Changing the course of Autism 2012
Susan Alcorn MacKay, BEd, MEd & Laura Brawn, MA
Susan Alcorn Mackay has been the Director of The Glenn Crombie Centre since it opened in 1996. This facility provides supports to over 900 students with disabilities annually. She is also responsible for Counselling Services and is the Director of the Northern Ontario Assessment and Resource Centre.
Laura Brawn, M.A., is a Disabilities Coordinator at the Paul Menton Centre for Students with Disabilities at Carleton University (PMC) in Ottawa, Ontario. Since 2008, she has overseen services for students with Asperger's Syndrome, a growing segment of the population of students registered with the PMC. Ms. Brawn will describe programming available for these students, and discuss elements of success for these students.
Identifying Trends and Supports for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder Transitioning into PostsecondaryEducation
This session will present the findings of a study completed for the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario that looked at the emerging trends of students accessing colleges and universities in Ontario as of 2009. Best practices emerging from various institutions will be highlighted as well as recommendations for future supports. The numbers used for this study as well as best practices will also be updated to reflect 2011, two years later.
The study can be accessed here. Trends and Supports for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder Transitioning into Postsecondary
Kenneth A. Bock, MD
Kenneth A. Bock, M.D., received his M.D. with Honor from the University of Rochester, School of Medicine, in 1979. He is Board Certified in Family Medicine and is a clinical instructor in the Department of Family Medicine at Albany Medical College.
The 4-A Disorders: Autism, ADHD, Asthma and Allergies
The incidence of autism, ADHD, asthma and allergies has skyrocketed in the last 30 years. A number of etiologies may underlie these disorders, including environmental insults, such as toxins (including heavy metals and chemicals), allergies, sensitivities; and chronic infections, as well as genetic susceptibility. Participants in this lecture will understand the multiple imbalances seen in children with the 4-A Disorders and the commonalities linking them together, including increased oxidative stress and chronic inflammation. They will then learn a multifaceted integrative medicine Healing Program for remediating these disorders through methods such as environmental and dietary modifications, nutritional supplementation, detoxification and medications.
Katherina Boser, PhD
Katharina Boser, Ph.D. has a doctorate in developmental psychology and cognitive science from Cornell University. She has a research background as a cognitive developmental psychologist in both autism research (at the Johns Hopkins University) and in language impairments in patients with aphasia, using computerized therapy techniques (Computerized Visual Communication System "C-Vic") at the University of Maryland.
iPads, ipods and other mobile devices to help organize, teach, and manage behaviour in both home and school.
iPads, ipods and other mobile devices are becoming increasingly popular technology to help organize, teach, and manage behaviour in both home and school settings. Accessibility options on apple devices have made independence a greater reality for a wide range of students with disabilities, including those with autism. In this presentation, Dr. Boser will provide an overview of information on a variety of mobile tools for learning for parents and educators working with students with autism and related disorders. The presentation will not only provide a demonstration of the apps but also include practical tips and tools regarding the use of iPads or iPods in learning settings. Most importantly, participants will learn to understand how to evaluate the educational value of apps in a variety of learning domains. Educators will also begin to understand basic implementation issues for school settings. Where applicable, research on mobile technology use will be explained. While Apple products will be the primary focus of this talk, Android apps and computer based technologies will also be highlighted. Participants will leave the presentation with an understanding of the benefits of cloud-based computing, touch technology and mobile applications with an emphasis on how these fit into a model of teaching that encompasses the Universal Design for Learning or UDL framework. Some of the specific areas covered will include reading and literacy, functional and organizational as well as behaviour management/social tools.
Wendy Edwards, MD
Dr. Edwards is a Consulting Pediatrician working in Chatham-Kent, Ontario. She completed her pediatric residency in Toronto, at the Hospital for Sick Children, where she was chosen to act as chief resident in her final year. Dr. Edwards also has a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and before attending medical school, worked as an oncology nurse at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.
Cerebral Folate Deficiency and ASDs
A recent "hot topic" in the field of autism is the possibility that some of our children might have a condition called cerebral folate deficiency. This condition is relatively "newly discovered" as a cause of developmental delay. To date, one small study has been completed in children with autism and results indicate that this condition may be present at least to some degree in our children with autism. This talk will explain just what cerebral folate deficiency is, how it can be diagnosed and how it can be treated.
Martha Herbert, MD, PhD
Autism Revolution: Breakthrough Strategies for Parents
After years of treating patients and analyzing scientific data, prominent Harvard Medical School researcher and clinician Dr. Martha Herbert offers a revolutionary new view of autism and a transformative strategy for dealing with it. Autism is not a hardwired impairment programmed into a child's genes and destined to remain fixed forever, as we're often told. Instead, it is the result of a cascade of events, many seemingly minor: perhaps a genetic mutation, some toxic exposures, a stressful birth, a vitamin deficiency, and a series of infections. And while other doctors may dismiss your child's physical symptoms – the diarrhea, anxiety, sensory overload, sleeplessness, frequent illnesses or seizures – as coincidental or irrelevant, Dr. Herbert sees them as vital clues to what the underlying problems are, and how to help. In this lecture she share how to approach autism as a collection of problems that can be overcome – and talents that can be developed. Each success you achieve gives your child more room to become healthy and to thrive.
Jill Hewlett is a nationally recognized and respected speaker, trainer, coach and TV host. Her impactful keynotes have engaged a full range of professionals from Clinicians, Educators, and Financial Planners to the rising Entrepreneur. She inspires and educates audiences ranging from 100s to 1000s at Conferences, Special Events, Corporate Training and Retreats.
Brain Development with Brain Gym®
Learn natural ways to support learning readiness for children & adults with Autism!
When in stress the higher brain neurological connections are lost and more effort is required for learning! This is exhausting for individuals with Autism and leads to more stress impacting self esteem, behaviour, communication & social engagement. Brain Gym ® works by turning on the lines of communication of the three dimensions of the triune brain. These parts of the brain are interconnected and stimulated by 3 different movement patterns. As we engage these movement patterns, we activate and strengthen those very parts of our brain.
With the advances in brain research and further understanding of brain plasticity, we now know the brain has the ability to rewire itself through experience. Participant who use Brain Gym ® increase success in their selected areas of development, maintaining life balance and supporting learning/life readiness.
As Executive Director of Community Living Wallaceburg, David Katzman leads a multi-faceted agency that provides a wide range of supports and services to more than 450 children, youth and adults with intellectual or related disabilities and their families throughout Chatham-Kent. Community Living Wallaceburg currently employs over 200 staff with annual budgets exceeding $10 million.
Making Supportive Living a Family Reality
Disability is a natural part of the human existence. It need not inhibit one's ability to experience independence and to live as a fully engaged citizen; as a housemate, a roommate, a neighbour, an employee, a volunteer, a club member, a parishioner.
As a parent, it is natural to have hopes, dreams and aspirations for all of our children. And while reality, place, time and any number of circumstances will impact our options, families must be encouraged to seek out opportunities and resources and make choices that will enable themselves- and their sons and daughters, to achieve a living arrangement in adulthood, that brings dignity to their lives, and builds on their intellectual strengths, regardless of the complexity of their autism spectrum disorder.
In this presentation, David will share his experiences in managing and growing a multi-service agency in a small Ontario town. He will focus on the various living arrangements that have been developed for younger and older adults living with ASD, including supervised group and independent living options and an intensive support residence. He will discuss the importance of building a supportive culture both within the organization and community at large. Through the use of mixed media, families who chose Community Living Wallaceburg to assist them and their family member to realize their dreams, will share key elements of their journey.
Stephen Shore, PhD
Diagnosed with "Atypical Development and strong autistic tendencies" and "too sick" for outpatient treatment, Dr. Shore was recommended for institutionalization. Nonverbal until four, and with much support from his parents, teachers, wife, and others, Stephen is now a professor at Adelphi University where his research focuses on matching best practice to the needs of people with autism.
Promoting Successful Transition to Adulthood for Individuals on the Autism Spectrum
Achieving a best outcome for a productive transition to adulthood requires intervention in the three main areas of behavioural/developmental/educational, biomedical, and sensory integration. The importance of the interplay between these three areas of intervention as well as approaches focused on addressing social and self-awareness necessary to navigate the adult worlds of employment, relationships and sexuality, continuing education, interdependent living, and appropriate self-advocacy shall be examined.
Isabel Smith, PhD
Isabel Smith is an Associate Professor in Pediatrics and Psychology at Dalhousie University. Following a Master's degree in Developmental Psychology (Brown University), she became involved in research in ASD, coordinating the Nova Scotia epidemiological study in the 1980's.
Early Intervention for ASD: Effectiveness of a Novel Model
There is strong research evidence that early intensive intervention based on principles of applied behavioural analysis (ABA) improves the skills of preschoolers with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD). Despite this, it remains a challenge to implement such programs at the community level, especially in regions with relatively fewer resources. Each province has approached these challenges differently. In 2005, Nova Scotia initiated a program based on a specific ABA-based intervention, Pivotal Response Treatment, within a less intensive service delivery model (Bryson et al., 2007). Dr. Smith will describe the model and its rationale, and will present evidence of the program's short-term impact on outcomes for children with ASD and their families. Following one year of intervention in the Nova Scotia program, children's average gains are comparable to those reported for programs that are far more intensive (Smith et al., 2010). Given these encouraging findings, discussion will focus on outstanding questions, and on next steps for research and for services.
Scott Smith, PA
Scott Smith, PA attended the Inter-Service Physician Assistant Studies program at Fort Sam Houston, TX and completed his clinical rotations at Fort Sill, OK. He has been a physician assistant since 1999 and has specialized in gastroenterology and dermatology.
Acute symptom changes. Is it P.A.N.D.A.S.?
P.A.N.D.A.S. (Pediatric Autoimmune Neuro-psychiatric Disorder Associated with Streptococcus) is an abnormal immune response leading to acute neurologic and psychiatric symptoms. The diagnosis of P.A.N.D.A.S. is clinical as there is no diagnostic test currently available. Identification of the symptoms at the earliest possible point leads to improved treatment outcomes. Unfortunately, many of the symptoms of P.A.N.D.A.S. overlap with symptoms commonly found within autism spectrum disorders (ASD). This leads to later identification and initiation of treatment for children already diagnosed with an ASD. With this lecture, parents will familiarize themselves with the acute symptom changes associated with P.A.N.D.A.S. They will learn how to rule out other conditions with similar symptoms.
Changing the course of Autism 2011
WENDY EDWARDS, B.Sc.N., MD, F.R.C.P.
Wendy Edwards, B.Sc.N., MD, F.R.C.P., is a Consulting Pediatrician in Chatham-Kent, Adjunct Professor of Pediatrics, University of Western Ontario and Former Chief-Resident, Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.
Biomedical Treatments for Autism – An Overview.
This talk will review three key areas of medical dysfunction in the patient with autism: gastrointestinal dysbiosis and inflammation; abnormalities of the immune system; and metabolic abnormalities leading to increased oxidative stress and abnormal detoxification. While discussing each area, reference will be made to research studies/journal articles to support the knowledge that autism is a medical disorder.
Laurette Janak is a parent-researcher. She is the mother of a child on the autism spectrum who also has Down syndrome and leukemia. Laurette helped co-ordinate a study on metabolic biomarkers and impaired methylation capacity in children with autism published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2004.
Forewarned is Forearmed: What parents need to know about themselves and their health
Parents can become so engaged in caring for their child with autism that their own health becomes neglected. In recent years, studies have emerged showing underlying biochemical differences in the parents of children with autism. This may predispose them to a variety of health complications including depression, fibromyalgia, cancer, cardiovascular disease and others. We will look at strategies for minimizing the risk of the consequences associated with these abnormalities. To be available for your child, you need to take care of yourself. This presentation is a step in learning how to do that.
FELICIA JERVIS B.Ed, M.S.W., R.S.W.
Felicia Jervis is a social worker and educator, as well as the mother of a son with autism. She has worked with individuals with physical, intellectual and psychiatric impairments in schools, community agencies and mental health centres. She stands with others against all forms of punishment, seclusion, or restraints. Her current focus is on teaching about gentle, joyful and compassionate practices to help children and adults who express their pain through troubling behaviours.
Helping children and youth with autism to communicate cooperate and engage with others, without punishment, seclusion or restraints
Some children and youth with ASD express their pain and frustration with daily living and learning challenges, through difficult behaviours that can include aggression, self-injury, withdrawal, despondency, intense agitation, insomnia, persistent and intensive repetitive behaviours. To be helpful to them we need to move away from intrusive, coercive and aversive practices and approaches such as reprimands, seclusion, restraints, and punishment. Instead we need to offer more skilful, tender, and grounded responses such as: comforting children in distress, deep listening, peaceful presence, power sensitive dialogue, companionship and inclusion.
BONNIE KAPLAN, PhD
Bonnie Kaplan, PhD is a Research Psychologist who studies mood and behavioural disorders. She is a Professor in the Department of Pediatrics, University of Calgary and is also past Director of the Behavioural Research Unit at the Alberta Children's Hospital.
Micronutrients versus Standard Medication Management in Autism.
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is often accompanied by self-injurious behavior (SIB), aggression, and tantrums, symptoms that have reportedly improved with micronutrient treatment with vitamins and minerals (micronutrients). This lecture will report on a recent study that compared the outcomes of 44 people with ASD treated with micronutrients to 44 treated with conventional medications. Although both groups improved in many ways, micronutrient treatment was associated with some significant advantages: lower activity level, less social withdrawal, less anger, better spontaneity with the examiner, less irritability, lower intensity SIB, markedly fewer adverse events, and less weight gain. Advantages of medication management were insurance coverage, fewer pills, and less frequent dosing. The underlying mechanisms likely involved in micronutrient treatment will also be discussed.
RAUN K. KAUFMAN, BA
Raun K. Kaufman, BA, is the former CEO and current Director of Global Education for the Autism Treatment Center of America, home of The Son-Rise Program. In addition to his work with families and professionals around the world, Mr. Kaufman brings a distinctive qualification to the realm of autism treatment - his own personal history as a person fully recovered from severe autism. He just completed his book, Autism Revolution: Breakthrough Strategies for Parents.
Autism Revolution: Breakthrough Strategies for Parents
Raun K. Kaufman will provide concrete, innovative strategies you can implement now for your child's immediate gain. With inspiration and humour, he will recount his story of recovery from autism and detail simple techniques from The Son-Rise Program to help your child: move beyond stimming (without you stopping or discouraging your child's behaviour), learn new skill (without having to push or pressure), and, most especially, to form meaningful, caring relationships with others.
Valerie MacLean is a certified HANDLE® (Holistic Approach to Neurodevelopment and Learning Efficiency) practitioner and instructor, and implements the HANDLE approach to families across Canada, through the Phoenix Centre for Neurodevelopment, Osteopathy and Complementary Therapies, located in Peterborough Ontario. HANDLE is an effective, gentle, whole person therapy for people of all ages, and for a wide range of issues, including autism, based in neuroplasticity and synaptogenesis. Valerie has written several articles and is a frequent speaker at local, national and international conferences. She is also studying Osteopathy at the Canadian College of Osteopathy.
Weaving the Fabric of Autism with HANDLE - Helping Extraordinary People Do Ordinary Things
Valerie MacLean will speak about the international award- winning HANDLE approach. The presentation explores the work of Judith Bluestone, the originator of the HANDLE approach. In her book, The Fabric of Autism, Weaving the Threads into a Cogent Theory, Bluestone combines her personal autistic experience with academic research and more than 40 years of clinical practice to craft a unique and compelling view of the phenomenon called autism. This presentation is designed for those who interact with children and adults experiencing sensory, cognitive, motor, social, and behavioural difficulties. We recognize that many struggling individuals are attending to their inner needs, and have less attention and energy to learn and develop efficiently. This is often the case with those who are hyper or hypo sensitive to factors in their environment, those with neurodevelopmental challenges, or those with sensory integration issues.
Lindsay Moir is a former Education Officer with the Ontario Ministry of Education and has 31 years of experience in Special Education in various Ministry roles. He has worked as a consultant for the last eleven years.
Rethinking High School Education for Kids on the Spectrum - Doable Solutions
This presentation is an overview of some of the exemplary programs for High School aged students with ASD that I have visited in the past year. These programs offer new ways of looking at high school education for a wide range of students on the spectrum, ranging from those who will go on to post-secondary education to those preparing for sheltered employment in the community. As large numbers of students with ASD arrive in high schools, these programs offer fresh new possibilities for appropriate educational experiences. Practical tips from programs that are "do-able", not just theory!
KEVIN STODDART, PhD
Kevin Stoddart, PhD is Founding Director of The Redpath Centre in Toronto and Assistant Professor (Status) at the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work, University of Toronto. He has worked in the fields of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs), Asperger Syndrome and child and adult mental health for over twenty-five years. His research and publications focus on understanding the clinical and psychosocial needs of individuals with developmental disabilities, ASDs, and their families.
Understanding the Clinical and Psychosocial needs of individuals with Asperger Syndrome
Asperger syndrome is increasingly diagnosed in individuals at all life stages in Canada. This presentation will highlight the opportunities and challenges of living with AS across the lifespan and these will be illustrated by reference to the current clinical trends seen at The Redpath Centre in Toronto. Considering that many of the challenges that individuals and their families face are related to a lack of services, practice research and clinical expertise in Canada, development of knowledge translation strategies, clinician and consumer-informed research, transformative policies, and cross-sector collaboration will be discussed.
SHARON TATEISHI BSc, RD
SHARON TATEISHI graduated from University of Ottawa with a Bachelor of Science, Honors Dietetics in 1979. The primary focus throughout her career has been providing nutritional counselling for complex cases, including food allergies, asthma, gastrointestinal disease, weight control and diet and behavior (ADD/ADHD). Her strong clinical background, accompanied by her proven investigative capabilities, has led to her success in providing appropriate, effective nutritional counseling for clients with complicated medical conditions.
Sharon has just returned to Canada, after living and practicing in Los Angeles, CA. for 4 years. Her experience in preparing for and practicing in this new environment was truly rewarding professionally, as she was able to attend and participate in various continuing education opportunities available locally and throughout the U.S. She also developed many significant liaisons with other peers who have similar career interests, which have been crucial as she continues to seek appropriate options for nutritional therapy for digestive disorders, including autism spectrum disorders. She currently maintains a consulting practice in Richmond, B. C., serving clients both locally and remotely throughout Canada and the United States.
Why Diet Makes a Difference with Autism Spectrum Disorders
Gastrointestinal disorders are all too common with ASD. The goal of nutrition therapy for ASD is to support the structure and function of the child's brain and body, to function at their optimum level. Enhancing nutrient uptake by improving digestion and absorption is critical in achieving this. The focus on exhaustive nutritional screening, assessment and dietary intervention is a priority before one dimensional therapeutic diet are tried and implemented. Current diets for ASD may offer some benefit, but may introduce other potential long term complications. Striving to identify the underlying causes of inflammatory conditions in the GI tract and identifying factors to alleviate the condition, rather than adapting the diet to the inflammatory condition is essential. This will enhance uptake of valuable nutrients, as well as create some leniency with many of the rigid diets currently followed for ASD. Secondly, the evaluation and monitoring of the efficacy of any dietary modifications must be thorough, appropriate and individualized for successful diet therapy.
We have seen evidence firsthand through the extensive efforts of the WHO, how iodized salt has prevented brain damage and impaired cognitive development in children. Are there key nutrient(s) that need enhanced absorption in ASD? Are there current significant barriers to their absorption? What are the long term effects of rigid diets, malabsorption and disordered eating patterns during critical growth and development stages?
We will be exploring these issues and how to develop a solid foundation for nutritional intervention with this multifaceted disorder.
THEOHARIS C. THEOHARIDES, MS, PhD, MD, FAAAAI
Theoharis C. Theoharides, MS, PhD, MD, FAAAAI, is the Director of Molecular Immunopharmacology & Drug Discovery Lab, Professor of Pharmacology, Biochemistry and Internal Medicine at Tufts University. He trained at Yale University and has over 290 publications. He showed that mast cells secrete inflammatory mediators that disrupt the gut-brain barriers, thus playing a critical role in brain inflammation and autism. Dr. Theoharides extends beyond theory into practical options for patients with disease that have defied treatment to date.
Neurotensin and Extracellular Mitochondrial DNA as Potential Biomarkers and Novel Treatment Targets
Autistic Children often present with gastrointestinal problems and fatigue. We showed that the peptide neurotensin (NT), present both in the brain and gut, is elevated in the serum of young children with autism. Moreover, NT can stimulate mast cells that have been implicated in the gut-blood-brain barrier disruption to secrete mitochondrial (mt) DNA, which is was also elevated in serum of autistic children and could lead to autoimmunity. Inhibiting NT and mt(DNA) could become novel treatments.