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Exercise, Academic Engagement and Children with Autism

Exercise, Academic Engagement and Children with Autism from www.YourTherapySource.com/blog1Pediatric Physical Therapy published research exploring whether participation in aerobic exercise before classroom activities improves academic engagement and reduces stereotypic behaviors in 4 classrooms of  24 children (ages 3-6 years old)  with autism spectrum disorder.
Methods: This study consisted of a treatment condition of 15 minutes of  aerobic exercise followed by a classroom task and a control condition of just a classroom task.  During the classroom task, data was collected on the number of stereotypic behaviors, percentage of on-task behavior, and correct/incorrect responses.

Statistical analysis indicated the following results:

1.  statistically significant improvements were found in correct responses following exercise

2.  no significant differences were found for on-task behavior or stereotypic behaviors.

The authors concluded that aerobic exercise prior to classroom activities
may improve academic responding in young children with autism spectrum disorder.

Reference:  Oriel, Kathryn N. et. al. The Effects of Aerobic Exercise on Academic Engagement in Young Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder.  Pediatric Physical Therapy. 23(2):187-193, Summer 2011.

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Mini Movements Brain Breaks from http://yourtherapysource.com/minimove.html

Mini Movement Breaks is a collection of over 60 quick movement breaks that require no equipment.  Get kids moving with these quick and simple activity ideas!  Find out more at http://yourtherapysource.com/minimove.html