Methods for teaching children with autism
Gerdes, Maggie R.
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Autism is a developmental disorder that affects many children. Its causes are unknown. The focus of this paper will be providing a brief history of autism, diagnosing autism, and comparing and contrasting four intervention models which include: Treatment and Education of Autistic and Related Communication Handicapped Children (TEACCH), Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), Sensory Integration therapy (SI therapy), and Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) TEACCH is an approach that "requires adaptations that must occur in three major areas of the child's life: home, school, and community. Starting with a comprehensive assessment, the approach comprises a number of interconnected elements, which are based on structured teaching" (Cumine et. al, 2000). The Applied Behavior Analysis theory is used for many children who have difficulties with learning, not just children with autism. This theory is based on Skinner's ideas about behavior. Skinner believed all behavior was learned and therefore could be changed by altering antecedents and consequences to behavior Once the antecedent and reinforcer are determined, the persons' behavior can be changed by not providing the reinforcer for inappropriate behavior and giving the reinforcer for the appropriate behavior.