How to support children with autism in the classroom
I started working with children with autism because I could see their frustration with not being understood by their support workers, educators, and teachers.
My first client with autism was a young man in his 20's who demonstrated aggressive behaviours with meals, daily care activities, and while travelling on the bus. When I went to see his home for a behavioural assessment I saw 4 very blank walls, his mattress was on the floor, his window was taped shut with a piece of cardboard blocking the sunlight, and there was not one single book or toy in his room.
Understandably (to a point) his support workers had taken away all of the objects in his room because he would throw objects at his support workers while they were dressing him. However, no one thought to replace his room with soft toys, or soft furnishings that would make him feel calm and safe in his bedroom.
From this point on I was determined to ask workers and leadership teams the hard questions:
* What daily activities do you have in place to bring a good quality of life to this person with autism?
* How are you managing behaviours of concern positively?
* What selfcare are you providing to your team?
* How are you bringing calm and a sense of security to your client's day every single day?
It amazed me how often workers were so anxious and scared of the behaviour, that they hadn't been given the support or resources to build positive connections with the individuals that they were working with.
In the videos below I share my tips for teachers when supporting children with autism in the classroom.
I will be creating an online course for support workers later this year, as I am also passionate about advocating the right of adults with a disability.
Want to learn more?
Enrol in my online supporting children with autism course