Homeschooling a Child with Autism
One of the great things about homeschooling a child with autism or Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), is you will know he/she is getting what they need, when they need it. Educating children with autism at home will give you the flexibility to truly individualize a program that best meets their daily and weekly needs.
Some home school programs for autism allow you to adjust the curriculum to best suit your specific student’s learning abilities. We’ve provided information that will hopefully answer many of the beginning questions you may have about homeschooling a child with autism.
- Homeschooling a Child with Asperger’s Syndrome
- Homeschooling a Child with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)
- Autism Education: Homeschool vs Public School
- Teaching Reading to Students with Autism
- Teaching Writing to Students with Autism
- Homeschooling a Child with Non Verbal Learning Disability (NVLD)
- Time4Learning Online Homeschool for Autism
Homeschooling a Child with Asperger’s SyndromeIn terms of homeschooling, autism types matter very little; almost any child on the spectrum can benefit from the customized approach that home education offers. However, if you have a child on the Asperger’s Syndrome part of the spectrum, curriculum options can differ widely from child to child. Learn how to start homeschooling a child with aspergers.
Homeschooling a Child with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)Has your child been diagnosed with PDD? Sometimes called “atypical autism,” PDD is often characterized by uneven skill development (strengths in some areas and delays in others). When choosing the best curriculum for autism, students with Pervasive Developmental Disorder have strengths and weaknesses that should be taken into account. Learn how to start homeschooling a child with PDD-NOS.
An autism diagnosis certainly doesn’t mean that college is off the table. In fact, there are college scholarships designed with students on the spectrum in mind!
Autism Education: Homeschool vs Public SchoolWhen you have a child with ASD, educational choices aren’t as simple as knowing which school district you are in, and then registering. When thinking about your special needs child’s education you may be considering whether school or homeschool is the right option.
- Public Schools – Does the teacher have special training in autism spectrum disorders? Is your child prepared to spend long hours sitting still and listening? Are the lesson plans modified to accommodate your child’s special learning needs?
- Homeschooling – Are you prepared to research and find the best mix of curricula? Can you evaluate the effectiveness of the program you plan to use?
Teaching Reading to Students with Autism
When teaching young children with autism to read, make sure you choose a homeschool program that capitalizes on their strengths, while minimizing their weaknesses. For example:
- Using programs that work with a visual spatial learning style
- Using predictable formats and patterns
- Incorporating technology
Teaching Writing to Students with Autism
When it comes to teaching writing to students with autism, learning tools and assistive technology can make all the difference. Knowing what resources are available to you will help you customize a homeschool plan to your specific child. Start helping your child with autism to write.
Teaching Math to Students with Autism
While every child has their own individual learning strengths and weaknesses, there are several known strategies to best aide students with autism when trying to teach them math. Learn how to best help your child on the spectum learn math here.
Homeschooling a Child with Non Verbal Learning Disability (NVLD)
If your child has been diagnosed with NVLD, non-verbal, or developmentally delayed speech, you may have experienced difficulties in the school system where your student is expected to communicate with various teachers, therapists, and students daily. While students are taught alternative methods of communication, often the stimulation or environment in a school can become overwhelming for a student who is already struggling.
Online learning that provides a curriculum with pre-recorded lessons, can remove the pressure from having to communicate and also adds the factor of student-paced learning, where a student can review or move forward only when he or she is ready, rather than working within a group’s schedule. When students are stressed, it can amplify already difficult activities such as communication, which can distract from the lesson at hand.
How Time4Learning Curriculum Helps Students with Autism
Parents of children with autism often prefer to have an active role in their children’s education. It is common for parents with children on the spectrum to homeschool at some point when appropriate educational institutions cannot be found.
Homeschooling has advantages that may be useful for children on the spectrum. With homeschooling comes the flexibility and freedom to change your teaching approach and adjust the curriculum that best works for your child with ASD. Sometimes lessons for students with autism will need to shift based on time, functioning and health.
The beauty of online homeschooling for autism students is the flexibility to choose the right blend of learning tools. Time4Learning’s educational learning system builds and reinforces reading skills using an interactive online environment. Online courses, interactive videos, personal computers, laptops, and tablet devices provide exciting and engaging materials that children with autism often thrive with. Time4Learning also provides worksheets, answer keys, project ideas, science supply lists, spelling lists, and more to offer parents content outside of screen time as well.
In hundreds of families in multiple different countries, Time4Learning is the curriculum of choice for teaching students on the autism spectrum. Here’s why:
- Language Skills – Time4Learning provides an engaging multimedia approach to building linguistic skills which are often difficult for children with autism to acquire. Unlike simple “learning games”, Time4Learning provides a comprehensive language arts program starting with simple vocabulary, verbal comprehension, and following basic instructions.
- Computer-Based Instruction – A computer provides an outlet for learning that many children with autism can benefit from as it provides an opportunity to remove stress and overstimulation from too much social interaction. An online curriculum like Time4Learning provides immediate feedback to students and positive reinforcement that keeps them engaged and motivates them to do their best.
- Student-Paced – Students can progress through Time4Learning at their own pace. Additionally, students can be placed at different levels for language arts and math. Students also have the freedom and flexibility to repeat and/or skip lessons, and thereby work at a pace that they are comfortable with.
- Social Skills – Beyond the academic aspects of Time4Learning, parents of children with autism have commented that the lessons model proper conversation and interactions. For instance, many of the elementary school math lessons start with a short conversation between two cartoon characters. Typically, one asks a question, the other explains the answer and this serves as an introduction to the lesson. The first character then thanks the second for the information. This peer interaction helps children with autism understand and learn typical social skills.
When first signing up for Time4Learning, we recommend sitting down with your student and his IEP or 504 plan, if you have one, and looking through the lesson plans in your parent dashboard.
Choose your subject and grade level to experience demos of Time4Learning’s interactive curriculum.