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Children in snow

Halloween is a time when little boys and ghouls get to trick-or-treat and be scary! It also means your child will be experiencing a holiday with events that they might not be accustomed to: asking strangers for candy, creepy costumes, and large crowds. Here are a few simple ideas you can use to make sure your child is prepared to be spooky and have fun this Halloween.

  • Prepare for the day: Remind your child early on what Halloween is to help them adjust to the holiday. You can find books, songs, and pictures to familiarize them with the sights and sounds of Halloween. Role playing is also an excellent way to help set expectations and boundaries for your child. For example, explain one-on-one how trick-or-treating works and perform a practice run! Have the child knock on your front door, or the door of someone they know and feel safe with, like a grandparent, and let them experience trick-or-treating first-hand before the big day.

  • Creative Costuming: Children with sensory sensitivity may not enjoy wearing itchy or loose fitting costumes. Masks are a challenge too because they restrict breathing and vision. Face paint can be sticky and has an odor. A poorly planned costume can cause trouble, so let your child dress up in advance to test how the costume fits and if they are comfortable. Remember, a little imagination can go a long way. You can make a fun and memorable costume for your child using their wardrobe and a few accessories. Own a green sweater and an orange headband? Bam! They're a Ninja Turtle! How about a soft skirt and a crown? Wow! They’ve been transformed into a lovely princess.

  • To Trick-or-Treat, or Not? You don’t have to take your child trick-or-treating. Try some other fall activities with them instead. Some children enjoy feeling the texture of skinless grapes or the inside of a pumpkin. Why not visit an orchard with your family and pick apples? You could also make a bonfire and roast pumpkin seeds in your backyard.
    If your child would like to participate in trick-or-treating, but you don’t feel they would be comfortable going out, have them hand out candy instead. Often, children enjoy giving candy just as much as receiving it.

  • Know When to Stop: If you choose to take your child out trick-or-treating or to a party, limit the duration and number of houses visited. Make sure they are in a neighborhood that is familiar to them, and know when it’s time to go home.

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Children in snow

The best line of defense against bacteria and viruses is a good offense. Check out these guidelines for preventing the spread of the flu at home and at school. Remember, school-aged children are at a higher risk of contracting the flu and other nasty germs, so it’s important to talk about sanitation at home and in the classroom.

  • Immunizing your family before or during flu season is one of the best preventive steps you can take. Yes, shots are a little scary but necessary for keeping your children happy and healthy in the long-run. Talk to your kids before seeing your doctor or local pharmacist and inform them about the shot and why it is important they have one. Ask your doctor if you can get your flu shot with your child so it doesn’t seem as frightening. Flu season is a great opportunity to be a role model. Get your shot first to show your child that it isn’t as scary as they imagine.

  • Make hand washing a habit. There’s nothing quite like good old fashioned soap and water to cut down on the spread of bacteria and viruses. To help your child remember to wash their hands thoroughly have them sing the Happy Birthday song twice in a row. Remember, it takes about 20 seconds to get hands clean!

  • Teach your child to cover coughs and sneezes in the crook of their elbow. Not only is covering your mouth polite, but it's also proven to be safer in preventing the spread of germs compared to coughing or sneezing into your hands. Also, show them how to use tissues for runny noses instead of their sleeve.


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Children in snow

It’s tempting to bundle up your little one so they won’t catch a cold as the temperature starts to drop, but children with sensory sensitivities don’t always enjoy restrictive or heavy attire. Scratchy clothing tags, elastic bands, and itchy socks can be an issue, too. Here are three kinds of clothing you should be looking for this season to keep your child warm but comfortable.

  1. Soft Materials: Try to purchase clothing made from soft, lightweight materials. Fleece or terry cloth are perfect for children with sensory sensitivities as the fabrics are warm and move with the child. Also, try long underwear like a Bodysuit Barrier Garment to layer your child without them feeling too restricted.

  2. Weighted Clothing: Compression vests and weighted coats can help keep your child cozy and comfortable. Weighted clothing feels like the child is receiving a hug and helps promote body awareness and focus.

  3. Fun Shapes: Who says mittens and hats have to look a certain way? For example, fluffy, colorful fleece gloves like these anemone sensory mittens keep your child toasty and stop them from scratching themselves. Make fall and winter wear exciting by finding fun clothes.



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News and Events


Sunny Days, Inc. receives SNJREIC’s Service Recognition Award

Congratulations! On behalf of the SNJREIC Board Trustees, I am pleased to share that the Sunny Days Early Intervention Program was selected as one of the recipients of the SNJREIC's Service Recognition Award for 2016. This rotating service award recognizes the efforts and dedication of your staff to help the children and families within the southern region.

The award was presented by the Executive Director of the Southern REIC, Jennifer Buzby. In the photo from L to R is pictured Jacqueline Jupin-Manzi, CE; Marisa LaMonte-Paulsen, RA; Donna Maher, CEO; Karen Olanrewaju, Program Director; and Carola d’Emery, TET CE.


Sunny Days CEOs Chosen to Present at Lincoln International's Growth Conference in New York on November 17

Joyce Salzberg and Donna Maher have been chosen to present the Sunny Days growth story at Lincoln International's Growth Conference in Manhattan on November 17. Lincoln International is a leading global investment bank with 17 offices located in 14 countries throughout the world. Lincoln specializes in merger and acquisition advisory services, debt advisory services and private capital raising on mid-market transactions. Over 30 high growth companies in the Health Care, Business Services, Technology, and Media Industries have been chosen to present. "We are honored to be having Sunny Days present at our Growth Conference", said Nick Konstantinou, Managing Director and Co-Head of the Health Care Practice at Lincoln International. "We are very excited for our conference participants to hear the Sunny Days growth story and get the opportunity to meet its Co-CEOs, who started in their basement 21 years ago, and have built Sunny Days into the nation's largest Early Intervention provider and one of the largest providers of autism services to young children."



Sunny Days to Once Again Have a Major Presence at the International ASHA Convention in Philadelphia on November 17-19

For the fifth consecutive year, Sunny Days will serve as a major sponsor and the exclusive provider of over 15,000 tote bags to attendees at the 2016 American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) Convention, which will be held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia. The ASHA convention is the premier annual professional education event for speech-language pathologists, audiologists, and speech, language, and hearing scientists. Over 15,000 practitioners are expected to attend, and over 300 companies will be exhibiting their products and services. "We are very excited to once again be playing such a prominent role at ASHA Convention", said Kerri Garrido, Recruiting Specialist for Sunny Days. Added Joyce Salzberg Co-CEO of Sunny Days, "As the leading Early Intervention Agency in the Nation, it is important that we have a major presence at the ASHA Convention. I also look forward to meeting practitioners from all over the world, seeing who else is in attendance, and it is also nice to see 15,000 people walking around carrying Sunny Days tote bags." For those of you who will be attending, we look forward to having you stop by our booth.



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Interested in a career in early childhood intervention? A career in early intervention is the perfect fit for anyone looking to help improve the lives of children with developmental delays and disabilities. If helping kids from ages birth to three is something you’re passionate about, then visit our Early Intervention Career Guide to learn more, view our open positions, and take the first step towards a rewarding career helping children.


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