What to Remember When Teaching Autistic Children
Good teachers are those who help children with autism achieve success. They must be able to help their pupils overcome autism. Teaching autistic children isn't just limited on the patients; teachers must also interact with the parents and other family members.
Parents need to be aware of their children's case and they must have special participation in the planning of the instructions and curriculum and in monitoring the progress of their child. If teachers let the parents do their share in the learning process, the child will get not just good school experience but also better and more productive learning experiences at home.
Here are some things teachers have to bear in mind when teaching children with autism:
1. Long strings or series of verbal instructions must be avoided.
As a teacher, you must always bear in mind that autistic individuals find it hard to instill the sequence in their memory. So if he or she can read, just write down the instructions on a sheet of paper. If you are giving directions involving more than three steps, write them down.
2. Most autistic people are visual thinkers.
Many people with autism think in pictures, not in language. So if you want to make them familiar with some words, use pictures to demonstrate such words to the child.
3. Autistic children usually get stuck on a certain subject such as maps or cars.
Since fixations on some things just can't be avoided, better utilize them to encourage school work.
4. Utilize concrete visual techniques to teach children with number concepts.
In teaching autistic children with numbers, it would be better to use visual methods such as math toys.
5. Protect children with autism from sounds that usually hurt their ears.
Loud sounds irritate autistic children, so protect them by avoiding things that produce such sounds. Don't let the child have fear on the sounds he or she doesn't like because it can make him or her behave badly.
6. If the autistic child is hyperactive, let him wear a padded weighted vest.
Such apparel help calm autistic children that's hyperactive. The garment gives pressure that calms the person's nervous system. It would be better to allow the child to wear the vest for twenty minutes and take it off for a few minutes. This way, the nervous system is prevented from getting used to the said outfit.
7. Most children with autism have troubles controlling the motor in their hands.
It is for this reason that most autistic children have messy handwriting. Oftentimes, they find it hard to achieve good handwriting and this can totally upset them. So to avoid or at least lessen such frustration, better help the child find pleasure in learning by letting him or her type on the computer.
8. Make sure the child's desk is near the window.
Fluorescent lights and some visual distractions bother autistic individuals. So when teaching autistic children, avoid illuminating the room by means of fluorescent lights and let them sit near the window.
9. Children with autism are oftentimes good at art, drawing, and computer.
If you notice that the child is good in a certain field, encourage them to use and improve their talents.
10. There are autistic children who easily learn how to read using phonics while some learn by memorizing the words.
This is also an important consideration in teaching autistic children. Since they learn reading the easy way through the help of phonics, then teach them phonics rule.