2020 Special Needs Conferences and Seminars for Professionals and Families

The following are upcoming special needs and developmental disability conferences and seminars for the year. The conferences include annual meetings, specialty conferences and professional development courses. Click on the highlighted title to get further information.

January

27th Annual Florida Statewide Card Autism Conference
Date: January 17-19, 2020
Location: Orlando, Fl.

Annual Autism conference for families, educators, professionals and autistic adults.

ICADD International Conference on Autism and Developmental Disorders
Date: January 30-31, 2020
Location: Dubai, United Arab Emirates

CASP The Council of Autism Service Providers Annual Conference
Date: January 13-14, 2020
Location: Scottsdale, AZ

7th Annual Conference on Depression, Anxiety and Stress Management
Date: January 20-21, 2020
Location: Barcelona, Spain

Autism Spectrum Disorder Across the Life Span
Date: January 11, 2020
Location: Boston, MA

DADD 21st International Conference on Autism, Intellectual Disability and Developmental Disabilities
Date: January 22, 2020
Location: Sarasota, FL

Future Horizon
An Evening with Temple Grandin
Date: January 28, 2020
Location: Atlanta, GA

Features Renown Dr. Temple Grandin who will give insight backed by research evidence and own experience.

February

Council for Exceptional Children
February 5-8, 2020
Portland, Oregon

DFW Autism Conference
Date: February 6-7, 2020
Location: Hurst, TX

Autism Conference and Training
Date: February 7-8, 2020
Location: Vancouver, BC

Special Needs Planning Symposium
Date: February 7-9, 2020
Location: Napa, CA

Future Horizon
An Evening with Temple Grandin
Date: February 11, 2020
Location: Oklahoma City, OK

Features Renown Dr. Temple Grandin who will give insights backed by research evidence and own experience.

Future Horizon
An Evening with Temple GrandinDate: Lubbock, TX
Location: February 17, 2020

Features Renown Dr. Temple Grandin who will give insight backed by research evidence and own experience.

Learning Disabilities Association 57th Annual International Conference
Date: February 17-20, 2020
Location: Orlando, FL

National Autistic Society- Autism Professional Conference
Date: February 27-28, 2020
Location: Birmingham, London

19th Annual Alabama Autism Conference
Date: February 28, 2020
Location: Tuscaloosa, AL

2nd European Autism Congress
Date: February 28-29
Location: Budapest, Hungary

March

Professional Development and Parent Seminars
Date: March 5, 2020
Location: Albany, New York

Autism Conference and Training
Date: March 5-6, 2020
Location: Edmonton, AB

Southern Maine Autism Conference
Date: March 7, 2020 8am- 4pm
Location: South Portland, ME

2020 Autism Matters Conference
Date: March 20, 2020
Location: Orange Beach, AL

Autism Through the Life Span
Date: March 21, 2020 8:45-4:30
Location: Li Ka Shing Conference Center
291 Campus Drive, Stanford University

Autism Society National Conference
2020 Disability Policy Seminar
Date: March 23-25, 2020
Location: Washington, DC

11th Annual Honestly Autism Day
Date: March 28, 2020
Location: Hunt Valley, MD

April

Autism Conference and Training
Date: April 2-3, 2020
Location: Ottawa, ON

Nebraska ASD Network State Conference
Date: April 2-3, 2020
Location: Lincoln, NE

Autism Conference and Training
Date: April 16-17, 2020
Location: Halifax, NS

International Conference on Physical Disability Treatments and Therapies
Date: April 23-23, 2020
Location, New York, NY

Autism Converge Autism Summit 2020
Date: April 23-25, 2020
Location: Greenville, SC

Autism Society of Greater Wisconsin 31st Annual Conference
Date: April 30- May 2, 2020
Location: Wisconsin Dells, WI

May

International Society for Autism Research
Date: May 6-9, 2020
Location: Seattle, Washington

Autism Conference and Expo Georgia
Date: May 13-14, 2019
Location: Georgia State University
Atlanta, GA

June

American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Date: 1-4, 2020
Location: Pittsburg, PA

Autism Research Conference
Date: June 4
Location: New York, NY

National Autism Conference
Milestones Autism Resources
Date: June 11-12, 2020
Location: Cleveland, OH

European Academy of Childhood Disabilities
Date: June 17-20, 2020
Location: Poznan, Poland

48th Annual National Down Syndrome Congress Convention
Date: June 25-28, 2020
Location: June 25-28, 2020

August

National Association of QDIP’s Annual Conference
Date: August 4-7
Location: New Orleans, Lousiana

September

American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine Annual Meeting
Date: September 22-26, 2020
New Orleans, Louisiana

October

Autism New Jersey Annual Conference
Date: October 15-16, 2020
Location: Atlantic City, N.J.

Council for Learning Disabilities
Date: October 15-16
Location: Richmond, VA

November

Annual 32nd International Conference on ADHD
Date: November 5-7
Location: Dallas, Texas

December

2020 CPISRA Conference on Physical Activity and Health for People with Cerebral Palsy or Acquired Brain Injury
Date: December 4-6, 2020
Location: Sydney, Australia

Executive Dysfunctions of ADHD Persist Into Adulthood: 25-Year Study

Published by: ADDitude
Written by: Nathaly Pesantez

Executive functioning deficits persist well into adulthood for individuals with ADHD, according to a new study1 in the Journal of Attention Disorders that affirms the clinical theory that executive dysfunction is a core symptom of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

The small Norwegian study looked at attentional processing capacities — namely pre-attentive and executive functioning — in a group of people with and without ADHD over a 23- to 25-year period. Pre-attentive processing — the basic, preliminary stage in the brain whereby auditive and visual stimuli is analyzed — is not as well understood in relation to ADHD as is executive functioning — the controlled brain processes (like working memory) that allow us to integrate information and select optimal actions — the researchers said.

These two processes, according to the researchers, exist on “contrasting ends of [the] ‘attentional processing continuum.’”  Because pre-attentive processing deficits may be precursors for brain function deficits of a higher order (like executive functioning), the study aimed to “gain insight into the long-term changes in attentional capacity” for “a clearer conception of attention dysfunction in ADHD.” Click here to read the rest of the story.

Dysgraphia and Workplace Accommodations

Some might be surprised to learn that there are several types of learning disabilities. Dysgraphia is describes as a learning disability that affects writing, spelling and fine motor skills. Dysgraphia is a neurodevelopmental disorder that can occur as a stand alone disorder or part of a co-occurring disorder with other disabilities such as ADHD, Autism, and Dyslexia. Typically it is diagnosed or discovered in the early years when children are beginning to learn how to write. Most adults often remain undiagnosed.

Early Signs of Dysgraphia

Signs and symptoms of dysgraphia generally begin to show up when children began to lean how to write. Early signs of Dysgraphia include:

  • Inconsistent spacing between letters
  • Poor spatial planning
  • Poor spelling
  • Unable to read own handwriting
  • Poor fine motor skills
  • Omitted words
  • Writes slow
  • Pain in hand from writing
  • Messy unorganized papers
  • Difficulty organizing thoughts on paper
  • Illegible printing and cursive letter formation
  • Slopping handwriting
  • Tight, cramped pencil grip
  • Tires quickly when writing
  • mixes upper and lower case or irregular sizes and shapes of letters.

Download a free dysgraphia checklist

Signs and Symptoms in the Workplace

A early signs that rarely disappears is having a “sloppy” handwriting. The person when writing leaves out letters at the end of a sentence, difficulty reading own handwriting after meetings, trouble with filling out routine forms, displays unorganized papers on the desk, difficulty thinking and writing at the same time and tends to mixes upper and lower case letters when writing. The person will also avoid writing when possible and show a preference to using a computer or texting neatness, line spacing, staying inside margins and capitalization rules.

Strategies to Use in the Workplace
  1. If you have a smart phone, you can use the device to record meetings, interviews or instructions that are given to you.
  2. Assitive technology such as tablets, computers and Apps are also useful in transcribing information
  3. Take the time to organize your desk before you leave work in the evening. Prioritize your workflow and create a plan for the next day.
  4. Pre-write. Before you take on the task of writing, create an outline on paper.

5 Perfectly Awful Ways to Motivate an ADHD Brain

Source: Additude
Written by: Tamara Rosier

Many of us with attention deficit disorder (ADHD or ADD) have less reliable access to our prefrontal cortex (PFC) than do neurotypical people. Life’s details are managed in the PFC. It is a calm, rational butler, directing behavior in a Siri-toned voice: “Sir, your keys are on the table.” Or, “Madam, you must leave now if you want to arrive on time.”

Those of us with ADHD can’t rely on our PFC butler for planning, short-term memory, working memory, decision-making, and impulse management. So we go to our emotional centers, in the limbic system, to remember things, make decisions, and to motivate ourselves. We use our emotions to help us to think, remember, plan, and act. Click here to read the rest of the story.

Developmental Disability Facts and Statistics

Developmental disability is a diverse group of chronic conditions that are due to mental or physical impairments before the age of 22. A developmental disability can occur before, during or after birth. Common well-known developmental disabilities include autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy and Fragile X syndrome. Here are some facts and statistics on developmental disabilities.

Click here to download PDF Format

  • Developmental Disability is a severe, long-term disability that affect cognitive ability, physical functioning or both.
  • 1 in 6 or about 15% of children aged 3 through 17 have one or more developmental disabilities.
  • Between 2014 and 2016 the prevalence of developmental disability among kids ages 3 to 17 increased from 5.76 percent to 6.99 percent.
  • Prevalence of autism increased 289.5%
  • Prevalence of ADHD increased 33.0 %
  • Males have a higher prevalence of ADHD, autism, learning disabilities, stuttering and other developmental disabilities.
  • Children from families with incomes below the federal poverty level had a higher prevalence of developmental disabilities.
  • 10% of Americans have a family member with an intellectual disability.
  • Intellectual disabilities are 25 times more common than blindness.
  • Every year 125,000 children are born with an intellectual disability
  • Approximately 85% of the intellectual disability is in the mild category.
  • About 10% of the intellectual disability is considered moderate
  • About 3-4% of the intellectual disability population is severe.
  • Only 1-2% is classified as profound.

 

Resources

National Institute of Health

New Study Links Hyperfocus and ADHD

Published By: ADDitude Magazine
Written By: Neil Petersen

A newly published study has pried the lid off the mysterious phenomenon of “hyperfocus,” tying it inextricably to symptoms of attention deficit disorder (ADHD or ADD) in adults.

Though not included in the official DSM-5 diagnostic criteria for ADHD, hyperfocus is a condition familiar to many individuals with ADHD who report becoming intensely focused on activities they find rewarding or interesting.

Anecdotally, we have known that, when a person with ADHD experiences hyperfocus, his or her attention becomes laser-like. They lose track of time, and distractions fade away. Switching to other tasks becomes difficult. But from a scientific standpoint, we’ve known very little about hyperfocus, most notably whether it is truly more prevalent among people with ADHD. To read the rest of the story, click here

Teaching Self-Confidence to Children with ADHD

Dr. William Dodson, expert on ADHD issues states that it is estimated that those with ADHD receive 20,000 more negative messages by age 12 than those without the condition. This may be due to the characteristics of ADHD including:

  • Unable to give close attention to detail or makes careless mistakes
  • Struggles to follow-through on instructions
  • Avoids or dislikes task requiring sustained mental effort
  • Losing things necessary for task or activities
  • unorganized and messy.

Children, teens and adults with ADHD more than likely grew up hearing, “you’re lazy and can’t do anything right.” Low self-esteem develops from constant negative feedback believing they are not smart or good enough.

The following articles provide tips, resources and information on ways to build self-confidence in kids with ADHD:

4 small ways to build confidence in kids

5 ways to boost your ADHD child’s confidence 

10 strategies for helping kids with ADHD build self confidence

Build self-esteem in your child with ADHD

Childhood ADHD and poor self-esteem

Don’t let ADHD crush children’s self-esteem

How to boost your ADHD child’s self-esteem

How to vanquish a child’s low self-esteem

How to Improve Self Esteem In Kids with ADHD

The importance of self-esteem for kids with learning and attention issues

 

Resources For Teaching Sequencing Skills

Sequence is defined as a set of related events, movements, or things that follow each other in a particular order. For many children and adults with developmental delays and disabilities, the ability to arrange thoughts, information and language may be a challenge due to issues with their executive function capabilities. The following resources, tips and strategies will help you teach sequencing skills.

How to teach sequencing skills at home

How to teach sequencing skills to children

How to teach sequencing to preschool children

Sequencing activities for students with autism

Sequencing skills teaching strategies 

Story sequence strategies

Strategies for teaching your child sequencing skills

Teaching sequencing skills

The importance of sequencing skills in a child’s development

Tips to teach sequencing skills in children

Overlap in traits of autism, attention deficit persists into adulthood

Published by: Spectrum
Written by: Nicholette Zeliadt

Traits linked to autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) tend to co-occur even in adulthood, according to one of the first studies of the traits in that age group1.

The results extend support for the idea that autism and ADHD are intrinsically linked — a notion that is largely based on studies of children.

“Not much is known about the transition from later adolescence into adulthood with regard to autism and ADHD,” says lead investigator Ralf Kuja-Halkola, a statistician at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden. Click here to read the rest of the story.

ADHD Looks Different In Women. Here’s How — and Why.

Source: ADDitude

From job opportunities to personal income to marital relationships, there’s hardly an area in which American women haven’t made great strides in recent decades. But when it comes to getting diagnosed with and treated for ADHD, women still have a long way to go.

ADHD in Women

Women are as likely as men to have ADHD, and the latest research suggests that ADHD in women causes even greater emotional turmoil. Yet ADHD is still thought of as something that affects only men and boys. Consequently, women with ADHD are more likely than men to go undiagnosed (or misdiagnosed), and less likely to receive appropriate treatment. Click here to read the rest of the story.