Every child deserves the support he needs to thrive. Providing that support takes patience, strategy, and even a little creativity. Just like anyone else, children with autism need help to grow up to reach their full potential. There are several ways to help them do so.
The first way to support a child with autism is to LISTEN to both the verbal and nonverbal ways they communicate. Nonverbal cues come in the form of facial expressions, gestures, and body language. A child with autism may not be able to verbally communicate his feelings, but by paying attention to how he reacts to certain situations can tell you a lot about ways to help him.
Another way to support someone on the autism spectrum is to give them the opportunity to be independent. Children with autism are often surrounded by people helping them whether it be their parents or classroom aides. However, they need to build confidence in their own abilities to do things for themselves.
Support a child with autism by seeing their interests as strengths. Some people might view a child’s tendency to only talk about numbers and letters, complete endless puzzles, or constantly organize the house as obsessions or “stims”. In his book Uniquely Human Barry Prizant positively refers to them as enthusiasms. He suggests using these enthusiasms to motivate them to learn and communicate with others. Barry Prizant recollects a story of a young boy with autism who was enthusiastic about license plates, but rarely socialized at school. A teacher gave him a project to take pictures of the license plates in the school parking lot and interview the people who they belonged to. He began talking to teachers and staff members and even gave a presentation in front of his class. His teacher turned his enthusiasm into a learning opportunity, while helping him build social connections.
Whether you are a parent, teacher, or therapists, working together as a cohesive team is vital in providing the best support possible. Constant communication and teamwork about a child’s needs and progress creates a consistent and supportive environment for a child with autism to thrive in.
Experience the new idea of teamwork in ABA therapy for children with autism – get to know the ABA DrOmnibus App, first ABA Resource App in the Google Ecosystem, designed for specialists, with the function of Therapy Plus.
The Pro Therapy Plus version is designed to track a student’s progress, while the student learns basic vocabulary, number identification and how to distinguish emotions on the ABA DrOmnibus App. The reports are accessible between therapists (BCBAs, RBTs and other Specialists) and parents, and helps make homework assignments easier. The student’s statistics are especially useful for creating Early Learning Individualized Education Plan (IEP) goals, which further improves the ABA therapy with ASD children.
Find fun ways for them to learn. Interactive applications such as the ABA DrOmnibus App are enjoyable ways to supplement therapy. Children can play without even realizing that they are leaning important skills.
What are the benefits for professionals and parents?
Whatever strategies you choose to implement, focus on treating a child with autism as an individual. Everyone needs support, but the type of help needed may come in different forms depending on the person. Take the time to listen and pay attention to each child to fully understand what they need. It might take some trial and error, but every second you put into understanding and helping a child with autism also supports their future.
Amber Tanski is a Content Marketing Specialist for DrOmnibus, a company creating ABA DrOmnibus – Resources App – All in one tool with a direct focus on resources for therapy, including baseline assessment, in-built and personalized ABA programs, graphs and video modeling. After graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology, Amber has worked with a diverse population through her job as a Line Therapist for young children with Autism, being a Personal Trainer for a girl with Asperger’s Syndrome and working as a Personal Care Assistant for a woman with Muscular Dystrophy. She currently develops content for DrOmnibus utilizing her unique experience.
Prizant, B. M., PHD. (2015). Uniquely Human: A Different Way of Seeing Autism. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster Paperbacks.
*Paid content by DrOmnibus.