Storytelling for children with Autismby Indu Punj
Storytelling bonds us as human beings; it is in the very core of our nature as social animals.
In children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), storytelling can be used effectively to help children master language skills, improve their listening skills, develop their attention span and enhance nonverbal communication.
Since children with ASD find it difficult to understand the nuances of language such as sarcasm or dry humour, it is recommended that the storyteller focus on their expressions, use repetition to help develop an understanding of words, body language and emotions. Do remember that one must take things slow as overloading the senses could be detrimental for the children.
One could start with folk tales with a good message, using props to make things interesting.
Children with ASD tend to get distracted. Thus one of the best ways to keep them engaged is let them participate as it gives them a sense of belonging, grounding them to the classroom they’re in.