6 Mayıs 2015 Çarşamba


    Autism is a neuro-developmental disorder characterized by;

  •  Impaired social intteraction,
  •  Verbal and non-verbal communication,
  •  Restricted and repetitive behavior.
  •  It is usually signed in the first two years of childhood.

  •  Social interactions and relationship.
    • Significant problems developing nonverbal communication skills, such as eye-to-eye gazing, facial expressions, and body posture.
    • Failure to establish friendships with children the same age.
    • Lack of interest in sharing enjoyment, interests, or achievements with other people.
    • Lack of empathy. People with autism may have difficulty understanding another person's feelings, such as pain or sorrow
  •  Verbal and nonverbal communication.
    •  Delay in, or lack of, learning to talk. As many as 40% of people with autism never speak.

    • Problems taking steps to start a conversation. Also, people with autism have difficulties continuing a conversation after it has begun.
    • Stereotyped and repetitive use of language. People with autism often repeat over and over a phrase they have heard previously (echolalia).
    • Difficulty understanding their listener's perspective. For example, a person with autism may not understand that someone is using humor. They may interpret the communication word for word and fail to catch the implied meaning.
  •  Limited interests in activities or play. 
    • An unusual focus on pieces. Younger children with autism often focus on parts of toys, such as the wheels on a car, rather than playing with the entire toy.
    •  Preoccupation with certain topics. For example, older children and adults may be fascinated by video games, trading cards, or license plates.
    •  A need for sameness and routines. For example, a child with autism may always need to eat bread before salad and insist on driving the same route every day to school.
    •  Stereotyped behaviors. These may include body rocking and hand flapping.
  •   Social behavior/ severe affect isolation.
    •   Ignoring or avoiding others
    •   Lack of attachment behavior
    •   When held, remain stiff, rigid or “go limb”
    •   Does not seek attention
    •   Avoid interactions with others
    •   Their play behavior is inappropriate-self-stimulatory, ritualized
    •   Relate to people as “objects” 
  •  Abnormalities in Response to the Physical Environment
    •  Apparent sensory deficit. Varying reactions to sounds
    •  May cover their ears
    •  May be oversensitive to tickling and under sensitive to pain
    •  Over selectivity interferes learning (/p/ and /b/)
  •   Ritualistic Behaviors and the Insistence on Sameness
    •  Play limited and rigid, rituals
    •  May repeatedly line up pieces, parts of a game, blocks
    •  Organize those pieces into rows of similar shape or color
    •  Attached a particular object-obsession
    •  Unusual preoccupation with numbers, colors, geometric shapes, ort bus routes
    •  Marked resistance to change in their environment
  •   Self-stimulatory behavior
    •  Self-mutilation. Repetitive stereotyped activities (e.g., rocking, flapping their hands); staring at lights; spinning objects
    •  Toe walking, waving objects in front of the eyes)
    •  May repeat the same sounds, words in rapid succession
    •  If allowed they may spend all day with those behaviors
    •  They are unresponsive when they are engaged in such behaviors
  •   Self-injurious behavior
    •  Tantrums and self-mutilatory behaviors.
    •  Hair pulling, face scratching, slapping
    •  Behavioral analysis is important
  •   Speech and Language
    •  Echolalia and psychotic speech. Most are mute; do not speak; echoes of other people’s utterances, immediate or delayed echolalia
    •  Echolalia
      •  Immediate (occurs in unfamiliar settings, unfamiliar tasks)
        •  Who is the president?
        •  What is your name?
      •  Delayed (occur with fearful stimuli, punishing situation)
        •   Kanner -- “Don’t throw the dog off the balcony”
        •   Communicative intent (do you want a cookie?)
    •  Use of pronoun
  •  Intellectual functioning
    •   Data suggesting true intellectual impairment
    •   However, not all autistic children are impaired on the nonverbal tasks (not a general deficiency)
    •   Tendency to score more poorly on abstract conceptual skills
    •   Score more highly on visual-spatial skills, mechanical skills (not the case in MR)
  •  Inappropriate affect
    •  Display inappropriate emotions
    •  Inappropriate fear responses
    •  Afraid of common items
    •  No fear
   Causes: There is not an exact cause of autism which is known but;

  •   Genetics (heredity),
  •   Metabolic or neurological factors,
  •    Certain types of infections, and problems occurring at birth                  are possible causes of autism.
   Diagnosis: After symptoms are noticed, doctors apply some tests to       children. These tests can be;

  •   X-rays and blood tests -- to determine if there is a physical, genetic, or metabolic disorder causing the symptoms.
  •  If physical disorder is not found, child may be referred to a specialist in childhood development disorders like a pediatric neurologist
  •  Does not grow out, persists into adulthood more than 90%of cases
  •  Controversial therapies
    •   Holding therapy
    •   Facilitated communication
    •   Colored lenses
    •   Dolphin-assisted therapy
  •   Intensive early behaviorally therapies (very powerful)
  •   Lovaas Technique (Behavior Modification)
    •   Lovaas and his colleagues (1987) developed an intensive early intervention program. It is a landmark study
    •   One-on-one behavioral treatment
    •   More than 40 hours per week for two years before they reach four
    •   Parent training, mainstreaming into a regular preschool environment
    •   Comparison with control group showed increase (20 IQ points)
  •   The teaching method used in Lovaas technique is Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA)
    •   A systematic approach for designing, conducting, and evaluating instruction based on principles modifies affects of environment on learning
    •   There are mistakes on the application of the technique
  •   Treatment environments:
    •   Classroom
      •   Functional curriculum (teaching behaviors that are frequently required in the natural environment)
    •   Parent training
    •   Residential environments
·         What teacher should do?

  •   Building rapport
 A lack of social understanding is part of the core deficit of the autism spectrum disorders, and children with autism don’t respond to you just because of your social role as a teacher. It is important to connect with your student as an individual, and build rapport so that praise and positive regard from you has value and is meaningful to them.

  •  Make school fun

When you are dealing with a child who has a history of school refusal, it is a good idea to make the transition to school as positive an experience as possible. Ideally, at least for those first few days or weeks, being at school should be more enjoyable for the student than staying at home.

  • Deal with the behaviour first

It is not only worthwhile but necessary to deal with your student’s behaviour problems before you expect her to be able to learn. There are many books out there on behaviour management strategies and positive behaviour support, and the approach you choose will depend on your student’s particular behaviour problems. 

  •   Explain the rules and provide perspective
Don’t take for granted that your student will know or understand the rules, no matter how long he has been in the school system. The phrase “s/he should know better” is not helpful to anyone working with students on the autism spectrum, so try to move away from what you think your student “should” know by now.

  •   Breaks
Ideally, we want to teach a student to ask for a break; however, you can build rapport and trust with a student by identifying his needs and allowing that opportunity for a break before challenging behaviors emerge. These breaks must not be confused with time-outs. Give your student regular breaks throughout the day even if he is calm or participating well—don’t wait until your students get agitated before offering a break. This will help to manage your student’s challenging behavior, and make the school day more manageable and enjoyable for him.

  •   Peer Buddy
 It teaches the peer patience and tolerance, and it gives the peer responsibility for some of the things that you would take care of otherwise, like making sure the student on the autism spectrum has the necessary materials at hand or is following along with the rest of the class in an activity.

  •   Visual Schedule
All kids, especially autistic ones, need a visual schedule of their own. A picture schedule posted on his desk or a written schedule tucked in his pocket will go a long way to reducing your student’s anxiety and making the school experience more pleasant and manageable for him.

  •   A & B Days
Suppose the gradual transition has been a success: you have been able to build rapport, your student associates being at school with having access to preferred activities, you have explained the rules and set up your classroom for success. The A schedule is closer to what the other students are doing, and includes new lessons and challenging activities like group work or cooperative learning tasks. The B schedule is less challenging and includes time to practice learned tasks, opportunities to work independently, and time to engage in preferred activities.  This will allow your student to stay in the rhythm of the classroom, but avoids making the school environment more stressful than she can manage.

  •   Take absenteeism seriously
 If you see issues with your student’s attendance record, take it seriously and work with your team to come up with a plan to address the problem. Your plan to keep your student in school will be individualized to your student’s particular needs, but quick action can make a huge difference when a student on the autism spectrum is beginning to slip through the cracks. (Keller, 2015)    


Keller, L. C.-L. (2015, 5 6). Geneva Center for Autism. Retrieved 5 6, 2015, from Geneva Center for Autism web cite: http://www.autism.net/resources/staff-corner/1716-bringing-them-back.html

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