Homeschooling provides the flexibility and specialization to make learning easier for almost any child—but for kids with Asperger’s syndrome, getting an education tailored to the way they learn could make all the difference. Learn more, today on Home School Heartbeat with HSLDA President Mike Smith.
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Dianne Craft, one of HSLDA’s special needs coordinators, is with us this week to discuss homeschooling a child with Asperger’s syndrome. Dianne, you explained last time why homeschooling can actually provide a much better learning environment. What kind of curriculum best serves a child with these particular challenges?
Well, parents who have successfully homeschooled their children with Asperger’s syndrome have found various educational approaches that work. Many parents find that computer-based instruction can be a good teaching method. One characteristic of children with Asperger’s syndrome is they tend to like structure and predictability. They’re also easily self-taught, in many cases. For that reason, parents have found that computer-based instruction works for these children, if they’re working close to grade level.
But some parents have found that unit studies work best for their child. Doing a unit study involves studying a topic in-depth. Since this is exactly what children with Asperger’s syndrome tend to want to do, it fits in very easily with their learning style. Unit studies often work well for kids who are resistant to learning about anything but their “special topic.” Parents start with the topic of interest, and then branch out into other topics.
Dianne, thank you very much for sharing your experience. I’m sure it will be helpful to many families. And until next time, I’m Mike Smith.