Wednesday, January 25, 2023

How Does Autism Affect Learning

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Autism is associated with a significantly increased risk of developing social anxiety, which may be defined as an intense dread of new people, groups, and social settings. In addition, a significant number of persons with autism struggle to regain control of their anxiety once it has been triggered by anything.

Why Is School So Difficult For Autistic Kids

  • For many autistic children, the challenges they face in school are substantially greater than those they would face in any kind of professional situation for reasons that the vast majority of people cannot even begin to comprehend.
  • Challenges with sensory processing are an inherent part of the autism spectrum for children.
  • 2 Many aspects of day-to-day school life, such as hall buzzers, fluorescent lights, shouting youngsters, and echoing gyms, can be stressful for children even if they do not have autism.

How Do Symptoms Of Autism And Learning Disabilities Overlap

As discussed, autism and learning disability are not the same thing and often occur independently of one another. However, some individuals with autism also suffer from a learning disability.

When comparing autism and learning disabilities, there are similarities in communication, learning, attention, and social challenges.In some cases, similarities exist between those with autism and disorders such as dyslexia. For example, individuals with dyslexia can experience auditory and visual difficulties, similar to the hyper or hypo sensitivity seen in those with autism. Dyslexic individuals can also showcase unique strengths in focused areas, displaying strong creative, logic, or design skills. Again, this can mimic focuses seen among individuals with autism.

The following symptoms of autism and learning disabilities overlap:

  • Neither are curable
  • Both can have a significant impact on ones life
  • Early intervention and ongoing support is important for both
  • Sensory processing issues and issues with social skills are common in autism and all learning disabilities

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Symptoms And Behaviors Of People With Autism

On a more complex level, symptoms and behaviors linked to autism exist on a spectrum because specific cases reveal specific strengths and weaknesses. Common weaknesses include the inability to grasp big picture concepts, with a focus on details and individual parts rather than the whole, as well as social and psychological concepts such as regulating and controlling thoughts and emotions, and controlling behavior . Children with autism often possess humor and empathy, yet may struggle to display it, or struggle with concepts surrounding emotion and humor.

Autism Treatment Network Research On Challenging Behavior

Sensory processing, Sensory processing disorder, Autism sensory

Researchers with the Autism Speaks Autism Treatment Network study challenging behavior in kids and teens with autism. Many children with autism have behavior problems. These can be hard on both the child and the family and caregivers. More than half of kids and teens with autism may be physically aggressive toward caregivers or other kids and grown-ups. This can include hitting, kicking and biting. Other behavior problems can include:

  • being hyperactive, anxious and worried
  • hurting themselves by banging or hitting their heads
  • biting their hands and fingers

Behavior problems happen more often if the child has trouble sleeping. This is more likely if they wake up in the middle of the night. Younger kids are more likely to hurt other people. But older kids and teens are more likely to hurt themselves, especially if they have trouble talking.

For the full reference list and more Frequently Asked Questions addressed by ATN research on challenging behavior, visit asatn.org.

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Reducing Anxiety In The Classroom

Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders sometimes have high levels of anxiety and stress, particularly in social environments like school. If a student exhibits aggressive or explosive behavior, it is important for educational teams to recognize the impact of stress and anxiety. Preparing students for new situations, such as through writing social stories, can lower anxiety. Teaching social and emotional concepts using systematic teaching approaches such as The Incredible 5-Point Scale or other cognitive behavioral strategies can increase a students ability to control excessive behavioral reactions.

Structured Teaching Strategies For Students With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Learn about four strategies for structured teaching to support students with ASD: physical structure, visual schedules, work systems, and visual structure.

This series of four articles can be used as a set or separately depending on the needs of the staff/students. Each article will review the rationale for the use of structured teaching, as well provide as a brief description of the TEACCH model.

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How To Better Support Students

There are a number of barriers to providing better and appropriate support to meet the educational needs of students with autism.

These include: funding, lack of knowledge and training, lack of specialist support staff and time, lack of appropriate resourcing and class sizes.

Funding can impact on the amount of resourcing, support and specialist staff available to teachers to help individualise their approach. Funding and resources vary from state to state and school to school.

Teacher training and experience in autism will vary.

In the Australian Autism Educational Needs Analysis, the majority of teachers and specialists who participated had received professional learning or specific training related to students on the autism spectrum.

Teachers and specialists working in the field need to feel adequately supported to meet the needs of these students, and this support must be ongoing.

The use of flexible and individually tailored educational approaches is crucial. This requires that teachers have an array of adjustments and resource options which can be implemented both in and outside of the classroom environment.

Input from a multidisciplinary team that includes educational specialists and allied health professionals should also be available.

It is not enough to give teachers professional development on autism. They need additional help from appropriate specialist staff to put adjustments in place that fit within the context of their classroom and school.

Is There A Link Between Autism And Infertility

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Concerns remain over whether there is a link between infertility and autism spectrum disorder. The interpretation of existing studies is limited, but a recent study funded by the National Institutes of Health using a case-control design found no evidence that infertility raises the risk of ASD.

If the mother is older, she has a higher chance of her child having autism spectrum disorder. Because the data were gathered via questionnaires rather than clinical records, there was no way to confirm the history or treatment schedule. It has been discovered that in IVF, pregnant women are more likely to develop birth defects, genetic disorders, and developmental problems such as autism. It is unclear how much greater the risk is related to confound factors such as maternal age, premature birth, or multiple births. The expert believes that we need to figure out how to separate these factors.

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How Autism Affects The Inclusive Classroom

Autism spectrum disorder, recognized by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders , is a developmental condition affecting communication, behavior, sensory processing, and social interaction. The disorder falls on a spectrum because affected individuals display a wide range of symptoms ranging from mild to severe, which can present symptoms as early as within the first two years of life.

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act requires that, to the extent possible, children with disabilities, including those with ASD, receive education alongside their peers. With this mandate, inclusive classrooms are becoming the norm.

Effects Of Autism On Learning

  • Autistic people have a different way of auditory processing which makes it difficult for them to respond quickly. They process incoming information one string at a time.
  • Their thinking is very rigid and inflexible. They think either white or black, no grey in between. This causes tremendous anxiety. This prevents them from thinking about new ideas and hampers creativity.
  • They have poor coordination of eye and hand, thats why many of them dont play team sports such as basketball or soccer and have difficulty maintaining proper hygiene and properly wearing clothes.
  • They lack executive functioning which makes it difficult for them to organize and prioritize responsibilities.

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Autism In The Classroom: One Size Doesnt Fit All

The parents and the professionals all agree that it takes lots of hard work to help a child with autism get the most out of the classroom experience. It also takes, they say, a good dose of structure and the understanding that every child with an autism spectrum disorder is unique. That means each child has different symptoms as well as styles of learning.

âAutism isnât like diabetes,â psychologist Kathleen Platzman tells WebMD. âWith diabetes, we have two or three things that we absolutely know about every kid who has it. But since itâs not that way with autism, we need an educational model wide enough to take in the whole spectrum. That means itâs going to have to be a fairly broad model.â

Platzman works with autistic children and their families in Atlanta. She says every child with an ASD needs individual attention.

The Hormonal Imbalance Hypothesis Of Autism

How Autism Affects Learning And Development

There is increasing scientific evidence for the hormonal imbalance hypothesis that links autism to hormonal imbalances. Autism Spectrum Disorder causes changes in the plasma levels of growth hormone and ghrelin, which can have a physiological, psychological, or behavioral impact on wellbeing. There is still much to learn about the role of hormones in autism, but it is clear that more research is required to determine the root cause of the increase in ASD prevalence. However, one thing is certain: the hormonal imbalance hypothesis is an important avenue of investigation that must be pursued further.

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Supporting Children With Autism In The Classroom

Children with autism often have difficulty with social interaction, communication, and repetitive behaviors. These difficulties can make it hard for them to learn in a traditional classroom setting. However, there are many ways that teachers can support children with autism and help them succeed in the classroom.

Here are some tips for supporting children with autism in the classroom:

-Create a positive and supportive environment.-Structure the classroom in a way that is predictable and organized.-Use visuals to support communication and learning.-Give clear and concise instructions.-Provide plenty of opportunities for practice.-Encourage social interaction with classmates.-Be patient and understanding.

Study Provides Evidence That Autism Affects Functioning Of Entire Brain

Previous View Held Autism Limited to Communication, Social Behavior, and Reasoning.

A recent study provides evidence that autism affects the functioning of virtually the entire brain, and is not limited to the brain areas involved with social interactions, communication behaviors, and reasoning abilities, as had been previously thought. The study, conducted by scientists in a research network supported by the National Institutes of Health , found that autism also affects a broad array of skills and abilities, including those involved with sensory perception, movement, and memory.

The findings, appearing in the August Child Neuropsychology, strongly suggest that autism is a disorder in which the various parts of the brain have difficulty working together to accomplish complex tasks.

The study was conducted by researchers in the Collaborative Program of Excellence in Autism , a research network funded by two components of the NIH, the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.

These findings suggest that further understanding of autism will likely come not from the study of factors affecting one brain area or system, but from studying factors affecting many systems, said the director of NICHD, Duane Alexander, M.D.

We set out to find commonalities across a broad range of measures, so that we could make inferences about whats going on in the brain, Dr. Minshew said.

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Inclusive Education For Children With Autism

Autism spectrum disorder is a neurological and developmental disorder that affects a persons social interaction and communication. According to the Autism Society, ASD affects 1 in 59 children in the United States.

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to education for children with ASD. However, research suggests that inclusive education, where children with ASD are mainstreamed into regular classrooms, can be beneficial. Inclusive education can help children with ASD develop social skills, learn communication strategies and make progress in their academics.

While every child with ASD is different and will require individualized support, there are some general tips that can help make inclusive education successful:

How Does Autism Affect The Learning Process

What is Autism? | Quick Learner
  • A person with autism may experience challenges in learning due to language delays, difficulties with social relationships, and communication concerns.
  • This is because learning often occurs via doing and through connecting with others.
  • Autism is characterized by difficulty in social interaction, particularly in initiating and maintaining eye contact, as well as with comprehending and interpreting facial expressions and body language.

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Autism Spectrum Disorder: Control And Regulation

Children with autism spectrum disorder can struggle with focus, attention, transitions, organisation, memory, time management, emotional control and frustration. We use these high-level abilities to help us do lots of daily tasks, like working cooperatively with others and prioritising things we need to do.

Difficulties with these abilities can affect childrens learning. For example, while trying to solve a maths problem, a child might know the facts well, but might not be able to come up with a solution. This is because the child cant organise ideas or put all the information together to solve the problem.

How Does Autism Affect Social Skills

A primary indicator of autism spectrum disorder is dysfunction in social functioning. The following are examples of typical deficiencies in social skills: starting conversations, reacting to the interactions initiated by others, keeping eye contact, sharing delight, understanding the non-verbal signs of others, and taking the perspective of another person.

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How To Support A Student With Autism

Having a student with ASD is a great challenge, so the British company specializing in training, High-Speed Training, gives seven tips on how to support them:

  • Establish a routine: People on the autism spectrum thrive on structure, so having a stable, predictable pattern lowers their anxiety. Creating a visual schedule is an effective way to reassure them and help them exercise their memory.

  • Considering their sensory sensitivity: People with autism can have strong positive or negative reactions to sensory stimulation, so taking this into account and trying to make the classroom more friendly is essential in these cases. It is necessary to observe and learn the student’s sensitivities since each person with ASD is different. For example, if a specific sound causes them distress, try to avoid doing it.

  • Managing changes: Although disturbances are sometimes unavoidable, anticipating and preparing the child for changes can alleviate the situation. For example, if they have an activity on the patio, bring it in advance or show and give it photos to become familiar with the place before the change. These activities are of great help as they allow them to get mental, adapt, and not get overwhelmed.

  • Be clear: Some people with ASD have a hard time communicating and interpreting what others are saying it is important to be clear and straightforward. Thinking about the way something is expressed and avoid metaphors, rhetorical questions, or complicated sentences.

  • Work With Their Parents/carers

    How Autism Affects Learning And Development

    Parents and carers are the true experts on their autistic children. To fully support the child in and out of school, you should therefore coordinate and share knowledge with them. Both of you can suggest interventions that have worked at home or in school for the child and can integrate these into their routine.

    Not only will building a relationship benefit the autistic child, but it will also help the parents and carers feel at ease about their childs education. Your commitment to working with them will build their confidence in the schools ability to support their child.

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    Adult Autism And Learning Disabilities

    Autism can have major effects on a childs development and create obstacles to learning.

    The terms autism and learning disability can not be used interchangeably. They are not the same. However, they show some major similarities.

    Since autism can affect social interaction, verbal and language skills, motor control, and executive function, there are often barriers to learning. This often leads to a misdiagnosis, since some symptoms of autism and learning disabilities overlap.

    Being a complex disorder, no two individuals are identical. Everyone experiences autism differently. That is why a person-centered approach is so critical. While one individual with autism may showcase speech delays, another will not.

    Whether you or your loved one seek support, here is what you need to know about autism and learning disabilities.

    Ways Autism Can Affect Learning

    Many children with autism spectrum disorder have average or above-average intelligence, yet autism can still affect learning in several ways. Others who are on the spectrum have one or more learning disabilities and other academic challenges. Some of these learning difficulties can be effectively addressed with early interventions. For school-aged students, an IEP can be put in place to address academic deficits and identify classroom accommodations to ensure success. While having a disability such as autism can negatively impact learning, it can also be accompanied by unique strengths and abilities. For those who teach and work with children with autism, it is important that they be aware of the learning challenges that they face as well as how to best address them. Learning development and classroom experiences may look different, but there are strategies that may be helpful for those with autism spectrum disorders.

    You may be wondering how does autism affect learning. The following are learning-related areas that can be affected in children with autism.

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