Articles & Blog - Autism Awareness
We’re here for you during COVID-19, providing information and resources like we always have for the past 17 years. Let us know how we can help.

Articles & Blog

Maureen Bennie curates a news blog for Autism Calgary called "What in The World is Going On About Autism". Her blog often mines and expands on the articles and events that she has detailed in that news feed, as well as looking at current best autism resources, news stories, and events on a variety of topics about autism and ASD.

Am I Autistic? A Guide to Diagnosis for Adults

With the availability of  information about autism spectrum disorders (ASD) on the internet and other media sources, some adults may start to question whether they have ASD. The path to self-discovery may start when your child is diagnosed (this happened to my friend, Judy Endow), someone in your life may point out that you have some ASD traits, or you…

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Count Me In! ASD and Physical Activity

Physical activity has soared to the top of the priority list since COVID-19 started to support health and well-being. It should be a part of everyone’s week throughout their lifespan. Regular exercise lessens anxiety, improves sleep, increases endurance, builds muscles, develops motor skills and offers opportunities for socializing. Whether being involved in organized sports on a team, solo activities (swimming,…

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Calming Strategies to Support a Person with Autism

It’s been several months now since the world was turned upside down due to COVID-19. Life has changed a great deal with social distancing, hand sanitizing, new rules in public places, and constant, unpredictable changes. As society begins to open up again, there will be new challenges to face. The “new normal” will continue to evolve and depending on how…

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Increased Screen Time in the Age of COVID-19

During this period of isolation, staying at home, and school closures, the internet has been a way to stay connected to the world and have access to information and education. Screen time has its pros and cons. Technology is not good or bad, healthy or unhealthy. It is the way it is used that makes the difference in how we…

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Autism Awareness Centre Celebrates 17 Years

June 2020 marks Autism Awareness Centre’s 17th anniversary. When I co-founded this company in 2003, my children were 4 and 6 years old. I was only four years in to the autism journey. Today my children are 21 and 23, young adults. This year’s celebration feels very different in the wake of COVID-19. Much of the world has changed; we’re…

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What We Can and Can’t Control – Managing Feelings During COVID-19

It has been over 2 months now since the COVID-19 pandemic began. For many, nerves are beginning to fray and mental health issues are on the rise. Everyone is struggling trying to juggle online schooling, supporting the health and well being of their family, unpredictable changes to protocols in the outside world, and the uncertainty of the future. Sometimes it…

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Playing Outdoors: Building Skills, Exploring and Creating Memories for Those with ASD

When you think of your fondest childhood memories, they are probably about something you did outdoors. Maybe it was camping, going to the beach, playing in a tent or sandbox, having a game of flashlight tag, learning badminton, or swimming in a lake. Playing outdoors builds physical health, provides exposure to vitamin D, supports cognitive and emotional/social development, improves sensory…

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The New “Normal”- ASD in the Post COVID-19 World

We are seeing out first glimmer of hope after weeks of bad and frightening news -the COVID-19 curve is flattening.  Our communities are going to reopen, albeit in stages and at different times and rates depending on regional data. It is exciting to be able to move about again, to have some shops open, and resume enjoyable activities. There are…

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FREE WEBINAR -The New ASD “At Home” World – 10 Ways to Cope with Changes During COVID-19

View Maureen Bennie’s and Autism Awareness Centre’s webinar on strategies and tips for being at home during COVID-19! Based on our free e-book Life at Home During COVID-19, we expanded on the topics and ideas from our e-book as well as going over the helpful tips and strategies Maureen has developed over her twenty years of experience. Agenda: Welcome and…

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How Does Your Garden Grow? Mental Health, Wellness & Skills Development Through Gardening

During this period of at-home learning, starting a garden is a great long-term project that has numerous benefits. Lessons can be taught through online learning and videos. Gardening can also be an activity that unites a group of people through a common purpose. For example, when this period of isolation is over and school resumes this fall, the things that…

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Autism x 2 in Isolation

I am the parent of two children, now adults, on the autism spectrum. Marc is 23 and Julia is 21. They’ve been out of school for almost 3 years now. We’re constantly at work building skills, expanding interests, exploring new recreational activities, volunteering in the community, exercising, cooking, and furthering their education. Things were moving along quite well, then COVID-19…

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Teaching Special Needs Students Online and At Home

I am getting requests from teachers and other support staff on how to best serve their students with special educational needs while at home. Some individuals will not have the ability or capacity to engage in traditional online learning formats that are currently being offered through the Zoom platform, for example. Instruction still needs to be personalized for the best…

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Embedding Skill Building Activities into Daily Routines and Activities for Children with ASD

The current COVID-19 situation has caused many programs, schools, preschools and daycares to temporarily close their doors. Services are also on hold such as occupational and speech therapy. This has caused many parents to feel anxious that their child may regress with their development. If parents are hoping for a diagnostic assessment, the additional wait times will be increased under…

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The New ASD “At Home” World – 10 Ways to Cope with Changes During COVID-19

The recent events around COVID-19 have dramatically altered our world in a short period of time. Each new day is bringing different challenges, restrictions and uncertainties. For our autism community, these changes create a unique set of problems. Activities have stopped running, day programs are shut down, schools are closed, and at home support/respite staff are not working during this…

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