THE CURRENT DEFICIT-BASED EDUCATION
Autistic students -most of their day engaged in interventions that are challenging.
Neurotypical students-much of their day focused on their strengths.
•Behavioral, social skills, and learning remedial skills over and over
•Masking of autistic traits
•Learning to suppress need for movement and other sensory input
•Remediation of academic and motor challenges
•Learning new speech and language skills
•Push in therapies ensure students are practicing these over and over
Issues with this….
•Takes time away from cultivating autistic strengths/skills & interests
•Robs student of intrinsic motivation and love of learning
•Robs autistics of a childhood (yes there can be too much of a good thing- it can overload the nervous system)
USING STRENGTH-BASED APPROACHES
•Identifies strengths, preferences, abilities and passions.
•Applies strengths to achieve, accomplish and overcome.
•Develops strengths to enable students to improve known competencies.
• Pairs strength with all the new learning by scaffolding.
•When a skill is not acquired, student is given additional opportunities, experiences, and instruction.
BENEFITS OF STRENGTH-BASED APPROACHES
•Develops learning independence.
•Develops self-advocacy skills.
•Develops a love of learning.