Using Customized Home Study Plan
Not everyone studies the same. I for one always preferred to study with music in the background and sitting on the floor. Now this may sound like a distraction, having music in the background but it worked for me!;Sitting on the floor allowed me to spread my wings! This allowed me to;organize all my homework right in front of me. Now, in hindsight, I created my own world to study in. My very own selection of music and my way of laying out my homework had;continued on even through college.
And Finally Develop Your Own Coping Strategies
When we work with autistic students, we often encourage them to find strategies to look after their own wellbeing. But we often forget to consider our own.
I recently told an audience;
If youre not worrying about your students on the drive home, youre not doing your job right.
It was a very tongue-in-cheek way of saying that our job is so important that we cant pretend we can forget about it the moment we walk out the door. But at the same time, the compassion we feel for our students, if left unchecked, can lead to issues for ourselves.
Im under no illusions about how emotionally connected I am to my work. I have a long history of lying awake at 2am hoping my kids will be alright when they become adults. This is just a natural consequence of caring; it only becomes problematic when we dont have healthy ways of addressing how we feel. Personally Ive always had strong relationships with senior staff as well as having private therapy to explore my mental adventures as well. This works for me.
Despite this article being mostly about my teaching, its only one of my jobs . Running Autistic Not Weird and also takes its share of my energy. And I came to realise how vulnerable I was a few years ago when a follower sent me a video of a man killing himself, as punishment for me not responding to her email for three days .
How Discipline Helps Children With Autism
There are many children who misbehave at some point in their life. There perform many abnormal activities like hitting another child, grabbing a toy that is not meant for them.
In such situations, most parents and teachers respond with consequences like time outs or TV privileges loss, etc.
As a result, children learn that their behaviors are abnormal and unacceptable. They also learn that if they control their impulses, then it can have positive outcomes.
However, when a normal child would receive a timeout for something done by an autistic child.; Instead of a consequence, the later gets a pass, and that too with a comment such as thats ok, I understand.
When the same thing happens to a child who can understand the rules of behavior, he learns that the rules are not at all applicable to him.
When it comes to the next time, he repeats the behavior expecting the same outcome and this continues.
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Listen To The Parents
Just as you surround a child with autism with acceptance, do the same for parents. Your support could mean the world to them.
Advocates explain that parents would love a night off to decompress and get away. If you feel comfortable with the idea, offer to babysit. If you don’t, provide a listening ear to a parent in need. Schedule a regular coffee date for decompression and chatter, or set up play dates between your children while you both supervise.
Bring Special Interests Into Lesson Plans
Many children with autism have a fixation on certain topics or activities. Take advantage of what theyre passionate about and use it while teaching students with autism to help them focus in class. If a child with autism loves outer space, for example, you could plan a math assignment about counting the planets in our Solar System.
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Talk About Them Like Theyre Not In The Room
It really is surprising how many people Ive seen doing this. The assumption is made, often without the speaker realising, that since the autistic person is looking away in silence, they must not be listening.
Which, of course, is quite a harsh;assumption to make about people who simply communicate differently. Partly because it would be disrespectful to talk about any non-autistic person as if they werent in the room , and partly because of the things that can end up being said if you think theyre not listening.
Ill let this badly-drawn picture do the talking.
When I worked in special education, on principle I always talked to the nonverbal students. I never expected any kind of communication in response, because that wasnt the point. The point was to give them the experience of social communication.
For example, one lunchtime I was sat outside with a twelve-year-old lad who Im going to pretend was called James. I was talking to him, mainly about how much the weather sucked . I was also quite sad that day for reasons I wont go into, but I carried on talking to him despite not being in a talking mood. After all, his needs took priority over;mine.
As I talked, he said nothing, did not look at me, and gave me no indication that he was listening. Nonetheless, at one point I simply said,
I like you, James. Youre a nice lad.
Everyone communicates, some just in their own way. And listening is part of communication too.
Try A Smart Goal Challenge
If a student with autism is having a hard time with school, sit down with them and pick a SMART goal to work on over the next month or semester. SMART goals are an effective way to help children with autism reach their potential, and they are:
Suppose, for example, that your student with autism is having trouble learning how to recognize emotions. You could make a goal with them to practice flash cards with emotions on them every day for five minutes and for the student to recognize each card by the end of the month. As long as the SMART goal hits all of the criteria, it can help your student focus on ways to make progress.
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Things All Teachers Should Know About Autism In The Classroom
With education constantly evolving and autism on the rise , more and more teachers are welcoming into their classrooms students on the autism spectrum. While teaching a child with autism may seem daunting, doing so can often prove to be one of the most rewarding parts of an educators career. Here are 30 things all teachers should know about autism in the classroom.
Different Schools Suit Different Teachers
Ive worked in mainstream and special schools that were wonderful, and Ive spent time in mainstream and special schools that sucked. Want to know what the distinguishing factors were?
The good schools knew who I was. They knew my strengths, they knew what motivated me, and had the wisdom to know that teachers like students work harder and work better when theyre doing something they love.
The bad schools expected us to adapt 100% to the vision of senior management, rather than seeing what skillset lay among their staff and adapting their approach to allow us opportunities to do what were good at. Kind of like commanding a bunch of mathematicians to be plumbers, and wondering why they cant fix pipes using a protractor and a compass.
Finding a teaching post isnt just about finding a school that will employ you. There needs to be a culture in the school that you feel comfortable with, senior staff you feel supported by, and a school ethos that matches your own.
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Your Autistic Students Are Individuals Not Walking Stereotypes
If youre giving serious thought to working with autistic students, you probably know this already. But it must be said first.
Because Im going to begin with an embarrassing story of how I learned this lesson.
It was summer 2009, and I was given a teaching placement in a special school. I had only ever known two autistic children , and I was six months away from learning about my own autism. Long story short, despite being autistic myself I was clueless about autism.
I was working in a class of teenagers aged 14-16, all of whom had substantial support needs and academic learning difficulties. One day we were lining up for assembly, but one boy was still sat at his desk. I went up to him and said slowly, so he could understand and process my words,
Daniel, its time to line up.
He didnt move, so I repeated the sentence again. For a second time he didnt move; he just stayed where he was and put his fingers in his ears.
Already sensing it was a battle I wouldnt win, I went to the class teacher and asked :
Why isnt Daniel moving? I thought autistic people understood everything you say, even if they dont talk?
The teacher gave the predictable response.
Oh he understands every word youre saying. Hes not moving because hes a sixteen-year-old lad who doesnt want to do what hes told.
Hold A Professional Development Session On Autism
Its so important to teach faculty about autism awareness, too. If youre a school administrator, consider holding a professional development session on teaching students with autism or sharing a few resources.
For example, the Regional Educational Laboratory Program has put together a helpful resource for administrators on how educators can support students with autism during remote learning.
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How To Tell A Child They Are Autistic
Last Updated: April 8, 2021References
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Introducing autism with a positive attitude can help your child accept that they are different and influence whether a diagnosis holds them back or helps them succeed.
Tips For Talking To Kids With Autism
Since one of the classic symptoms of autism is a marked deficit in verbal communication abilities, a common problem for applied behavior analysts and others who work with children and even adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder is simply being able to carry on a basic conversation. Something as simple as finding out what they want for lunch or whether or not they are happy or sad or indifferent about their current school assignment can be nearly impossible to find out if you rely on normal conversational methods.
But dont let that stop you!
There are ways to have conversations with autistic kids and you can make them easier by keeping the following tips in mind.
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What To Teach For The Concept Of Time
Here are are a few suggestions of what to teach about the concept of time:
- Teach the language of time for time frames before, after, next, later, until
- Teach yesterday, today and tomorrow for specific periods of time
- Teach past, present and future to learn broader concepts of time
- Teach the sequence of the days and months.
- For months, also learn their numerical order ex. December is the 12th month. February is the second month. Many dates are written out numerically on forms and statements.
- Teach what a.m. and p.m mean.
- How to count in one second increments . This is good for both waiting and calming.
- Practice timing different events how long it takes to put in a load of laundry, make a sandwich, sing a favorite song.
- Set an alarm for reminders to do things at particular times.
- Play a game have the person estimate how long it will take to do a task, then time it to see how long it actually takes.
- Build time into directions and schedules. For example, if bathtime is at 8:00 pm, twenty minutes before say, Bathtime is in 2o minutes. You can then set a Time Timer for 20 minutes to show this passage of time.
Abrupt Changes In Behavior Usually Signify Anxiety
Living on the autism spectrum means living with a sensory system that is constantly bombarding you with information that may or may not be accurate. If you happen to notice an abrupt change in behavior in your autistic student, know that it is likely not a case of the student deciding to act naughty for attention or entertainment. Rather, he or she may be experiencing anxiety due to something in the environment.
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Bowel Movement Toilet Training
Follow these steps offered by Dr. Kroeger for managing toilet teaching when your child wants to poop only in a diaper:
These steps may take a long time, and you may need to break them down further and further.
The key to success is making it possible for your child to succeed and earn that motivating prize.
Autism And Teaching Patience
Response by psychologists Kenneth Shamlian and Brenna Cavanaugh, of the University of Rochester Medical Center one of 13 sites in the Autism Speaks Autism Treatment Network . Dr. Shamlian directs the medical centers behavioral treatment program, where he and Dr. Cavanaugh both practice.
Our 6-year-old has autism and gets really impatient to the point of tantrums. No matter how many times we explain “waiting,” he doesnt seem to understand that he cant always get what he wants right now. How do we help him understand?
Editors note: The following information is not meant to diagnose or treat and should not take the place of personal consultation, as appropriate, with a qualified healthcare professional and/or behavioral therapist.
Thanks for your great question. Learning to wait is a crucial life skill that proves difficult for many children and adults, for that matter. Teaching this skill to children with autism can be particularly challenging for many reasons.
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Dance Around For Musical Clocks
Start by printing out our free blank clock sheets here. Pass them out and have each student draw a time on their clock, then leave it on their desk. Give each student a recording sheet , then have them grab a pencil and get ready to move! Start the music and let kids dance around from desk to desk. Stop the music and instruct them to record the name and time on the clock of the desk in front of them. Start the music again and keep on going!
Effective Teaching Strategies For Children With Autism
In some cases, the learning characteristics of students with autism may differ from the rest of your class. But luckily, the right teaching strategies and methods can keep children with autism on track to finish the school year strong. Try these tips, educational accommodations, and resources for students with autism to help them learn concepts that might otherwise be difficult for them to grasp.
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Get Ready For A Potty Party
Put together all the things you’ll need to keep your child comfortable and content while seated on the toilet for a long time. If you like, consider bringing books, toys, and even a TV into the bathroom.
Make sure that the toilet is comfortable. For some children, that will mean wrapping the seat in towels for extra cushiness. Other children may be most comfortable on a potty seat with handles that help them feel secure while sitting on the toilet.
Collect “motivators”special treats to give your child when he successful urinates or poops in the toilet.
Have An Uncompromising Relentless Belief In Your Students Ability To Succeed Even If Eventually
Yes, its another obvious one. But read this bullet-point anyway.
Teachers are humans: and its one thing to say how much you believe in your students when everythings going fine , but another to stand by it when your lessons turn to crap and nobody engages.
But stand by your belief in your students under all circumstances. Believe me, they can sense whether or not you think theyre capable.
Because if your belief in your students falters, you end up with negative self-fulfilling prophecies. You end up being reluctant to teach certain topics to your students because of a subconscious assumption that they wont understand it.
Well, of course they wont understand it if its never taught to them.
To illustrate what I mean, have a look at this picture I made for :
One common mantra in teaching is that high expectations yield high outcomes. This is true even if they need to be high expectations with high levels of support .
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