Strategies for Teaching Students with Aspergers

Asperger's Strategies Although with the recent revisions to the DSM 5 have nullified the diagnosis of Asperger’s, the students who have had a prior diagnosis of this are still in existence and will be in your classrooms. They will look normal, make excellent grades, and be communicative. They will not be part of a pull out group for special help, special education, or other special groups. Although these students will present extreme social deficits in many ways, lack social skills with their peers, and demonstrate a high level of intelligence, there will be times that, as a teacher, you will have to make special allowances or accommodations in order to meet their needs. Today we have some very helpful strategies for you to keep in mind when having a child who has a former diagnosis of Asperger’s or who shows similar characteristics.

  1. 1. Structure “free time”
    2. Limit the number of “questions and comments” the student is allowed to share
    3. Avoid surprises and changes in routine when possible
    4. Carefully plan seating arrangements
    5. Avoid the use of sarcasm, idioms, and figurative language without explaining
    6. Provide visual cues
    7. Use graphic organizers as often as possible
    8. Do not require student to take on notes
    9. Limit the amount of rote and repetitive written exercise also known as “busy work”
    10. Allow extra time when needed and appropriate
    11. Limit “required” social participation
    12. Provide concrete reinforces
    13. Allow student to use computer, laptop, iPad etc for written assignments as available
    14. Break lengthy assignments into smaller assignments with deadlines
    15. Create a daily ” to do list”
    16. Allow student plenty of time to “process” information before demanding an answer
    17. Monitor and supervise ALL unstructured time
    18. Teach social skills at all available moments
    19. Provide “peer buddies” when necessary and available
    20. Give breaks as needed

There are many other things that would be beneficial to a student with Asperger’s. Just like with all kids, each student is their own unique being. Although many of the strategies listed above will benefit many of them, some may not. This list is an overview of possible solutions and recommendations. It will NOT guarantee immediate success in your students, or total acceptance. As a teacher, you must get to know your students, what makes them tic and how to reach them where they are… No list or recommendation can give you that. You must create that within your classroom and with your student by developing a relationship with them.

Good LUCK!!!

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