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Inclusive Education: Supporting Students with Autism in Mainstream Classroom

 

 

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 1 in every 36 children is born with autism. By late 2023, 1% of people in the world had different autistic disorders. Mo

st schools lack a specialized curriculum for people with this disorder. Unfortunately, they have many learning difficulties that include poor communication and information processing. 

They may be distracted easily or forget things fast. Educators need to create strategies for supporting autistic students to learn smoothly. They need to limit the curriculum load and offer incentives where necessary. College education should be inclusive and support students with varying learning needs. 

 

Study support for autistic students in the classroom

Students with autism disorders can be great artists or scientists. Educators need to exercise patience with them and help them learn. Their learning curve might be uneven and the teacher might feel challenged sometimes. The educator needs to learn together with the students to obtain the best outcomes. The role of the teacher in the classroom is more important than the study books and other educational materials they might have. It may include the following. 

  • Understanding the unique needs of every learner. The teacher needs to know what each student likes or dislikes. It helps them to offer them the necessary support for education.
  • Creating a conducive environment for education. The educator needs to ensure the learning environment for students with the disorder is friendly. It helps reduce the chances of stress. 
  • Understanding the medical needs of every learner. Students with autism have different medical or therapy needs. Educators need to consult with parents or the doctor to understand them. 
  • Understand the learning curve of each student. The degree of autism disorder is different for each student. Some of them may learn fast but others might need more time. The college teacher must understand the study curves for them all. 

Part of learning in college involves writing. The writer needs to understand how the reader will review the text and write to them. For an autistic learner, it might be harder to imagine what other people think about a topic. To write essays that resonate with readers, a student can place orders with services that help students with writing. They can pay for essay writing by connecting with writers experienced in different essay types. The writers ensure the learners meet deadlines and the essays capture the reader’s view to help the learner earn higher marks. 

Admitting students with autism in the mainstream classroom

The learning support for students with autism begins at the admission phase. Parents should fill in the form and declare the condition of the applicant. They may attach reports from the doctor and any special medical needs they require. On the other hand, parents need to prepare the students psychologically to join higher education. The preparation should not begin after the final exam but several months earlier. 

The parent might worry about what might happen to their autistic child once they join college. It is the role of the school to eliminate the fears and give parents the necessary affirmation. The college needs to create special standards for admission tests and forms. They need to prepare a team of educators who will be handling the learners. 

There is also a need to prepare the rest of the college student community to receive the new special needs learners. The immediate action after joining is to make the learner comfortable. They might undergo stress due to changes in environment and routine. Educators need to help them feel they are in the right place. They need to settle soon to pave the way for the lessons to begin. 

Lesson and curriculum plan for the students 

Lesson plans in college need to meet the learning needs of autistic students at the personal level. The plan needs to cover both short-term and long-term needs. It should be guided by the curriculum and offer an outline of every skill that needs to be taught. 

The educator may gather insights from plans used in other institutions. Many resources in the school and the Department of Education website can help the educator with an effective teaching plan. It should include study support strategies for autistic students. The strategies include the following.

  • Ways to minimize the academic load

    . Learners with autism might not effectively handle learning loads. When they get too much to handle, it could cause stress or resistance to learning. 

  • Strategies to use study visuals

    A learner with autism might have comprehension challenges. Incorporating visuals in the teaching plan can help them grasp the concepts better. 

  • Include breaks between lessons

     Concentration for the learners might be poor. Keeping them in the classroom for 40 minutes could be counterproductive. Educators need to include multiple break sessions during learning. 

  • Spread awareness about autism in the college

    The entire student community needs to understand the challenges and strengths of autism. Teachers need to create an awareness plan and implement campaigns to help the entire school support the special needs learners. 

  • Have a plan for establishing a routine

    Autistic learners might feel confused when they fail to follow a specific routine. You create a friendlier learning environment for them by establishing a routine. Follow routine even in teaching and have a visual table that they can follow. 

Materials and extra support that enhance learning

Educators can get many autism resources that support learning. They could be textual-based or visual-based materials. The teacher needs to know how to leverage each resource offered to deliver the best teaching outcomes. Here are different materials that support learning for autistic learners. 

Books

Apart from the curriculum books, there are books specially designed for autism learners. They may include books for fun or for encouraging activities and socialization. Provide books to help the students survive and adjust in their freshman year. Offer information for navigating the college or a guide to health. 

Visuals

Offer visual support as much as you can to make concepts clear. They offer information that can be retained or memorized with ease. Choose visuals that resonate with the needs of the special learners. They may include diagrams and charts that communicate specific messages.

Homework

Homework can help the student learn better. However, it should be given at the individual level. If the autism level of the child cannot allow them to handle homework, it should be avoided. 

Priming

Priming is a strategy that helps autism learners learn coordination and speech. It is applied to prepare the learner psychologically to get ready for an upcoming lesson. Educators need to use the exact materials they will use during the lesson. It lets the learner recall and comprehend the lesson better. 

Therapy

The learners need therapy support at different levels but it is necessary to them all. It includes guided exercises involving the entire classroom or the individual learner. The teacher needs to consult with a doctor or the parents before providing this support. 

Group work

A study report by the University of Portsmouth shows that most autistic students love group work. It supports socialization and builds cohesion among the learners. The strategy can be used to support learning with language or communication challenges. 

Tools

Students with autism could get overwhelmed by different factors. Tools such as gadgets and technologies can help them get organized. Some tools such as alarms can help them awaken at routine times. Computers can help them improve their writing and creativity. Organize with the college and parents to get the relevant tools for education. They may include daily planners and reminders, or writing tools. 

Conclusion

College study might be hard for autistic learners. The right support offered to them can create a conducive environment for them to learn. Educators need to understand the needs of individual learners. They must offer support based on their special needs. Additionally, they need to create a teaching plan that favors learners at a personalized level. The plan may include allowing breaks or availing therapy at schools. Educators need to consult parents and the student doctor in support. It can help with therapy and the choice of books to offer to the learner.

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