Thursday, March 28, 2013

Can Autism be cured?

I do not think this will ever be possible.  Now can the Autism ticks and negative parts of Autism be condensed?  I think so, it is all about having the student that has Autism team, work together.  The team includes the student, parents, teachers and friends, all practicing the same principles to help students overcome what might be holding them back.  So, in a sense they can be cured and I bet you could get it to the point where a stranger will not ever know if a student has Autism.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Ways to deal with Ticks

  1. Correct the student as soon as the tick starts.
  2. Give the student an alternate activity.
  3. Give the student a stress ball.
  4. Be patient.
  5. Do not go cold turkey.
  6. Work slowly in introducing an alternate activity.  

Monday, March 25, 2013

ADD and Autism

I have seen from my experience that these two diagnosis go hand in hand.  So, not only do the students have Autism to deal with, but they must deal with ADD.  This can be a challenge for those that try to educate youth with both of these diagnosis.  A lot of times students will say they are thinking while they are zoning out, but if you prompt them usually they get back to the task at hand.  Now sometimes students will use an avoidance behavior e.g. Licking a desk, getting up and walking around.  It is important to help these students with these avoidance behaviors.

As always ask any questions.

Friday, March 22, 2013

How to get a Student with Autism to tie their Shoes?

I had a someone one post the question how to get students to accomplish simple tasks such as tying their shoes or clean the house?  I know from the county that I work in if a student is severely Autistic and they lack the functions of a daily living, they go into a learning for life classroom.  In this classroom they learn life skills and how to be independent.  The students go to this class until they are 21 and while they learn life skills, they also learn how to make a grocery list or balance a check book.  The students are also required to be on some kind of work study while in the program.

Now the next question will be, what does the student do after they are 21?  There are many, many programs out there that help students all through their life with job skills training, such as the ARC of Frederick County,  in Maryland.  This is just one of many programs that can help students with daily living.

Some helpful hints to help a student with Autism learn a simple task.

  1. Use a bigger scale
    1. If a student is having trouble tying their shoes, use bigger shoe laces, and first help them tie shoes that are not on their feet, if you make it like a warmup, it will get their my going.
    2. Incorporate some reward system that makes them want to do chores.
      1. Let them rent a movie or cook their favorite meal if they sweep the floor.
    3. Students love lists, and specific details for example:
      1. Sweep the floor
        1. Go grab the broom from the garage, by the door.
        2. Next get the dust pan from the top of the fridge
        3. Sweep every corner of the kitchen and by the trash can
        4. sweep the dirt into the dust pan
        5. put the dirt from the dust pan into the garbage
        6. put the broom back and dust pan
This should eliminate stress from the student and is just one broad example

Let me know if you would like more?
Can those that have Autism lead a normal life?

Absolutely, now there are different severity of Autism, which I will address in a later post, but all of these students that have Autism have a special gift.  Many students with Autism have a special gift just like you and I that do not have Autism.  Some students can play a musical instrument very well, others can act and you would never know that student has Autism.  I have personally seen when a student that has Autism becomes very focused on something they are interested in, they lose the disability that holds them back in the classroom.  It is absolutely AMAZING.  To see these kids with Autism focus and out perform those without a disability just makes you smile.  The key is to find that one thing the student can excel at and try to make that a career for them.

As always if you would like me to write about a topic leave feedback.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Are students with Autism all the same?

The answer is no.  Every student that has Autism is different in every way.  They are different in the way that they learn, they are different in the way they socialize, they are different in the way that they learn, the list could keep going.  Every student has a different learning style and one teaching strategy may work on one student, while the same teaching strategy does not work on a another student that has Autism.   It is very important to remember that every student that has Autism is different and they are different just like you and I are different, because they are people just like you and I.

If you have questions please post or if you would like me to write on another topic.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The number one way to get through to a student that has Autism?

  1. The number one way to get a student to trust you or to get a student to converse with you is to find out what that student is interested in.  If you show a common interest with a student that has Autism, this will make the student want to talk to you.  This will show the student that you care enough to have a common interest in something that is important to them and you are not just concerned about math and English.  This trust will go a long way in building any relationship with a child that has Autism.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


What is it?  Where did it come from?  Has it always been around?  These are some of the questions people have who do not understand a student that has Autism or has been around a student that has Autism.  We do know that a person with Autism deals with challenges everyday.  Challenges that we may not understand.  I remember watching a documentary on a little girl that had Autism and it made her feel that someone or something was screaming in her head all the time.  Can you imagine that?  That noise going on in your head when you are trying to listen to someone or trying to take notes in class?  I know that growing up having ADHD it was hard enough to focus, but having screaming in my head at the same time would be impossible, but we as society and some teachers expect students with Autism to learn the same way as all the other students.  Well I know from personal experience, that is not possible, every student with Autism is wired differently, because they are not the same person.  We have to adapt how they learn as a person and as a student, the same strategy that you use with one student that has Autism may work or another student with the same disability or it may not?