Posts Tagged ‘Examiner.com’

Best autism articles of 2012: Vaccines, environmental causes, social skills and play dates

January 6, 2013
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Activities for play dates include books, sports equipment and games. Photo by Mike Frandsen.

Autism news in 2012 once again centered on the dramatic increase in autism rates. In March, the Centers for Disease Control estimated that one in 88 children has autism, up 78 percent from 2002.

Scientists increasingly learned through research that autism is largely caused by environmental and man-made factors, a departure from the view held years ago that autism’s causes were nearly all genetic.

Meanwhile, educational and therapeutic interventions continued to evolve, with a strong emphasis on play skills as a way to improve social and life skills for children on the spectrum.

Links and excerpts from 10 autism articles from 2012 are below.

Autism advocates, NIH, CDC testify to Congress about research, autism increase

Autism advocates and government officials testified in front of a congressional committee Thursday about the federal response to the dramatic increase in autism diagnoses in recent years.

One in every 88 babies born in the U.S. will develop autism, according to the Centers for Disease Control, a 23 percent increase since 2009 and a 78 percent increase since 2007. In the 1960s, autism was believed to affect one in 10,000 children in the U.S.

Members of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee questioned representatives of the National Institutes of Health and CDC about research priorities and subsequent results. A second panel of autism advocates testified about concerns ranging from research to services for people with autism. See the video here.

Numerous congressmen on the committee harshly criticized the NIH and CDC for a lack of effective research results, while agency officials at times struggled to come up with answers. The safety of vaccines was discussed, an issue that NIH and CDC insists is not linked to the rise in autism. However, many parents still steadfastly believe vaccines are one of the causes of the disorder. Members of the House committee recounted instances in which parents told them of children developmentally regressing immediately after being subjected to vaccines.

To read excerpts from the articles on Examiner.com, click here.

Play date activities for children with autism spectrum disorders

January 28, 2011

Participating in play dates can help children with autism gain invaluable social skills.  The best way for children on the autism spectrum to learn how to manage their emotions and make friends is to practice those skills over and over with their peers.

A sample list of play date activities designed to improve social-emotional, play, cognitive, and motor skills is below.  The description of ideas is just a guide.  The list of potential games, sports, and other activities is endless.  The list below includes activities that in some cases require a minimum level of education and communication.

Activities should be customized to the interests and needs of students.  A list of ten or so major activities can be given to kids who should have some leeway to take turns choosing activities.  In a two-hour play date, usually about six activities can be accomplished.

To read the rest of my article on Examiner.com, click here.

 

Examiner “Upgrade”

August 15, 2010

Examiner.com is going through an “upgrade.”  Unfortunately, and hopefully not for long, there are a lot of formatting problems with the articles.  They’re working on fixing them.  Hopefully everything gets back to normal soon, but I wanted to say that I’m not responsible for the problems if you look at my autism and sports articles. If you commented on the articles, those comments should reappear soon.

Red hot Washington Capitals win 13th in a row, take on Pittsburgh Penguins tomorrow

February 6, 2010

The Washington Capitals will try to extend their franchise record winning streak to 14 games as they host the Pittsburgh Penguins tomorrow in their traditional Super Bowl Sunday contest.  The game features the NHL’s two best players, Alexander Ovechkin of the Caps and Sidney Crosby of the Penguins.

Red hot Washington Capitals win 13th in a row, 5-2 over Atlanta Thrashers

The red hot Washington Capitals won their 13th consecutive game tonight, 5-2 over the Atlanta Thrashers in Washington.

Caps backup goalie Michael Neuvirth made a career-high 43 saves as the Caps got goals from their three leading scorers: Alexander Ovechkin (39), Alexander Semin (26), and Nicklas Backstrom (25).

Ovechkin scored his league-leading 39th goal on a power play slapshot past goalie Ondrej Pavelec at the 13:41 mark of the first period. Backstrom fed Ovechkin the puck as Ovie was sprinting back from the bench after retrieving a new stick.

For the rest of the article, see http://www.examiner.com/x-37753-DC-Sports-Headlines-Examiner.

Washington Capitals win team record 12th straight over NY Rangers, Ovechkin gets 500th career point

The Washington Capitals extended their team record winning streak to 12 games with a 6-5 victory over the New York Rangers last night at Madison Square Garden.

Nicklas Backstrom scored five points including the game-winning goal early in the third period, while linemate Alexander Ovechkin scored two goals.

Ovechkin scored his 500th career point in style with 8.5 seconds left in the second period, sliding the puck through the legs of Michal Rozsival and up over goalie Henrik Lundqvist. The goal, Ovie’s 38th, closed the gap to 5-4.

For the rest of the article, see http://www.examiner.com/x-37753-DC-Sports-Headlines-Examiner.

Washington Capitals beat Boston Bruins for franchise record 11th win in a row

The Washington Capitals won a team-record 11th straight game last night over the Boston Bruins, 4-1.

Brooks Laich and Boyd Gordon each scored past Bruins goalie Tim Thomas in a three minute-stretch in the 3rd period to give the Caps a 3-1 advantage. Caps goalie Jose Theodore was superb in the net, stopping 41 shots.

The Caps have won 14 of 15 games since Alexander Ovechkin was named Captain January 5. Ovechkin was named the NHL’s first star of the month for January.

For the rest of the article, see http://www.examiner.com/x-37753-DC-Sports-Headlines-Examiner.

Washington, D.C. Sports Headlines Examiner – Examiner.com

February 6, 2010

I’m the new Washington, D.C. Sports Headlines Examiner for Examiner.com.  Basically, I write short articles about local sports events.  In a typical week, I might do an article on a Caps game, Wizards game, either Maryland or Georgetown basketball game, and a fourth miscellaneous item.  Right now I’ll do more Caps games because they’re doing so well.  And of course, in the spring, I’ll be doing some Nats and D.C. United games, and of course Redskins news as it comes in.

See http://www.examiner.com/x-37753-DC-Sports-Headlines-Examiner for my articles.  If you click on “subscribe” to the right of my name and then enter your email address, you’ll get email alerts whenever I do an article.  Subscribing is free, and in a typical week, I’ll probably do about four articles.  If you’re a local sports fan, it’s worth it just to find out what happened to the local teams, and just as important, to hear about any major breaking news.  A perfect example of this is former Redskin Russ Grimm making the Hall of Fame, which just happened today.  Also, I get paid per page click — each time one of my articles gets read.

Examiner.com is not affiliated with the Examiner newspapers. Examiner.com has reporters, or “Examiners” all over the country and emphasizes local news and sports.

As long as I’m promoting myself, I might as well cut and paste my bio here:

Mike Frandsen is a free-lance writer who has worked as a local sports reporter covering the Redskins, Wizards, Capitals, and Orioles. Mike also teaches kids with autism (www.coachmike.net) and works as an advocate for kidney donor awareness. He blogs about subjects as varied as sports, autism, and kidney disease at www.mikefrandsen.org.

Thanks for reading.


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