By Phoebe Caldwell
Phoebe Caldwell's impressive new publication makes obtainable for the 1st time the advanced, problematic internal and sensory worlds of individuals whose studying disabilities are mixed with autistic spectrum disease and, frequently, difficult-to-manage behaviour. in accordance with a long time of operating with such humans, a lot of whom have withdrawn right into a international in their personal, she explores the various sensory truth they event, exhibiting it to be infinitely extra complicated and sundry than is commonly understood. She introduces a pragmatic method often called extensive interplay, which makes use of the physique language of such humans - who've hitherto mostly been considered as unreachable - to get in contact with them, giving them a manner of expressing themselves which shifts their realization from solitary self-stimulation to shared job. the end result is not just a marked development in behaviour and skill to speak yet, extra very important, many oldsters will say 'they are only a lot happier'.
overlaying not just the sensible facets of introducing this method, but additionally the considering at the back of it, this landmark publication has a lot to claim on behalf of a gaggle that has some time past principally been denied a voice, and may open new avenues for either perform and learn. it's useful for fogeys, carers, and all who paintings with this group.
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Additional info for Finding You Finding Me: Using Intensive Interaction To Get In Touch With People Whose Severe Learning Disabilities Are Combined With Autistic Spectrum Disorder
When I go into the sandpit area it is lined with brilliant fluorescent orange tiles, evidently the cause of his distress. The solution is a paintbrush. Again, a man who trashes his room every day becomes calm when the walls are repainted soft pale green with curtains, carpet, bed-linen and upholstery to match. All his so-called challenging behaviour ceases. On the other hand a mother tells me she bought a bright green fluorescent mat to cheer up her son’s bedroom. Every morning he threw it out on the landing and she told him to take it back.
A child tells us he hears the first few words in a sentence and then the rest ‘sort of slips away’. There is a blank space, nothing. A child at school says that when the words return he has no idea of what the teacher has said in between – so he loses the message and is blamed for being lazy. A difficulty that I share with a friend who is autistic is that of hearing what a person is saying against a high level of background noise – for example, in a crowded restaurant. She says that it is not just a question of deafness (as it is for me) but for her, when there is ambient noise, the speech is not just faint but scrambled – so it appears that processing is distorted by overloading the system.
When she heard of the effects of coloured lenses she told us that now she understood the behavioural change in a man she had worked with. Aged 33, he has ASD, is non-verbal but makes sounds. When he is anxious he will not sit down, jumps on the spot, repetitively shuts doors and tidies and CAUSES OF STRESS 43 his sounds become louder. One day he has a fall and breaks his prescription glasses. While these are being mended, support staff give him his sunglasses which have red lenses. There is a significant change in his behaviour, noticed by staff and this man’s parents.