Teaching students with autism can be intimidating for many. It can be challenging, but it can also be one of the most memorable and rewarding teaching experiences that you will ever have. When teaching an autistic student, you will want to learn the best tips to educate them.
5 Powerful Tips for Teaching Students with Autism
So, if you are looking for ways to get better at teaching autism children, here are the five most powerful tips for teaching students with autism.
Avoid Overwhelming Sensory Stimuli
One of the most important things to keep in mind is that sensory overload such as bright lights, loud noises, strong smells, and other similar factors can make it very difficult for a child with autism to remain calm and focused.
Use cool and calm colors in the learning area and avoid covering the walls with too many things. Whether a classroom or room at home, the learning environment needs to be both welcoming and peaceful.
Visual Schedules is Extremely Beneficial
As often visual learners, students with autism benefit greatly from the use of visual schedules and cues. Visuals can serve as useful reminders regarding classroom rules, where things are meant to be placed at the end of class, and resources that students take advantage of during classroom hours.
Visual Schedules are incredibly beneficial to autistic children. These schedules can be either in pictures or written language. The benefits include promoting independence, relieving anxiety, and help to avoid power struggles. Plus, the benefits have been documented time and time again!
Check out our free autism resource library to check out our visual schedules for morning and bedtime routines.
Predictability is Key
Anxiety can be a significant reason why a child with autism might struggle to keep up in class. For that reason, having a predictable lesson plan and style of teaching is a great way to help your autistic student.
With less worry about what will come next in class, your student will have a better chance to remain calm and focused on the matters at hand that you are trying to teach. It also gives them a better chance to use their learned coping techniques, like the ones taught through Mightier.
Make sure to give your student a schedule that they can follow. If unpredictable changes happen, make sure to let your child know as soon as you are aware. While unpredictable transitions are hard, they are better handled with direct and straightforward communication from caregivers.
Focus on social skills
As a teacher of an autistic child, lessons in the classroom are not limited to book learning. Autistic children often struggle to understand social cues and norms. Teaching children with autism also includes helping your student learn these skills and build relationships.
To do this, you will need to have a few tools in your toolbelt. When your student does well in a social situation, reinforce with praise (and concrete reinforcement if needed) to shape positive social behavior.
Additionally, you can practice social situations directly with your student. You can model social interactions by taking turns.
Social stories are great to help your autistic child learn social rules and expectations. These work best when custom made to represent your student. Here are some great tips to learn how to write social stories for any situations
Teaching Students with Autism
The final tip for teaching students with autism is the most important. You must care. With love and patience from you, your autistic students will thrive greatly! To learn more about autism, check out our autism parenting section for some fantastic articles!