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Dino Dan

Diego has always had an interest in dinosaurs, but sea animals were his special interest until Dino Dan.

The premise of this Nick Jr show is that a ten-year old boy by the name of Dan has a very special interest in dinosaurs and can actually see them.  All Dan talks about to friends and family are dinosaurs and each one of them is intensely interested.  Dan’s mom pretends she believes him and his friends help him go on dinosaur missions. 

Personally I think Dino Dan has Aspergers and one hell of an imagination. 

Yes children with ASD have imaginations. 🙂

Just ask Diego who now sees various dinosaurs in our yard.

So anyway the show started in October and Diego is hooked, captivated by each episode.  Sea animals have taken a back burner and it is all about the T-Rex and his other dinosaur friends.  I DVR Dino Dan for Diego because it comes on while he is at school, but he has no clue I save all of the episoded…because if he did….Dino Dan would be playing on our TV 24/7. 

No Thanks.

My problem with Dino Dan is that Dan eats, sleeps and breathes dinosaurs, which may translate to Diego that it is ok to do this. I mean once Dan enters a conversation with a group of  his peers it is all dinosaurs all of the time, and what is nutso to me is that his little friends are not bothered by it at all. I know Nick Jr  didn’t make this show thinking about such things, but as Diego’s mom I can’t help but think about them.

So why do I DVR it for Diego?

He loves it.

After spending his days working out all of the challenges that come with ASD, who am I to deny him a half hour of pure bliss??

My major issue now (and it really has nothing to do with Dino Dan) is that Diego has started referring to dinosaurs by numbers.  I have figured out a few.  The T-Rex is 305 and the Brachiosaurus is 405 and I think the Spinosaurus may be 505, but I’m not sure.  Diego is under the impression that we share the same brain (*sigh* mind blindness) and that I know the dinosaur/number classification system that he has come up with, he gets quite frustrated with me if I don’t know what dinosaur he is referring to.

In other news, the Risperdal is helping with Diego’s behavior A LOT.  I was so hesitant to start it, but we are at a very low dose and the difference is amazing.  What the Risperdal doesn’t help with are the ADHD like symptoms. Diego is having a very hard time at school.  Between his gnat like attention span and his fine motor difficulties, he is having a time doing much of anything.  I have been wracking my brain for a way to help him focus and finally, after talking with our OT,  I found something that we haven’t already implemented that may work for focus. 

What is it you ask??

His iPod with some  classical music.

It has helped the few times that we have used it during OT and we tried it at school on Friday.  He got through all of his desk work, which is promising.  It is too early to tell if this will  be a long-term fix, but I am hoping that between the addition of the morning dose of Tenex, the iPod, the weighted lap pad, the sticker chart, and the angled writing board that he will be able to complete his desk work.


We are stuck, this is the area that kills me.  Diego just finished a 4 month social skills group and I haven’t seen much progress.  The discharge summary didn’t show much either :(. 

Sometimes I feel like a hamster in that damn wheel thing…

Our next step is peer-to-peer therapy. 

Hopefully that will help him at least a little bit.


About sonidoinquieto

I hate writing bios *bio pending*

10 responses »

  1. It is perfect chance to produce some solutions for the longer
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  2. I also found this page be Googling “is Dino Dan autistic” my son is fascinated by this program and watches it whilst playing with his dinosaurs. I have also noticed him using a number system, I had assumed that this was due to the numbers on the cars in the film “Cars”. I do have worries that my son has a slight autistic streak though his mother whom I did not live with will not countenance it. The reason I have these fears is that he gets so wound up if his trousers do not cover his shoes or if his buttons on his jacket are not all done just right. His mother says he is just a being him and she has known other children much worse than him. As a single father I would take any advice I can get.

  3. littlebitquirky

    Found your blog by googling dino dan asperger’s. LOL. I watched the show for the first time with my daughter. We just discovered the show, and it’s a new favorite of my daughter’s. I could not get over how obsessed with dinosaurs Dan is. It certainly set off my A-dar!

  4. Hi, I searched “Dino Dan, Asperger’s” and found your page. I read it and I smiled. So glad I’m not the only parent wondering.
    My son’s latest intense interest is Dino Dan (and the Dinosaurs). Other than the points you made, Dino Dan wears something yellow in every single episode. Having a kid with ASD, I’m short from making a firm conclusion because Dan indeed has Asperger’s are that he interact with his peers without difficulties, and that he can be so easily redirected back to class work.

  5. I found this post by googling “is Dino Dan autistic”. I noticed the same preoccupation with the singular (dinosaurs), but have you ever noticed that he seems to struggle with eye contact? He always seems to stare at people’s necks or chests when he talks. 😛

  6. Was searching for more info on “Dino Dan” and saw your blog. I was thinking the same thing about the kid on the show since it seems like no one else sees the dinos but Dan.

  7. Your mentioning the social skills group made me think of something I recently listened to a UCTV broadcast on itunes U (the talk is from a while ago but I just found it). It was about a study done on social skills intervention. They found they were more successful working with the typical peers than with the ASD child (of course they got even more success working with both the child and the peers). Perhaps you can have the school counselor or speech teacher work with the whole class on friendship skills and how to include children who are shy or not often included – this can be done without revealing any personal information about him to the classmates.

    Glad to hear some of the interventions are helping!

  8. I LOVED that comment about seeing dinosaurs in the backyard… I hope this all helps, let us know how it goes!

  9. I’ve never heard of Dino Dan as the Roc has shunned all things TV. He used to watch Little Einsteins and when he grew out of it (much later than other kids) he wouldn’t watch any other shows!

    The classical music–the only way I could study in college was with headphones playing the “Summer” CD by George Winston (piano.) Also the Braveheart soundtrack. I had to block all the extraneous noises that would drive me to distraction in the cavernous campus library-people moving papers, scraping chairs, clearing throats, whispers, pencil taping, etc. So I personally get how that helps him!!

  10. Ah! Yes! We have two Dino Dan addicts in our house, and strangely one of ours has also put sea creatures on the back burner for dinosaurs now, too. Of course, he loved dinos before, Dan has just ramped up his interest. I think it’s kinda cool to see him emulating the behaviors of a peer… a flesh-and-blood (albeit actor) peer. It’s an interesting development for us.

    Regardless, nice to meet you.


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