Autistic Children: 4 Hobbies That Can Turn Into Careers

Hobbies drop the mask of autistic children, who especially grow up with less positivity, and oblige them to perceive who they are and what they are while appreciating the true colors of life.

In most families, an autistic child is often handled like an unseen guest. It’s not because the parents don’t care, it’s because the impaired areas of child get more attention than his actual needs. On a constant basis, parents of autistic children do their utmost to provide their children as much happiness as possible and inject the extreme amount of positivity in their lives so that this world can become an ideal world for them. However, they often forget to focus on those areas that can save the wings of their children from catching fire in the future by building their career.

Hobbies are those areas of your child’s life that can either give scars to your child over and over or raise him as an elite person of the society while building his career. It won’t be far from the truth to say that hobbies are the only things that a child with autism can embrace happily at any stage of his life, because hobbies bring comfort and help the child to escape from the weird eyes of the society.

If you are supremely concerned about your child’s future, don’t entangle yourself in different kinds of misinformation which is often provided by our uninformed society. Just solely focus on introducing those hobbies in your child’s life that can turn into a career and result in betterment in the future. Focusing on just this area won’t only build the best future for your child but also teach him to socialize with other people.

4 Hobbies That Can Turn Into Careers

There must be something that your child enjoys doing again and again for fun, or for bringing predictability in his day-to-day life (which is very common in autism). All you need to do is to look for the career clues in his hobbies in order to move him in the appropriate direction so that he can naturally flourish himself while relishing his dominant mood. If you feel there is nothing special in his hobbies that can assist him to build his career in the future, then here I am presenting top four hobbies that you should introduce in his life, because these hobbies turn into the paid jobs and compel him to understand the meaning of his existence.

  • Golf: Autistic children count on the capacity of their mind, which is, in reality, relatively limited. Therefore, they mostly avoid going to those uproarious events which bombard their mind with too much information and result in their meltdown… Golf is a very relaxing hobby that soothes the feelings of an autistic child and opens up the world to him in the best possible manner. Ask John McCabe, who has started learning golf at the age of 7, about the spectacular changes that golf has brought into his life; golf helped him to socialize with new friends; he is now a senior and in the series of top golfers on the North Allegheny High School team. Occupational therapists also believe that golf helps an autistic child to learn motor, coordination, and social skills.
  • Photography: Children with autism often love to offer their thoughts through photography. They have the talent too to highlight the aesthetic appeal of the photographs. If your child has some interest in photography, then it’s time to carry this hobby further, since it has the potential to produce the finest amount of cash. In addition, photography doesn’t demand fast processing information in short-term working memory. It also helps the child to make new friends at work and injects immense amount of confidence in his personality which is so essential for his existence.
  • Graphic Designing: Graphic Designing is basically an art of communication. Every color, style, and image convey the actual message in the best possible manner. The most interesting thing about this hobby is that, it can help your child to build a business from home. Children, who are especially nonverbal and rely on their visual power, can do wonders in this field of art as they view this world differently from us; the diversity of their experiences breaks the silence of their personality by turning their perception into tangible reality. It’s a must for you to encourage your child and develop his drawing skills if he has the ability in the field of art as your this move can give him a satisfying life in the future.
  • Writing: If he’s good with his words, he can sell his words! Some autistic children have aesthetic ability to spread the atmosphere of heaven through their words. Donna Williams is one of the names who have unlocked society’s mind to what it means to be an autistic. Her book, “Nobody Nowhere” became an international bestseller… It won’t be far from the reality to say that only around 10 percent of autistic children have the potential to become an amazing writer in the future, since most autistic children are loners, or have low self-esteem. On the other hand, some autistic children have problems with handwriting skills too. However, if you feel your child can win the world through his words, then inspire him to do that, because writing can turn his future into gold.

Promising Future

Our society is uninformed and unprepared to support millions of autistic children; there is no doubt about it. However, the good news is that, various surveys have demonstrated time and time again that autistic children show improvement and thrive in the society as they grow up. If your child is autistic, don’t worry about it; he definitely has a promising future. Just strengthen the self-esteem of your child and tangle him up in career-building hobbies, because this will give him the best chance to live a happy, promising life, even when you’re gone.

Swing Therapy For Autistic Children

Most of us have no problem combining all our senses. For autistic children (and grownups) however, it’s a mighty challenging task. Processing stimuli from the senses of sight, smell, sound, touch, taste, balance and body is overwhelming. Those suffering from autism will often withdraw to avoid over stimulation, or try to sort out the input from their senses with self-developed soothing mechanisms and repetitive behaviours.

A significant amount of occupational therapy for autism focuses on sensory integration through specially designed programs. Some of the greatest tools for sensory integration therapy for autism type disorders are various types of swings. People with various autism spectrum disorders such as Autism, PDD, ADHD, Asperger’s, proprioceptive dysfunction and tactile defensiveness will benefit from using swings as part of their therapy.

Additionally, children and adults with Sensory Processing Disorders (also called Sensory Integration Disorders), especially those with proprioceptive or vestibular dysfunction, should definitely have swings or therapy hammocks as a crucial element of their treatment.

The benefits of the hammock can be two-fold. Children who find the smooth, swaying motion soothing, will relax and unwind while using it. However, children who have a vestibular dysfunction will feel uneasy while in the hammock and might initially protest its use. For them, hammock therapy is more about regaining equilibrium and learning to tolerate vestibular stimuli.

The motion of swinging restores balance to the vestibular system, provides proprioceptive input (deep pressure) and generally helps autistic-spectrum children feel more “in balance”. The soothing motion of swinging soothes, relaxes and increases concentration. Children who have trouble focusing on tasks such as reading or math, might find it easier to concentrate sitting in a hammock chair, their bodies engaged in a soothing motion.

Setting up a swing in the home is easy and does not require a large investment. A hammock, hammock chair, hanging bag or a therapy platform swing are all relatively inexpensive, easy to find and do not take up a lot of room. Making a platform swing out of a hammock is an easy do-it-yourself project, with instructions available in our blog. Put one in the child’s room, playroom or family room for a retreat or a therapy corner for an autistic child.

Early Learning – Can Movies and TV Ever Be Good For Babies and Small Children?

What an important question! As a parent of a baby or toddler, you want to help your little one reach his or her potential. We know that language and social skills are very important for success in school and in life. And what better time to start than when your child is young?

First, the bad news–the really bad news. “Excessive viewing before age three has been shown to be associated with problems of attention control, aggressive behavior and poor cognitive development. Early television viewing has exploded in recent years, and is one of the major public health issues facing American children,” according to University of Washington researcher Frederick Zimmerman.

In this article, we’ll look at the suggested links between screen time and lower vocabulary, ADHD, autism, and violent behaviour. Then we’ll look at how you might possibly use baby TV and movies to help your child learn.

LOWER LANGUAGE SKILLS A University of Washington study shows that 40% of three-month-old babies and 90% of two-year-olds “watch” TV or movies regularly. Researchers found that parents allowed their babies and toddlers to watch educational TV, baby videos/DVDs, other children’s programs and adult programs.

What can we learn from this study?

* “Most parents seek what’s best for their child, and we discovered that many parents believe that they are providing educational and brain development opportunities by exposing their babies to 10 to 20 hours of viewing per week,” says researcher Andrew Meltzoff, a developmental psychologist.

* According to Frederick Zimmerman, lead author of the study, that’s a bad thing. “Exposure to TV takes time away from more developmentally appropriate activities such as a parent or adult caregiver and an infant engaging in free play with dolls, blocks or cars… ” he says.

* Infants age 8 to 16 months who viewed baby programs knew fewer words than those who did not view them.

“The more videos they watched, the fewer words they knew,” says Dr. Dimitri Christakis. “These babies scored about 10% lower on language skills than infants who had not watched these videos.”

* Meltzoff says that parents “instinctively adjust their speech, eye gaze and social signals to support language acquisition”–obviously something no machine can do!

* Surprisingly, it didn’t make any difference whether the parent watched with the infant or not!

Why did these babies learn more slowly? Dr. Vic Strasburger, pediatrics professor at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine, says “Babies require face-to-face interaction to learn. They don’t get that interaction from watching TV or videos. In fact, the watching probably interferes with the crucial wiring being laid down in their brains during early development.”

ADHD Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is characterized by problems with attention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. A link between ADHD and early TV viewing has been noted by Dimitri A. Christakis, MD, MPH et al.

“In contrast to the pace with which real life unfolds and is experienced by young children, television can portray rapidly changing images, scenery, and events. It can be overstimulating yet extremely interesting, ” say the researchers. “We found that early exposure to television was associated with subsequent attentional problems.”

The researchers examined data for 1278 children at the age of one year and 1345 children at age three. They found that an extra hour of daily television watching at these ages translated into a ten percent higher probability that the child would exhibit ADHD behaviours by the age of seven.

AUTISM Autism is characterized by poor or no language skills, poor social skills, unusual repetitive behaviours and obsessive interests. A University of Cornell study found that higher rates of autism appeared to be linked to higher rates of screen time.

The researchers hypothesize that “a small segment of the population is vulnerable to developing autism because of their underlying biology and that either too much or certain types of early childhood television watching serves as a trigger for the condition.”

In his commentary on this study in Slate magazine, Gregg Easterbrook notes that autistic children have abnormal activity in the visual-processing areas of their brains. As these areas are developing rapidly during the first three years of a child’s life, he wonders whether “excessive viewing of brightly colored two-dimensional screen images” can cause problems. I find this comment highly interesting, as it would apply to the full spectrum from “quality children’s programming” to adult material.

VIOLENT BEHAVIOUR The National Association for the Education of Young Children identified the following areas of concern about children watching violence on TV: * Children may become less sensitive to the pain and suffering of others. * They may be more likely to behave in aggressive or harmful ways toward others. * They may become more fearful of the world around them.

The American Psychological Association reports on several studies in which some children watched a violent program and others watched a nonviolent one. Those in the first group were slower to intervene, either directly or by calling for help, when they saw younger children fighting or breaking toys after the program.

Now that we know the bad news…

Is it possible to use movies at all? I think it is. I believe the key is to USE the program, not just WATCH it. Most people know that it’s very good to read to babies, but no one would set a book before a baby and walk away, thinking it will do her any good at all!

Rock your baby or tap the rhythm to classical music or children’s songs.

Be very, very choosy about what your young child watches–and watch with him. Does the program show kindness, helpfulness, generosity… whatever values you wish your little one to learn?

When she is old enough to relate to the images of people, animals and toys, talk to her about what she’s seeing. “Look at the puppy. He’s playing with the kitten. They’re friends. Mommy is your friend.” “The baby birds are hungry. They’re calling for their mommy. She’s going to come back with some food.” “Oh no! The baby lamb is lost. I wonder if the shepherd will find him.”

Make screen time a special–and highly limited–time that the two of you share. Treat a baby or young children’s movie the way you treat a book–as another tool to give you topics for interaction with your little one.