Facilitator of An Innovative & Dynamic Autistic Support Classroom

My classroom aid and I find ourselves laughing with and often at each other. We agree that in Room 435 behaviors are wildly eccentric and enlightening. While giving our students the tools to navigate society, it is important that we can also preserve each student's intricate personality and autonomy by nurturing their strengths, interest and abilities.

Each day, we are able to enjoy the gifts our extraordinary students present. I'd like to share these gifts, hopefully opening a window in the world of students with autism. It is my goal, to let others see that students with cognitive variations have insight and abilities far beyond what many may imagine. Enjoy.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Regional Competition

We are on fire!  After winning first place in the multi-media category at our school's computer fair, our students went on to win third place in the Philadelphia Regional Computer Fair Competition Multimedia category

As the only Autistic Support Classroom in the Philadelphia region to participate, many people thought that placing third was an impressive accomplishment for our classroom; however, our students had another sentiment.  "We wanted to win first place." 

I explained to them that not only was the pool of competitors much larger than our school's computer fair, but that some of those students had much more experience using technology and multi-media. Placing third was indeed a big accomplishment and they should be proud.   I knew that they truly felt gratified as they returned to school, showing off their trophies to students and faculty throughout the building. 

I can appreciate their ambition.  In fact, I too hold aspirations that will hopefully contribute to their ambition, nurturing the motivation to accomplish, persevere and compete amongst their peers.  It is my intent to fortify a process where students with Autism regularly compete with "neorotypical students."  It should become the norm.

In pushing to make that happen, I will continue to set high expectations for my students... and myself.