Many people with autism can be overloaded by too much input. Overload may be triggered by lights, colours, moving objects, loud noises, everyday sounds, touch, textures.
Here in the UK, the NAS have recently launched a video called Too Much Information to simulate what it feels like to be overloaded in public places. View it here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lr4_dOorquQ
In school there are many triggers of sensory overload which can make it extremely difficult for students with autism to focus on tasks.
It can be difficult for teachers to know what are the triggers of their student’s overload, therefore I am creating some simple products to help. Available here https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Autism-Auditory-Preferences-Sensory-Visual-Support-2575352
Here’s my Top 10 list of recommended reading for teachers of kids with autism:
- “The Autistic Brain”, Temple Grandin- in this Temple Grandin details the latest research into how the minds of people with autism. She explains why not eveyone with autism is a visual thinker.
- “The Autism Checklist”, Paula Kluth– this book gives a great summary of the adaptations teachers need to make to include kids with autism in their class
- “10 Things Every Child With Autism Wishes You Knew”, Ellen Nottbohm -written by an autism-mom, this book is a must read for all teachers.
- “Carly’s Voice”, Arthur & Carly Fleischman -Carly is a young woman with autism who is unable to speak, but communicates by typing. This book, mainly written by her father, is her true story.
- “The Way I See It”, Temple Grandin -In this book Temple Grandin shares her opinion on many topics realting to autism.
- “The Out of Sync Child”,Carol Stock Kranowitz– Many kids with autism also have sensory processing difficulties/disorder. This book provides lots of information and advice about SPD
- “Intensive Interaction and Sensory Integration”, Phoebe Caldwell -Pheobe Caldwell has been working with people with autsim for over 30 years, most of whom are nonverbal. In this book she explains how it is possible to commnicate with nonverbal people with severe autism.
- “Anxiety To Meltdown”, Deborah Lipsky -This book discusses the triggers for meltdowns, and explains the differences between meltdown & tantrums.
- “Autism Movement Therapy”, Joanna Lara -Music & Movement Therapy is not only fun, but it can help kids with autism develop new skills. This is an inspiring and encouraging book.
- “Running With Walker”, Robert Hughes -A true story of a boy with autism and how his family find therapies which help him learn.
Curriculum for Autism has just opened a new shop on TES. Our products are being uploaded now.
UK & International Buyers can now purchase our specially designed autism products here https://www.tes.com/teaching-resources/shop/CurriculumForAutismhttps in addition to US stores:
Teachers Pay Teachers
and Autism Educators http://autismeducators.com/sellers/curriculum-for-autism/curriculum-for-autism
Perhaps you have students who struggle to stay seated in class. You’ve tried a token economy, you tried visuals, but your students keep getting out of their seats. Those students may have sensory processing disorder. They may need to move to be bale to feel where their bodies are. Their bodies may be craving movement.
Do you teach any students with very challenging behaviors? Many of the students which we label as “challenging” can be sensory seeking or sensory avoiding behaviors. My teenage son, with autism, is hypersensitive to sound, but sometimes he can create a lot of noise by shouting, singing, or turning up his cd player super loud. He is making sound which he can control in order to block out environmnetal noises which distress him. Carly Fleischmann (see “Carly’s Voice”by Arthur & Carly Fleischmann), a young woman with autism says she creates “output to block input”.
In order to help you meet the sensory needs of your individual students I have begun creating some sensory resources:Sensory Strategies Self-Regulation Visual Support click here to view
Auditory Preferences Visual Support click here to view
Sensory Strategies Poster click here to view
Visual Overload can affect many people with Autism. I will be blogging about this topic soon.