Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A New Environment - One You Can Create.

Tina writes:

If you could, would you please share with us your thought of what an environment that favors autists would be?

Tina's question is a hard one because each autist is unique as to need. To give me what works for the visual learner is to give me nothing of use at all as example.

But attitude might make a huge difference of equal application to all. It is a huge deterrent to our even trying sometimes. Now I do what I do for me, but for many years my eforts at learning were Mom directed. To be other motivated is a horrible way to live. What was important to me was ignored as unimportant or unworthy. I am of limited interests, but many autists have intense passions that can be used to learn with. Reading, Math, English, Art, even Music can all be tailored to one's passions. Imagine to actually have learning matter as something of interest to you. Imagine to match things you liked or sing to speak about something you love. When little my favorite speech session involved using my string as a tug of war to bring out a sound. I like speech now because I practice phrases I've chosen as important to me. How many of your lessons are child interest directed, not neurotypical child,individual child? I know I offer only one example here, but trained learning is a huge part of most autists' lives. It has been largely my whole life for years. To develop motor coordination and skill in the pool is something I'll gladly work on everyday.

Dr. Reinson is now helping me further my independence in typing from Mom. I love her enthusiasm. She spent last session playing war with me with weighted cards, had me scan and stack, and use my pointer finger to detach pieces from a velcro board. The embedded skills I use to type. It is a fun way to develop the motor I need, and the anxiety over the actual typing is not there to interfere with the learning.

Kick me for suggesting any environment could actually be favorable to all autists. An environment rich in the cues we each need would be best. I am an auditory learner so sound is important to me. I am a smell distracted individual, so smell limited to relevant information is best for me. To smell my dinner or coffee brewing in the morning, that is relevant. The antiseptic wipes in the new speech room I would be well rid of. For me,to smell is to resort to an impulse response, one I can not tame all the time. What is your addiction of choice? It is a bit like that. How we respond is key to our ideal individual environmental needs.

1 comment:

  1. I just want to say I am absolutely intrigued and inspired by you (and also your mother). To be able to develop the intelligence, insight, self awareness, and especially religion with such a set of difficulties is a miracle. You are your mother's miracle and she is yours. Thank you both for sharing that miracle with us.