Janet Twyman, Ph.D., BCBA – Early Literacy Instruction for Learners with Autism Spectrum Disorders
1.0 Type II CE Credit
This presentation was filmed at the 2008 CCBS West Coast Conference on Autism
This presentation will focus on best practices in helping children with autism spectrum and related disorders acquire early literacy skills. Often educators and parents struggle to effectively teach functional reading skills to these learners who exhibit significantly limited language skills, narrow vocabulary, rapidly shifting attention, difficulties with delay, a tendency to focus on irrelevant stimuli and other behaviors that can interfere with learning. Teaching any complex repertoire requires a thorough analysis of the behaviors that make up that repertoire. While most experts agree that reading involves a system of deriving meaning from print, one must also understand that the “system” requires understanding how phonemes (speech sounds) and print are related, the ability to decode (derive sound and meaning from print), to fluently recognize larger and larger units of print (letters, phonetic elements, words, sentences, etc.), and to comprehend print. Each of the endeavors must also be further distilled to its essential antecedent-behavior-consequence relations. The presenter will share specific strategies for teaching literacy to individuals with autism or similar behavioral characteristics. These strategies include functional assessment of current print and pre-literacy and literacy skills, as well as an understanding of the component behaviors that make up a composite reading repertoire. Strategies to effectively teach the components and assess for the composite will be presented. The effective use technology as a tool for increasing early literacy for learners in the autism spectrum will also be discussed.
Learning objectives include:
Participants will become familiar the sometimes unique difficulties associated with teaching reading to learners in with autism spectrum disorders.
Participants will become familiar with a component-composite analysis of early reading skills.
Participants will become familiar with strategies and practices that have been empirically demonstrated effective in increasing reading repertoires.
Participants will become familiar with how to adapt or present those strategies and practices to learners with autism spectrum disorders.
Participants will become familiar with various technologies and materials that build or support early literacy skills for learners with autism spectrum disorders.