If you have decided that your autistic child will attend mainstream education, you should first consider whether the mainstream school of your choice can meet their special educational needs.
Many techniques used in mainstream education will not necessarily suit a child with special needs such as autism.
Generally children have three basic learning styles;
Visual learners - this group will learn better through visual methods like pictures, images and by watching demonstrations.
Auditory learners - this group learn best through listening, for example to tapes, recordings and to explanation given verbally like lectures etc.
Kinesthetic learners - this group learn best through movement, practice for example they learn through imitation watching and doing or repeating what they have just witnessed.
With normally developing children they can embrace two or even three of these styles easily, for example they may be a visual learner (prefer to learn visually) but will equally be able to process and learn information in other ways like auditory and or kinesthetically.
But when considering teaching autistic students it is a good idea to remember that generally autistic children are normally visual learners and will not respond so well to auditory lessons and group discussions etc.
Therefore teaching autistic children needs to be modified slightly to embrace the visual learning skills, for example use more visual aids like pictures, images and visual prompts.
An autistic educator can help his/her autistic student by creating a more suitable atmosphere and take autism classroom accommodations into consideration
For example what do I mean by autism classroom accommodations? Well put simply the layout of the classroom, the feel and atmosphere, is it noisy, hard to navigate, dark, light etc..
A good starting point when considering teaching autistic students is placing visual prompts or cues around the classroom, for example remembering autistic children are visual learners, a picture of a chair and desk above their work station, to show this is where they will be expected to sit.
A picture of a toilet above the bathroom, a picture of their coat peg above where there coat will hang and so on..
Generally autism classroom accommodations will also include visual prompts such a visual timetable/schedule, mini schedule if needed, now and next board if needed and of cause probably the most important of all social skills stories.
These are visual cues demonstrating lessons, skills, activities, events and situations that the autistic student will encounter each day.
For example autism social skills stories are used to show, teach and help the autistic child rehearse prepare and be more comfortable with the days planned activities and lessons, like recess for example suitable autism social skills stories explain what recess is and what will happen as well as the expected rules, giving the autistic child coping methods which can cut down anxieties.
They can also be used to teach vital social skills like using the toilet, eating, sharing, teasing and joining in play.
All autistic educators can benefit from a strong back up of suitable autism social skills stories to help them when teaching autistic students.
You can download autism social skills stories for the autism classroom and the autistic student from
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Tags: , autism classroom, autism classroom accommodations, autism social skills, autism social skills stories, autism social stories, autistic child, autistic children, autistic children visual learners, autistic educator, autistic student, Social skills stories, teaching autistic students