• Tips for Traveling with Your Child with Autism

    Traveling with a child who displays signs of autism can be challenging, particularly if the child still requires a car seat. Children with autism may resist the straps of the car seat and attempt to get out of the seat while the car is in motion. It can be especially trying to get a child with autism in and out of a car seat. An ABA therapist may recommend taking the car seat out of the vehicle, bringing it indoors, and practicing each step of getting in and out of it. Children who are averse to the straps may build up tolerance gradually, such as by first learning to tolerate a piece of cloth over the shoulder.

    You can hear more helpful tips by watching this interaction between an autism specialist and a mother who has a child with autism. They discuss the common challenges related to car travel and brainstorm some solutions that may help your family.

    To consult an ABA therapist near Plano about your travel-related difficulties, call The Behavior Exchange at (888) 716-8084. Our autism treatment center works collaboratively with families to teach them how to implement consistent interventions for behavior disorders.

  • The Importance of Focusing on Your Child’s Abilities

    It’s not uncommon for parents to have difficulty coming to terms with the early signs of autism in their children. Yet, children remain the same unique people that they were before the diagnosis; they just need some extra help to reach their full potential. If your child has autism, you can give him or her the support they need by focusing on abilities, rather than deficits.

    By watching the video, you will meet Nicholas, a 17-year-old boy with autism. He was diagnosed with autism at a very young age. Although he has limitations, Nicholas is continually adding to his repertoire of skills. He landed a job at a local restaurant, and with lots of practice and patience, he’s learning to be a chef.

    Children who are displaying signs of autism can find the extra attention they need at The Behavior Exchange . To schedule a consultation for ABA therapy in Plano, call us at (888) 716-8084.

  • How Autism Spectrum Disorders Affect Language Development

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) affect children in different ways. Often, children with autism display language deficits, such as delayed language development. For example, a child may develop a broad vocabulary at an early age, yet have trouble associating the words with their meanings. These types of autism symptoms can make it difficult for children to progress in school. Difficulty with communication can also reduce quality of life for the child and the family. At an ABA school , an autism therapist can help children strengthen their communication skills.

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    Delays in language development are one of the possible indicators of autism. By the time a child is six months old, he or she may begin babbling. By 12 months, he or she may begin saying very simple words, such as “da-da” or “uh-oh.” And just one year later, children typically begin saying simple, short phrases and speaking about 50 words or more. Autism can cause children to experience delays in speech and language acquisition , which means they may not meet these milestones.

    Social Communication

    A child begins to learn communication skills well before he or she can speak. Infants absorb knowledge of language by listening to their caregivers. Babies also learn to recognize the nonverbal cues of language, such as their parents’ facial expressions, eye gaze, body language, and tone of voice. For children with autism, social communication may be difficult and they may have trouble interpreting these nonverbal cues.

    Repetitive Language

    When children with autism do develop speech skills, they may use them differently than typically developing children. Children with autism may engage in echolalia, which is the repetition of words that have no contextual meaning. For example, a parent may instruct a child to “Put the bananas in the cart,” while at the grocery store. The child may immediately begin to repeat this sentence over and over again, which is known as immediate echolalia. Or, he or she may repeat this sentence at a later time, which is delayed echolalia.

    At The Behavior Exchange, we use specialized teaching methods that help children develop skills in the areas of speech and language, self-help, age-appropriate play, and many more. Parents can schedule a meeting with an ABA therapist near Plano by calling (888) 716-8084. We also encourage you to visit our website to read more about our evidence-based autism services, including parent training and school advocacy.

  • The Benefits of Early Intervention in Preparing Your Child for School

    Generally, a child may be diagnosed with autism as early as 18 months, although some of the signs of autism may be evident before this point. Receiving a diagnosis for your child as soon as possible is a crucial step toward getting him or her the services needed to facilitate the best possible outcome. When children with autism symptoms begin working with an ABA therapist at an early age, they have a better chance of reaching their full potential.

    Language Development autism school plano

    When children with autism receive early intervention services based on clinically proven therapy approaches such as ABA, they can acquire language skills they’ll need to succeed in the classroom. Children with autism can experience varying degrees of speech and language impairment. For children who are nonverbal, an ABA therapist might first focus on teaching nonverbal methods of communication to reduce frustration and set the stage for verbal communication. Other children might display repetitive or rigid language that appears out of context, while others may be able to discuss their area of interest at length, yet have trouble with two-way conversations. Early intervention gives children the opportunity to improve their expressive and receptive language skills before they enter the classroom.

    Social Interactions

    The preschool years are a crucial time for children’s social development. Preschool not only provides academic preparation for kindergarten; it also teaches children to work cooperatively with others, share, take turns, and resolve conflicts peacefully. Many children with autism struggle with social interactions. Some may also have difficulty regulating their emotions and responding appropriately to their environment, which may sometimes result in meltdowns and other undesirable behaviors. Early intervention with ABA therapy gives these children the tools they need to modify their behavior, both in and out of the classroom.

    Before your child heads off to school, consider enrolling him or her in The Behavior Exchange Early-Start (B.E.E.S.) Program. In our classroom near the DFW area, your preschool-aged child will work with peers and ABA therapists to develop important skills for school. To find out more, call our ABA school at (888) 716-8084 or visit us on the Web.

  • How to Respect the Individuality of People with Autism

    One common misconception about autism is that it affects every person the same. It’s important to remember that not only are the symptoms of autism experienced differently by each individual; but also that every person with autism has a unique personality. Supporting a person’s independence and respecting his or her wishes can improve their quality of life.

    You can learn more about living with autism by watching this video. You’ll meet Dan, who was diagnosed with autism early in life. Now an adult, Dan has a cleaning job in a cafeteria. You’ll also meet Dan’s mother Caryn and one of Dan’s lifelong friends, who now works to promote autism awareness at Autism Speaks.

    The Behavior Exchange is an ABA therapy center in Plano that is committed to providing comprehensive support and training for children with autism and their families. If you believe your child has displayed some of the signs of autism, you can get in touch with our team by calling (888) 716-8084.

  • The Benefits of Autism Therapy

    Language acquisition, pragmatic language skills, social interactions, and behavioral issues are just a few of the challenges that children with autism struggle with every day. It’s not unheard of for a very bright child to fall behind in school simply because of issues such as class disruptions. Every child with autism deserves the opportunity to reach his or her full potential, which is why autism therapy is so crucial. The earlier a child begins to work with an ABA therapist, the better the outcome is likely to be.

    Speech and Language autism spectrum disorder dallas

    An improvement in a child’s communication abilities is just one of the many benefits of autism therapy. Some children with autism are completely nonverbal or nearly so. An ABA therapist can first give these children a means of communicating their needs nonverbally, which comprises the building blocks for speech acquisition . Other children with autism may have typical verbal communication, yet lack pragmatic language skills. These refer to the use of social cues to place language in context. For example, an ABA therapist can help these children learn to use and interpret facial expressions and body language, and how to take turns in a conversation.

    Family Harmony

    Autism spectrum disorders can adversely affect familial relationships, including sibling relationships. With the help of an autism therapist, your family can use consistent behavioral interventions to support compliance, discourage problematic behaviors, and support harmony within the household.

    School Advocacy

    School support is crucial for children with autism. An autism therapist who provides school advocacy services can facilitate academic and social success for your child. He or she can observe the classroom, offer recommendations for the implementation of behavioral interventions in the school, and ensure that your child’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP) is appropriate.

    The Behavior Exchange has offered evidence-based autism therapy near Plano for nearly 20 years. We’ve been privileged to guide countless families in overcoming obstacles with our comprehensive services , including school advocacy, parent training, and one-on-one autism therapy. If you have observed possible signs of autism in your child, you can call (888) 716-8084 today for more information about our services.

  • The Benefits of Social Skills Groups

    autism school dfw Many children with autism, learning differences, and behavior disorders have trouble making friends and interacting with others. If this describes your child with special needs, consider enrolling him or her in a social skills group at The Behavior Exchange, an ABA therapy center located in Plano. We’ve found that giving children with autism the tools they need to overcome social obstacles helps them feel self-confident and improves their quality of life.

    Under the guidance of an ABA therapist, your child will receive the support he or she needs to make new friends. We offer a unique social skills curriculum with structured lessons, academic enrichment, and applied activities to encourage appropriate social interactions. Children in our social skills groups have fun and develop important skills while participating in our broad range of age-appropriate activities.

    Parents of children with autism and other special needs are encouraged to call us at (888) 716-8084 today to find out more.

  • A Parent’s Guide to Behavior Disorders

    Parents of children with behavior disorders may sometimes feel at a loss as to how to cope with and change these challenging behaviors. Behavior disorders can strain family relationships and cause problems in school. It’s important for parents to realize that behavior disorders are not the result of “bad parenting” and that there is help available. Teaching appropriate replacement behaviors is possible with intensive therapy.

    Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) aba therapy dallas

    Children with ODD display a pattern of frequent defiance, anger, and argumentativeness toward authority figures such as their parents. Typically, the signs of ODD are apparent from a young age. These signs include frequently losing one’s temper, being easily annoyed, refusing to comply with directions or requests, blaming others for one’s own misbehavior, and arguing frequently with others. One-on-one therapy, parent training, and social skills training can help improve symptoms of ODD.

    Conduct Disorder

    Conduct disorder involves more extreme and serious issues than ODD. It is defined as a pattern of repetitious behavior that violates age-appropriate social rules or the rights of others. Children with conduct disorder may break major rules habitually. For example, they may skip school, run away from home, destroy property, and behave aggressively toward others. Children with conduct disorder typically need to undergo one-on-one therapy and social skills training, and parents may need to implement changes at home.

    Impulse Control Disorder

    Children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may be more likely to be diagnosed with impulse control disorder. As the name suggests, this behavior disorder involves regular episodes of the loss of self-control, which may lead to explosive verbal outbursts and aggressive behaviors such as property destruction. Typically, behavior modification is recommended for children with impulse control disorder.

    The Behavior Exchange is an ABA school in Plano that has a longstanding reputation in the community for helping children and families overcome a wide range of difficulties associated with special needs. We encourage parents to visit our website for information on how our therapists can help. Then, call us at (888) 716-8084 to set up an appointment.

  • Getting to Know the Autism Spectrum

    New diagnostic criteria have been issued for individuals with autism. Instead of recognizing different autism subtypes such as Asperger’s, autistic disorder, childhood disintegrative disorder, and pervasive developmental disorder, not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS), the new criteria groups all types of autism under the umbrella diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). However, the types and degrees of impairment that children experience still vary widely.

    This expert explains that some children with autism may be entirely nonverbal and display restricted behavior patterns while other children with autism may experience mild speech and language limitations.

    Children who have displayed some of the signs of autism can find the help they need at The Behavior Exchange located in Plano. Parents throughout the DFW area can call (888) 716-8084 to inquire about our family centered services .


    When children with autism struggle with problem behaviors, the quality of life for the whole family may be adversely affected. In addition, problem behaviors such as noncompliance and meltdowns can significantly affect a teacher’s ability to maintain an ideal learning environment, which in turn, affects the child’s academic progress. An ABA therapist can apply the principles of behavior modification to help children eliminate or reduce problem behaviors and acquire desirable behaviors.

    Developing New Behaviors certified behavior analyst plano

    For many children with autism, socially accepted behaviors must be learned through repetition. For example, a child who does not make eye contact can be taught to acquire this behavior with the successive approximation principle. This principle involves leading the child toward the end goal through attempts at the desired behavior. In other words, the child might be rewarded for looking up when his or her name is called, even if eye contact isn’t established. The continuous reinforcement principle of behavior modification for children with autism involves providing the child with an immediate reward after a correct response. Another principle, the modeling principle, involves having the child observe another person performing the desired behavior.

    Reinforcing New Behaviors

    As the child progresses, it may become impractical or undesirable to reward him or her after every correct response. ABA therapists and parents can use the decreasing reinforcement principle, which involves waiting for increasing periods of time after the execution of a behavior to provide a reward. It may also involve requiring more than one correct response before a reward is given.

    Curbing Undesirable Behaviors

    Often, ABA therapists use the extinction principle of behavior modification to discourage children from repeating problem behaviors. This means that following the execution of an undesirable behavior, no positive reinforcement is given.

    At The Behavior Exchange, you’ll find a positive, welcoming environment with the autism therapy programs that can help your child reach his or her full potential. Our ABA therapy center in Plano works closely with children, parents, caregivers, and school staff to consistently implement effective techniques for behavior modification. Parents may reach us at (972) 755-3804 to schedule a consultation.