Does My Child with Autism Have Sensory Processing Disorder?

Parenting an autistic child means endless questions, like “Is this autism, or is this developmental?” One thing many parents find themselves questioning is whether their child’s sensory sensitivities are a typical aspect of autism, or signs of SPD (Sensory Processing Disorder). Sensory Processing Disorder is characterized by the brain’s difficulty in handling sensory input. This […]

How to Build Self-Advocacy Skills in Your Autistic Child

As our children grow, so much time is spent focused on their education, wondering if they will have satisfactory employment and if they will be able to live on their own. Yet, the ability to self-advocate is what most determines the quality of a person’s life.  Self-advocacy is the ability for someone to understand and […]

A Review of AAC Devices and Who They Can Help

Most parents will never know the difficulty of trying to communicate with a child who struggles to speak. If you have a non-speaking or primarily non-speaking child, you are all too familiar with the endless desire to simply understand what your child wants at any given moment. As a parent navigating the complexities of raising […]

How to Create a Care Map for Your Child with Autism

Between therapies, groups, and specialists, when you have a child on the autism spectrum, you probably feel as if your schedule is always booked solid. Beyond that, keeping up with all of this, and making the most of your resources, is a feat all on its own. A care map is a visual tool that […]

How To Prepare a Child with Autism for a Birthday Party

If your child with autism has received an invitation to a birthday party, you likely have mixed feelings: excitement they were included in the festivities, and dread of all the possibilities this unpredictable event might hold. For a child with autism, attending a birthday party can be both exciting and overwhelming due to the sensory […]

4 Tips for Holiday Gatherings for Children with Autism

The holiday season is a time of joy, celebration, and togetherness. It is also a time of crowds, bright lights, loud music, and rushed activities. For children with autism, this presents a unique set of challenges due to sensory sensitivities, changes in routine, and social expectations. Preparing for and navigating through holiday gatherings requires a […]
5 Tips to Deal with After-School Meltdowns

5 Tips to Deal with After-School Meltdowns

All day, your child’s experience is completely planned out. They listen to someone else’s directions, are told where and how to sit, and receive reminders to focus, on top of the plethora of sensory needs not having a chance to be met.  That sets the stage for something many parents, and especially parents of autistic […]
When and How to Seek OOD Placement: Part 2

When and How to Seek OOD Placement: Part 2

When and How to Seek OOD Placement When a parent of a child with autism or other special needs begins their partnership with the local school district, everyone is optimistic. Maybe the first, second, or even fifth IEP meeting was productive and with good intentions, and the teachers and therapists all worked with your child’s […]

When and How to Seek OOD Placement: Part 1

For all children, and particularly those with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), receiving appropriate educational services is vital for their growth and development. But what if you have argued for years for the substantial services your child is receiving at school, and they are not making the expected progress? What if the IEP (individualized education plan) […]
Echolalia for Children with Autism

The Purpose of Echolalia for Children with Autism

A neurotypical child, by their third birthday, can be expected to put together sentences in their own unique way. By 4 and 5, they are expected to carry on conversations. What do these expectations mean for a parent of a child on the autism spectrum? Often a lot of anxious googling, discussions with a speech-language […]
What is Stimming: 5 Reasons Children with Autism Stim

What is Stimming: 5 Reasons Children with Autism Stim 

What is stimming? Everybody stims! Think pen-tapping, humming while you wait, or twirling hair. “Stimming”, or self-stimulation, is a way to regulate emotions or even entertain yourself for a moment. For those on the autism spectrum, stimming is usually more pronounced and is even part of the DSM-5 diagnostic criteria for ASD (autism spectrum disorder). […]
Autism Acceptance Month

4 Ways to Celebrate Autism Acceptance Month 

April is Autism Acceptance Month, which is a time to raise awareness and promote understanding and inclusion of autistic individuals. This month is an opportunity for individuals on the autism spectrum, their families, and friends to celebrate and honor the unique strengths and contributions of individuals with autism.  As families that are part of the […]

6 Ways to Plan an Impactful Summer for Your Child with Autism

For many children, summer is a time of excitement, spontaneity, and freedom. For those on the autism spectrum, however, it also translates to a lack of routine, which can bring anxiety and overwhelm.  Because children with autism rely so much on having a predictable schedule, planning and preparing them ahead of time is essential. Use […]
What is OT and How Does It Benefit a Child with Autism?

What is OT and How Does It Benefit a Child with Autism?

When your child is diagnosed with autism, a likely part of their care plan is occupational therapy (OT). This is because the intent of OT is to help the child adapt to their environments more easily and become independent and functioning adults. For many children with autism, filtering out sensory input is an endless challenge, […]

Tips To Help Your Child Seeking Sensory Input

Tips To Help Your Child Seeking Sensory Input It’s the kid who can’t sit still in the classroom. The one constantly distracted during the lesson. The child who gets so caught up in what they’re doing, they can’t transition to the next activity. Or the kid who melts down seemingly out of nowhere, when things […]

3 Ways Having a Pet Benefits Your Child with Autism

As a parent of a child on the autism spectrum, you likely already feel stretched too thin. The last thing you want to do is add even more responsibility into your household.  However, we at Gersh Academy recognize the immense power animals have on our students. It is why we chose our campus at Cougar […]
Autism Parenting Magazine Cover

Changing the Landscape of Special Education Across the US

Explore how Gersh Academy has been leading the charge towards a more successful teaching model for individuals on the autism spectrum.
Autism Parenting Magazine Cover

Should I Send My Child to a Special Education School?

Kevin Gersh authors an article featured in Autism Parenting Magazine that explores the many benefits of sending children to a specialized school for autism, and how it can differ from other environments.
Horse and Caretaker Bonding

The Important Relationships Between Animals and Students on the Spectrum

It’s a well-known fact that having a pet, or spending time with an animal, can have numerous benefits on a person’s mental and physical well-being. Explore how animals benefit individuals on the spectrum specifically.
Family together at the beach

How to Support Your Child During Distance Learning and COVID-19

As this pandemic continues, as a parent, you likely feel like you’re on an island with your child. Here are some tips from our teachers on how best to support your child during this time.
A family hugging in a field

How to Support Social Emotional Needs of Your Children and Yourself

Learn how to tune in to the social and emotional needs of our children and ourselves, and come out of this with strong bonds and enhanced resilience.
Student Cheering During Distance Learning Session

Why Virtual Learning Might Benefit Your Child on the Autism Spectrum

Learn how teachers and parents have been reporting higher engagement and success in online learning than they previously thought.

How to Combat Possible Covid-19 Learning Regression

Learn how you can combat COVID-19 related learning regression while still having plenty of time to do what you still need to do.

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