Top 3 Tips for Helping Your Teen With Autism Get Back to School

The transition from summer back to school can often be a challenging time for children and teens, especially for youths on the autism spectrum. Because autism covers a large spectrum and presents differently in every person, there are several ideas for ways to help your teen or child with autism feel that they belong and have significance during this time of change. Keep reading for top 3 tips for helping your teen with autism get back to school.

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Quick Connection: The Power of Walk and Talks

Have you ever tried a walk and talk with your teen? This could be a walk for exercise, sure, and it can also be entirely leisurely. In either case, walk and talk is communication strategy, a tool to remember when you have a pressing idea to process with your teen or when you can tell they are feeling stressed, overwhelmed, or frustrated. Being next to your teen, or "sideways talking," as opposed to face-to-face, can open the space for conversation-- literally and metaphorically. This orientation often feels less confrontational and more spacious for young people. For some teens, it can be safer to be next to adults when it comes to tough conversations and topics, or even asking for help.

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10 Keys to an Intentional, Easeful Back to School Season

Some children and teens can't wait to get back into the routine of school; they might be excited to reconnect with friends, to resume extracurriculars, to get out of the house more. And others are dreading getting back to campus; they might resist or fear the structure, the workload, the socialization, the pressures. Regardless of where your teen is on this spectrum of back to school feelings, they are likely experiencing the energy of transition. And you too! Keep reading for 10 keys to an intentional back to school because the more aware we can be through this change, the more easeful this season will be.

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Quick Connections: Asking Curiosity Questions

Asking curiosity questions to the children and teens in your life will not only increase their engagement (which brings confidence, critical thinking, emotional intelligence, and so much more along with it), but it will also give you, as the parent or caregiver, more room to breathe. Keep reading to learn how to use curiosity questions in a wide range of opportunities!

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Quick Connection: Making Agreements with Teens

You and your family can make agreements about screentime, chores, finances or allowances, curfew, and so on. When you and your child or teen reach agreements TOGETHER, the buy-in is stronger. They are more likely to follow through with genuine interest and commitment. Plus, there’s less weight on you! Instead of giving instructions or reminders-- which can feel like nagging-- you can ask/remind your teen, “What did we agree to?”

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