There comes a point when you are homeschooling your child with autism that they need to start acquiring higher level writing skills. While in a school environment, children are taught a formulaic approach to cranking out the essays quickly but not necessarily well. When you are homeschooling, you can take the time to teach your child the process of writing. This enables them to write anything well. Writing essays is one of those skills that many children have to learn despite their limitations if they want to advance to higher level learning or professional jobs. If you give your high schooler with autism the right tools, even they can learn how to write essays.
Find The Best Tools For Their Ability
Teaching high schoolers with autism to write essays can be overwhelming for both teacher and student so you need a curriculum that breaks it down into steps as well as ways to make the writing process work despite fine motor or auditory processing challenges. I set Logan up for success by using adaptive technology to make it possible for him to overcome these deficits. . Whether this is a text editors for his Mac, some sort of dictation software, or letting him take video lessons so he doesn’t have to rely solely on me to explain the steps to him. WriteShop II really hones in the process of putting an essay together. The video lessons make it possible for him to go at his own pace to learn the many steps involved in essay writing. If he forgets a step or needs more help when editing, he can watch the videos again.
Encouraging The Argument
The great thing about an essay that you can argue for or against a topic. You want your children to craft a decent case, so show them how to think through the process understanding the pros and cons of both sides. You want to push the subjective, where your child can see both sides of an argument in order to create a more compelling essay. This can be difficult for our kids with autism who only see in black and white. You have to model this way of thinking out loud to teach it your child. An essay is, in many ways, a story, and we underestimate showing our kids how to make it sound like one. Encouraging the argument will make for a more flowing piece of work. Remember, you have to take time to teach them how to make the argument. In the beginning, you can do this with them orally and teach them how to organize their thoughts in order to see each side. Don’t neglect this part or you will be doomed to failure.
Teaching Them Flex Their Writing Muscles
Flexing their writing muscles isn’t just about them cranking out essay after essay from the beginning. It’s about giving them as many different tools as possible to encourage their enthusiasm and success in a subject. Teach them to love reading, give them online games to improve their neuroplasticity, but also give them the tools they need to write an essay successfully. As already mentioned, dictation software can help your child not to view a pen and paper as a pressurizing thing. A lot of kids with autism freeze under this sort of pressure because they can’t organize or process their thoughts while also trying to overcome fine motor issues. By giving them software to help them dictate their thoughts, free from intimidation, allows the essay writing to flow more smoothly.
Writing essays can be quite a pressure but it’s certainly a important step in reaching upper level skills. Your kids don’t need to be the next Steinbeck. They just need to know how to organize their thoughts successfully as well as use the tools at their disposal to get the job done. The confidence this brings is priceless!
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