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Autistic Child


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I have a severely autistic child starting in my reception class tomorrow. He will only be coming for a couple of hours a day to start with and then we will be seeing how things go from there. From what I have been told he is quite calm but cannot really communicate and appears to like wandering around and looking out of windows and doors. He is very much functioning like a toddler

 

I do have some support for the child but she is inexperienced, as am I in teaching someone with this level of need.

 

So far I haven't planned anything for them to do as I was thinking that for the 1st week or so we should just do lots of observation and finding out what he appears to like and dislike. Then I really don't have much idea about how I plan for a child like this and include him in some of the activities that we do.

 

Can anyone give any advice

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Do you have any records or IEPs from other settings attended? What does the SENCo advise? There must have been discussions when he was registered with your school re how to manage him as he is already getting extra adult support which generally only happens if there is a statement so you may find he has a programme that he is used to?

 

There is guidance on autistic spectrum children here:

http://nationalstrategies.standards.dcsf.gov.uk/node/173893

Cx

Edited by catma
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He was at a private nursery and I have been given very little information. His IEP is exceptionally basic considering his needs e.g. it has 1 sentence on it which really doesn't tell me anything. From what I can gather he was basically left to his own devices as he wasn't causing any disruption. This in itself bothers me as it doesn't sound like he has ever been challenged or made to do something

 

We have a new SENCO this term who hasn't spoken to me yet as we have a lot of high profile children in our school and to be honest us in Early years are just left to get on with it.

 

At the moment his support level is equivelent to 2 1/2 hours a day and I am concerned about the TA allocated to him as she will need 100% direction with this and struggles with using her own initiative (this has been an ongoing problem but thats another story!) I'm afraid that I will end up neglecting the rest of my class because of this.

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You may find something to help you here.

http://www.nas.org.uk/nas/jsp/polopoly.jsp?d=1066

I think you need to talk with you SENCO and Area Senco as soon as you can. This child must have a Statement, as Catma says, and I presume there must have been some transition meetings with the parents and team involved, which planned for his slow introduction to school.

There was a discussion on here last year which you may find useful here.

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Unfortunately they do not really speak English. He did have a toy with him when he came for a quick visit and was sucking on a large piece of duplo. When we are in the classroom and outside I don't think he will be able to continue to do that due to H&S. Mum did take it away from him to blow his nose and he screamed which is obviously concerning to me.

 

Think I just need some reassurance that observing him would be the best place to start. Don't really know why I am asking as this is what I am doing with the rest of the class.

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I have worked with autistic children in nursery and reception for many years and totally agree that he should have a statement. Do you have an autism outreach worker who can come in and offer help and advice?

 

Does he use pecs as a communication aid, you could use a visual aids such as a visual timetable and a sitting spot to encourage him to sit where you want to, use good sitting visuals etc to show him visually that you are please with him. Autistic children are visual learners they think in pictures.

 

I hope this is some help

killowengirl

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Hi, I have almost the same problem! I too have a little boy starting in my class on Thursday, who has severe learning difficulties and global delay. - I think he is autistic, (and after speaking to his father I am almost convinced).

He has been assessed by his doctor as having a mental age of 2 and a half, other than that the parents won't allow anymore tests and they think he is 'normal'. He also has laxity (or however you spell it) He looks like a toddler, you wouldn't think he is four years old.

As if that isn't enough, his 1:1 careworker at nursery, kindly lifted up the sleeves on her top to show me the scratches and bitemarks he had given her!

He is not statemented and will not be according to the specialist team involved, as they are moving away from statementing now - apparently!

My head teacher has employed a parent helper to give him the 1:1 support he so badly needs - but this poor lady has no experience and hasn't got a clue what she's in for. ( I will have a meeting with her on Tues, hopefully she won't run a mile)

 

I feel that we are completely unsupported, unprepared and under resourced to teach this child and I am very worried about his interaction with the other children. I am also worried about his educationanal needs and social skills.

 

I am all for inclusion, but I do think the powers that be should have allocated proper funding and training for the teachers left to pick up the pieces!

 

Sorry for the rant!

 

Anyway my point in replying was - maybe you and I should keep in touch. We might stumble across some good strategies between us!

I would definately just observe for the first few weeks.

 

Good luck!

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Oddly enough I was talking about the autistic child and how they would fit in to the whole child initiated with my SenCo. She has an interest in autism and said that the new foundation stage guidelines of child initiated actvities are a nightmare for the auitistic child. They need routine and timetables to follow, otherwise they will wander aimlessly from task to tak, watching everone else but not taking part. She said that they would need a clear timetable of activities where they are told; first you can play in the sand, then you can go to the construction etc etc. This would be very visual and would be reinforced daily. You would quickly get an idea of their interests and could gear the timetable to their needs as the weeks progressed.

 

Hope that helps,

 

Sarahjane

xx

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Tori, i feel exactly the same as you and it would be good to keep in touch. I feel that if I was in Year 2 or above I would be getting much more support once it starts impacting results.

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there is a publication on the national strategies website about supporting children on the autsic spectrum in the foundation stage, you can download the publication and if you send for it there is a supporting dvd.

 

you could also email the national autistic society and ask for advice.

killowengirl

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Have had a couple of children on autistic spectrum - each one with their own needs.

 

We have always tried to get support from LA although statementing is v. v. v. difficult to get. If he has had support at nursery there will be records with La early years SEN team.

 

You might want to see if a CAF has been registered yet - if not this is a route to travel down.

 

A visual timetable (key ring type) for all staff who come into contact with the child is always a good thing and a display of your daily routine in picture format will never go amiss.

 

Have a scan of Early Support website as well.

 

Early Support Website

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