to get enough nutrition.
  • Immune system specialist.  Your child should be checked by this type of specialist. If your child has a T cell problem, he or she is at risk for infections that keep coming back. Your child should not have any live viral vaccines. Your child should have any blood products for a transfusion irradiated. This is true unless your child’s immune system doctor says that is not needed.

Other common problems that may need treatment include:

  • Low calcium. This is common in children with the syndrome, especially right after birth. But it can also happen during times of stress, such as during puberty or after surgery. Your child may need to take calcium and vitamin D supplements. Your child may need to see an endocrinologist. This is a doctor who specializes in treating problems of the endocrine system.
  • Development problems. Young children with 22q11.2DS may be slow to meet developmental milestones. These include sitting, walking, and talking. The International 22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome Foundation recommends that parents consider physical therapy (PT), occupational therapy (OT), and speech therapy for their child. PT strengthens large muscles and helps children meet developmental milestones. OT focuses on small muscles used for tying shoes, buttoning clothes, and other tasks. It can also help with feeding problems. Speech therapy can help your child with language delays.

What are the possible complications of 22q11.2DS in a child?

A small number of children with severe heart defects and immune system problems caused by 22q11.2DS will not survive the first year of life. But most children with the syndrome who get treatment will survive and grow into adulthood. These children will likely need extra help throughout school. They may also need long-term care for their health needs.

Some children with the syndrome may have behavioral conditions. These include autism, attention deficit disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, or anxiety.

How can I help prevent 22q11.2DS in my child?

Most cases of 22q11.2DS occur randomly. So the disease can’t always be prevented. In about 1 in 10 cases of the syndrome, the deletion is inherited from one of the parents. Think about having genetic testing and counseling to find out if this disorder is inherited. If you have the 22q11.2 deletion, you have a 1 in 2 chance of passing it on to a child. This is true for every pregnancy you have.

How can I help my child live with 22q11.2DS?

Most health problems caused by 22q11.2DS can be treated, especially if they are found early. You can help your child by:

  • Keeping all appointments with your child’s healthcare provider.
  • Calling the healthcare provider if you are concerned about your child’s symptoms.
  • Telling others of your child’s condition. Work with your child’s healthcare provider and school to come up with a treatment plan.
  • Thinking about getting genetic testing and counseling to understand whether 22q11.2DS is an inherited condition in your family.

When should I call my child’s healthcare provider?

Call the healthcare provider if your child has:

  • Symptoms that don’t get better, or get worse
  • New symptoms

Key points about 22q11.2DS in children

  • 2 deletion syndrome (22q11.2DS) is a genetic disorder where a tiny piece of chromosome 22 is missing.
  • Most cases happen randomly as a baby grows in the mother’s uterus. It can also be inherited.
  • Symptoms vary widely and can range from heart defects and developmental delays to seizures. A child’s eyes, nose, or ears may look different. Or the child may have an opening in the roof of the mouth (cleft palate).
  • The syndrome has no cure. But many related health problems can be treated. You can help your child by seeking early care.
  • Most children who get treatment early will survive and grow into adulthood. They will likely need extra help throughout school. They may also need long-term care for their health needs.
  • A person with this condition has a 1 in 2 chance of passing the problem to a child. So genetic testing and counseling are important.

Source

Resources

Information for Educators and Members of School Resource Teams

22q Deletion Velocardiofacial At a Glance (Comprehensive overview)*

Supporting children with genetic syndromes in the classroom: the example of 22q deletion syndrome COLIN REILLY and LINDSEY STEDMAN

Educational Issues for children with Chromosome 22q11.2 deletion (PowerPoint)

What is 22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome? (Super Duper Handout)

Math Instruction for Students with Chromosome 22q11.2 Deletion Cheryl Dultz

Videos from the 22q foundation

final-22q-infograph-pano

Books

Just Jen: Living With Invisible Differences

By R. S. Hibbard

In this funny, heartwarming celebration of kindness and inclusion, spunky grade school narrator Jenna, or Jen (as she prefers), shares all about living with invisible differences.

Parents

Helping your Anxious Child

A Step by Step Guide for Parents

by Ronald Rapee, PhD

This revised and expanded edition of the best-selling Helping Your Anxious Child offers parents the most up-to-date, proven-effective techniques for helping children overcome anxiety.


Overview of The Syndrome Missing Genetic Pieces

by Sherry Baker-Gomez

The author, Sherry Baker-Gomez, is the parent of a child with VCFS. Her son, now 25, was finally diagnosed with VCFS at 18 years of age after a long medical history and searching for answers. Sherry, herself, had been so desperate for answers after many years of struggling with her son’s undiagnosed disorder that she became a nurse in an effort to understand the symptoms she saw in him and what they meant. Then she realized that many other parents needed answers and needed to know where to turn, so she began writing.

Committed to VCFS education, Sherry started gathering information on resources and, stories that offered support. Working along with other parents and professionals, Sherry has organized this collection of information into a comprehensive handbook that brings information and resources to parents, professionals, and others under one cover.

Modified from http://www.amazon.com/Missing-Genetic-Pieces-Sherry-Baker-Gomez/dp/097453580X


Educating Children with Velo-cardio-facial Syndrome

by Donna Cutler-Landsman

This book effectively blends the thoughtful research that has transpired within the past 15 years with practical and current educational strategies to better meet the needs of children with VCFS and other developmental disabilities.

The first part of the book explains the syndrome and the implications of current research in the fields of brain abnormalities, language/learning profiles and psychiatric/behavioral difficulties. These chapters are written in a reader-friendly manner for parents, professionals, and teachers. The second part of the book is a practical guide to educating a child with VCFS from birth through adulthood. It includes information regarding the necessary tests special education teams should run, typical difficulties associated with learning, changes that occur with ability as the child matures, as well as behavioral problems in the school setting. The authors also present meaningful advice on issues such as friendships, private vs. public school placement, job training, and other pertinent decisions that affect the VCFS child’s everyday life.

Modified from http://www.amazon.com/Educating-Velo-Cardio-Facial-Syndromes-Communication-Disorders/dp/1597564923


Educating the Child with VCFS Also Known as 22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome and DiGeorge Syndrome. Second Edition

by Donna Cutler-Landsman

For the second edition, the author has added fresh and updated content. A partial list of new material includes:

  • The most recent research and studies to make the text as up-to-date as possible
  • Expanded and enhanced coverage of bullying and the social/emotional aspects of VCFS
  • More information on common core standards and standardized testing for children with disabilities
  • Homeschooling and other placement alternatives
  • Executive functioning deficits and their impact in the classroom
  • Dealing with problem behaviors
  • Issues related to anxiety and school success
  • Cognitive remediation and new treatment strategies
  • New math and reading remediation techniques
  • Expanded section on the very young child

With its expanded content, as well as contributions from some of the most highly regarded experts in the field, Educating Children with Velo-Cardio Facial Syndrome (also Known as 22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome and DiGeorge Syndrome), Second Edition is an essential resource for teachers, parents, physicians, and therapists of children with velo-cardio-facial-syndrome.

Modified from http://www.amazon.com


Footprints of Hope: VCFS (Velo-Cardio-Facial Syndrome)

by Raymond Tanner

54-year-old Raymond Tanner has always felt different. As a child, he looked unusual, had trouble speaking clearly and was a slow learner. Over the years, he’s had countless operations to improve his appearance. For Tanner, being diagnosed with VCSF (at the age of 43) helped him re-evaluate his life, but it also brought a burden of guilt – both his sons were born with the syndrome. His first son died of heart problems when he was nine days old. His other son, Andrew, has ongoing health issues. Tanner now hopes to help other families through giving them a better understanding of VCFS, and encouragement that support is available and there is hope for the future.

This book is a compilation of stories from families from Australia, France, Israel, New Zealand, South Africa, the UK and the USA; and other important information. It also tells about Raymond Tanner’s life story with VCFS in himself and his two sons.

Modified from http://www.amazon.com/Footprints-Hope-VCFS-Velo-Cardio-Facial-Syndrome/dp/0958117535


Adolescence and Young Adulthood Being Different: Growing up with impairments

by Daniella Krijger

Daniella is worried about the future of her son Tijn. He has been diagnosed with 22Q11deletion syndrome, and also has ADHD, autism spectrum disorder and Dyslexia. She wanted to know how people with a syndrome, disorder or impairment led their lives, what they had been through and whether they had been able to make their dreams come true despite these obstacles. How does it feel when others see you as being ‘different’ and treat you ‘differently’?

In this inspiring book, adolescents and adults with 22Q11 deletion syndrome, ADHD and ASD tell about their dreams and ambitions, friendships, love, education, work, drugs and depressions. Young people with a disability have to work harder at doing their best. They have the additional challenge of biases and incomprehension. Increasing awareness about 22Q11 deletion syndrome will hopefully contribute to more understanding and patience for these people who might seem different but who are as ordinary as anyone else.

Modified from http://www.amazon.com/Being-Different-Growing-impairments-ebook/dp/B008EVT0TE


A Different Life

by Quinn Bradlee

Ten percent of the population is affected by a learning disability, but few of us understand what being learning disabled (LD) is really like. When he was fourteen, Bradlee was diagnosed with Velo-Cardio-Facial-Syndrome (VCFS), a wide-spread, little-understood disorder that is expressed through a wide range of physical ailments and learning disabilities. In this funny, moving, and often irreverent book, Bradlee tells his own inspirational story of growing up as an LD kid—and of doing so as the child of larger-than-life, formidably accomplished parents: long-time Washington Post executive editor Ben Bradlee and bestselling author Sally Quinn. From his difficulties reading social cues, to his cringe-worthy loss of sexual innocence, Bradlee describes the challenges and joys of living “a different life” with disarming candor and humor. By the end of A Different Life he will have become, if not your best friend, one of your favorite people.

From http://www.amazon.com/Different-Life-Learning-Disabled-Adventures/dp/B004JU1U1U


Socially Curious and Curiously Social: A Social Thinking Guidebook for Bright Teens & Young Adults

by Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke

This anime-illustrated guidebook is written for teens and young adults to learn how the social mind is expected to work in order to effectively relate to others at school, at work, in the community and even at home. The book is written in the language of teens about what really goes on inside the minds of people as we share space together.

From discussing the ins and outs of what it means to be a social thinker to figuring out texting, dating, the different levels of friendship and the many and varied emotions we experience as we relate to others, the authors describe the real world of being with other people. The authors are not trying to get every reader to find a group to hang out with; instead, they are providing information to help each person find his or her place and be appreciated by others at whatever level he or she feels comfortable with.

Modified from http://www.amazon.com/Socially-Curious-Curiously-Social-Guidebook/dp/0884272028


So, What’s the Difference? A self-help guide to helping children and young adults understand their learning differences

By Donna Cutler-Landsman

This self-help workbook is designed to assist students with disabilities in understanding causes of disabilities, recognizing individual strengths and weaknesses, soliciting help from others, understanding the role of special education, learning how to be successful at school, studying for tests more effectively, getting and staying organized, coping with teasing and bullying, making and keeping friends, coping with sadness and frustration, recognizing the struggles of others, mapping out and working towards future goals.

The workbooks are available in four themes: butterflies, coral reef, racecar and jungle.


Children with Cleft Lip and Palate

A Parents’ Guide to Early Speech- Language Development and Treatment 

by Mary A. Hardin-Jones, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, Kathy L. Chapman, Ph.D., CCC-SLP & Nancy J. Scherer, Ph.D., CCC-SLP

Family-friendly guidance and support for young children with clefts. Teams of SLPs explain clefts and offer strategies to improve speech and language in children up to age three.

Modified from http://woodbinehouse.com/book_reviews.asp?product_id=978-1-60613-210-4

Living With a Brother or Sister With Special Needs: A Book for Sibs

by Donald Meyer and Patricia Vadasy

Living with a Brother or Sister with Special Needs focuses on the intensity of emotions that brothers and sisters experience when they have a sibling with special needs, and the hard questions they ask: What caused my sibling’s disability? Could my own child have a disability as well? What will happen to my sibling if my parents die? Written for young readers, the book discusses specific disabilities in easy to understand terms. It talks about the good and not-so-good parts of having a sibling with special needs, and offers suggestions for how to make life easier for everyone in the family.

This revised and updated edition includes new sections on attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, fetal alcohol syndrome, fragile X syndrome, traumatic brain injuries, ultrasound, speech therapy, recent legislation on disabilities, and an extensive bibliography.

Modified from http://www.amazon.com/Living-Brother-Sister-Special-Needs/dp/0295975474


Views from Our Shoes: Growing Up with a Brother or Sister with Special Needs

by Donald Joseph Meyer

In Views From Our Shoes, 45 siblings share their experiences as the brother or sister of someone with a disability. The children whose essays are featured here range from four to eighteen and are the siblings of youngsters with a variety of special needs, including autism, cerebral palsy, developmental delays, ADD, hydrocephalus, visual and hearing impairments, Down and Tourette syndromes. Their personal tales introduce young siblings to others like them, perhaps for the first time, and allow them to compare experiences. A glossary of disabilities provides easy-to-understand definitions of many of the conditions mentioned.

From http://www.amazon.com/Views-Our-Shoes-Growing-Brother/dp/0933149980

Bedwetting in School-Aged Children

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Bedwetting is an issue that comes up in elementary school from time to time. Here are some resources to help support this situation for your students. The good news is that for many children the problem will resolve itself over time, or can be fixed through fairly simple treatment.

Bedwetting (also called nocturnal enuresis) is very common. As the following graph shows, almost a third of four-year-olds wet the bed. By the time they are 6, only one in 10 children wet the bed, and one in 20 by age 10. Bedwetting can sometimes continue into adolescence.

Percentage of children who wet the bed at different ages

bed wetting graph

Source

Nighttime bedwetting. This type of bedwetting is a common sleep
a problem in children ages 6–12, occurring only during NREM sleep.
Primary enuresis (the child has never been persistently dry at night)
is associated with a family history of the problem, developmental lag,
or lower bladder capacity, and is unlikely to signal a serious
problem. Secondary enuresis (a recurrence of bedwetting after a year
or more of bladder control) is more likely to be associated with
emotional distress. Interventions include the use of reinforcement and
responsibility training (such as keeping a dry night chart), bladder
control training, conditioning (e.g., bedwetting alarms), and
sometimes medication. In the case of secondary enuresis, it might be
most helpful to determine any source of emotional stress and address
it directly. (For example, if a child starts wetting the bed at night
following parents’ separation or divorce, providing counseling to
address loss issues might help alleviate bedwetting.)

Source

When to see a doctor

You may wish to see a doctor about your child’s bedwetting if:

  • your child is at least six years old (treatment for bedwetting is not recommended before this age as treatment is less effective and many children get better on their own)
  • you or your child are troubled or frustrated by the bedwetting
  • you punish, or are concerned that you might punish, your child for wetting the bed
  • your child wets or has bowel movements in their pants during the daytime.

If your child has been dry at night for six months then begins to wet their bed again, it is important to see a doctor for evaluation.

The doctor will consider your child’s details and determine if there is a physical problem that needs to be addressed.

Source
BEDWETTING

Nocturnal enuresis is the medical term for bedwetting. Most children
wet the bed occasionally or even nightly during the potty-training
years. In fact, it is estimated that seven million children in the
United States wet their beds on a regular basis. Controlling bladder
function during sleep is usually the last stage of potty-training. In
others words, it is normal for children to wet the bed while sleeping
during that learning process. Bedwetting is typically not even
considered to be a problem until after age 7.

Bedwetting in children is often simply a result of immaturity. The age
at which children become able to control their bladders during sleep
is variable. Bladder control is a complex process that involves
coordinated action of the muscles, nerves, spinal cord and brain. In
this case, the problem will resolve in time. On the other hand, it may
be an indication of an underlying medical condition, such as
obstruction of the urinary tract. If bedwetting persists beyond the
age of 6 or 7, you should consult your pediatrician.

There are both primary and secondary forms of bedwetting. With primary
bedwetting, the child has never had nighttime control over urination.
The secondary form is less common and refers to bedwetting that occurs
after the child has been dry during sleep for 6 or more months.
Secondary bedwetting may be caused by psychological stress but may be
the result of an underlying medical condition such as constipation or
urinary tract obstruction. With secondary bedwetting, contact your
doctor for an evaluation.

Commonly prescribed behavioral methods for treating the problem include:

Establishing a regular bedtime routine that includes going to the bathroom
Waking your child during the night before he/she typically wets the
bed and taking him/her to the bathroom
Developing a reward system to encourage your child, such as stickers
for dry nights
Talking to your child about the advantages of potty-training, such as
not having to wear diapers and becoming a “big kid”
Limiting beverages in the evening – even those last minute water requests
Using a “bell-and-pad” which incorporates an alarm that goes off
whenever your child’s pajamas or bed become wet during an accident.
These systems teach your child to eventually wake up before the
bedwetting occurs

As a last resort, a doctor may prescribe medication for bedwetting,
either for short or long-term use. Some examples are imipramine (an
antidepressant), which relaxes the bladder, and desmopressin, a
man-made copy of a normal body chemical that controls urine production
at night. Although medication usually helps, bedwetting typically
resumes once the child stops taking the medicine. As with any drug, it
is important to monitor your child’s response to the medication.

Coping with Bedwetting:

There are products that parents can buy for school-aged children with enuresis:

Disposable absorbent underpants
Reusable absorbent underpants
Sleeping bag liners
Moisture alarms that go off when the child begins to wet the bed

There is no reason for punishment if your child wets the bed. Your
child cannot help it. Talk to your doctor about treatment options and
following these coping tips may help:

Be patient, understanding and attentive
Do not talk about the bedwetting in front of others
Talk to your child about how the bladder works
Avoid fluids in the hours before bed

Source

Links

Bed-wetting: Tips to Help Your Child

Check Out Some of the AMAZING Resources at the IRIS CENTER

IRIS Center

IRIS Link

I ran across this site and use it regularly to help support students at my schools. I hope you like it as much as I do!

The IRIS Center offers a wide variety of resources and services to suit a diverse set of instructional needs and circumstances. IRIS is supported by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs and located at Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College, the IRIS Center develops and disseminates free, engaging online resources about evidence-based instructional and behavioral practices to support the education of all students, particularly struggling learners and those with disabilities. These resources, designed to bridge the research-to-practice gap, are intended for use in college teacher preparation programs, in professional development (PD) activities for practicing professionals, and by independent learners. The array of IRIS resources includes modules, case studies, information briefs, course/PD activities, a high-leverage practices alignment tool, and an online glossary of disability-related terms as well as supporting products to enhance their use in coursework and PD activities.Developed in collaboration with nationally recognized researchers and education experts, our free online resources address instructional and classroom issues of critical importance to today’s educators: classroom behavior management, secondary transition, early childhood, Universal Design for Learning (UDL), and many others.

In addition to our free resources, IRIS offers low-cost online professional development options: Certificates of Completion for IRIS Modules, a School & District Platform, and micro-credentials.

Since 2001, IRIS resources have been used in teacher preparation programs throughout the United States and around the world. In 2017 alone, the IRIS Website hosted more than two million visits.
Learn more about IRIS in our informative brochure.

En español

En español

En español

Student Anxiety – Tools, Worksheets, and App From “Anxiety Canada”

anxiety-quote-hp-72-1

Student anxiety can really impact their learning. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Psychopharmacological interventions are sometimes recommended when anxiety fiercely gets in the way of doing day to day activities. Consult an expert if this applies to your child. Below is a list of tools and worksheets to help address issues related to anxiety.

Tools

Worksheets

Web-­based Resources (International)
AnxietyBC
• Psychoeducational material and handouts for parents, teachers, and family and
friends of children with SM (search ‘selective mutism’ for all information on the
topic).
• Website -­‐ www.anxietybc.com
• Children’s section -­‐ http://www.anxietybc.com/parenting/parent-­‐child
• Short 11 min. video on understanding and managing Selective Mutism.
http://www.anxietybc.com/resources/video/understanding-­‐and-­‐managing-­‐
selective-­‐mutism
• Lecture on Selective Mutism given by Dr. Annie Simpson
http://www.anxietybc.com/resources/video/selective-­‐mutism-­‐giving-­‐kids-­‐
voice-­‐dr-­‐annie-­‐simpson
Dr. Steven Kurtz’s
• A treatment provider in New York. Check his website for a selective mutism e-­‐
learning website (coming soon).
• Website https://kurtzpsychologyconsulting.wordpress.com
Child Mind Institute
• Website -­‐ http://www.childmind.org/
• A treatment centre in New York that also provides webinars on various aspects
of selective mutism treatment (search ‘selective mutism’ and look for events)
Selective Mutism Group
• Website -­‐ http://www.selectivemutism.org
• Provides information, resources, and support to those impacted by selective
mutism

MindShift™ App

Struggling with anxiety? Tired of missing out? There are things you can do to stop anxiety and fear from controlling your life. MindShift™ is an app designed to help teens and young adults cope with anxiety. It can help you change how you think about anxiety. Rather than trying to avoid anxiety, you can make an important shift and face it.

 

MindShift™ will help you learn how to relax, develop more helpful ways of thinking, and identify active steps that will help you take charge of your anxiety. This app includes strategies to deal with everyday anxiety, as well as specific tools to tackle:

    • Making Sleep Count
    • Riding Out Intense Emotions
    • Test Anxiety
    • Perfectionism
    • Social Anxiety
    • Performance Anxiety
    • Worry
    • Panic
    • Conflict

 

Think of MindShift™ as your portable coach helping you face challenging situations and take charge of your life.

If you are a MindShift user, please consider making a donation to help us maintain and continue to offer the app for free.

MindShift stems from a one time joint collaboration in 2012 between Anxiety Canada and BC Children’s Hospital, an agency of the Provincial Health Services Authority.  In 2016 RBC Children’s Mental Health Projectprovided funding for an enhancement to the app.  Learn more about our privacy policy.

 

 

Nemours Has Great Resources for Reading and Health

I ran across this Nemours website by accident looking for developmental reading resources and I found so much more. I hope you find it as useful as I have in looking at reading and health subjects in a very concise and accessible format.

READING

HEALTH

TEACHERS

Teacher Site for Health Topics By Grade Level

Making the Most of Recess

recess10-1_orig

Good Reads

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What you promote by creating a positive recess experience:

Outdoor Play Allows a School-Aged Child to:
-Increase the flow of blood to the brain. The blood delivers oxygen and glucose, which the brain needs for heightened alertness and mental focus.

-Build up the body’s level of brain-derived neurotrophic factor or BDNF, BDNF causes the brain’s nerve cells to branch out, join together and communicate with each other in new ways, which leads to your child’s openness to learning an more capacity for knowledge

-Build new brain cells in a brain region called dentate gyrus, which is linked
with memory and memory loss.

-Improves their ability to learn.

-Increase the size of basal ganglia, a key part of the brain that aids in
maintaining attention and “executive control,” or the ability to coordinate
actions and thoughts crisply.

-Strengthen the vestibular systems that create spatial awareness and mental
alertness. This provides your child with the framework for reading and other
academic skills 

-Help creativity

Raise Smart Kid (2015). The Benefits of Exercise On Your Kid’s Brain.

Addressing Conflict on the Yard

conflict-resolution-skills-infographic

Conflict is normal

Conflict is a normal part of children’s lives. Having different needs or wants, or wanting the same thing when only one is available, can easily lead children into conflict with one another. “She won’t let me play,” “He took my …”, “Tom’s being mean!” are complaints that parents, carers and school staff often hear when children get into conflict and are unable to resolve it. Common ways that children respond to confl ict include arguing and physical aggression, as well as more passive responses such as backing off and avoiding one another.

When conflict is poorly managed it can have a negative impact on children’s relationships, on their self-esteem and on their learning. However, teaching children the skills for resolving conflict can help signifi cantly. By learning to manage conflict effectively, children’s skills for getting along with others can be improved. Children are much happier, have better friendships and are better learners at school when they know how to manage conflict well.

Different ways of responding to conflict

Since children have different needs and preferences, experiencing conflict with others is unavoidable. Many children (and adults) think of conflict as a competition that can only be decided by having a winner and a loser. The problem with thinking about conflict in this way is that it promotes win-lose behaviour: children who want to win try to dominate the other person; children who think they can’t win try to avoid the conflict. This does not result in effective conflict resolution.

Win-lose approaches to conflict

Children may try to get their way in a conflict by using force. Some children give in to try to stop the conflict, while others try to avoid the situation altogether. These different styles are shown below. When introducing younger children to the different ways that conflicts can be handled, talking about the ways the animals included as examples below might deal with conflict can help their understanding. It introduces an element of fun and enjoyment.

Conflict style Animal example Child’s behaviour
Force Shark, bull, lion Argues, yells, debates, threatens, uses logic to impose own view.
Give in Jelly fish, teddy bear Prevents fights, tries to make others happy.
Avoid Ostrich, turtle Thinks or says: “I don’t want conflict.” Distracts, talks about something else, leaves the room or the relationship.

Sometimes these approaches appear to work in the short-term, but they create other sets of problems. When children use force to win in a conflict it creates resentment and fear in others. Children who ‘win’ using this approach may develop a pattern of dominating and bullying others to get what they want. Children who tend to give in or avoid conflict may lack both confidence and skills for appropriate assertive behaviour. They are more likely to be dominated or bullied by others and may feel anxious and negative about themselves.

It is possible instead to respond to conflict in positive ways that seek a fair outcome. Instead of being seen as a win-lose competition, conflict can be seen as an opportunity to build healthier and more respectful relationships through understanding the perspectives of others.

Win-some lose-some: Using compromise to resolve conflict

Adults have a significant impact on how children deal with conflict. Often adults encourage children to deal with conflict by compromising. Compromising means that no-one wins or loses outright. Each person gets some of what they want and also gives up some of what they want. Many children learn how to compromise as they grow and find ways to negotiate friendships. It is common around the middle of primary school for children to become very concerned with fairness and with rules as a way of ensuring fairness. This may correspond with an approach to resolving conflict that is based on compromise.

Conflict style Animal example Child’s behaviour
Compromise Fox I give a bit and expect you to give a bit too.

Win-win: Using cooperation to resolve conflict

Using a win-win approach means finding out more about the problem and looking together for creative solutions so that everyone can get what they want.

Conflict style Animal example Child’s behaviour
Sort out the problem

(Win-win)

Owl Discover ways of helping everyone in the conflict to get what they want.

Skills required for effective conflict resolution

Effective conflict resolution requires children to apply a combination of well-developed social and emotional skills. These include skills for managing feelings, understanding others, communicating effectively and making decisions. Children need guidance and ‘coaching’ to learn these skills. Learning to use all the skills effectively in combination takes practice and maturity. However, with guidance children can begin to use a win-win model and gradually develop their abilities to resolve conflicts independently.

Skill What to encourage children to learn
  • Manage strong emotions
  • Use strategies to control strong feelings
  • Verbally express own thoughts and feelings
  • Identify and communicate thoughts and feelings
  • Identify the problem and express own needs
  • Talk about their own wants/needs/fears/concerns without demanding an immediate solution
  • Understand the other person’s perspective
  • Listen to what the other person wants/needs
  • Understand the other person’s fears/concerns
  • Understand without having to agree
  • Respond sensitively and appropriately
  • Generate a number of solutions to the problem
  • Think of a variety of options
  • Try to include the needs and concerns of everyone involved
  • Negotiate a win-win solution
  • Be flexible
  • Be open-minded
  • Look after own needs as well as the other person’s needs (be assertive)

Guiding children through the steps of conflict resolution

1. Set the stage for WIN-WIN outcomes

Conflict arises when people have different needs or views of a situation. Make it clear that you are going to help the children listen to each other’s point of view and look for ways to solve the problem that everyone can agree to.

  • Ask, “What’s the problem here?” Be sure to get both sides of the story (eg “He won’t let me have a turn” from one child, and “I only just started and it’s my game,” from another).
  • Say, I’m sure if we talk this through we’ll be able to sort it out so that everyone is happy.”

2. Have children state their own needs and concerns

The aim is to find out how each child sees the problem. Help children identify and communicate their needs and concerns without judging or blaming.

  • Ask, “What do you want or need? What are you most concerned about?”

3. Help children listen to the other person and understand their needs and concerns

In the heat of conflict it can be difficult to understand that the other person has feelings and needs too. Listening to the other person helps to reduce the conflict and allows children to think of the problem as something they can solve together.

  • Ask, “So you want to have a turn at this game now because it’s nearly time to go home? And you want to keep playing to see if you can get to the next level?”
  • Show children that you understand both points of view: “I can understand why you want to get your turn. I can see why you don’t want to stop now.”

4. Help children think of different ways to solve the problem

Often children who get into conflict can only think of one solution. Getting them to think of creative ways for solving the conflict encourages them to come up with new solutions that no-one thought of before. Ask them to let the ideas flow and think of as many options as they can, without judging any of them.

  • Encourage them: “Let’s think of at least three things we could do to solve this problem.”

5. Build win-win solutions

Help children sort through the list of options you have come up with together and choose those that appear to meet everybody’s needs. Sometimes a combination of the options they have thought of will work best. Together, you can help them build a solution that everyone agrees to.

  • Ask: Which solution do you think can work? Which option can we make work together?

6. Put the solution into action and see how it works

Make sure that children understand what they have agreed to and what this means in practice.

  • Say, “Okay, so this is what we’ve agreed. Tom, you’re going to show Wendy how to play the game, then Wendy, you’re going to have a try, and I’m going to let you know when 15 minutes is up.”

Key points for helping children resolve conflict

The ways that adults respond to children’s conflicts have powerful effects on their behaviour and skill development. Until they have developed their own skills for managing conflict effectively most children will need very specific adult guidance to help them reach a good resolution. Parents, carers and teaching staff can help children in sorting out conflict together, by seeing conflict as a shared problem that can be solved by understanding both points of view and finding a solution that everyone is happy with.

Guide and coach

When adults impose a solution on children it may solve the conflict in the short term, but it can leave children feeling that their wishes have not been taken into account. Coaching children through the conflict resolution steps helps them feel involved. It shows them how effective conflict resolution can work so that they can start to build their own skills.

Listen to all sides without judging

To learn the skills for effective conflict resolution children need to be able to acknowledge their own point of view and listen to others’ views without fearing that they will be blamed or judged. Being heard encourages children to hear and understand what others have to say and how they feel, and helps them to learn to value others.

Support children to work through strong feelings

Conflict often generates strong feelings such as anger or anxiety. These feelings can get in the way of being able to think through conflicts fairly and reasonably. Acknowledge children’s feelings and help them to manage them. It may be necessary to help children calm down before trying to resolve the conflict.

Remember

  • Praise children for finding a solution and carrying it out.
  • If an agreed solution doesn’t work out the first time, go through the steps again to understand the needs and concerns and find a different solution.

The information in this resource is based on Wertheim, E., Love, A., Peck, C. & Littlefield, L. (2006). Skills for resolving conflict (2nd Edition). Melbourne: Eruditions Publishing.

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