PO Box 23731
November 9, 1999 -
experience with special diets
for autistic children.
Holiday Party on Dec.
January 11, 2000 -
Meeting Time and Place
of Each Month
6:30 pm Room 140
T. C. Thompson
(see our Group
This Space Available
We need your information for the newsletter. Please fax,
email or mail your submission to Phillip Deal prior to the 25th of each
Mail: PO Box
Chatt, TN 37422
Welcome Packets are available at all meetings. If you have
not received yours yet and are unable to attend the next meeting, please
call our FEAT-Chattanooga phone number and leave your name and mailing
address and we will send one to you.
Do You Have Ideas?
-Do you have any
ideas for the newsletter?
-Would you like to see a column about a
particular topic related to your
child that interests you and you think may interest others?
like to share ideas and opinions with others?
-Do you just want to see
your name in print?
If you answered yes to any of the above questions,
then submit your articles/idea/cartoons/opinions to the FEAT-Chattanooga
Newsletter in care of the address above. Or email your contribution to firstname.lastname@example.org. Deadline for
submission is the 25th of each month give or take a day or two.
The CARS (Childhood Autism Rating Scale) is now
available on a website where you can do the assessment yourself.
Meeting Location and
A The Massoud Pediatric
Building now locks electronically at 6:00 p.m. The gravel lot (number 3)
where several people parked is now closed. You should now park in the
Erlanger Parking Garage and enter
T.C. Thompson Children's Hospital
from the parking garage. There is a $1 charge. Below are detailed
- Enter the Erlanger Parking Garage from
the Central Ave entrance (across from the Ronald McDonald
- Park in the Garage (preferably on Level
- While you are in the parking garage,
walk toward the elevator on the right.
- Take the elevator to the 1st floor if
you did not park on that level.
- On Level One, you will see the entrance
to T.C. Thompson across a walkway next to the elevator.
- Walk down the long hallway after you
enter the Hospital.
- At the end of the hallway, turn
- Go through the double doors. (Someone
will be posted at these doors starting at 6:15 p.m. to let you in the
building. These doors lock electronically at 6:00 p.m. We will ensure
these doors are open until 6:45 p.m.)
- At Dr. Massoud's picture, turn
- At the elevators, go to your left
through the double doors. Our meeting room is the second room on the
LONDON-BASED WEB SITE BRINGS AUTISM CONFERENCE TO
Traveling all the way to London in the middle of the school
year for an international conference on autism may be too much for many,
so the United Kingdom's National Autistic Society (http://www.oneworld.org/autism_uk/)
is using the Internet to bring the proverbial mountain to Mohammed. Autism
first-ever international disability conference to be held solely on the
Internet, opens Nov. 2 for people around the world with Internet access.
The event runs through Nov. 23 and is set up on the same model as a
real-life conference, with lectures by education, health and other
professionals, a planned exhibition hall and places for people to network
with others in their region.
The organizers describe the conference
as a "pioneering opportunity for world-wide communication and sharing of
expertise." The conference will address the history, diagnosis and
possible causes of autism and Asperger's syndrome and discuss current
therapies and teaching methods. Online discussion forums and interviews
with leaders in the field will be used to help conference attendees
interact and learn more throughout the month. Special Education News will
carry additional coverage of the conference as it continues over the next
Dozens of papers are scheduled for
presentation, with articles in 15 different categories scheduled for debut
each day. The "Education" category includes at least 25 planned
presentations, including an explanation of the Picture Exchange
Communication System developed by Andrew Bondy, a former director of the
Delaware Autistic Program, and Lori Frost, a speech
Another category, called "In Our Own
Words," offers various looks at the autistic experience, such as Julie
Donnelly's "Speaking for Themselves: The Thoughts and Words of Individuals
with Autism." Donnelly is an autism consultant, mediator and resource
specialist in the Columbia, Mo., public school system. The "Psychological"
section includes nine papers on clinical aspects of autism. For example,
Jill Boucher's "A New Theory of Autism" explores the connection between
autism-related impairments and a range of "different but related" temporal
processing deficits. Boucher is a professor of developmental psychology in
the United Kingdom.
The conference makes extensive use of
Macromedia's Flash Player utility to create a more active on-screen
appearance. The Flash Player program is preinstalled on many recent
computers that use Microsoft Internet Explorer, but it can also be
downloaded free from the Macromedia http://www.macromedia.com/ web
(*note--you can also access the papers through html or text based
Attendees also must register to enter
the conference. The registration information is used to develop a profile
of the people involved in the fields of autism study, education and
treatment. On the eve of the conference opening, more than 10,000 people
had registered, with nearly 60 percent from North and Central America.
About 33 percent of attendees are from the United Kingdom and Europe. The
group is primarily composed of parents, friends and relatives -- 44
percent of registered visitors - and people from the education and
research fields -- 22 percent. The medical and social services professions
are also represented, and 2 percent of registrants have either autism or
Autism Research Bill Update
From FEAT DAILY
ONLINE NEWSLETTER http://www.feat.org/
CAN (Cure Autism
Now) encourages families to send thank you notes to Renee Russo and
Anthony Edwards for their efforts on behalf of the Autism Research bill.
They can do this 2 ways. Elizabeth Emken will either forward emails to
them at her address or through a box office in California. In either
instance Elizabeth is the person who will forward the mail.
Edwards P.O. Box 2064 Danville, California 94526; Renee Russo P.O. Box
2064 Danville, California 94526
or email them email@example.com
Excerpts from a Memo from CAN:
Unfortunately, it's my sad duty to report that our
effort to attach the autism legislation as an amendment to the
appropriations conference report has failed. This is the end of this
BUT THIS IS
NOT THE END OF THE STORY. …WHAT'S NEXT:
As a result of the testimony of Rene Russo and Anthony
Edwards before the two authorizing committees on health matters, we are
very confident that our provisions will be included in a broader
children's health bill which will be taken up by the congress early in the
Our bills will likely be the centerpiece of an omnibus
Children's Health Bill. The good news is that we will achieve our goals,
and in a very public, high publicity manner. Sliding our bills through
appropriations would have made the provisions law, but in a very quiet
WE HAVE EVERY REASON TO
BELIEVE WE WILL BE SUCCESSFUL IN THE SPRING!!!
For now, there is nothing to do until congress
goes back into session on January 10th.
Thank you again, for your
unbelievable response. Please rest assured, as seems to be the case with
everything related to the fight against autism, our victory is merely
Thanks, EE * * *
**Please note that the November meeting will
be held on the 5th floor of the Massoud Pediatric Building. Another group
will be meeting in Room 140 this month. There will be signs posted to
remind you of this change.
Target Christmas Tree
The Target Store in
Hixson will donate a Christmas Tree to benefit F.E.A.T.-Chattanooga again
this year. The 7 1/2 foot Christmas tree will be decorated this weekend
and be on display at the Northgate
location of Target. Next week,
the Christmas Tree fund raising committee will send you a ticket page, an
outline for this year's Christmas tree fund raising promotion, and
hopefully a picture of the decorated Christmas Tree.
Each ticket will be a $5.00
to F.E.A.T.- Chattanooga. The winner of the Christmas
Tree, including all the decorations, will be selected on Monday, December
20th. Last year, we raised over $1,000 to support the work that we do to
help families in our area and educate the community about autism. Please
remember that fundraisers like this one allow FEAT-Chattanooga to provide
information at no cost to families and for our members to not incur annual
Believe it or not
but plans are already underway for "Lunch in the Outback 2000". Last
year's "Lunch in the Outback" raised over $2,500 for our organization. The
luncheon is tentatively scheduled for April 2000, during National Autism
A committee has formed and is creating a target sponsorship
solicitation list and discussing ideas to make the luncheon fun and as
successful as possible. The committee asks that each FEAT member think of
potential sponsors for the event. The best target sponsors are probably
individuals or business people that we know and/or work with. The
sponsorship levels will remain at $100, $250, and $500. By creating a
master sponsorship target list, our group will not solicit potential
sponsors more than once. Please contact Susan Bollinger, Tammy Torres or
Phillip Deal with your suggested sponsors. Make sure you provide the
contact name, address and phone number. The committee plans to send out
the first sponsorship proposals after Thanksgiving.
Purple: by Alexis Rotella
In first Grade Mrs. Lohr said my purple teepee wasn't
realistic enough, that purple was no color for a tent, that purple was a
color for people who died, that my drawing wasn't good enough to hang with
the others. I walked back to my seat counting the swish swish swishes of
my baggy corduroy trousers. With a black crayon nightfall came to my
purple tent in the middle of an afternoon.
grade Mr. Barta said draw anything; he didn't care what. I left my paper
blank and when he came around to my desk my heart beat like a tom tom. He
touched my head with his big hand and in a soft voice said:
FEAT Family Holiday Party
Please mark your calendars for December 10th.
F.E.A.T. of Chattanooga will celebrate the holidays with a FEAT Family
Holiday Get-Together. This gathering for the entire family will occur at
Bayside Baptist Church on Highway 58 in Chattanooga from 6:30 pm until
8:30 pm. There will be pictures with Santa, holiday videos and music,
craft gifts for the kids to make including ornaments for the tree and a
personalized welcome mat. Bring your favorite holiday dessert or finger
food and join in the fun. We need to know if you plan to attend so we can
purchase the appropriate supplies for the event. Please RSVP by calling
the FEAT phone number (423-296-0092) and let us know if you plan to
Toys "R" Us Catalog
Just in time for the holidays, Toys "R" Us has
released its seventh annual Toys "R" Us Toy Guide For Differently Abled
Kids. Through its partnerships with the National Lekotek Center and the
National Parent Network on Disabilities, Toys "R" Us developed and
distributed this digest-sized catalog -- the ideal resource for parents,
family members and friends who don't know what to get for a child with
special needs. It features more than 60 popular toys and will be available
on November 1st at Toys "R" Us stores or by calling
(TDD/TTY calls 1-888-859-8011).
As the father of a child with autism,
NFL Superstar Doug Flutie is featured on the cover of this year's guide
with his son, Doug Flutie Jr. When the boy's condition was diagnosed in
1995, Flutie used half of his signing bonus from the Buffalo Bills to
establish the Doug Flutie Jr. Foundation for Autism -- a foundation that
generates funds for autism research and education and provides financial
assistance to families raising children with autism. Flutie has become an
advocate, not only for children faced with disabilities such as autism,
but for their parents as well.
Because every differently-abled child
is unique and has specific needs, each toy in the Toys "R" Us Toy Guide
for Differently Abled Kids is evaluated and assigned a symbol that
indicates what skill it helps enhance - auditory, language, visual,
tactile, gross motor, social skills, self-esteem, creativity and thinking.
Depending on a child's abilities, parents, grandparents and friends can
select toys that will help encourage the specific skills for that child.
For instance, the Tech-Link Aviator 500 Electronic Headsets featured in
the guide enhance social, auditory and language skills. Children who have
limited mobility will be able to join in on games of treasure hunt,
airline pilot and other imaginative play. This toy promotes social
interaction and gives children opportunities to have fun while developing
speaking and listening skills.
The toys featured in the Toys "R" Us
Toy Guide for Differently Abled Kids have been extensively evaluated and
specifically chosen by the National Lekotek Center for promoting the
development of children with physical and cognitive disabilities. The
National Lekotek Center is an independent non-profit organization
dedicated to making the world of play accessible to children with all
types of disabilities so they can learn just like any other child. Each
toy in the Guide has a strong play value and is chosen for its
developmental and educational attributes.
"Toys play an important part in a
child's development," says Michael Goldstein, CEO of
Toys "R" Us.
"There are so many toys out there to choose from that it can be very
intimidating for parents and friends of children with disabilities to
choose a toy that is appropriate and enjoyable for that child. Toys `R' Us
believes in the benefits children derive from toys, but we also have a
strong commitment to the health and welfare of children. That's why we are
so pleased to offer this guide every year as a free resource to anyone who
"Kids with disabilities love to play.
They learn and build skills through play, just like other kids," says
David Rubovits, Ph.D., Director of Applied Research and Evaluation of the
National Lekotek Center. "With the Toys `R' Us Guide for Differently Abled
Kids in the hands of parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, caregivers, and
others who care about kids with disabilities, we hope that children's
access to appropriate toys will increase. The Toys `R' Us Differently
Abled Guide can help bring the magic of play - and the learning that
happens with play - to some very treasured children."
"As parents of an autistic son, we
realize that having special toys for Dougie will help him develop both
physically and mentally. This guide provides educational toys that have
been specifically chosen for our son and other children with special
needs," says Doug Flutie.
Each toy in the Toys "R" Us Toy Guide
for Differently Abled Kids is available in Toys "R" Us stores nationwide,
or through its mail order catalog. Once shoppers select the ideal toy,
they may visit a Toys "R" Us store, place the order by mail, log on to http://www.toysrus.com/, or call
888-333-4108 to purchase the gift.
Previous covers of the Toys "R" Us Toy
Guide for Differently Abled Kids featured celebrities such as actress
Marlee Matlin; former Miss America, Heather Whitestone; and baseball
player, Jim Abbott.
Toys "R" Us, the world's leading
resource on kids, families and fun currently operates 1,522 stores; 706
toy stores in the United States, 445 international toy stores, including
franchise stores, 206 Kids "R" Us children's clothing stores, 121 Babies
"R" Us stores and 44 Imaginarium stores. The company also sells
merchandise through the Internet at http://www.toysrus.com/, http://www.imaginarium.com/and mail
The National Lekotek Center of
Evanston, IL is a non-profit organization with a national network of 50
affiliates that promote access to play for children with special needs,
and access to supportive services for their families. For more information
on toys, play and technology for children with disabilities, please
contact the Lekotek Toy Resource Helpline at 1-800-366-PLAY or visit our
website at http://www.lekotek.org/.
From FEAT DAILY ONLINE
Brain Cells Keep
Growing and Growing
Sunday, October 17,
dispels a century-long belief common among scientists. The author warns
"but don't look for any clinical applications soon. It has just opened the
door to possible treatments."
By Edward Edelson of
The part of
the brain that controls thinking, memory and personality can grow new
cells in adult life, scientists report, a finding that raises hopes that
degenerative conditions such as Alzheimer's disease may some day be
treatable. For many decades, neuroscientists believed the brain's cerebral
cortex could not add new cells after childhood. But Drs. Elizabeth Gould
and Charles G. Gross of the Princeton University psychology department
report in today's issue of the journal Science that thousands of new cells
are grown in the cerebral cortex of adult monkeys every
The discovery is almost
certainly applicable to the human brain, says Ronald D. G. McKay, chief of
the neuroscience laboratory at the National Institute of Neurological
Diseases and Stroke. "It would be surprising if it wasn't," he
And while the discovery won't have immediate medical
applications, "I'm sure many people will be working on them," McKay says.
"It may take a few years, but treatment of degenerative conditions is not
The Princeton discovery becomes part of a
changing view of the adult human brain. In his work, McKay has shown that
new cells can be grown in the adult hippocampus, a section of the brain
believed to play a part in memory formation.
Research by Dr.
Frederick Nottebohm of Rockefeller University has shown that the canary
brain can grow new cells as the birds learn songs. But until now, that
finding was not believed to say anything about the human brain. It had
been believed that human brain cell growth stopped at about age
Cell location is key
The new finding "is another piece of evidence that new
neurons are formed in the human brain, and in this case a very interesting
place," says McKay. "The frontal cortex is important in determining what a
The Gould-Gross work focused on the cerebral cortex, the
largest and most advanced part of the brain. They injected BrdU, a
chemical that is incorporated in DNA when a cell divides, into the brains
of rhesus monkeys. They found BrdU in neurons of the cerebral cortex over
the next few weeks, evidence that the cells were formed after the
The new cells were generated in a zone just above the
fluid-filled central chambers of the monkey brains. This region was
recently identified as the home of the brain's stem cells, the cells that
an organ uses to regenerate itself. The Princeton scientists then added
another tracer to determine where the new cells went.
migrated to the cortex, where they sent out connections to other brain
cells, the scientists say. The new neurons were found in areas where
memories are stored: the prefrontal cortex, which controls decision-making
and short-term memory; the inferior temporal region, which is involved in
recognition of objects and faces, and the posterior parietal region,
important for representing objects in space.
The work shows that "there are natural mechanisms in the
brain that might someday be harnessed for therapeutic purposes to
replenish damaged areas of the brain," Gould says. For now, she and Gross
will continue their studies by blocking the formation of new cells in
monkey brains to see if memory and learning are