How To Improve Reading Skills With a Non-verbal Autistic StudentMarch 17th, 2009
This question just came in from Penny Ray:
I have a question about “Five Minutes to Better Reading”. Have you used that program with a non-speaking student? What do you recommend for non-speaking (non-verbal autistic) kids in terms of boosting reading skills?
Am looking for anything that would help.
There is a way to use the Five Minutes to Better Reading Skills with a non-speaking student, providing they can read the 3 letter words it starts with.
1. Get one more clear plastic sheet and one more dry erase marker.
2. Your student places a clear plastic sheet on top of his copy of the drill & you place a clear plastic sheet on top of yours.
3. Sit across from each other.
4. You will need to prop your book somewhat upright so he/she can’t see when you make a mark on your sheet.
5. You will then read the drill to the student, practicing it – put in a few mistakes – mark when you make a mistake.
6. The student needs to mark on his/her plastic when you make a mistake too.
7. Compare sheets – did the student mark the same mistakes as you did – ‘catching’ your mistakes?
8. Then do the timed read for one minute. Try to read the drill a little bit faster, BUT, be sure to put in mistakes again. Mistakes can be skipping a word, repeating a word,
skipping a line, or mispronouncing a word.
9. The student needs to catch whatever mistake you make.
10. If the student catches all of your mistakes, he/she is reading at 100%. You will need to figure out the percentage of errors he/she catches in order to keep track of the scoring for the student (words per minute & errors per minute that he/she caught vs words per minute & errors that were actually made).
Other non-speaking reading activities would include:
1. Pointing to the word I say, or the sentence I am reading and then a particular word or phrase with the sentence.
2. Circling all of a particular word on a page.
3. Reading a story without pictures and then drawing pictures to go with it – so there are no picture clues ahead of time. that way you know if they really read the story and understood/comprehended it.
4. Use magnetic letters for them to write the word you are saying.
5. Use word cards and have them arrange them into sentences (The Sentence Zone game would allow them to do this – it comes with over 700 color-coded word cards.)
Hope this is helpful.
Bonnie Terry, M. Ed., BCET