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A Beginner’s Guide to Being an Autism Parent

When your child is diagnosed with autism, you begin to look for ways you can help and try to figure out what you need to do. Since 2013 autism has been classified as Autism Spectrum Disorder and encompasses several different disorders, some of which did not have funding or support prior to this classification. Having a child with autism often leaves you feeling lost and embarrassed, hopelessly trying to figure out what you need to do in order to understand how you and your child are going to live with autism. My Story As you may know, I founded We Rock the Spectrum Kid’s Gym as a place for children with special needs to play with other typically developing children and to have the sensory equipment they need to aid in their development. We Rock is much more to me than a sensory gym. It provides my family with a chance to interact with the world outside of our home. Before I founded We Rock, …

How Children With Autism are Getting the Most Out of Social Skills Classes

So, what is the We Rock Social Skills Program (WRSSP), and better yet, how does it benefit children enrolled in the program? WRSSP is a program designed to offer classes to aid children in gaining the social skills they need to properly function on a daily basis. Whether a child is on the spectrum, has another disability, or is simply introverted, a lack of social skills can result in inappropriate behavior in public settings. This was the case with my son, Gabriel. Although he is a high-functioning child with autism, he often felt awkward and shy around other children. To address this, we developed the WRSSP to offer children the opportunity to take a sensory break from classes to play on the equipment at the gym. By incorporating breaks, it allows children to refocus their minds on the subject matter of the class so that they can benefit from the classes more. This has not only helped Gabriel, but it has also helped many other …

We Rock is NOT a Substitute for Therapy: It’s What to do in Between

A visit to any one of our We Rock the Spectrum Kids Gyms will give parents and children the feeling they are about to participate in a therapy session until they see the other kids of the gym. Kids are always running, playing, joking, laughing, climbing, swinging and zipping on the zipline at We Rock and that is exactly how we like it! We have all the sensory equipment needed to aid children with special needs, but provide it in an environment that is simply meant to be fun. Same but Different Sessions with various therapists are designed to be specific. They give feedback to the child and the therapist in an effort to continuously work toward the improvement of the sensory functions the child may need assistance with. Even though our equipment is the same as what children see at the therapist office, our environment is social and fun, allowing children to discover for themselves what they can do on the various pieces of …

How Siblings of Children with Autism are Affected

How Siblings of Children with Autism are Affected As parents of children with Autism, we understand they require specialized care and attention. Depending upon which part of the spectrum a child falls under, the extent of the support will vary from helping them accomplish daily tasks to needing assisted care on a continual basis. Regardless of the extent of the therapy solutions, parents try anything and everything to give their children the support they need to reach their full potential. But what about the siblings of the children with autism? Just like how parents’ lives change when they discover their child has autism, their other children are also affected, but in a much different way. Siblings have to stand by and watch, feeling helpless as their beloved brother or sister is affected by a disorder they will not fully understand until later in life. This has the potential to cause anxiety and difficulty in expressing emotions, which can lead to the siblings lashing out at …

7 Ways We Rock the Spectrum Helps Children with ADHD

We created the We Rock the Spectrum Kid’s Gym (WRTS) franchise with a unique purpose: to provide children with autism and other special needs an inclusive play environment they could enjoy with their peers. At WRTS, children are able to take advantage of sensory play equipment in order to grow and develop the skills they will need later in life. Our inclusive philosophy allows children of all ability levels to play and grow together. Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the many conditions where WRTS can help children overcome challenges. Children with ADHD have trouble focusing and often times act without thinking. ADHD symptoms can range widely. These include:  Difficulty paying attention to details and tendency to make careless mistakes in school or other activities which produces work that is often messy and careless  Easily distracted by irrelevant stimuli, frequently interrupting ongoing tasks to attend to trivial noises or events that are usually ignored by others  Inability to sustain attention on tasks or activities …

Meet the New Gym: Svetlana & Eugene Kharitonov

Svetlana & Eugene Kharitonov are the gym owners of We Rock the Spectrum – Laguna Hills.