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Behaviour management for children with autism in early years 2020-10-21

It is uneasy for some parents to accept that their children have autism. When children exhibit problem behaviours in public places, parents feel very embarrassed and avoid taking their children out. Chi’s mother is different. She had quickly accepted the fact that Chi has autism, but she felt helpless about how to deal with Chi’s emotions and behaviours. Here is her sharing:

 "Chi is sensitive to sounds, especially to the sounds generated by hand dryers. I had brought Chi to a washroom in a shopping mall. When someone was using a hand dryer, he immediately struggled and cried. I didn’t know how to handle, so I just avoided taking Chi to washrooms with hand dryers. But running away from problems is not a good way."

Chi’s mother believes that problems have to be tackled before it is too late. For this reason, she has actively arranged treatment programmes for Chi. She heard about APF from other parents of children with autism. At that time, she knew nothing about Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) treatment. “I was a bit worried that Chi was five years old and might not be able to adapt to a new teaching model in a short time, which might lead to adverse effects. Fortunately, treatment programme of APF allows children to learn through games. He quickly adapted to the environment and learnt a lot.”

“After becoming familiar with the environment of APF, the therapists started to train Chi to stay clam when he was hearing the sounds of hand dryers. After repeated practices, he has gradually adapted to the sounds of hand dryers. Chi has also learnt different skills, such as looking at others’ eyes while talking, paying attention to instructions and answering questions. His descriptive language skills have also been enhanced significantly. I was surprised that he would explain games’ rules to me and even invite me to play together. ABA fits my son very well and is more comprehensive than traditional treatments. I hope that Chi can continue to receive intensive ABA treatment in APF and make good progress.”

(Recorded by APF)

Chi’s mother was invited to share her perspective on ASD and ABA services with Autism Partnership Foundation (operating in Hong Kong) (APF, HK). Chi is a past beneficiary of APF, HK.