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TEACCH

'Treatment and Education of Autistic and related Communication handicapped Children'. The primary aim of TEACCH is to help to prepare people with autism to live or work more effectively at home, at school and in the community.

Structured teaching is an important priority because of the TEACCH research and experience that structure fits the “culture of autism” more effectively than any other techniques we have observed. Organising the physical environment, developing schedules and work systems, making expectations clear and explicit, and using visual materials have been effective ways of developing skills and allowing people with autism to use these skills independently of direct adult prompting and cueing. These priorities are especially important for students with autism who are frequently held back by their inability to work independently in a variety of situations. Structured teaching says nothing about where people with autism should be educated; this is a decision based on the skills and needs of each individual student. Some can work effectively and benefit from regular educational programs, while others will need special classrooms for part or all of the day where the physical environment, curriculum and personnel can be organised and manipulated to reflect individual needs.

Cultivating strengths and interests, rather than dwelling solely on deficits, is another important priority

Extract from ‘What is Teacch?’ Gary Mesibov on www.autismuk.com

Further information

TEACCH (on NAS site)

Training in the UK