News From Terre Haute, Indiana

News

June 28, 2013

Autistic kids get their points across

TERRE HAUTE — “The silence of speechlessness is never golden. We all need to communicate and connect with each other. … It is a basic human need, a basic human right. And much more than this, it is a basic human power."

–– Bob Williams, a disability

 awareness advocate

Williams’ words especially ring true for Hannah Waggoner, who, like 13 other children attending Camp Bruce Thursday at the newly renamed Norma and William Grosjean Clinic at University Hall, has severe verbal communication problems.

These children have special needs, most of them suffering from Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

Although nonverbal, Hannah showed no hint of difficulty understanding and answering questions using her communication device while doing arts and crafts.

“What did you do yesterday?” camp director April Newton asked Hannah.

The girl, who has been attending the camp for three years, then pushed letters and figures on her communication device, which looks like a tablet. Her answer can be read on the screen of the device and be heard from the speaker saying, “I went to Indianapolis.”

“How old are you?” a reporter asked.

She held up her two index fingers together to say that she is 11 years old.

Hannah signs, gestures and uses facial expressions and her device to communicate with people around her.

As do other children at the camp.

Camp Bruce, a two-week summer camp, with a pre-camp during the first week, is designed to assist these children to communicate using Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) strategies.

According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, AAC is an umbrella term for communication methods that supplement or replace speech or writing for those unable to produce spoken and/or written language. These methods include gestures, picture boards and electronic devices.

To facilitate this, 20 speech language pathology graduate students at Indiana State University — Newton’s students — planned activities tailored to participants’ needs. For four days a week, the children go to different rooms for activities such as movement and music, literacy, and arts and crafts.

An important part of the children’s two-hour sessions at camp is snacks and social.

“A lot of these kids haven’t had the opportunity to be involved because they have limited communication. This gives them an opportunity to participate,” Newton said of the campers, whose ages range from four to 14.

But learning acquired from Camp Bruce is a two-way street.

“The children are able to use the communication that they’re working on. The graduate students are able to practice their skills as a facilitator and as a communication partner with the kids,” said Newton, who has been working with the camp since its inception three years ago.

This year, the camp is funded through the Larry Archer Memorial Fund for Autism Awareness and Understanding through a Wabash Valley Community Foundation grant that Arc of Vigo County received. Arc, which advocates for persons with developmental disability, partnered with Newton and the graduate clinicians to facilitate the camp.

“It provides an opportunity for the graduate students to learn about helping people with severe communication disabilities, a lot of them with autism, that really have a lot to say but have no way of saying it,” Newton added.

The theme of the camp, “We’ve got something to say,” is imprinted on Newton’s shirt as a constant reminder of what the work is all about.

Newton’s work started in 2010 with a 44-year-old man named Bruce suffering from ASD. After working with him over the summer, he made so much progress that he was able to order his food from a restaurant and answer basic questions using a communication device. Before that, he had not spoken in 30 years, Newton said. The camp was named in his honor.

“We decided to do something in his honor. He taught me a lot,” Newton said.

Another person who is learning a lot is Heather Hancock, who was assisting Hannah with arts and crafts on Thursday.

“It’s been such a good learning experience,” Hancock said.

But it is mainly about the kids, who have so much to say.

Barbara Archer, who started the Larry Archer Memorial Fund for Autism Awareness four years ago, visited the camp Thursday to see the work firsthand. She expressed passion for the plight of the children.

“They [the children] can contribute so much to society if people allow them to do it,” Archer said.

She also said that lawmakers do not understand that such children require long-term therapy.

“The problem with a child with autism is that they will revert back if this [therapy] is not continued,” she said.

But Archer was pleased with the work being done at Camp Bruce and considers it to be important.

“They [the children] have so much to offer. We need to give them the chance to come out and be what they are,” Archer said.  

Tribune-Star Reporter Dianne Frances D. Powell can be reached at 812-231-4299 or dianne.powell@tribstar.com

 

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
News
  • MET072914leo screen.jpg Slick’s debut

    Bobby “Slick” Leonard was the main attraction but his hometown, Terre Haute, was constantly in the background as friends, fans and family gathered in Indianapolis Tuesday night to honor the man famous for the words “Boom Baby.”

    July 29, 2014 8 Photos

  • MET 072914 TAJIMI YANASE.jpg Sister-city students get a dose of ‘new culture’

    One of Juri Sawada’s dreams has been to visit America.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

  • Motion delays trial for 2012 homicide

    A man who has been jailed about 20 months in connection with the homicide of his wife will not go on trial next week as scheduled.

    July 29, 2014

  • Sheriff charged in prostitution case

    Clark County Sheriff Danny Rodden has spent more than 30 years in law enforcement working to protect the public from criminals, but on Tuesday he was treated as one.

    July 29, 2014 1 Story

  • maple candy closeup.jpg Vigo Parks dishing out the sweetness

    Vigo County Parks and Recreation has made a “sweet” addition to its maple syrup production at Prairie Creek Park.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

  • Danny Rodden indicted on federal charges

    Instead of overseeing the operations of the Clark County jail and police force Tuesday, Clark County Sheriff Danny Rodden found himself being transported by the FBI to Indianapolis to answer federal charges.

    July 29, 2014 1 Story

  • Woman’s condition ‘fair’ after grocery store wreck

    A Terre Haute woman was listed in fair condition Tuesday at Eskenazi Health in Indianapolis as the result of injuries sustained in Monday’s accident on the Baesler’s Market parking lot.

    July 29, 2014

  • Semi driver cited for alcohol use

    A commercial vehicle driver has been placed out of service after he tested positive for alcohol consumption during a Tuesday morning traffic stop in Sullivan County.

    July 29, 2014

  • Church to give out school backpacks

    United Methodist Temple will stage its first-ever Back-2-School Bash from 5 to 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 9.
    The church is located at 5301 S. U.S. 41.

    July 29, 2014

  • MET 072814 BUS MEYERROSE.jpg Bus safety features

    New safety features on South Vermillion School Corp. buses have led to fewer disciplinary problems and fewer incidents of motorists illegally passing stopped school buses, officials say.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

  • Pendergast.jpg Humvee driver says foot caused fatal accident

    Kyle Pendergast, 22, the Terre Haute driver of a black Humvee charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing the death of a teenager, has told police he could not turn the wheel before the vehicle flipped in a field in an early Saturday morning accident.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo 1 Story

  • MET 072814 CONTAMINATED Cleaner may have contaminated water

    Groundwater and soil testing is set to begin within a week to learn whether toxic chemicals might have seeped into the wells of a small southside neighborhood and even beyond.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

  • Housing Authority’s Warren Village nearing completion

    Construction on the newest Terre Haute Housing Authority property – Warren Village – should wrap up next month, a housing authority official said Monday.

    July 29, 2014

  • rush-hr.jpg Observers predict ‘wide open’ process of picking next chief

    State Supreme Court Chief Justice Brent Dickson surprised observers in June when he decided to step down after a brief tenure as the state’s top judge.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • Multi-vehicle accident in parking lot

    A woman was hospitalized with injuries after a multiple-vehicle accident late Monday morning in the Baesler’s Market parking lot on Poplar Street

    July 29, 2014

  • Old National acquires Michigan bank

    Evansville-based Old National Bancorp and Grand Rapids-based Founders Financial Corp. said Monday they have finalized an agreement under which Old National will acquire Founders through a stock and cash merger.

    July 28, 2014

  • Ohio man falls to death at Cataract Falls rec area

    Indiana conservation officers are investigating the death of an Ohio man that occurred at about 4:10 p.m. Sunday at Cataract Falls State Recreation Area in Owen County.

    July 28, 2014

  • MET 072514 WWI 01MORAHN.jpg Postcards from the war front

    A native of France, Marie Decleir saw humanity at its worst as she experienced the death and destruction caused by World War I, which began 100 years ago today.

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

  • MET 072714 NASCAR STEIG.jpg Watching Gordon make history

    As race car drivers competed on the track on Sunday in Indianapolis, racing fans in Terre Haute gathered around television screens and watched history unfold during the “Crown Royal Presents, The John Wayne Walding 400 at the Brickyard.”

    July 27, 2014 3 Photos

  • STATE OF THE STATEHOUSE: Inept amid partisan fury

    Retired Congressman Lee Hamilton has warned of the perils of political ideology, calling the body where he spent 34 years “noxiously partisan.” Now, he worries the divide is downright dangerous.

    July 27, 2014

  • Restaurant Inspections: July 28, 2014

    July 7-11

    July 27, 2014

  • MET 072514 I-70 CONE.jpg Caution zone

    Travel the interstate at your own risk.

    July 26, 2014 5 Photos

  • Earl Elliott report1 copy.jpg Report: City‘s general fund to remain in red

    The city’s general fund balance on June 30 remained deep in the red, even after Terre Haute received its twice-yearly property tax check from the state.

    July 26, 2014 6 Photos

  • MET 072314 INTERN 01MILLER.jpg Interns, getting foot in the door, bring diversity to workplace

    Shanya Tompkins interviewed with Coldwell Banker-Troy Helman Realtors, anticipating an eight-week, part-time summer internship.

    July 26, 2014 5 Photos

  • MET072514dance porter.jpg Everybody get up and dance now

    National Dance Day promotes dancing as part of a healthy, active lifestyle.

    July 26, 2014 4 Photos

  • Pendergast.jpg Man arrested after rollover kills teen girl

    A Terre Haute man has been arrested and a teenager has died following an alcohol-related accident early today.

    July 26, 2014 2 Photos 1 Story

  • Brother sues W.Va. senator over business loan

    U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin III faces a $1.7 million civil suit filed by a brother over a lifeline to save a family carpet business. in the late 1980s.

    July 26, 2014

  • MET072514 invenadamson step.jpg ‘Minds-on camp’

    Sylvia Ann Adamson longed for privacy, so she invented a solution to that problem at “Camp Invention.”

    July 25, 2014 5 Photos

  • Linda Tincher.jpg Riley lion’s roar goes global

    Linda L. Tincher has become the first woman from Indiana elected to serve as an international director for Lions Clubs International. She was chosen earlier this month during the clubs’ 97th international convention in Toronto, Canada.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • MET072514 SPPRAK glasses.jpg Kindness ‘undercover’

    Hundreds of people gathered at Bob Warn Field at Sycamore Stadium on Friday for a night of baseball, music, the “Green Man” and green shades.

    July 25, 2014 2 Photos

Latest News
TribStar.com Poll
AP Video
Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Raw: Plane Lands on New York Highway Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Harding Love Letters Now Open to Public Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers
NDN Video
Heartwarming 'Batkid Begins' Documentary is Tear-Jerker Orlando Bloom 'Takes a Swing' at Justin Bieber In Ibiza Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Sadie Doesn't Want Her Brother to Grow Up "Maxim" Hotness! See Jessica Alba's Sizzling Spread Two women barely avoid being hit by train Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber Reportedly Came To Blows In Ibiza Meet the Man Behind Dumb Starbucks Chris Pratt Adorably Surprises Kids at a 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Screening NOW TRENDING: Peyton Manning dancing at practice "The Bachelorette" Makes Her Decision Thieves pick the wrong gas station to rob Golden Sisters on '50 Shades' trailer: 'Look At That Chest!' Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted 'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' Sneak Peek Florida Keys Webcam Captures Turtles Hatching Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show'
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -

     

    March 12, 2010

activity
Real Estate News