Posts Tagged ‘Children on the autism spectrum’

Strategies that help autistic children

Wednesday, February 7th, 2018

ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) is an umbrella term used to describe a range of developmental disorders such as autism, atypical autism, high-functioning autism, Asperger syndrome, and pervasive developmental disorder (PDD).

Strategies that help autistic childrenGenerally a child with autism will have social skills deficits in social interaction skills, communication skills and imagination skills. Some children on the autism spectrum may also have difficulties with sensory processing issues, for example – sight, sound, touch, smell and taste.

Difficulties in these areas mean that a child with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) will probably have difficulties understanding and following instructions.

A child with autism may understand simple commands but may have difficulties with long or complicated instructions.

For many children on the autism spectrum shifting their attention from one activity to another can be difficult and cause anxieties, generally an autistic child will need time to process given instructions.

For parents and teachers this can be frustrating, however repeating the instruction is not going to help, this will just add to the child’s anxieties, the more you talk the more pressure the autistic child is going to feel under and the more confused they will become.

All autistic children will struggle to understand spoken or written instruction this is mainly due to their social skills deficits which as we learnt earlier are common to autism. Communication difficulties are probably one of the major struggles parents face with their child.

For children with autism communication difficulties are common, a child on the spectrum may fail to recognise nonverbal communication such as facial expression or body language and may not recognise nonverbal communication such as gesturing or pointing etc.

However there are strategies that help autistic children learn appropriate social interaction, communication and imagination skills.

For example PECS, flash cards and social skills stories are all strategies that help autistic children learn vital every day and less common social interaction skills, address communication difficulties and help develop imagination skills.

The purpose or goal of a social story is to provide the child with autism with a prompt for socially appropriate behaviour, help them become familiar with a situation, and to respond appropriately.

The social story is also used as a transition tool, helping the child with autism move on, help prepare them for a new experience, change to routine and prevent negative or inappropriate reactions that stem from a lack of social understanding.

A social story is a short story that has been written in a specific style and format. That uses visual images much like a comic script that gives the child with autism information through pictures and text providing clear, concise and accurate information about what is happening.

The social skills story answers the “wh” questions ~ who, what, why, where and when as well as giving an insight into the emotions, thoughts and feelings of others and giving appropriate responses to social skills and situations the child with autism may otherwise be struggling with or may find confusing.

To obtain social skills stories that are used as strategies that help autistic children learn appropriate social interaction, communication and imagination skills visit http://www.autismsocialstories.com

Social perception in autism

Monday, February 5th, 2018

Generally most children on the autism spectrum will appear aloof even rude at times, free of pretences, oblivious to public opinion and not concerned with making a good impression. Children on the spectrum are honest, if you do not want a straight forward answer don’t ask, they will not pretend and will not care if they hurt your feelings by being honest.

For children with autism a lack of social skills can lead in many cases to bullying, isolation and ridicule. A child on the spectrum will not worry about how others perceive them or whether they are considered cool or not by their peers.

A lack of social perception in autism can be helped by using supports designed to teach children on the spectrum why we need social skills, what they are and how to conduct themselves.

Most children with ASD are visual thinkers and learners and will respond better to visual information, such as visual autistic supports. There are many visual autistic supports available to use, but probably the most effective visual support for children on the spectrum is social stories.

Social perception in autism is a problem. Social skills stories tackle the “wh” questions – who, where, why, when and what as well as give an insight into the thoughts, emotions and feelings of others.

For example: You’re at a friend’s house, your friend’s son is playing nicely with his toy, but your son wants that toy. You have tried to tell him to wait, you turn your back and there is a yell! Your friend’s son is crying nursing a bitten arm, while your son is happily playing with the toy. Your son has not waited to share or asked nicely, his social awareness skills are missing, he wanted the toy therefore he took the toy.

What do you do? Stay in the home and never go out? NO of cause not, you teach your child on the spectrum appropriate social skills. Easier said than done? MAYBE…But introducing visual autistic supports such as social skills stories can really make a difference.

A social skills story is aimed specifically at children on the spectrum, written by experts, needs no formal training to use, can be printed out for ease of use and convenience, will slip into your bag to take with you while out. A social story can be edited and personalized to suit your child’s ability and language recognition.

Social skills stories are normally visually rich using visual imaged to show your child with first person text how and why we do what we do or why we use certain behaviours.

Social skills stories are used widely by parents, teachers, care givers and other professionals to teach a child on the spectrum appropriate social skills, they are also used to aid communication difficulties and to reduce negative behaviours such as biting, stimming, asking inappropriate questions and so on.

Social skills stories can also be used to help prepare for changes to routines, unexpected events or happenings, hygiene issues, in fact almost all social, communication and imagination issues can be dealt with by using social stories as a strategy.

To learn more about how to use social skills stories as a strategy when teaching social perception in autism visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com

A diagnosis of autism

Tuesday, September 26th, 2017

What do I do after my child receives a diagnosis of autism?
a diagnosis of autism Autism Spectrum Disorder is possibly one of the most frequently diagnosed developmental disorders. There is still as yet no cure for autism and research into its cause continues.

So what do I do after my child receives a diagnosis of autism?

Receiving a diagnosis of autism for your child is not easy. Typically a child with autism will have what is known as the “triad of autistic impairments” these are impairments in social, communication, imagination and interaction skills.

So what does the triad of autistic impairments mean to your child?

Children on the autism spectrum have problems socially interacting and will not normally develop socially in the same way as a “typically developing” child. The child with autism will almost certainly lack the ability to distinguish and read body language and facial expression.

This is often referred to as “mind blindness” or the “theory of mind”. Normally developing children learn how to distinguish the thoughts and feelings of other people as they grow by people watching they begin to distinguish certain expressions, postures and mannerisms this ability is somewhat diminished or completely missing in children on the autism spectrum.

Typically children are by nature very curious and will want to please, copy, mimic and learn social behaviours. The child with autism will probably lack this normal instinct and will need direct instruction for social and communication skills.

Probably one of the most important issues parents have difficulties with after a diagnosis of autism is their fear that their child will not be acknowledged socially and will struggle to make friends.

There is however treatments and therapies available to parents, guardians, teachers and so on, which can be found on the internet such as social skills stories for autism.

Social skills stories for autism are designed to help children with autism gain knowledge of and remember social and communication skills from basic every day life skills such as washing, brushing teeth and using the toilet to more complex skills like accepting a new baby into the family, making friends, buying new shoes, even attending the hospital or dentist.

The use of autism social stories on a regular basis to teach and re-enforce appropriate social skills and behaviours to children on the autism spectrum has been proven to work.

Written by experts, teachers and parents using appropriate language the social skills story will help explain the why, what, where and when and how to the child with autism.

To find out more about social skills stories for autism like autism and making friends visit www.autismsocialstories.com where you can download various social skills stories for autism

What do I do after my child receives a diagnosis of autism?

Monday, January 27th, 2014

Autism Spectrum Disorder is probably one of the most frequently diagnosed developmental disorders with 1 in every 150 children born receiving a diagnosis of autism. There is still as yet no cure for autism and research into its cause continues.

 

So what do I do after my child receives a diagnosis of autism?

Your child receiving a diagnosis of autism is probably going to be difficult to accept, the autism child will certainly have what is known as the “triad of autistic impairments” which are impairments in social, communication, imagination and interaction skills.

 

So what does the triad of autistic impairments mean to your child?

Typically children on the autism spectrum have problems socially interacting and will not normally develop socially in the same way as a “typically developing” child the child with autism will almost certainly lack the ability to distinguish and read body language and facial expression.

 

This is often referred to as “mind blindness” or the “theory of mind”. Normally developing children learn how to distinguish the thoughts and feelings of other people as they grow by people watching they begin to distinguish certain expressions, postures and mannerisms this ability is somewhat diminished or completely missing in children on the autism spectrum.

 

Normally developing children are by nature very curious and will want to please, copy, mimic and learn social behaviours. The child with autism lacks this normal instinct and will need direct instruction of social and communication skills.

 

Probably one of the most important issues parents have difficulties with after a diagnosis of autism is their fear that their child will not be acknowledged socially and will struggle to make friends.

 

There are however treatments and therapies available to parents, guardians, teachers etc. which can be found on the internet such as social skills stories for autism.

 

First developed almost twenty years ago social skills stories for autism are designed to help children with autism gain knowledge of and remember social and communication skills from basic every day life skills such as washing, brushing teeth and using the toilet to more complex skills like accepting a new baby into the family, making friends, buying new shoes, even attending the hospital or dentist.

 

As a general rule all parents, teachers, guardians, teachers and care givers use autism social stories on a regular basis to teach and re-enforce appropriate social skills and behaviours to children on the autism spectrum.

 

Written by experts, teachers and parents using appropriate language always from the child’s point of view, using first person text and visually rich social stories for autism explain the why, what, where and when and how to the autism child.

 

To find out more about social skills stories for autism like autism and making friends visit www.autismsocialstories.com and obtain info and downloads of various social skills stories for autism

Autism and play in preschool children

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

In a study of preschool children with autism spectrum disorder it was found that this set of children were disadvantaged in the way they play.

Characteristically preschool children with autism spectrum disorder find it difficult to play as a normally developing child would. This lack of play skills can aggravate the child’s social isolation from their peers, and only underline their differences from other children.

So what is play?

  • Play should be fun and enjoyable.
  • Play should have no set goals imposed on it from outside influences; it should be imaginative and sometimes impulsive.
  • play should be spontaneous and voluntary
  • play should involve some kind of active involvement on the part of the player
  • play can be solitary or enjoyed with friends

The Development of play

Children’s play should go through a number of developmental stages

  • Sensory motor play, stimulation from objects, for example a baby gym.
  • exploratory and manipulative play, for example Lego
  • physical play including rough and tumble
  • social play, playing with their peers, playground play
  • pretend play or make believe

Why do children need to play?

Play allows our children to learn new skills and practice them in safe supportive surroundings.

Sensory motor play teaches babies and young infants about their own bodies and about objects in their immediate surroundings. The bright colored toys stimulate the babies mind and he/she will reach out to grab and explore the toy.

Manipulative and exploratory play teaches older infants about various objects, what they do; sound like, how they react together and how they influence the world they are living in.

Physical play, rough and tumble play, teaches toddlers and pre-school children some gross motor skills, which will provide them with the experiences of whole body interaction with others.

Social play is vast right from the mother and baby interactions to children’s make believe play, for example, playing mummy’s and daddy’s, which teaches children about social relationships in the world they live in.

Typically the autistic child on the other hand likes repetition and things to stay the same, and may display stereotypical, repetitive and stimming behaviors, mostly their play will be solitary.

Preferring their own company to that of others, an autistic child will find interactive, make believe play strange and may not understand the reasons for this kind of play.

So how do you help your Autistic child play?

One method it through direct teaching, typically children on the autism spectrum do not learn play skills naturally and like social and communication skills direct teaching is often needed.

One method of direct teaching for children on the autism spectrum is the use of social stories for autistic children.

Significantly social stories for autistic children can be implemented to help teach and re-enforce play skills and other skills the child with autism struggles with.

Social stories are short explanations using visual images, much like a comic script to detail the skill or situation from the child’s own point of view and in a manner that they will understand.

Social stories for autistic children follow set patterns, are generally easy to use and implement need no training to use and will be editable making them ideal for all.

To view and learn more about how social stories visit:

www.autismsocialstories.com

Using social stories to teach social skills to kids with ASD

Wednesday, May 30th, 2012

Commonly children on the autism spectrum HAVE difficulties WITH AND IN social situations.

The social awareness skills we take for granted – the ability to “read” peoples body and facial expression ARE NOT skills that children on the autism spectrum learn naturally.

A lack of social awareness skills makes it difficult for these children to make and keep friends and can lead to social isolation.

However, using social stories to teach social skills to kids with ASD has proven effective. The social story is typically visual, and as we know the majority of children on the autism spectrum are indeed visual thinkers and learners.

Therefore this type of teaching aid is going to work and give better results.

The social skills story can be adapted to suit all ages and abilities and there is NO formal training needed to be able to use this autism resource.

Introducing social stories

Typically using social stories to teach social skills to kids with ASD is beneficial in all area of social awareness skills teaching for example: making friends, sharing, calming down, Visiting the Dentist and so on…

·         The social story uses first person text and visual images to describe the skill or situation from the child’s own perspective

·         The social story breaks the situation/skill down into smaller easier to understand sections

·         The social skills story acts like a visual plan or framework

·         The social skills story answers the “wh” questions – who, what. why, when and where

·         The social story also explains “HOW”

·         Social stories should aim to also give an insight into the thoughts, feelings and emotions of others

·         Social stories should offer possible outcomes

For the vast majority of kids with autis,  social awareness skills ARE very difficult to learn and direct teaching is generally needed, this is what the social skills story WILL DO!

Parents and teachers report success in teaching social awareness skills and a drop in communication difficulties once social skills stories have been introduced.

To learn more about how social stories work and gain immediate access to 100 social skills stories downloads visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com/stories.html