Coast to Coast

February 2012

We at Puzzled Parents hope that the information you find in this newsletter helps you.   As always, we encourage you to pass along any information that would help our readers and their special-needs families.   You can do this by posting to this blog or commenting on our Facebook page and don’t forget to check out our website at


Valentine’s Pencil Toppers – a project to do with your kids!!

(all kids should be supervised)

A great craft for disabled kids is Valentine’s pencil toppers. Cut out double heart and cupid shapes, or any other shape that represents love. Glue only the edges of the shapes together, leaving an opening at the bottom. Supply the kids with glitter, feathers, markers, the new pencils in pink and red and other craft supplies. They can roll the pencils in glitter or put stickers on them, and then decorate the toppers with feathers and glitter as well. When they are done, they’ll have new pencils to give as treasured gifts to family and friends or pencils that they can keep and use themselves.


Local Events and Programs:

Resources for Families with Special Needs from San Diego Family Magazine. ( Learn More)

NAMI San Diego (     Helpline for families, friends, and those affected by mental illness: 1-800-523-5933

Autism Tree Project Foundation (

Mommy, Daddy & Me Playtime Group

Date: February 11, 2012

Time: 10 – 11 AM

Location: ATPF Office, 2845 Nimitz Blvd, Suite C, San Diego
Bring your child to our new Playtime Class for a fun hour of interaction and play. Dr. Jennifer Oke will be leading this FREE group and teaching parents how to play, enjoy and have fun with their kids. This class is limited to 6 families – all siblings welcome!
RSVP now for this fun new class — contact Lisa Kaufmann,, 619-222-4465 Make sure to subscribe to this great local informational resource

Xcite Steps-  Maritime Museum

18 February 2012, 10:30-1:30 pm

EVENT TYPE: Little Adventure Club
The Little Adventure Club is an opportunity for kids who experience mild cognitive disabilities such as aspergers, high functioning autism, PDD-NOS, MDD, CDD, social anxieties, or minor disabilities to be part of a social club.  Please contact Pam


Autism Society of San Diego ( 

Join AMC Entertainment® and the Autism Society of America for Sensory Friendly Films:

The Secret World of Arrietty
February 25th, 2012 at 10:00am

AMC Mission Valley 20  OR  AMC Palm Promendade 24 (San Diego)

Admission $6.00

ReSpectrum Community ( Check their calendar for information on all the wonderful programs they offer the community.

CHADD-Children and Adults with ADHD   Information and Materials to help ADHD children- (Click Here)

LDA-Learning Disabilites Association of San Diego (

Local News:

FREE San Diego East County Resource Fair

Friday, February 10, 2012   9 AM to 2 PM

Grossmont Healthcare District Office

9001 Wakarusa Street, La Mesa, CA

Involved Exceptional Parents’ Day (IEP Day) is a unique one-day conference for parents of children with special needs and the professionals who work with them.  Each year, parents and professionals come together in the best interest of the children to learn in an environment of collaboration.  The 2012 conference will be the 29th annual conference in San Diego. The conference is organized by a group of parents and professionals who work collectively to offer a variety of workshops and resources, in both Spanish and English that will empower participants.  The theme for this year’s conference, which will be held on March 17, 2012, is “Today and Tomorrow–Transitions through Life” and offers workshops on many different topics for parents of children of all ages, including a special strand for parents of those transitioning from high school to adult options. Workshops are co-presented by parents and professionals. Avenues for advocacy for those who do not have a strong voice in our society are discussed and brought to the forefront by the featured speakers, workshop presenters and a huge resource fair.

·         Workshops in both Spanish & English!

·         Strand specifically for those transitioning from high school to adult options!

·         Workshops for parents of children of all ages!

More Information:

San Diego/California News:

Judge grants preliminary injunction, stopping IHSS across-the-board cuts from going forward-  OAKLAND-January 19, 2012-  “Judge Claudia Wilken today issued a preliminary injunction, barring the State of California from going forward with the 20% cuts in home care hours for hundreds of thousands of seniors and people with disabilities. She had previously issued a Temporary Restraining Order on December 1, stopping the cuts until today’s hearing. The Judge certified the plaintiffs as a class….” (read more)

See details about this case, David Oster et al. v. Lightbourne (formerly V.L. v. Wagner):

San Diego EMFP (Military) News:

5th Annual EFMP Activity & Resource Expo MCRD Field house

This special event includes: resources from local and national agencies, fun zone for children, lunch (reservations required), and raffle prizes

Saturday, February 25, 2012, 1100-1300

To register for lunch: 619-524-8031 or

Introduction to Special Education

Thursday, March 15, 2012, 0930-1130

MCRD Family Readiness Classroom, Bldg 6E

Topics Include:

–          Special Education Law

–          Special Education Process

–          Parental Rights

–          Tips & Strategies

Register one week prior: Anna Nguyen 619-524-8031,

National News:

Should Teens with Autism Drive?- “Most teens with high-functioning autism are behind the wheel or are planning to be, according to a first-of-it-kind study…” (By Shaun Heasley) (read more)

Supreme Court Declines to hear IDEA Case- “The U.S. Supreme Court said this week that it will not consider a special education case that raised questions about whether or not school districts should be liable if they fail to identify a child’s special needs….” (By Shaun Heasley) (read more)

Education News:

Most Parents pleased with role in Child’s IEP– “Developing a special education program for any child can be a contentious process, but new research suggests most parents are satisfied with their inclusion at individualized education program, or IEP, meetings….” (By Michelle Diament) (read more)

Fewer Parents go it Alone at IEP Meetings– “Increasingly frustrated by difficult negotiations with school districts, more parents are turning to special education advocates and attorneys for help….” (By Shaun Heasley) (read more)

Technology News:

Teens with Autism avoid Email, Social Media-  “Even as teens with autism use television, computers and other screen-based media more than their peers, new research suggests that they’re shunning some of the Web’s most popular offerings”…(By Shaun Heasley) (read more)

Computer Technology give voice to children with Autism– “”Tunnel.” The electronic voice reverberated in a classroom void of children’s voices. But 8-year-old Adam Garcia was communicating. He was asking for cardboard toilet paper tubes….” (By Kayla Bell) (read more)

Puzzled Parents News is associated with the San Diego Puzzled Parents Support Group and is created by Heather Kennedy. 


Comments on: "February 2012" (1)

  1. Sarah Wyckoff said:

    Retreat for
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    just for moms, kids play elsewhere


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    For Date, San Diego Location and further information contact:
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    Feminine Power® Transformative Coaching addresses the calling
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    Movement Therapy is the psychotherapeutic use of movement to further the emotional, cognitive, physical and social integration of the individual.

    Expressive Art taps the imagination so a person can examine the body, feelings, emotions and her thought process

    Massage enhances physical function, aids in the healing process, and promotes relaxation and well-being.

    Support Group offers a witnessing of each other’s journey promoting the experience of acceptance and companionship.

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