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In This Issue
Parent Connections December 18th
Holiday Shopping Ideas
Asperger's Dropped in New DSM
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LogoEvanston Citizens for Appropriate Special Education (CASE) is a community advocacy organization working to improve the range, quality and accessibility of special education services in Evanston/Skokie District 65 and ETHS District 202.

We provide information and support for parents of children with special needs through Parent Connections meetings and our CASEline number.
We are commited to advancing disability awareness in the Evanston community.

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On the CASE
December 2012

Hello Evanston CASE members,


In this issue of On the CASE you will find ideas and suggestions for adaptive toys that would make good holiday gifts for your child.


In addition, be sure to save the date for our Parent Connections meeting on December 18th.  Ann Bouchard from Lekotek will be speaking about their play-based therapy services, as well as their adaptive toy lending program.  Adaptive toys are expensive and difficult for families to access.  Lekotek provides the ability to borrow 5 new toys a month that are chosen to address the individual needs and interests of your child.  Ann will also talk about the new location in Skokie for their play based therapy program.

Save the date for our January 15th Parent Connections meeting. Mary Ann Ehlert of Protected Tomorrows will be speaking about financial and future planning for children with special needs.  Some topics of discussion include how to create a map of the future; how to prepare legally and financially, how to incorporate and maximize government benefits, and more.


Winter break is around the corner.  Remember to stick to routines as much as possible (especially bed time), prepare your child in advance for activities and trips, and find time to relax.  Happy Holidays.


Warm regards,


Cari Levin, LCSW

Founding Director

Evanston CASE 



Parent Connections Meeting December 18th


Parent Connections is held at the Evanston Public Library, 1703 Orrington, room 108 from 7-9 pm. 







At this month's Parent Connections meeting Ms. Anne Bouchard from Lekotek will present information about their play based therapy model and their adaptive toy lending program. 


The NATIONAL LEKOTEK CENTER offers therapeutic PLAY-based family sessions for families of children with disabilities structured to help children learn, develop and thrive in a world that presents them with many unique and complex challenges. TOYS and PLAY are the vehicles used to provide children with an understanding of and an ability to relate to the world around them. PLAY is also utilized to increase interactions within the family, especially between siblings, and the community as a whole.


To learn more about the Lekotek membership benefits, including their toy lending program click here 


If you plan to attend, contact us at or call (847) 556-8676 to reserve presentation materials. 




Toys for Differently-Abled Kids

Toys are expensive and holiday shopping can strap anyone's budget.  Choosing toys that your child will enjoy for more than five minutes can be tough.   


Read this helpful article by Joan Carey in the Chicago Tribune about challenges in picking out appropriate toys for children and adults with special needs.  There are a number of helpful resources included in the article.  Read more HERE


Also check out the Toys R Us Toy Guide for Differently-Abled Kids for some helpful ideas HERE. 


More ideas:

Holiday Gift Guide 2012 from LoveThatMax blog


Playworks Special Needs Toys 


AblePlay Top 10 Newest Products 


Asperger's Dropped in New DSM

Major changes to the diagnostic criteria for autism and other conditions are on track to take effect after the nation's psychiatrists gave final approval to a new version of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders this weekend.

Read about it here