Do your children have their mannerisms
Help with regard to the particularities of perception
In the case of special features in the area of perception, which are very often found in people with autism, it can be helpful to
Reduce acoustic stimuli (e.g. through earplugs or headphones, sound-absorbing carpets, quieter apartment, well-closing or specially sound-absorbing windows, sorting out beeping electronic devices, prior notification of unavoidable noise, quieter workplace at school),
to reduce visual stimuli (e.g. through screens, sunglasses, blackout blinds, pleasant and non-dazzling color design in living areas, avoidance of neon tubes or flashing neon advertising),
reduce tactile stimuli (e.g. by cutting out annoying labels in the T-shirt, avoiding wool or other fabrics that are perceived as unpleasant),
to reduce olfactory stimuli (e.g. odorless detergents, soaps or creams, carrying a pleasant "emergency scent" such as lemon or suitable spices),
Avoid stimuli that arise from many people (e.g. through partition walls in large rooms, shopping early in the morning or late in the evening, online orders, etc.),
to intervene in organizational support in the event of poor body awareness (for example, always carry a small snack with you if the child has difficulties perceiving hunger in time, or targeted "eating according to plan" if there is no feeling of satiety, etc.).
Help for kindergarten or day care center
Prerequisites for a successful and as stress-free as possible kindergarten visit are:
clear structures in terms of staff, rooms, activities and other children,
Relaxation and recreation offers (e.g. low-stimulus rooms),
Attendance times that are as flexible as possible at the beginning,
Understanding of caregivers and other parents about Autism Spectrum Disorders and your child's special needs
as well as the willingness to work closely with you as parents and experts of your child.
It is very important to prepare the child for the change, for example to show them the rooms beforehand, to look at photos with them, to familiarize them with the main caregiver or to give them something familiar from home. An autistic child is often very insecure in such situations, which is why it is important to offer him support and structure and to understand his insecurity.
Help for the school
For many autistic people, school is the worst time of their lives. It is therefore very important to offer support for this phase of life. Examples of helpful measures are:
the possibility of taking breaks in the school building, e.g. B. in the classroom or in the student library (spending time in the school yard often means additional stress for autistic children),
the possibility of adapting other class or school rules for the student concerned if necessary (e.g. the ban on headphones, etc.),
the opportunity to contribute as an autistic student on an equal footing with everyone else and to be just as welcome,
Adjustments to the classroom or the timetable for the student concerned, a manageable workplace and an offer of quiet retreats in case of need (free adjoining room or similar),
an individualized curriculum for all students with content and methodological modifications (this requires time and sufficient staff!),
the need for structure and predictability, to take uniform and orderly processes into account and to announce changes at an early stage so that the autistic student can adjust to them in good time and thus experience less fear,
to use the special interests of the child to increase the motivation to learn,
fixed contact person z. B. from the teaching staff for questions of all kinds, in crisis situations and as an aid to get in touch with classmates,
the ritualization of the daily routine through daily routines and fixed processes,
Performance assessments in individually coordinated form (e.g. in writing instead of verbally; carefully guide group work),
a school companion as an integration assistant who supports the autistic pupil on the way to school, in class, during breaks, on class trips etc., but can also convey a sense of togetherness with their peers,
specific lesson content for the student concerned (e.g. training of social and communicative skills, sports promotion),
long-term accompanying therapeutic support,
regular exchange and collaboration between teachers, parents, therapists, etc.,
as well as other individual measures if necessary.
A positive basic attitude of all teachers is decisive for all measures.
In addition, pedagogical specialists with special skills must be deployed to provide support; However, basic knowledge about autism must be available to all employees involved.
In addition, it can be useful
Obtaining and collecting information about autism (internet, literature, lectures and seminars from autism-related institutions and individuals),
Passing on information about autism to all people who have anything to do with the child (relatives, employees in day care centers, kindergartens, schools, possibly neighbors, friends) in order to improve understanding,
To discuss help for daycare, kindergarten or school with the responsible educators or teachers and to make suggestions (what is difficult, what would be helpful) and to work out an individual compensation for disadvantages,
to submit an application to the competent pension office for recognition of a severe disability according to Book IX of the Social Code,
to apply for long-term care insurance benefits in accordance with SGB IX (details and explanations can be found in a leaflet from the BVKM - Federal Association for People with Disabilities and Multiple Disabilities: https://bvkm.de/wp-content/uploads/2019 /08/neuregelungen-fur-pflegebedurftige-ab-2017-zammlung-bvkm-1.pdf),
Use counseling services in your region with regard to general questions with regard to disability, participation, authorities, etc. (e.g. social / community psychiatric counseling centers or supplementary independent participation counseling (EUTB)),
Get advice from a regional autism association in your area and look for a parent group to exchange ideas with other affected parents and benefit from their tips and experiences. You are not alone with your concerns! Improvements for the people affected can only be achieved as a large community.
Like your own child, you will help yourself the most if you stand up for all autistic people!
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