Educating the Autistic
Making the hard decision to educate your autistic child in mainstream education is never going to be an easy one.
Generally speaking a lot of the methods used in mainstream education will not necessarily suit an autistic youngster.
For example most normally developing children will be able to learn using various methods like for example visually, kinesthetically and using auditory learning.
Where as with the autistic child this may not be the case and there for certain conditions within the mainstream classroom should be taken into account before the autistic youngster starts school.
For example teaching students with autism can be helped by remembering most autistic children will be visual learners and will respond better to lessons that are taught visually.
So by adding pictures, images and visual cues or prompts to lessons especially those lessons that involve class teaching will improve the chances of the autistic student understanding and staying focused.
Most autistic children if in mainstream education will have the ability to cope with the education aspect of mainstream school but will probably struggle with the social, communication, imagination and interaction aspects of a normal classroom.
These are the main areas of difficulty for most autistic youngsters. They lack the social and communication abilities of their normally developing peers, which can lead to social isolation and at times even bullying.
Therefore when making preparations for teaching students with autism autistic educators would be well advised to remember this. As well as making the appropriate changes or modifications to the classroom.
An autistic educators can gain an advantage by taking certain aspects into consideration like making the classroom visually more suitable for the autistic student, by this I mean adding appropriate visual aids and prompts around the class, like a picture of the toilet over the bathroom a coat above their coat peg and so on by doing this you will relieve a lot of the anxieties the autistic student may have.
Another good idea would be the introduction of autism visual aids for the autistic youngster like visual schedules and social skills stories.
Both the visual schedule and social skills stories will help the autistic student find repetition, instruction, and structure all things an autistic student will need to be able to learn effectively.
The autism social stories will act as a guide, friend, instruction and coping method. Evidence proves autism social skills stories are well placed in the autism classroom and can provide clarity to those situations like recess, break time, dinner time and lessons that the autistic student may struggle to cope with.
To download autism social stories for helping autistic students and for helping prepare for teaching autistic students visit:
www.autismsocialstories.com/school and download 48 autism classroom social stories for autistic students.
jANINE - All social skills stories for autism classrooms as well as other social skills stories and resources can be downloaded and implemented with our full support from www.autismsocialstories.org.uk