Autism: The Divide Between Children

Autism: The Divide Between Children

Autistic children need the same opportunities.
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The CDC has reported that autism effects one in 68 American children today. Autism is a very broad mental handicap that can be clinically defined as a condition or disorder that begins in childhood which causes issues with having successful relationships and communicating in an understandable way. Many autistic children have issues with behavioral, developmental, cognitive and psychological development. Among these development issues are; compulsive behavior, speech delay, unaware of other's emotions, intense interest in a limited number of things, anxiety, and inappropriate social interaction. The severity of these issues depends on the child, as well as which symptoms the child may have.

This disability tends to cause school systems to group the autistic children with the less intelligent. Therefore, these children begin to believe that they are different or less important than average children due to the treatment they receive. Many of the autistic children are sent to do their work with Special Education teachers instead of being placed into a normal classroom. While in some instances these circumstances do work, a good portion of the time these Special Education teachers are spread too thin throughout the school system. Some school districts only having one Special Education teacher for elementary school and one Special Education teacher for the high school. Often, there are other students with more severe handicaps, such as Down Syndrome. Many autistic kids feeling neglected or not receiving the material they are capable of completing. These small things can lead these children to believe they are too different, unintelligent or disabled to achieve what average children are able to achieve.

Morgan Day, an 18 year old incoming freshman at Bowling Green State University, mentions, "One of my cousins went to school, and I never went there, but I have to say it must not have been a very good school. She was a lot to handle, so they told her mom that she was not allowed back!" Day, referring to how the public school system is not capable of handling autistic children in the appropriate way, shows the divide between average children and children with disabilities, especially autism. Autistic children who are expelled or sent to special schools are generally divided from average children, causing their already poor social skills to worsen over time.

While these special and safe areas to learn are great in theory, many of these educators have not been properly trained in how to handle autistic children. After being asked about his training as a special education teacher, Andrew Barker, a Special Education teacher in the Mineral Ridge, OH school district states that he was not really taught about how to teach and handle autistic children because, "there is no 'normal' for autism." This is the sad truth. Children diagnosed with autism all have different symptoms and issues.

So, how are we going to be able to teach our future generation of teachers to better help these children? They need experience. We need our teachers to know how to help these kids learn because they are just kids, begging for a learning opportunity.


Cover Image Credit: Huffington Post

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I Woke up In The Middle Of The Night To Write About My Fears, They're Worse Than The Dark

One minute I'm thinking about what I want to do after college next thing I know I'm remembering the time I tried talking to a boy and choked on my spit.

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It is one of those nights when I am tired, but for some reason, I can't seem to fall asleep. So, what do I do? I pull out my laptop, and I begin to write. Who knows where it will lead. It could lead to a killer article or something that does not make sense. I mean it is almost 2 A.M. In my mind, that's pretty late.

Anyways, let's do this thing.

Like many people, thoughts seem to pile up in my head at this time. It could be anything from a time when I was younger to embarrassing stories to wondering why I am "wasting" my time somewhere to thoughts about the future. All of these things come at me like a wildfire. One minute I'm thinking about what I want to do after college next thing I know I'm remembering the time I tried talking to a boy and choked on my spit.

The thought that is going through my mind as I write this is about the future. It's about the future of my fears. Let me explain. I have multiple fears. Some of my fears I can hide pretty well, others I am terrible at hiding. My fears may seem silly to some. While others might have the same fears. Shall we start?

1. My career

I don't know where to begin with this one. For as long as I can remember, my consistent dream job has been working in the world of sports, specifically hockey. A career in sports can be and is a challenging thing. The public eye is on you constantly. A poor trade choice? Fans are angry. Your team sucks? "Fans" are threatening to cheer for someone else if you can't get your sh*t together. You can be blamed for anything and everything. Whether you are the coach, general manager, owner, it does not matter. That's terrifying to me, but for some reason, I want to work for a team.

2. My family

Julie Fox

Failing with my family, whether that be the family I was born into or my future family, it terrifies me. I have watched families around me fall apart and I have seen how it has affected them. Relationships have fallen apart because of it. I have heard people talk about how much they hate one of their parents because of what happened. I don't want that.

3. Time

This could be a dumb fear. I'm not sure, but I fear time. With every minute that passes, I am just another minute closer to the end. With every day that passes that I am not accomplishing goals or dreams I have, I am losing precious time. It scares me to think of something horrible like "What if I die tomorrow because of something horrific?" or even worse, "What if I don't make it through today?" It's terrible, I know.

4. Forgetting precious memories

When I was younger, I had brain surgery. It is now much harder for me to remember things. I am truly terrified that I am going to forget things I will want to hold close to me forever, but I won't be able to. I am scared I'll forget about the little things that mean a lot. I'm afraid of forgetting about old memories that may disappear. I'm worried that I'll forget about something like my wedding day. That might seem out of this world, but it's a reality for me.

5. Saying "goodbye"

I hate saying bye. It is one of my least favorite things. Saying bye, especially to people I don't know when I'll see again, is a stab in the heart for me. I love my people so much. I love being around them. I love laughing with them. Thought of never having a hello with them again scares me beyond belief.

6. Leaving places that I love

Alright, let me start off by saying this- it takes a lot for me to love a place. It has to feel like home. It has to make me feel comfortable. It has to be a place I can go to and be myself. Thankfully, I have had and still have multiple places that are like that. I have also had places I could not wait to leave. I think that's why leaving places I love is so hard and something I fear so much. I am afraid I'll never get that place "back", for lack of a better term. I guess, I'm trying to say, it's like a piece of me is leaving as well.




These six things are just the start of my fears. Some of these might seem "dumb" or "ridiculous" to you, but for me, it's my life. These are the things that I think about the most. These are the things that feel like a pit in my stomach. These six things are parts of my life that mean a lot to me.

Cover Image Credit:

Emily Heinrichs

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Regardless Of The Trials In Your Life Right Now, Always Keep Smiling

A simple smile can release all your negative psychological emotions and transform them into positive emotions.

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"A smile is a curve that sets everything straight" should always resonate in your hearts and minds whenever you are going through a rough patch. A simple smile can release all your negative psychological emotions and transform them into positive emotions. I strongly believe that when you smile, most of your stress neurons disappear leaving you more subdued towards the positive prospects of life. Life is short and I sincerely urge everyone to spend more time smiling and enjoying the precious moments with loved ones. You never know how much your smile can mean to others around you.

I'm blessed to be able to experience this immaculate feeling whenever I'm volunteering at my local hospital. Whenever I walk in to interact and check in with patients, I always enter with a bright smile on my face in the hopes of cheering them up. Most of the patients who I'm able to see are the elderly who are suffering from various debilitating diseases or are on their road to recovery. It is truly a special and remarkable feeling to observe the glow on their faces when I speak to them with a huge smile on my face. Their smile in response to mine brightens up my day in a mind-blowing way!

Furthermore, your smile is precious and priceless. There shouldn't be any price or strings attached to it. Smiling has been proven to be a universal form of communication globally because it views everyone as equals without any type of discrimination. In other words, a smile brings two nations together just like love brings two hearts together. The intensity of your smile will bewilder people around you and make them want to smile too.

Another reason everyone should always encourage others to smile is that it can release any type of internalized tension that they are trying to lock inside their hearts. Any type of stress, anxiety, or emotional conflicts should not be suppressed inside you. In fact, you should strive to conquer your failures, hardships, and emotional turmoil with a breathtakingly expressive smile! Keep in mind, smiling can be viewed as a coping mechanism as well as a therapeutic route to recovery.

No matter how many difficulties you have, never let it get to you and always keep on smiling!

Cover Image Credit:

Erikka Chowdhury

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