Does your heart go out to those with special needs? Do you want to be by their side and assist them in some way?
Then an autism support teacher can be a great career option for you. But the next question that arises is how you can become an autism support teacher!
Such a position falls under the special education teaching category. However, the support staff positions can also be available for the teachers’ aides and for that you do not need specialization.
The knowledge of what it takes to be an autism support teacher can assist a person to plan the path of education and achieve the correct certificates.
To help you out here are certain things that you should keep in mind for becoming a special ed teacher specialised in autism.
But first let us understand what you need to do as an autism support teacher. Just take a look.
What You Need to Do as an Autism Support Teacher?
It can be quite challenging to be a teacher for those with special needs or autism. But at the same time, it is also extremely satisfying. Though it can be physically and mentally draining to assist students who are autistic, it is also quite rewarding when you see them progressing and succeeding.
Just like the teachers of other subjects, you also have to devise the lesson plan, instruct and assign the activities to the kids, grade the tests and assignments and track the progress of the students as a special ed or autism support teacher.
Such teachers can teach at the elementary, middle and secondary schools both private and public. Their students can range between those having mild to severe behavioural and/or learning disabilities.
Some of these teachers have separate classrooms where they teach students with special needs and others work in the general classroom in small groups or on individual basis. Under such circumstances, the special kids learn side by side with the other students. Of course, during the times when autism is in the public eye, such as when clothing for autism awareness month is worn, staff may also promote autism awareness within the rest of the school to help neurotypical students understand more about autism and how they can support their autistic peers in school.
Educational Credentials for Being an Autism Support Teacher
Every state requires the candidate aspiring for such a position of special education teacher or Autism support teacher to hold, at least, a B.Ed degree in special education. In certain cases, the M.Ed level of special education is also a must.
Though there is, now, awareness and topics related to special needs in the teachers training programs in India, the one that includes Autism is not so prevalent still. However, you will find many diploma programs (D.Ed.Spl Ed-ASD) that are being conferred today.
There are intensive programmes stretching for 1 or 2 years brought forth by both government and private institutes for the Autism support teacher aspirants. Such programmers help to prepare you so that you can guide your Autistic students in the best way possible.
Necessary Skill Sets for Being Autism Support Teacher
Here are some of the important skill set to become the Autism Support Teacher. Just take a look.
- Critical Thinking – The Autism Support Teachers must be able to examine the progress that is made by the special kids and use that info to strategize the lesson plan.
- Improved Communication – The Autism Support Teachers are supposed to explain the concepts in the terms in which the kids with the learning disabilities can comprehend. They are also supposed to write the education programs on individualistic basis and share the students’ advancements with the counsellors, general education teachers, administrators, specialists and parents.
- Patience – The special education teachers must be able to maintain their calm while instructing students with disabilities who present challenges related to behaviours and others, who lack the basic attributes or call for repeated efforts for understanding the materials.
- Interpersonal Abilities – The Special Ed or Autism Support Teachers work on a regular basis with the educators’ team and the parents of the students to develop the individual reports accurately. So it is a must that they are able to develop the positive working relations.
- Resourcefulness – The special education teachers or Autism Support Teachers in the special needs schools should be able to invent different ways to present the information pieces which meet the needs of the students. They also assist the general education teachers to adapt the lessons to the students with the disabilities.
Now that you know what you need to be an autism support teacher, start preparing and change as many lives as possible.