Did you ever leave behind your mobile phone at home while going to work? Most of us use our smartphones, tabs, and laptops to connect to our colleagues, friends, and the world around us. But for people with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), these everyday tech gadgets can show the way to learn and communicate. The in-built features of technology can greatly enhance communication, behavior, and the quality of life of autistic people, especially children with ASD, which a major challenge for parents, counselors, and therapists.
Technology interventions for children with ASD
Research, as well as first-person accounts of autistic individuals, has revealed that visual learning is usually a very effective way to gain information. Children with ASD learn best with pictures and symbols. Now combine that with technology like autism apps available today and there’s a seemingly exhaustive options to provide visual and interactive support to them. Children with high functioning autism spectrum disorder are more drawn towards technology. Special strategies, however, should be in place to impart skills.
Many times, even some simple strategies can forge the biggest change. Many families even struggle with a child having mild autism symptoms. Schedule disruption is also a major problem for autistic children. This may mean something seemingly harmless like taking a different route home from school, or boarding a bus.
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Picture and word schedules depicting anticipated events of a day, can be shown to an autistic child to help alleviate the anxiety. The camera of a mobile device, like smartphones and tabs, can take pictures of people, events and places that you can show to your child in advance. Showing the picture of the destination may calm the child. There are several scheduler apps that can be personalized with your own voice and photos.
Tech is proving to be of immense help for children with ASD. The possibilities are immense. But more research is required.