web analytics
March 4, 2015 / 13 Adar , 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


Autism and the Effectiveness of Augmentative and Alternative Communication


Children and adults that use AAC devices are more successful communicators when properly trained and when their teachers have basic training to help facilitate meaningful communication.

Many specialists believe that the Apple iPad is very adaptable for children with ASD to use as an AAC device. It lessens the symptoms of the disorder by helping kids deal with life’s sensory overload.

Autism experts like Dr. Martha Herbert, an assistant professor of neurology at Harvard Medical, and Stephen Shore, who wrote the book “Understanding Autism for Dummies,” agree about the iPad’s usefulness.

The disorder, which affects as many as one out of 110 children in the U.S. according to a CDC study, means kids have “no control over the pace of information coming at them,” says Herbert. With the iPad, she said, the child has more control.

Gili Rechany, the Education Director at Shema Kolainu-Hear Our Voices School in Brooklyn — which uses the iPad as part of their special education programs — says the iPad allows children with autism to have more direct control than a standard laptop which requires the use of a keyboard and mouse. She also indicated that, “the iPad is an AAC device that allows the child to access their speaker domain abilities easily through using technology with limited modality requirement and minimal cost.”

Aside from the fact that an IPad costs much less than some of the high end AAC’s available, it is also:  Easy to transport  Easy to use applications  Online tutorials are available for free  Educational, communicative and leisure time applications are available for free or for purchase

There are at least three dozen apps designed for autistic kids, including ones for music and reading. And the device itself supports spoken text and other aids for those with special needs.

Here are some links for all kinds of uses:  iPhone application – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lyBnt9wygyY  Possible Homework activities – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kdpjIR8KjLU&feature=related  Summary of multiple applications – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W-eWvnWMx6c&feature=related

In a leading book on AAC by Joanne Cafiero, PhD, Meaningful Exchanges for People with Autism, Dr. Cafiero discusses the ways AAC fits people with autism well (page 26) • Most people with autism are visual learner – AAC uses visual cues • Many people with autism are interested in inanimate objects – AAC tools and devices are inanimate • Many people with autism have difficulty with complex cues – Level of complexity can be controlled so AAC grows with the child • Many people with autism have difficulty with change – AAC is static and predictable • Most people with autism have difficulty with the complexities of social interaction – AAC provides a buffer and bridge between communication partners • Some people with autism have difficulty with motor planning – AAC is motorically easier than speech • Many people with autism experience anxiety – AAC interventions don’t apply pressure or stress (when introduced properly) • Many people with autism present behavioral challenges – AAC provides an instant means to communicate, preempting difficult behaviors • Many people with autism have difficulty with memory – AAC provides means for language comprehension that relies on recognition rather than memory.

Most people have not heard much about Augmentative and Alternative Communication with the exception of sign language. AAC is a different way of communicating with others without using your natural voice. But communication is a lot more than that, especially for children on the Autism spectrum, who can have difficulty with eye contact and the two–sided aspect of maintaining a conversation. It is estimated by the National Research Council that one third to one half of children and adults with autism do not use speech functionally. This makes them prime candidates for augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) systems, either to augment their existing speech or to act as their alternative method of communication.

What’s great about AAC is that there are all types of augmentative communication that can help fill different needs. You only need to find the right ‘fit’ for your child and their needs. For more information in augmentative communication, check out YAACK (Augmentative and Communication Connecting Young Kids) which offers a comprehensive breakdown of the evaluation process for whether to get a low or high tech device, funding issues, and issues with education. However, it is best to seek expert advice on how to proceed and for instructional measures which may “make or break” the success of any AAC program.

Joshua Weinstein has been an educator and administrator for over four decades. He holds a Ph.D., two Masters Degrees in Educational Administration and Supervision and an MBA in Executive Administration. He has been the CEO in healthcare, social services, and business corporations. He’s the president and founder of Shema Kolainu-Hear Our Voices, Tishma for children with autism in Jerusalem and ICare4Autism- International Center for Autism Research & Education- a global leader in autism research & education. He can be reached via email at jweinstein@skhov.org.

About the Author: Joshua Weinstein has been an educator and administrator for over four decades. He holds a Ph.D., two Masters Degrees in Educational Administration and Supervision and an MBA in Executive Administration. He has been the CEO in healthcare, social services, and business corporations. He’s the president and founder of Shema Kolainu-Hear Our Voices, Tishma for children with autism in Jerusalem and ICare4Autism- International Center for Autism Research & Education- a global leader in autism research & education. He can be reached via email at jweinstein@skhov.org.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Autism and the Effectiveness of Augmentative and Alternative Communication”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Jordan's King Abdullah II, a licensed helicopter pilot, is rumored to have personally taken part in air strikes against ISIS.
Jordanian King Warns Global Battle With ISIS Has Launched World War III
Latest Sections Stories
Yarden Merlot

Bottles of wine accompany the Pesach storytelling – each glass of wine represents the four expressions used by G-d in describing the redemption of the Jewish people from Egypt.

Schonfeld-logo1

There is a point that many parenting books miss: children do more for us than we do for them.

Brigitte Gabriel

Brigitte was a nine-year-old girl when Islamic militants launched an assault on a Lebanese military base and destroyed her home.

The husband needs to make some changes!

Purim is a fantastic time for fantasies, so I hope you won’t mind my fantasizing about how easy life would be if kids would prefer healthy cuisine over sweets. Imagine waking up to the call of “Mommy, when will my oatmeal be ready?”… As you rush to ladle out the hot unsweetened cereal, you rub […]

‘Double Gold’ awarded to 2012 Yarden Heights wine & 2011 Yarden Merlot Kela Single Vineyard.

One should not give the money before Purim morning or after sunset.

The mishloach manos of times gone by were sometimes simple and sometimes elaborate, but the main focus was on the preparation of the delicious food they contained.

One of the earliest special Purims we have on record was celebrated by the Jews of Granada and Shmuel HaNagid, the eleventh-century rav, poet, soldier and statesman, and one of the most influential Jews in Muslim Spain.

Jews, wake up! Stop educating the world and start educating yourselves.

The lessons conform to the sensitivities and needs of the Orthodox community…

The program took on special significance as it marked not only the first anniversary of Rebbetzin Kudan’s levayah but also the 27th yahrzeit of Rebbetzin Chaya Mushka Schneerson, a”h.

It was only in the reign of George III (1760-1820) that Jews became socially acceptable in Britain, and Nathan became music master to Princess Charlotte and musical librarian to King George IV.

It captures the love of the Jewish soul as only Shlomo Hamelech could portray it – and as only Rabbi Miller could explain it.

More Articles from Dr. Joshua Weinstein

The newest addition of the DSM-5 manual is scheduled for publication in May 2013. The DSM is used by clinicians to determine whether a client or patient meets or does not meet the criteria for a particular diagnosis.

Our understanding of Autism Spectrum Disorders has advanced rapidly in recent years. Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are a family of neurodevelopmental conditions characterized by unusual patterns in social interaction, communication, and range of interests and activities. While this profile is generally applicable for the entire ASD population, much variation actually exists. No two individuals exhibit the exact same symptoms and as such, ASD is a heterogeneous disorder.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/health/autism-and-the-effectiveness-of-augmentative-and-alternative-communication/2012/03/18/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: