Autism Curriculum at ABC
Our curriculum is loosely divided into three sections that progress as your child grows, develops, and learns new skills. It begins with fundamental and basic skills necessary to learn. From there, our individualized program takes your child through a progression of skills that leads them to self-sufficiency. Once your child has completed our program, they will be competent in the essential skills required to be successful in a typical classroom setting. Our goal is to guide your child to independence in the classroom.
Depending on the need, programs can be up to 6 days per week. Some children have a full-time comprehensive program that can be upwards of 40 hours per week. Others have a more focused approach & those programs vary from 12-25 hours per week. Programs relating to relationships with families can last several years.
The Beginning Curriculum
This set of programs is designed to assist a child in “learning how to learn.” It heavily emphasizes skills that provide the very foundation for learning the more advanced skills that people associate with development throughout the early years of life. These programs specifically target skills relating to imitation, matching, early receptive language, basic attending skills, and fine/gross motor skills.
What does this mean and what does it look like? In a nutshell, on Day 1 of your child’s therapy, our therapy team will be targeting some very basic skill sets and important therapeutic goals:
Increasing tolerance to demands.
Sitting in a chair for an extended period of time.
Properly handling materials (i.e., cards, toys).
Building rapport with teams members.
Identifying important motivators.
The Intermediate Curriculum
This program is designed to use the skills learned in the early curriculum to begin learning the skills that are more closely associated with developing social skills, pre-academic skills and increasing quality of life. It is in these programs that the child begins to use vocalizations to identify objects. In other words, this is where a child typically begins to speak for the first time.
More advanced skills include:
Early conversation skills (i.e., answering questions, responding to social greetings).
Learning to spend downtime on appropriate play activities (puzzles, games, books, etc.).
The Advanced Curriculum
By this point in the program, the child has mastered the ability to imitate the sounds required to make words and has moved onto phrases, as well as sentences. In many cases, the child is now learning to speak based on what is being said (by parents, brothers, and sisters) in their natural environment. The focus of the program shifts toward having more appropriate social interactions through conversation, reading gestures, social queues, and nonverbal communication. Another major focus of this portion of the program is on advancing play skills and using free time to engage in appropriate activities. The goal of the final stage of the program is to enhance independence and quality of life.
Some common activities and skills targeted in this area would include:
Highly structured play and social groups that require independent and spontaneous use of the social skills already acquired.
Listening and compliance in group instruction settings.
Inclusion into social and play activities in the community (i.e., swimming, gymnastics).
Pre-academic and academic skills (reading comprehension, math story problems, writing sentences).
The Advanced Curriculum
In addition to providing ABA therapy services, ABC also offers programs to assist with important life skills. We have a potty training and feeding program, as well as programs that involve different types of therapy: Parent Training and Peer Interaction Therapy. If you’re interested in learning more about these programs, click here!