Published on April 1st, 2013 | by Robin Parker0
Happy April! Celebrate Autism Acceptance Month and National Poetry Writing Month!
There are a lot of celebrations this month. It is officially Autism Awareness Month. A new name for this that has popped up & taken hold is Autism Acceptance Month. Awareness and/or Acceptance seems to mean different things to different people but hopefully the intent is similar. We hope that this month is filled with great ideas to support ALL people with autism and their families. We hope that educators, clinicians, and whole communities are inclusive, that they presume competence, and that they support communication and language using best prAACtice information and research. We do know that there is more to hope for than just this, like better employment outcomes, more appropriate accommodations, and more individualized support but if focus stays on the former, it seems then that the latter would improve. Plus we have more control (if there is such a thing) on facilitating inclusivity, presuming competence, and of course supporting communication and language. With this in mind, celebrate by learning and sharing.
Worth Repeating: 5 Things to do to Celebrate
- Read & share 5 references that support the use of AAC & Autism (evidence based research)
- Start following an autism self advocate’s blog or Facebook page (some great ones- Karla’s ASD Page, Zoe- Illusion of Competence, Autocast,Paula Durbin-Westby Remember to listen and consider the suggestions from autistic people.
- Create some visual supports for a student, teacher, or family who needs them. Then wrap them up as a present and say “Happy Autism Awareness Month“ (more ideas on visual supports for conversational and social skills from Joel Shaul Autism Teaching Strategies.com)
- Learn about CORE WORDS to facilitate communication and language. Watch Language Stealers, read AAC Language Lab or ASHA- A Few Good Words
- Learn more about literacy, AAC, technology & ALL learners by following Jane Farrall’s blog and follow some Pinterest Boards: Apps for Communication & Autism or any of Lauren Enders Boards
It is also National Poetry Month. Poetry is a form of communication and language. While that might seem obvious, it is not often obvious how to teach poetry writing to students who use AAC. All learners can learn to write poetry so stay on the look out for some posts this month on poetry writing for the beginning to advanced communicator. When we presume competence, use evidence based teaching strategies, and immerse learners in different types of poetry writing we continue to be immensely impressed by the poems we read.
5+ Things to do to Celebrate
- Check out: Short Poems
- Check out: Acrostic Poems
- Check out the poetry app: Funny Kids Poems by We are Interfaces AB,
- Use poetry writing resources such as: Poetry Graphic Organizers and Forms for Creating Original Poems, Giggle Poetry
- Watch Brian Kajiyama’s video poems- Seeing Beyond Images- A Prelude, Who Am I , Who Are You?