Please can you tell me if all autistic learners require special needs
To begin with, let me give you a few common charasteristics of those in the autism spectrum. Then I’ll answer your question.
Autism Spectrum Symptoms or “Red Flags”
As you know, those with autism can vary in their abilities as well as communication, social skills, interests, and behaviors. Some students have severe difficulties and others just minor. So the first thing to look at with this question is some overall red flag behaviors of autism.
The cdc states …
A person with ASD might:
- Not respond to their name by 12 months of age
- Not point at objects to show interest (point at an airplane flying over) by 14 months
- Not play “pretend” games (pretend to “feed” a doll) by 18 months
- Avoid eye contact and want to be alone
- Have trouble understanding other people’s feelings or talking about their own feelings
- Have delayed speech and language skills
- Repeat words or phrases over and over (echolalia)
- Give unrelated answers to questions
- Get upset by minor changes
- Have obsessive interests
- Flap their hands, rock their body, or spin in circles
- Have unusual reactions to the way things sound, smell, taste, look, or feel
That being said, each autistic learner is unique and has different abilities, so the answer is…It Depends...
It depends on where the autistic learner is in the spectrum regarding requiring special needs assistance. I have worked with students in the spectrum when they were in high school and requiring additional help with writing. Up to that point they really didn’t require extra help. On the same token, I have worked with kids that are not in the spectrum that ended up needing extra assistance at one point or another. So the answer really is…It depends…
The best way to decide this is to look at how the autistic learner is doing. If they are struggling, then yes. If learning is difficult for them or they are taking a really long time to do their homework, or if they don’t like to read or struggle with math or spelling, then yes. If everything is going along fine, then no. If you have concerns about them and their schooling, feel free to contact me and set up a 30 minute complimentary consultation.
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