Topic: Strategies for helping students with autism
Date published: 5/17/23
Listen to the full podcast here
In this podcast, Dr. Levy discusses strengths and weaknesses of students with autism and how to best help them.
Students with autism have varying types of challenges. Some are nonverbal and struggle significantly to communicate, while others are fully verbal and have difficulty with skills such as social communication, abstract language, and changes to their routine. There are others that fall somewhere in the middle, in different ranges of the autism spectrum.
Many students with autism, however, struggle with similar skills. They often have difficulty with change and benefit from being made aware of their routines and schedules ahead of time, along with any changes to these routines. They often thrive with a visual schedule that they can see, including how their day will start and what they will do throughout the day, broken down into increments. Many have trouble with language and communication and often have difficulty participating in classroom discussions. They tend to have trouble picking up on nonverbal cues and sustaining friendships. Many struggle in environments that have a lot of sensory stimuli, including loud noises and bright lights. Read more at Differentiating Between ADHD and Autism in Children.
At EBL Coaching, when we provide special education tutoring to students with autism, we take these characteristics into consideration when creating individualized learning plans for each student. We often create visual schedules for each tutoring session and limit sensory stimuli. We also target their academic needs during the tutoring using research-based techniques. For instance, many students with autism struggle with reading comprehension – especially inferencing and abstract language. They may also have difficulty expressing their thoughts on paper in an organized fashion when writing and struggle with their executive functioning skills. To remediate these challenges, we create individualized special education tutoring plans using multisensory techniques that are customized to the needs of each student. This type of instruction can truly help students with autism make significant progress with their academic and language skills.