How to teach autistic students to communicate feelings

This article was co-written by Iddo DeVries, MA-SLP. Iddo DeVries is a speech therapist and owner and clinical director of speech therapy at DV Therapy, Inc. based in Los Angeles, California since 2014. for disabilities and delays, including autism, people who speak late, PDD, specific speech disorders, joint disorders and phonological, auditory processing delays, stuttering, pragmatic and social delays, verbal apraxia of language. Iddo holds a BA in Speech Communication Sciences from Brooklyn College and a Masters in Speech and Speech Pathology from Adelphi University. In 2011, Iddo was awarded by the New York Department of Education for Outstanding Achievement in Speech Therapy. Since 2006 she has been an active member of the nationally accredited ASHA speech committee.

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Teaching students with autism can be difficult, especially when it comes to emotions. Here are some simple steps you can follow to make the learning process easier!

If babies feel comfortable and safe, they will feel calmer and more likely to open up.

How to teach autistic students to communicate feelings

How to teach autistic students to communicate feelings

How to teach autistic students to communicate feelings

How to teach autistic students to communicate feelings

How to teach autistic students to communicate feelings

Alexithymiait is a condition that often overlaps with autism and is characterized by the inability to understand one’s emotions.

How to teach autistic students to communicate feelings

How to teach autistic students to communicate feelings

Iddo DeVries, MA-SLP
Interview with an expert speech therapist and speech therapist. August 28, 2020 Try making flashcards or create a pin board with different facial expressions. When your child is unsure how he is feeling, ask him to point to the picture on the poster and to monitor for physical symptoms.

    Alternatively, you can create a traffic light chart, with red meaning they’re nervous, yellow meaning they need a minute, and green meaning they’re ready to learn. [2] X Expert source

Children with autism often have difficulty recognizing and controlling their emotions and have difficulty communicating and expressing their feelings. And parents have usually misunderstood this because an autistic child has no emotions or feelings that are actually far from the truth.
In fact, an autistic child has as many emotions as anyone else. It’s just you need to work more on your child to help him learn how to recognize and process emotions and express his feeling. However, actually doing this isn’t as easy as it sounds. You need to learn a lot about it, spend a lot of time with your autistic child, and sometimes you may need expert help. Our online Social network for autism Julia Friendscan help you with that.

How to teach autistic students to communicate feelings

Children with autism spectrum disorder often have difficulty recognizing other people’s facial expressions, tone of voice, and body language. Therefore, the first step is to teach them to recognize, process and understand emotions, and then you can work on the communicative part. Here are three simple real word tips to help teach your autistic child to understand emotions:

Use emotion cards

Emotion cards are a great way to teach your child about basic emotions. These cards contain pictures of pictures, real or cartoon, to help children with autism understand and identify basic feelings and emotions. These images are on a plain background and show the upper body and face to represent individual emotions. You can teach your child basic emotions with the help of these pictures. Once your child begins to recognize the six basic emotions – happiness, anger, sadness, surprise, fear and disgust – you can step forward and start teaching more complex feelings such as pride, guilt, embarrassment, shame and joy. . This will help your baby develop a deep understanding of emotions.

Social stories

Social stories program works great for a few children while some seem to be least interested in these stories. Social stories program include narration of a story to an autistic child. Social stories are presented in a book and use photos or illustration to explain emotions. You can also use different tones of voice when telling your child a story so that he understands the emotions behind the sentence. For more creative storytelling ideas, check out our JuliaFriends Autism social network.

Talk to your child during neutral hours

It plays a very important role in educating a child with autism about emotions. Quando stai effettivamente comunicando con tuo figlio, è più probabile che impari le emozioni e i sentimenti dalla comunicazione reale. Talk to your child during neutral hours and guide them on how to control emotions in extreme situations. Encourage your child to talk and try to interact with him so that he learns and gains experience in communicating with you.

Here are three simple tools to help your autistic child understand emotions. You can learn more by joining Giulia Amici, autistic social network for families.

In my previous blog (click here), I illustrated how a parent can help their teenage son or daughter with ASD learn effective ways to recognize and communicate emotions. I’ve covered these steps:

Step One: Teach teens with ASD to recognize feelings from related energy levels using a color-based zone system

Step Two: Teach them to hear the words associated with each color zone.

In this post I will continue:

Step Three: Teach them that emotions are often expressed in ghosts and help them identify and use words for different levels of emotion.

Many teens are reluctant to experience emotional expression. They stick with overbroad words like “upset,” “bored,” “fine” or even “I don’t know” because they’re safer to use and people seldom follow up and question what is really being said or felt when teens use words like these. (Incidentally, neurotypical adults tend to abuse generic words and phrases. But sometimes they do so for various reasons.)

You can use zones to teach teens the concept by asking them to identify emotions in each color zone that is on the same spectrum. For example, the spectrum of worry might be something like this:

The category of feelings ZDNA BLUEE GREEN AREA YELLOW ZDNA ZDNA RDSSA
Worry Relaxed Restless / Worried going crazy

Notice there isn’t a Blue zone word for “worry” since that feeling doesn’t tend to get expressed with reduced energy levels. (If your child is interested enough in the empty space in the chart, you can remember the concepts of worry that lead to feelings in the blue zone, such as “avoidance” leading to a feeling of “tired”, but this may be excessive for the purpose of teach the basics of emotional expression. adolescent with ASD.)

Here are some examples:

The category of feelings ZDNA BLUEE GREEN AREA YELLOW ZDNA ZDNA RDSSA
Excitement Bored Peace Excited Uncontainable Excitement
Anger extravagant Do not bother Annoyed / Frustrated Angry / Aggressive
Sadness & Happiness Depressed Contents Happy / joyful Enchanted
Disgust Do not bother Disgusted "Naprawdę chory"
Gratitude I have not noticed Praise Really grateful Overwhelmed with gratitude

After educating your child about the degrees of emotion that exist, you can make him practice more accurate identification of the true emotions that arise in everyday life. At first this might look like, “You told me you were angry, but I wonder if ‘frustrated’ wouldn’t be a better word for it since you still seem to be in control of yourself and are asking me to help you solve the problem.” Later, as your child begins to understand the degrees of feelings, you can ask them to explain using lists of options such as: “Which word best describes how you are feeling right now? Peace, annoyed, irritated, frustrated, angry, mad or enraged?” Finally, you can praise them as they start using more descriptive words to express feelings in their daily emotional expression. “I love how you helped me understand just how you are feeling by saying you were ‘annoyed’ by this school assignment.”

Bonus thoughtA: Another step you can take in this process to reinforce your use of more descriptive and feeling-inducing words is to make it a game with your teen ASD. For example, you can make it difficult for you and your child (and perhaps other members of your family) to use more descriptive words for your feelings throughout the day. You can even track points to see who is using the new emotion words the most and get a reward at the end of the week (something as small as a chocolate bar can be quite motivating) and the competitive nature of the game can help you and yours. son focuses on using more descriptive feeling words.

There will be more passages in future blog posts. Make sure you perform these steps slowly and wait for some calm before continuing. “Slower is faster.”

We highly recommend reading:

"Regulatory Zones: A Program to Promote Self-Regulation and Emotional Control," written and produced by Leah M. Kuypers, MA Ed. DTR / L.

The third step is the adjustment from the regulatory zones.

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How to help a child with autism understand their emotions?
Four important tips

For children with autism, coping with their emotions is often very difficult. Many autistic children see emotions as things that happen suddenly and without warning. Possono avere difficoltà a riconoscere le proprie emozioni e a metterle in relazione con gli eventi che le hanno causate. Children with autism also have a hard time recognizing the emotions expressed by others. To help a child with autism cope better with emotions, help train them to recognize emotions in other people, use social stories to help them identify their emotions, teach coping skills, and summarize after an emotional event.

1. Practice looking at facial expressions.

Before children can understand emotions, they must first recognize them. A good way to practice recognizing emotions is a procedure known as Discrete Trial Formation (DTT).

With your child present, seated and engaged, make a facial expression that matches the emotion you’d like the child to label. Then ask, “How am I?” If they answer correctly, provide reinforcement (like a sticker or a snack they really like) and use specific praise statements to let them know they identified the emotion correctly (e. g., “You’re right; I do feel sad!”). For further practice, you can also download free emotional flashcards and use them in the DTT procedure described above.


2. Use social stories to teach children how you feel.

For kids with autism, the ability to identify an emotion based on facial expression isn’t enough; we must also teach them how any emotion will make them feel. A social story is an individualized story that describes a social situation. Social stories are helpful because they provide rules and traits that may present when they are feeling specific emotions. Social stories should be customized for each child’s unique needs. Click here for free social story resources. A popular example of social history is Lynn Hubbell’s “I Feel Green Sometimes”.

“When I feel green, I am safe and comfortable.
When I feel green, I am friendly to others.
When I feel green, I immediately follow the directions.
My teacher and friends like the way I behave when I’m feeling green.
La sensazione del verde è piacevole."

3. Teach coping skills and provide safe space.

Coping with their emotions is more than just identifying them – children with autism should be given a variety of coping skills and a safe space to deal with their emotions when they feel overwhelmed. Start by identifying the things that seem to calm your baby down; it can be a big hug, playing with your favorite toy, or going for a walk. Coping mechanisms vary widely and it’s important to make a list of things that seem to help your child calm down. Once you have the list, create a visual representation of each item on the list and print it. Check out this example.

When your child experiences overwhelming emotions, present his visual list and ask him to choose what he wants. It’s important to not only present the list but to model the coping mechanisms as well, then provide specific praise for using these coping skills: “You did a good job of walking away from what was upsetting you.”


4. Discussion after the emotional event.

Debriefing is an important step in helping children with autism understand their emotions. Wait for your baby to calm down and spend some time doing something else before talking about your recent overwhelming emotions. If your child is very young, it may be helpful to summarize using a social story on how to cope with the emotions he has been through. Make sure you tailor the story to your child, using examples they can relate to and understand. If your child is an intermediate or advanced learner, consider using a summary sheet (like this example) to discuss what happened, what happened to those around him based on their emotional state at the time, and which ones. strategies could be useful in the next emotion appears.

Learning to cope with emotions can be a difficult process for children with autism, but these techniques can help. They’re part of a type of therapy known as Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), an intensive one-on-one therapy that helps kids with autism improve their language, communication and social skills and more!

Social toolkit for school

September 1, 2018

Autism education or sensitivity training can take place in a generalized way where students learn acceptance and sensitivity unrelated to a particular student at school. It could also be much more specific to the needs of that student and their family.

It is very important to communicate with the parents or guardians of a child with autism before doing any sensitivity training.

L’insegnante o lo psicologo scolastico che guida la discussione in classe dovrebbe contattare i genitori o i tutori di un bambino autistico per capire come si sentono a proprio agio nel rivelare. Some families may be comfortable with general sensitivity training and acknowledgment of their child’s strengths and challenges to the class, but not with sharing the autism diagnosis. Dther families are more open about their child’s diagnosis and are willing to be active participants in the education and sensitivity training. These are personal decisions that every family must make and schools should honor them. These decisions can also change over time as the needs of the student with autism change.

Also, be aware that some families may not yet tell their children their diagnosis.

Some children may know they have autism but may not want to share their diagnosis with their classmates. Again, these are individual decisions. Another point to discuss in advance is whether an autistic student will be present during sensitivity training. Some families want their children be active participants in the training process, and others might prefer that it’s done when the student is out of the classroom.

Many schools have found it helpful to have a parent, guardian or school representative who knows the student well, introducing him or her at the beginning of the school year or during a new inclusion opportunity. If the family or team feels that protecting the student’s privacy is important, the student may not even be mentioned by name and general sensitivity and acceptance may be all that is addressed. Out of respect for the student, a more detailed introduction can be given even when he is not in the classroom. It is important to present the student as someone with unique skills and similarities (family, siblings, pets, love of music, favorite foods, video games, movies, etc.) while sharing some of the challenges and differences students may notice or share. you need to be aware of, such as sensory needs.

Inform families of peers

In addition to reaching out to peers, it is also important to reach out to their families. Many parents have had no experience with autism and may not understand or have the tools necessary to adequately support their children in cultivating relationships with children who seem different. The involvement of the whole school community will create awareness and sensitivity and will benefit all involved.

Families of peers can be informed through assemblies or Parent Teacher Drganizations (sometimes called Home & School Drganizations). In some cases, it may be necessary to inform the peers’ families more directly within a classroom or grade level. Some families may prefer to protect their child’s privacy (which is their right), while others might be inclined to share information in a letter or meeting about their student’s challenges and interests, finding that greater understanding and perspective within the community will reduce fear and improve acceptance.

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My video blog last week was about ruling out medical problems before treating problem behaviors in children with autism. So please watch last week’s blog first before this video blog on autism and pain if you haven’t done so already.

This week I’m going to answer a question I get often: “How do you teach children with autism and severe language impairments to indicate that they are in pain? And how can you teach them to tell you where the pain comes from?

For more information on problem behavior related to pain and the four behavioral functions – a topic closely related to this video blog – I recommend that you listen to the Turn Autism Around 45 podcast.

Indicating pain

When Lucas was 5, he underwent surgery to remove his tonsils. My friend, who was a pediatric nurse, warned me that about 5 days after surgery, scabs often fell out. It can be really painful. So, she told me I shouldn’t be too alarmed if Lucas woke up screaming around the fifth night.

As my friend predicted, on the fifth night Lucas woke up in the middle of the night screaming in pain. He yelled out, “Arthur’s Tooth!” You see, a video called “Arthur’s Tooth” was one of Lucas’ favorite videos at the time. The hero, Arthur, had a tooth extracted and screamed in pain as the tooth came out. For a year or two later, if Lucas skinned his knee or banged his elbow, he would yell “Arthur’s Tooth” as he rubbed the painful body part.

When I became a BCBA, a few years after Lucas started describing all pain as “Arthur’s Tooth,” I was curious as to how to best teach children to talk about pain. I remember asking Lori Frost many years ago about autism and pain. Lori’s response was to make sure you label – and preferably have your child label – when he has something visible that is obviously hurting him.

In other words, when your child has a dry knee or is stung by a bee, you attribute a lot of pain by saying “bu-bu” or auu. This is an important step. Eventually, your child will be able to tell you that he has internal pains, such as a headache or stomach pain.

Sensory problems

When it comes to autism and pain, we should also mention sensory processing. Some people with autism above or below their sensory processes. Potrebbero avere un’avversione per le luci intense o i suoni forti. My son Lucas wore headphones a lot because he’s bothered by loud noises, especially loud noises that come on suddenly. They also couldn’t respond to their name, which would be too poor a response to sound or language.

When teaching a child with autism to indicate they’re in pain, we should also be teaching them to indicate when there is a sensory issue . Some kids can’t stand being touched and get over reactive just by the tags in clothing. Most of us wouldn’t even notice a tag, but a child with autism needs to be able to indicate if that is bothering him.

Other autistic children may be sensitive to touch and need a lot of pressure. They jump or search for information by running on walls or slipping into sofa cushions.

Some babies also have problems with food-related reactivity. They can react to the sight of the food, the taste, texture, flavors, temperature of the food, and even the appearance of the food, such as color or brand. For example, the appearance of macaroni and cheese with different brands. They may refuse anything that’s not their preferred brand.

What parents and professionals initially associate with the pain response may in fact be simply an over or under response to the senses. In response to pain and sensory issues, tagging body parts can really help.

Body parts labeling

If your child is sensitive to pain, you can teach them to label what hurts or feels bad. For a child who does not speak or is slightly noisy, you can try taking the patch picture and saying Boo Boo on my ____________ to let the child fill the sore body part. Or try my ___________ bad. Your child will fill in the blank with a body part by speaking or selecting a body part image of your choice. Even if your child is talking, they may need additional visual support to learn the concept.

I also recommend that you try putting a real patch on the photos on different parts of the body. Have your child fill in the blank – boo boo on the boy’s ___________ or the boy’s ___________ hurts. You can also use the same idea to teach this concept with a speech generation device and / or sign language. I have found that receptive touch and expressive marking of body parts are usually essential skills for pain marking. So I recommend working on Mr. Potato Head and other body parts programs as well when your baby is not in pain. This can help make the brain react when it is in pain.

How to teach autistic students to communicate feelings

How to teach autistic students to communicate feelings

If you’re the parent of an autistic child, you may recognize the feeling: You drop him off to school every day, kiss him good-bye and wait anxiously until the afternoon when it’s time to pick him up. You greet him warmly, but he turns his head and hides in the seat. What’s up? Dn nie może lub nie powie ci. What can you do? The key to uncovering many of the underlying causes for your child’s behavior may be communication with your child’s teacher, who can be your best ally when it comes to helping your child.

This can be done in two ways: formally or informally. Formal communication takes the form of parent-teacher conferences or IEP (Individualized Education Plan) meetings. These forums exist for the purpose of updating parents on their child’s progress and for reviewing or setting goals for the next year. These meetings are very important, but the importance of informal communication between teachers and parents of children with autism cannot be overlooked.

Laura Shumaker, writer and mother of a child with autism, believes that communication between parents and teachers must be constant and “detailed”. By this you mean it should be more than “Great Day” or “Hit the Student”. Do you want to start? Here are steps experts they believe parents can take to facilitate communication with their children’s teachers.

Kathy Bolduc, mother of an autistic son and author of several books, encourages parents “not to be afraid to show their emotions at parent / teacher conferences. Raising a child with autism is a difficult but often joyful job. Dtwierając się na swoje uczucia, zapraszasz nauczyciela do relacji z tobą.

Invite the teacher over to your home for a cup of coffee and a chance to see your child on the premises. It can go a long way in establishing a relationship. You can prepare a simple booklet or booklet that introduces your child to the teacher at the beginning of the year. List his strengths, favorite activities, dishes, music and books; relaxing activities you use at home, topics you like to talk about, etc.

Sometimes, there is no substitute for an occasional visit to your child’s school at pick up or drop off. (Bring a few flowers from your garden, if possible!) Keep the visit short, but the more appreciation and encouragement you show your child’s teacher, the better the outcome for all.

Teachers also tend to be receptive to communication, but busy schedules can prevent them from always getting the answers their parents are looking for. For example, when Johnny’s mother meets the teacher at the end of a busy day and asks, “How did Johnny do in calendar time today?” the teacher may not have the information on top of their head. A parent’s question, though casual, may be seeking an in-depth answer, such as whether Johnny sat through the whole of calendar time. Did he answer the call? Ha stabilito un contact visivo? The teacher would do well if she said, “We still have some problems to solve. Can I contact you? Then for the next few days she can compile a log of Johnny’s behaviors and present it to his parents at a scheduled meeting.

Nicole Beurkens, M. Ed. And consultant to parents and school professionals, offers the following do’s and don’ts for teachers:

  • Make sure you pass at least one positive for every negative – Johnny can tell us when he wants to go to the bathroom. Negative – Johnny is unable to identify the Boys’ sign.
  • Non lasciare che i genitori sentano che è loro responsabilità "riparare" i problemi che sorgono a scuola.
  • Respond to communications from parents immediately, especially if you expect them to do the same.
  • Just don’t write when you want to let off steam or talk about problems with a parent.
  • Ask the parents what type of communication system (notebook, email, telephone, etc.) would be best for them.
  • Don’t give up if parents don’t communicate back to you consistently. Share your insights and requests and encourage them to do the same.

Communication between parents and teachers is necessary for a child’s educational growth. When a child is autistic, communication becomes crucial. It is not always possible to do this to the satisfaction of all concerned, but with some effort improvements can be made that will benefit not only the child but also the adult.

Steps to teach children about emotions that are non-verbal

Rebecca Eisenberg 06/12/2017 05:49:28

Expressing our emotions is such an important part of interacting with others. However, it can be very difficult for people with autism to express their emotions and interpret social cues.

Giving people on the gift spectrum the ability to express how they feel has great benefits. The more we shape the language, learn, collaborate and encourage, the better the communication will be.

The importance of understanding and expressing emotions

When a child or adult with significant autism is asked “How are you feeling?”, He often responds “I am happy” through his AAC (Assistive and Alternative Communication) system because that is what he was told to communicate when he was ask the question. As a result, it can cause confusion and frustration when something is wrong and the individual cannot convey their inner emotions or feelings.

For children who are unable to communicate verbally, parents often ask for AAC because they want their child to express how they feel or when they are hurt. It can be a complex process, but not impossible! As difficult as it may seem, parents should never give up and always pursue the greater goal of functional communication!

Teaching and learning: a process on both sides

Teaching emotions to children with non-verbal autism may seem like a complex task, but there are resources and aids that make it a little less daunting. These include communication cards and AAC communication devices. Feeling boards are available for download at https: // smartysymbols. com / – created with Smarty Symbols.

Start with simple feelings like joy, sadness, good, bad, hurt, sick, tired, and frustrated. He begins by identifying these feelings with both photos of people (they could be cards with different faces or photos from magazines). Although this is an identifying task and not communication, it is the beginning of interpreting cues from someone’s facial expression.

Model language! The modeling language is the key to learning to communicate in the AAC communication system. What is modeling? Modeling is all about pointing or activating specific icons in your communication system when you say them verbally. Use modeling to express your well-being with their AAC system. If you feel tired, model the phrase “I feel tired”, if you feel bad model the phrase “I feel bad” on your device. It is important that they are exposed to different feelings and have a perspective on how other people are feeling. Follow this link to learn more about assisted linguistic stimulation (https://www. youtube. com/watch? v=flFNMky22-U).

Video modeling is an amazing resource! Functional iPad apps such as the Focused on Feelings (Read to Learn by Attainment) app are easily accessible. Short snippets of advertising can be paused as often as needed to shape language and discuss how a person feels based on body language, facial expressions, and speech.

Catch the feeling when it’s happening! This can be a little difficult, but it is crucial in teaching emotions. If your child is visibly frustrated, present him on the device by saying “I’m frustrated”. If your child is angry, he shapes this language. If your child is injured or gets sick, take the opportunity to name the sentiment and form a sentence. Dsoby z autyzmem, jak każdy inny, mają bardzo złożone uczucia, ale mogą nie mieć etykiety, aby to przekazać. This is where you come in to give them that label!

Teach more complex feelings in context. Feelings like relaxed, confused, nervous, excited, scared etc. they should be taught in context and through modeling. Too often, many children and adults with autism are able to express only the words “happy” and “sad”. Imagine how limiting it would be to express just two feelings! In this article by Kendra Cherry (https://www. verywell. com/how-many-emotions-arethere-2795179) she states that there are over 7,000 different facial expressions!

Learning about emotions is a functional skill that will allow a person with autism to improve their quality of life. It will also help them become a more effective communicator with both friends and unknown communication partners. Individuals rely on the models of others to learn to express emotions, so model as much as you can on the communication board provided within this article or with your child’s AAC system.

Rebecca Eisenberg, SM, CCC-SLP, is a speech therapist, author, instructor and parent. Lei dd ponad osiemnastu lat lei pracuje zarówno z dziećmi, jak i dorosłymi z różnymi opóźnieniami mowy i języka oraz niepełnosprawnością. Rebecca has taught graduate courses at Teachers College Columbia University, NYU and Mercy College. www. soil gravity. com

Published by The Autism NoteBook. View all articles.