Some pretty amazing little gadgets are bringing new insights into how children respond to therapy and how we can improve our methods to really make a difference in the homes of our families.

One intriguing tool is a sensory wrist band that collects information on a person’s movement, body temperature and other internal and physical  responses. Researchers at Boston’s Northeastern University and New York’s Center for Discovery have been using it to follow what’s happening inside a child with autism in the hours and minutes before he or she acts out in a classroom. This is powerful information that can help guide a teacher in anticipating – or better, avoiding – meltdowns. It also provides insights for behavioral therapists working with a child to better deal with the sensory issues and frustrations that lead to overload.