Big Deal Media

K-12 Technology
Autism and Blindness Deafness

Apr 15, 2019 2019-04-15

Digital Learning • Learning Support

SPOTLIGHT! On Autism, Hearing Loss, and Visual Impairment

When a young child has autism, screening for hearing loss and visual impairment can be difficult. A number of resources are available to help families and professionals work together to appropriately screen these children and address their special needs effectively. These include explanations of autism-like behaviors, an online webinar series exploring multidisciplinary perspectives on these disorders, suggestions for writing measurable IEP goals, and a video of revealing moments of children with Asperger’s syndrome and their parents. 

Autism in the Visually Impaired Child
This webpage highlights explanations for autistic-like behaviors in children who are blind, as well as caveats in diagnosing them—that is, the behaviors one might observe on the surface and the processing difficulties that might account for them. These include socialization, problems in language and communication, perseverance or narrowly focused interests, and hypo- and hyper-sensory systems. The presentation identifies what one sees and does not see, and the implications for parents and educators. The information was presented at a past AER conference by two members of the Psychology Department in Maryland School for the Blind.

Perspectives on Deafness with Autism
Audiology Online offers a webinar series to help shine some light on deafness when it coexists with autism. This special online series, sponsored by Advanced Bionics, explores multidisciplinary perspectives in an effort to help change and add to how we think about these disorders. The presenters discuss some of the unique communication challenges that come with a dual diagnosis of deafness and autism, as well as strategies for assessment and intervention.

Social Skills: IEP Goals for Students with Visual Impairments and Asperger’s Syndrome
Often educators receive requests for assistance regarding writing appropriate (measurable) IEP goals in the area of social skills for children with visual impairments and are also presented with Asperger’s syndrome. A licensed psychologist and former vision teacher provides a perspective that goes beyond the observable behaviors to suggest some underlying causes to parents and professionals. The suggestions are based on her training and clinical experience with children and adults who fall within the autistic spectrum disorder, with children with visual impairments, and now with the dually diagnosed.

Kids with Cameras
This video follows the participation of seven children with Asperger’s as they create films, poems, paintings, and music, with encouragement from their teacher and stimulated by interaction with one another. Revealing moments in the children’s private lives and candid interviews with their parents bring to life the challenges they and their families face in coping with the disorder. Sign up for free to Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP) to view the full-length title. Non-DCMP members may preview a short clip for free.

Autism Deafness/Hearing Disability Blindness/Visual Disability

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