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10 Tips for Starting the New Year Off Right

These tips for parents of children with autism can help you and your family prepare for success in 2013.

By: Leigh Sams Ashley, M.A., BCBA, Director, Corporate Development for Engage Behavioral Health


In working with children with autism at Engage Behavioral Health since 2008, I’ve found the most enjoyment out of equipping families with everything they need to be successful in the long-run. Much of the success that families can experience lies in preparation. Here are some simple tips that can lead to great successes for families in 2013.


1. Sit down as a family and create a checklist of things you would like to accomplish this year. Choose goals that are practical and achievable.

2. Buy a photo album and fill it with pictures of your children participating in specific activities each month. Review these experiences with them throughout the year and use them to prepare for the next year.

3. Create a calendar with pictures of upcoming events to review with your children.

4. Meet with your children’s therapist(s) and teacher(s) to review last year’s progress, and work together to determine goals for this year.

5. Help your children prepare to go back to school after winter break by reviewing pictures of classmates and school activities to remind them of what to expect.

6. Plan monthly family activities to participate in based on the interests of your children.

7. Increase the nutrition intake of your family by finding healthy replacements for unhealthy eating habits. Make small changes that can be maintained.

8. Plan more physical activities that your family can do together to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

9. Set up some play dates for this month.

10. Don’t forget to take time to appreciate your children’s strengths and accomplishments! 


About Engage Behavioral Health

Engage Behavioral Health, formerly Advanced Behavioral Systems, is a leading provider of Applied Behavior Analysis and Applied Verbal Behavior services. Engage’s unique, collaborative approach brings parents and health care providers together to provide treatment within a safe, natural environment. Through research-based, data-driven methods, Engage focuses on the needs of both individuals and their families. For more information, please visit www.EngageBehavioralHealth.com. Follow on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/EngageBehavioralHealth, or on Twitter at @Engage_ABA.


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