Teaching Children with Autism, continued
Great as I think it is that ABA-based instruction has the potential to improve the lives of anyone, let alone children with autism, I don’t think that it is a good enough solution to the wait list problem, given the current incidence rate of 1 in 45. We need to get them younger, and I believe that can only realistically be done if we can shift most of the instruction – actually, the raising of children using what we know about the laws of learning – unto the parents, and do it while the children are younger. And that should be possible to do!
One of the books that I reference in my book, Teaching Children with Autism: An ABA Pimer, was Vicki Lansky’s Games Babies Play. I mention it here to remind you that “play is a child’s work,” the context within which much if not most of a young child’s learning occurs. There are lots of other playskills references cited as well, mainly for slightly older children.
In previous postings, I have written about Robert Schramm and his book, Motivation and Reinforcement, which I consider to be the “ABA Bible.” Schramm is an outstanding therapist, and it is my understanding that he has shifted his emphasis from providing instruction to children within the context of his own treatment centre to teaching parents how to teach their children at home. In my opinion, if we can get these children young enough, the context within which the ABA-based NET should occur is home-based everyday activity, beginning with an emphasis on play. So let’s talk about play (again).