Discuss Inclusive Practice for Children with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder Within a Primary School Setting

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BA Honours and Combined Honours in Education
And professional studies
Learners with Disabilities and Learning Difficulties
ED2234
Tutor: Frank J. Harrington
Discuss Inclusive Practice for Children with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder within a Primary School Setting

Mukaddes Cross
May 2012

Discuss Inclusive Practice for Children with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder within a Primary School Setting

According to The National Autistic Society (2011 and 2012), autism can be defined as a lifelong developmental disability which affects the way a person is able to interact with others around them and make sense of the world they live in. However, there are variations of Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and children who have ASD will be affected in different ways (Dover et al, 2007). This essay will be discussing the inclusive education within the primary school setting, exploring the different strategies that are in place in order to support children with ASD, together with the effectiveness and possible improvement which impacts on the learning experience of children with ASD.

The number of people affected with an ASD in the UK today is still rising (NHS, 2012). The National Autistic Society (NAS) (2012), states that over 500,000 people have been diagnosed with an ASD. The condition occurs in families regardless of their ethnic and social backgrounds (Dodd, 2005:13) and the condition can affect people in various ways with the severity of the disorder also varying. Therefore Autism is referred to as a ‘spectrum disorder’, additionally Dover et al,(2007) and Siegal (2008) speculate that the reason behind using the term ‘spectrum’ is due to children presenting different symptoms at different stages of their development that links to the 12 diagnostic criteria, which was stated by Siegal (2008). As the diversity amongst people who are affected by ASD vary significantly, due to the different symptoms they are displaying as well as the background the children are from. Consequently these variations can cause difficulties in diagnosing the condition (Doyle et al, 2009).

A key factor regarding ASD and the challenges they may face, relate to communication and socialization, additionally related challenging and disruptive behaviour. Children suffering from ASD show behaviour that is considered to be socially unacceptable, however when viewed rationally, this behaviour may simply be defined as ‘different’ (Sadri and Flammia, 2011). There appear to be numerous behavioural models that indicate a child may have ASD, example of some of the models are: externalizing behaviour, problem behaviour, maladaptive behaviour, symptoms of behavioural and emotional disorder (Hill and Furniss, 2006).There are also other suggestive symptoms, such as: the constant flicking of fingers, flapping of arms, rocking, nudity, bedwetting and or irregular sleeping patterns which are deemed as inappropriate, defining ASD to a degree (Groark and Eidelman, 2011). Problems usually appear to arise when the individual becomes increasingly aggressive, amongst the issues are, tantrums, self harming or irrational disassociation (Research Autism, 2011). Whilst some situations involving co-ordination or fine-motor skills may prove to be challenging for a child who has ASD, some children shows signs of high IQ and appear to be gifted in certain areas such as Mathematics, art and Music (NAS, 2012)

Although there have been some suggestions that a form of predisposed chromosomes could have an effect on ASD, there is not enough evidence that this is the cause. Therefore, currently it is assumed (NAS, 2012), that ASD cannot be identified before or at birth. This argument is based on the diagnostic criteria of Wing and Gould (1979) ‘triad of impairments’ which looks at social interaction, imagination and communication difficulties the child may display (NAS, 2011). However, Mowder et al (2009) suggest that early identification of ASD would be advantageous as...
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