Archive for the ‘autistic infant’ Category

Autistic children in preschool

Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

Many parents of autistic children feel confused and helpless wondering how to communicate with their child and ensure their child has the opportunity to reach their full potential.


Research does suggest early intervention strategies for autistic children are beneficial, and that enrollment for autistic children in preschool can also help the child.

 

Your G.P. will be able to point you in the right direction with regard to early intervention strategies for autistic children.

 

Many parents of autistic children opt to place their child in mainstream preschool.  It is always a good idea to make an appointment to visit the preschool and discuss your child with the teacher to ensure she is aware of what autism is and that appropriate provisions are in place before your child begins.


If you are the teacher of an inclusive preschool a good place for you to start will be with the introduction of appropriate visual support tools for preschool children with autism. 


There are many visual support tools available today, with PECS, flash cards and social stories being among the most significant visual support tools for preschool children with autism that are available to you. All of which can now be sourced directly from the internet, as well as from OT and the speech therapist.

 

Using visual support tools for preschool children with autism do not need any form of formal training, sites offering good support and visual tools can be visited at:

http://www.autismsocialstories.com/visual_aids

http://www.autismsocialstories.com

 

Personally we recommend the use of both flash cards and social stories combined. By placing visual supports like flash cards around the preschool you can help the preschool autistic infant quickly identify certain areas, for example a picture of the toilet above the bathroom allows the child to find the toilet without causing the stress and anxiety. This is repeated around preschool in areas the child will need to identify like the pencil tray, sink, coast pegs etc.

 

Social stories for the preschool autistic infant are short descriptive visual scripts used as a tool to teach and improve social and communication skills. The preschool autistic infant may have difficulties interacting in play, or understanding make believe, ask for a drink etc. A social story will help the child address these difficulties.

 

Social stories are much like a comic strip showing the skill or behavior in visual images with age appropriate text always in first person and from the child’s point of view.

 

To find out more about social stories for the preschool autistic infant visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com/preschool

 

 

 

Improve play skills in children with autism

Friday, April 16th, 2010

Play is believed to be an essential element in the development of any child. It is believed that through spontaneous play and exploratory play children begin to make sense of the world around them.

 

In preschool infants with autism the ability to learn through play is missing, this is common in autism and mainly due to the child’s autistic social skills deficits.

 

Generally most children with autism spectrum disorder have issues with social interactions, due mainly to social skills deficits which are present in all autistic individuals.

 

For parents of children with autism, “play” may look very different to that of a typically developing child.

 

An example of “play” that may be presented by an autistic infant could be, the child who loves cars, but the only thing he really enjoys doing with the cars is spinning the wheels. Or maybe your autistic infant loves Lego, but all he really does is line up or sort the Lego into colours.

 

Research suggests that through play children learn social skills such as sharing, cooperation and taking turns. It is also believed that through play children learn social and communication skills, build friendships and self-esteem.

 

Therefore parents of children with autism wanting to improve the play skills in their autistic infant, can benefit from using autistic tools and methods that help with teaching and improving social and communication skills. For example it is widely believed that visual supports such as visual support cards, PECS and social stories have great benefits.

 

For many parents with preschool infants with autism social stories are already a good resource. Social stories are used as a visual framework for any skill or behaviour that needs improving or mastering such as “play skills”


A social story is a short visual representation that uses first person language and follows a specific formula. Social stories were first developed by therapist Carol Gray to help her communicate with the children she was working with.

 

Since then social stories have evolved and are now widely used as a tool to help parents and teachers teach and improve social and communication skills in children with autism spectrum disorder.

 

A social story can be quickly and easily adapted to suit and child, a social story should be written by parents or professionals that have been properly trained to write them.

 

To find out how social stories can help improve play skills in children with autism spectrum disorder as well as how to implement and use social stories with preschool infants with autism visit:

http://www.autismsocialstories.com/preschool


Alternatively social stories for children with autism can be found at: http://www.autismsocialstories.com

http://www.autismsocialstories.com/school

http://www.autismsocialstories.com/potty