For many parents, the first sign that their child may have an autism spectrum disorder comes around the time when they should be developing language skills. This is almost always the first sign that parents receive that something may be different about their child. While children in the same age group are often learning to say mama and daddy or asking to go to the potty, children with ASD are often content to play with toys and show no desire to communicate. ABA therapy can help to change this.
There has been a great deal of research completed on Applied Behavior Analysis therapy over the past thirty years. Not only do studies show that it is the most effective form of treatment for autism spectrum disorders, they also show that it can be the best tool for teaching language and communication skills. Research states that ABA therapy is most effective when started as early in a child's life as possible, and children diagnosed at the age of early communication certainly tend to see the best results from the therapy. In fact, many children treated this early are able to communicate on par with their peers by the time they reach school age.
ABA offers more than just a chance at language skills, it offers a chance at a better life. With intensive ABA training, which can be as much as forty or more hours per week, these kids learn to express thoughts, emotions, and concepts in an appropriate verbal manner. This often creates positive patterns of behavior that make it easier for them to integrate and fit into a traditional classroom setting. In essence, ABA can help teach kids how to learn.
ABA therapy is excellent at teaching language and communication, but it can do much more. It can also help these children learn how to recognize patterns and sequences. Learning through the discrete trials and repetition of ABA helps to create new synapses in the brain that can enable students with autism to start learning in much the same way as their classmates. This is certainly quite a remarkable feat, and it has given many children a great deal of hope. If you are the parent of a child with autism or an educator looking for a better way to teach your students, ABA therapy is a great choice. Designed to help teach language, social skills, and academic skills, it can equip autistic children with the tools they need to function both in the classroom and in the world as a whole.
Garrett Butch is the father of a 6 year old with autism and the founder of Maximum Potential Group.
Maximum Potential has developed courses that train parents and school systems how to work with children with autism.
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