Project CHOICES is an initiative of the Illinois State Board of
that provides free on-site technical assistance to any school
within Illinois. Over the past 10 years, Project CHOICES has
more than 500 school districts in facilitating education
children with disabilities ages 3 - 21 in preschool settings and
general education classrooms.
Project CHOICESí services include:
6S331 Cornwall Road
Naperville, IL 60540
www.projectchoices.org (for all you folk on-line)
From the Swedish word "lek", which means "play", and the Greek suffix "tek," which means "library", comes Lekotek, a program that recognizes the importance of play in the developing childís life.î Lekotek centers are places where you go once a month to meet with your childís own advisor who helps you select up to 6 toys/puzzles/games, appropriate to your childís needs and abilities, to borrow until the next monthly visit.
The object , for our kids, is to find items that can help with fine and gross motor (weíve borrowed wooden balance beams and bean bag toss games, peg board -type toys and even cool ìfeelieî bags with abstract wooden objects and matching 2/D cards) or classifying (Montessori sorting boxes, etc.) turn-taking (various levels of games) pretend play - they have doll houses, toy vacuums, toy cash-registers, toy barbecue grills, mowers, etc etc - all the range of Little Tykes stuff plus the kind of (expensive) stuff you might only find in a catalog or at an up-scale toy shop. Lekotek is a great resource for items to incorporate into home therapy, or simply to help engage a child in appropriate play activities, without the expense of buying new stuff all the time.
There can be a refundable fee (it was $30 for us a couple years
since we did not lose or break any toys we got it all back when we quit
the program) in addition to a yearly fee (ask if you can be
for a fee reduction or waiver if needed. We did, and were.)
Lekotek locations are in: Alton, Carbondale, Champaign, Chicago,
[national headquarters], Flossmoor, Franklin Park, Gages Lake,
Lombard, Midlothian, Moline, Normal, Ottawa, Park Forest, Peoria,
Rolling Meadows, South Holland, Springfield, Sterling, and Tinley
You can call the national headquarters in Evanston at
for more information.
Some Illinois teachers a dedicated to sharing some of the
they have found useful and effective in the classroom with parents of
needs students have created KidKits. All materials in each kit
been previously fine-tuned by extensive classroom use, and adapted as
for use in the home. Some of the KidKit materials include:
* Supplies needed to structure your home to make it comfortable and easy for your child to understand.
* Manipulatives and books which expose your child to counting, color identification, and understanding of the printed word.
* Sensory Integration supplies to give your child the much needed ingredients of a sensory diet.
*Velcro-Match books to show your child the important relationship between text, pictures, and the spoken word.
* Social Stories customized to address your childís specific behavior issues.
* A "To Go" bag for trips to the babysitter, grandmas or even the park to easily tote the KidKit Materials.
* A customized "ME BOOK" which included personalized information and pictures of your child.î
Kid KitTwo other sources for high-quality materials that may be of great use are
P.O. Box 11
Claredon Hills, IL 60514
MAK Home Therapy Resources
6209 Sundowner Raod
Woodridge, IL 60517
Stages Learning Materials
P.O. Box 27
Chico, CA 95927-0027
Contact all of the above and request free brochures about their
Geneva and surrounding areas: contact Kelly Collins at Community Therapy Services, 630/208-8880
Chicago: contact Mary Kay McGuire at Illinois Masonic Medical Center, 773/296-5685
Northbrook: The Jewish Children's Bureau sponsors sibling support groups. For more information contact Ali Weiss at 312/357-4595Community Support Services, Inc (Sibshops), contact Tara Kosieniak
The primary goal of the Illinois Autism/PDD Training and Technical Assistance Project is to strengthen the capacity of districts to educate the growing number of students with autism/PDD in Illinois. Under the project, 22 teams of educational and related service professionals and parents have been trained. The main components of the training included characteristics of autism/PDD, educational programming and strategies, functional assessment of challenging behaviors, positive programming, teaming approaches, communication strategies, problem solving and collaboration, sensory issues and social skills development.
Beginning in Summer, 1999, training opportunities became
additional teams in their own or a neighboring district. Teams
to include a parent or other family member of a child with autism and
other members who support children with autism in schools, including
educators. For more information or to get on a wait list to be
by a trained team, contact Kathy Gould, Project Director at LADSE,
or email Gouldkl@aol.com
> > Wendy Partridge
> > Regional Consultant/Manager
> > Illinois Autism Training and Technical Assistance Project
> > Rockford, IL 61114
> > 815-637-4219
> > 815-637-4281 (fax)
> > www.illinoisautismproject.org
> > firstname.lastname@example.org
DO YOU NEED THE ARC?
> If you're a parent...
you want an opportunity to learn from the experiences of others who share your dreams for your child.> If you're a person with a disability...
you want to be a self-advocate in a supportive environment.> If you want to be able to effect governmental change to better the
lives of individuals with disabilities --
You need the Arc - And The Arc Needs You!
The Arc is committed to...
The Arc of Illinois(good website - most of the above snitched from it to help spread the word about this group. The Arc is not specific to autism BUT as an advocacy group does help effect changes that affect persons with autism so it is about time I mentioned them.)
1820 Ridge Road, suite 300
Homewood, IL 60430
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