Since receiving my Diploma in Early Childhood
Education in 1994, I have been employed as a Special Needs Assistant
for public education in Alberta,
The majority of my experience has been with
young children experiencing behavioral difficulties, mild/moderate speech
and language delays, selective
mutism and various degrees of cerebral palsy.
For three years I had the opportunity and
privilege of assisting a young boy diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental
Disorder and Mental Retardation.
Unlike many of the mild/moderately affected children with PDD, this child was severely affected and required constant supervision. It became apparent to school personnel that our knowledge or experiences gleaned from working with other special needs children inadequately equipped us for the experiences which lay ahead.
As I began to learn all that I could about autism by attending local seminars, reading articles, and searching endlessly on the internet, I soon discovered that much of the information related to diagnosis and assessment, rather than intervention strategies.
After reading books relating to developmental
psychology, mental retardation, alternate communication, behavioral management,
occupational and rehabilitation therapy, I was able to develop a
very specific program for this
low-functioning autistic child.
It is my desire that others may benefit from the knowledge and experience that I have acquired to better meet the needs of these unique individuals.
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