If you’ve ever had a student who blurted out in class, screamed when someone patted their shoulder, or rocked back and forth in the chair, you will appreciate the lessons ahead. In this course, you will discover the neurobiology behind these disorders and the way it affects students’ behavior, learning, and thinking. Most important, you will learn creative, easy, low-budget strategies to help your students with Autism succeed in the classroom and beyond.
Develop the skills to counter these students’ social discomfort, sensory sensitivities, meltdowns, problems with homework completion, language reciprocity issues, and violent fixations. Even if you don’t have a student with high-functioning autism or Asperger’s Syndrome in your class this year, these strategies will equip you to deal with any student who exhibits these characteristics on a regular basis.
Note: To receive 25 hours of instruction in the State of Oregon, please ensure your school is eligible to issue professional development units, and that the course is approved by your professional learning coordinator.
Meet Your Students With Autism
You may have already taught students with high-functioning autism or Asperger’s Syndrome (HFA/AS), but have you taken the time to get to know them? In this lesson, you will discover how their brains are wired differently, the ways they behave, and smart strategies to make when teaching them.
Understand the Common Characteristics of HFA/AS
This lesson focuses on understanding common HFA/AS characteristics displayed in the classroom. From trouble handling change to difficulty with social interaction and language processing, you will discover how these characteristics shape students’ worldview and ability to perform in academic settings.
Discover How Your Students Think
Did you know that most students with HFA/AS are visual thinkers? This lesson will help you determine how your students process information, so you can tailor your lesson plans to their preferred learning and thinking styles.
Nurture Students' Social Skills
This lesson explores why and how students with HFA/AS struggle socially. You will learn about the extent of the problem, some of the causes, and its impact. You will also learn some nonverbal and verbal exercises that you can do to lessen these students’ social anxiety.
Encourage Language Reciprocity
This lesson explores how students with HFA/AS converse and why it’s so incredibly hard for them to keep conversations going. You will learn about a graphic organizer that is very helpful when students need to translate between their thoughts and ours.
Work With Sensory Sensitivities
In this lesson, you will learn why students with HFA/AS have such delicate sensory sensitivities. You will also learn two strategies for helping them reclaim control over daily experiences that once seemed quite intimidating.
Nurture Special Interests
Students with HFA/AS are often known as “little professors,” with highly specialized interests and fixations. But how do you direct these gifts into appropriate academic channels? This lesson answers that question – you will learn strategies to help students link their interests to the broader world.
Encourage Homework Completion
This may just be your favorite lesson in the course! Nearly every teacher is looking for new and exciting strategies to get students to do their homework. This lesson will teach you how to engage students with HFA/AS in their studies and link their interests to meaningful learning.
Counter Runaway Emotions and Meltdowns
If you had an emotional meltdown every day, would you be excited to get out of bed and do it all over again? Probably not. Many students with HFA/AS are prone emotional outbursts that derail their focus In this lesson, you will learn how to turn these charged encounters into positive learning experiences.
Redirect Violent Fixations
No one likes to be teased! Sadly, many students with HFA/AS are bullied or made fun of on. Often, this makes them fearful and frustrated, so they often fixate on objects of power or violence. This lesson delves into how to help your students channel frustrations into more appropriate feelings.
Imagine what it would be like if your mind raced all the time, darting from thought to thought at warp speed. It would be pretty hard to pay attention to anything, wouldn’t it? This lesson looks at ways to help students with HFA/AS focus on classroom activities, so they can learn in their own way.
Plan for the Future
Your final lesson explores the ways to prepare students for life beyond the classroom’s four walls. It’s never too early to start thinking about ways to encourage students to reach their highest potential in future classes, jobs, and social roles. Isn’t that why we chose to be teachers in the first place?
Prerequisites / Requirements
There are no prerequisites to take this course.
- This course can be taken on either a PC or Mac device.
- PC: Windows XP or later.
- Mac: OS X Snow Leopard 10.6 or later.
- Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
- Adobe Flash Player. Click here to download the Flash Player.
- Adobe Acrobat Reader. Click here to download the Acrobat Reader.
- Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.
- Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.
When can I get started?
Instructor-Led: A new session of each course begins each month. Please refer to the session start dates for scheduling.
Self-Paced: You can start this course at any time your schedule permits.
How does it work?
Instructor-Led: Once a session starts, two lessons will be released each week, for the 6 week duration of your course. You will have access to all previously released lessons until the course ends.
Self-Paced: You have three-month access to the course. After enrolling, you can learn and complete the course at your own pace, within the allotted access period.
How long do I have to complete each lesson?
Instructor-Led: The interactive discussion area for each lesson automatically closes 2 weeks after each lesson is released, so you’re encouraged to complete each lesson within two weeks of its release.
Self-Paced: There is no time limit to complete each lesson, other than completing all lessons before your three-month access.
What if I need an extension?
Instructor-Led: The Final Exam will be released on the same day as the last lesson. Once the Final Exam has been released, you will have 2 weeks plus 10 days to complete the Final and finish any remaining lessons in your course. No further extensions can be provided beyond these 10 days.
Self-Paced: Because this course is self-paced, no extensions will be granted after the start of your enrollment.