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Tips for Teaching Independence

Feb 09, 2012 -- 5:53 pm
From Autism Digest.com: Autism Asperger’s Digest | January/February 2012

What do you think of when you hear the word independence? For many parents of children with Asperger’s Syndrome (AS) and similar autism spectrum disorders (ASDs)—pervasive developmental disorder-not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS) with solid cognitive and verbal skills or high functioning autism (HFA)—the word is both charged with promise and fraught with uncertainty. Though every parent knows that feeling to some extent, let’s be honest: for those raising neurotypical (NT) children, it’s different. For them this process seems to come naturallyThis is not so for parents of children with ASD. When asked to describe where they would like to see their children as young adults, most parents speak of college or job training, a career, and living on their own. Most of all they wish for their children to have the skills and supports that they need to be agents of their own lives—to be free to make things happen for themselves without an inappropriate amount of assistance from others. Achieving this requires a strong adaptive behavior repertoire, something that is not based on intelligence as we often think of it (see sidebar on page 25) and usually is not taught in school. These are the daily living skills most NT kids seem to learn “by osmosis” but must be systematically taught to many kids with ASD. To read the entire article, please click: http://autismdigest.com/tips-for-teaching-essential-independence-skills/

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