Support For A Child With Autism At Home And School
by Navneet Anand
On 30 June, 2021
If you have just learned that your child has been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), it throws up many concerns, issues, and fears. Wanting the best for your child and your family and any news to the contrary can catch you unaware and throw you off balance. You will be flooded with tons of information, suggestions, tips, etc. from all quarters leaving you confused. Though ASD is not transient or a condition that will go away with time, there is now a wide range of treatments/therapies that can surmount developmental issues as well as teach important skills to become productive citizens. In this blog, we look at suggestions on how to provide support for a child both at home and in school.
Home - The home is every person's refuge and for an autistic child it should be a safe haven. To begin with, ensuring the house is child proofed from all sharp and harmful objects, and cleaning stuff stored away from easy access. The child should have a bedroom where they can retreat and calm down if overwhelmed. If a separate bedroom is not possible, then a portion of the home can be converted into their "comfy corner" that has their favorite toys, a bean bag, and/or other items that the child is comforted and secure with. You can opt for therapy and respite services for your child as well as home schooling. Therapy at home has many benefits and it ensures that the parents/caregivers are in the loop and can carry forward the therapy in the absence of a therapist. Communication and understanding between family members, relatives, and friends ensure that the child is cared well by everyone who is invested in the child and the family. Last but not least establishing a daily fixed routine that the child is familiar with and can follow with assistance needs to be formulated. It takes time and patience but the fruits borne are rich.
School - If you choose to put your child into a regular school then there are certain things that need to be taken care of. To begin with in depth consultations with the special education director and staff about what to expect and explaining about your child, their specific needs, and special accommodations. An IEP that the school must follow through with will contain all relevant information about your child is a great and necessary resource. Establish a solid method of communication with the school (i.e. weekly progress emails, daily communication binders, monthly meetings, etc.). Be proactive and participate in school activities when appropriate or volunteer to read in your child’s classroom. School is beneficial for reasons beyond academics that include development of interpersonal and social skills. Schedule a meeting to speak with your local school district today!