Wendy Chung: Autism — what we know (and what we don’t know yet)

Wendy Chung is the director of clinical research at the Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative, which does both basic and applied science to serve people affected by autism spectrum disorders.

Assisstive Technology and Occupational Therapy

Latest information about scientific research and assisstive technology news related to occupational therapy and assissting people with disabilities in their daily life.

SPD - Sensory Processing Disorder and Sensory Integration

SPD Foundation and information related to sensory processing disorder (SPD), systems and ways to treat and to address sensory integration deficits

People with ADHD and ADD are just different, but not defective

Actress Wendy Davis believes people can thrive and be successful while living with ADHD or ADD - like herself.

April 06, 2020

Google Jamboard with Hangout Meet

Google Jamboard with Hangout Meet is a solid alternative to Zoom Whiteboard for Teletherapy. 

Google Jamboard with Hangout Meet. Therapists' primary teletherapy software Zoom security was compromised. New video conference call tools approved by NYC DOE are Google Hangout Meet and Microsoft Teams. I will review only Google Hangout Meet and its "whiteboard" called Jamboard.

Where is my WhiteBoard?

Hangout Meet does not have a built-in whiteboard, but Google has a second application called Jamboard. It can be used on all platforms and operating systems (Chromebook, Windows, iOS (iMac, iPad, iPhone), Android-powered tablets, and smartphones. You need to install this application from Google Play Store or Apple App Store (your student/parent should install it on their system as well or they will be prompted to download and install the app when you'll share the board with them).

Step by Step instructions:

  1. Download and Install Google Jamboard on your primary computer/iPad

  2. Login into your Google Account (organization account).

  3. Open the Jamboard app and click on the "plus" sign as you do it when you are creating new Google Note or new Google Calendar Event

  4. A new blank Jam is created.

  5. On the left side, you have some tools that you should explore or view the Youtube tutorial for JamBaord (draw, write, shape, add images, drive content, photos from camera, stickers).

  6. Write something (as you see in the images that I attached).


  8. Go to the top right corner and find three vertical dots, click/tap there.

  9. A new menu pops up with a list of options (Share, Add to Starred, Copy Link, Share Jam as PDF, Rename, Remove).

  10. Click Share

  11. Enter the email address of your client (add an optional message) and send.

  12. As soon as your client receives email with link to your Jam they can open it and your will interact in real-time.

If you have any questions or would like to leave your feedback, feel free to use comments box at the bottom of this page.

March 28, 2020

Teletherapy: DIY Puzzles

puzzle activities
Teletherapy DIY Food Puzzles - a family fun activity. Puzzles are great activities to practice visual motor and visual perceptual skills. In addition, you will have fun pictures for your social media. Have fun!

Apple puzzle a day...

Fruits and Yogurt puzzle

Fruits puzzle by @FOODARTBYME

Teletherapy DIY food puzzles - a family fun activity for adults and children.

Teach Typing Skills Online

Teach Typing Skills Online with these Free Resources:


If you are looking for fun and entertaining way to learn or to teach typing skills online then the following resources are for you.

1. Typing.com
It's completely online typing tutoring site for children and beginners. Lightweight, fast and accessible from any device connected to Internet. It provides an excellent support and activities for those who want to increase speed and efficiency of typing.
Pros: Free. Fast, efficient, short practice lessons with self-monitoring of progress and badges.
Cons: no sound effects, browser requires flash component to use activities and games.

2. Typing Club (https://www.typingclub.com/)
Pros: Free. Amazing site with multi-purposeful functionality. You don't have to register to use this site, however, with free registration a child or an adult can monitor own progress. Teacher can watch students' progress, speed and accuracy and adjust level of difficulty by customizing lessons. Typing Club is very similar to Typing.com (see above) idea of having free account and to monitor own progress while accessing it online from anywhere in the world and on any device.
Cons: More complicated than typing.com, but totally worth your time managing and organizing it, specially if you are a teacher and need to monitor students progress.

3. Ratatype (https://www.ratatype.com/)
Pros: Free. Users don't have to sign up, however, if they create free account, they can monitor their speed and progress. It is a great tool for setting up group activities for classmates who may play against each other while their progress is reported to the teacher. It's fully online and supports social interaction and help to encourage daily practice.
Cons: It takes some time to figure out settings and to setup class or group.


4. Speed Typing Online (https://www.speedtypingonline.com/)
Pros: Free. Users can track their progress and speed of typing and accuracy if they register (free registration). Fully online. Level of difficulty is increasing gradually. Free typing games are available on site to support learning and building the typing skills.
Cons: Very simple and individual activities only. No interactive component. Many advertisement banners that slows down site on old computers and iPads.

5. Dancing Mat (https://www.dancemattypingguide.com)
Pros: Free. Younger student love this site and its characters, no registration required. Cons: Load time could be slow due to flash and advertisement banners


6. Rapid Typing  - requires users to install Rapid Typing software. Site offer free online typing games (good to practice) https://www.rapidtyping.com/online-typing-games.html
Pros: Free, multi-lingual options, Rapid Typing has simple features that makes it a great choice for new users.
Cons: installation of software, so it's not accessible from different locations.

Teach Typing Skills Online

September 13, 2019

Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD)

Before reading about Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD), please watch this video with child's point of view on sensory processing. Child is diagnosed with ASD (autism spectrum disorder)
Video: Sensory Processing Disorder by child's view on the problem

Sensory processing is the process of organizing sensations from environment and from body to develop and produce adaptive responses and to function efficiently.
Sensory integration is just a frame of references used by therapists to treat sensory processing dysfunction/disorder (SPD).

What senses/sensory systems are involved: vision, auditory, taste, smell, touch, vestibular (movement and had position), proprioceptive (sense of muscles and joints, tells about body, controls amount of force muscles should generate to protein task - you may see it when child had difficulties grading strength of pencil grip and pressure on pencil).

SPD has different types: 
Sensory Modulation Disorder (SMD): 
1. Sensory over-responsivity (hyperresponsivity/defensiveness). Could be aggressive avoiding stimuli like touch, sound (covering ears, avoiding crowded noisy places), texture
2. Sens. under-responsive (lethargic, slow)
Both types of disorders are sensory seeking, but seeking different types of stimuli. First is looking for stimuli to calm themselves down. Second - to increase arousal state.

Sensory modulation is directed to improve high level skill called self-regulation which involves other components (behavioral, cognitive, social emotional).
Working on sensory processing deficits requires family support and providing "sensory diet" activities. (See below link to resources).
After an assessment of a child (SPM sensory processing measure) plan school and home activities including sensory diet (sensory strategies,  environmental modifications). 

Sensory diet (Patricia Wilbarger) - repeated beneficial sensory input to modulate sensory system. There is positive feedback on benefits of using movement, deep pressure, weighed vests, discs, brushing protocol and other elements and activities of sensory diet (there is no evidence-based proven research, demonstrating positive effect. Effect must be monitored over long period of time and adjusted according to the child's needs and responses).

To be continued...

materials from online resources and autism workshops provided by different organizations were used in this article. Full list of references will be published later in this blog

January 16, 2016

California Occupational Therapy Jobs

California Occupational Therapy Jobs are booming. Occupational Therapy positions in rehabs, schools, private clinics and agencies (contracts and per diem) are being updated daily. New career opportunities are available for experienced OTs and COTAs as well as for college grads in all types of settings (licensed OT (OTR) and COTA only):

Occupational Therapy Site

Occupational Therapy Jobs in California

Search Occupational Therapy Jobs in California State. Jobs for OTs, COTAs, college grads in all types of settings for licensed OT (OTR) and COTA:

New Jersey Occupational Therapy Jobs

New Jersey Occupational Therapy Jobs for licensed OT (Occupational Therapists) and COTA (Certified Occupational Therapy Assistants. Salary levels vary based on experience and field of practice. Detailed information about each opportunity read on employer's job page: