On #AUTISM & HOMEWORK – Carly Jones

Thank you to friend and autism advocate. Carly Jones, for allowing me to share this. You are a light in the world Carly.

“I have learned that when an Autistic child says “I don’t understand ” to a piece of school /home work it can often mean they “don’t understand how to not overthink the question ” or they “don’t understand how short the answer should be ” or “don’t understand what the teacher is requesting ” not that they simply don’t get it – but that they are massively overthinking how to answer with information overload – after all the world gives us (Autistic people) too much information constantly so it’s only correct that’s what the world expects in return ? No ? 

For example , spelling homework was write the spellings out repeatedly each day (not an issue) then put each word into its own sentence with a very small area in paper to do so -que meltdown – “I don’t understand !!” So I say “OK for example HATCH could be , I wait to watch the eggs hatch ” – the child’s reply “but in English we are told we must write using describing words , I was thinking .. In the cool mysterious darkened wood I tip toed through the rustling leaves to find a wooden hatch on the floor” 

Me (gobsmacked !) “so you do understand then? 

Child “no I don’t understand how we are expected to write all that in that tiny box ?” 

Example 2

Maths homework 

What comes after 30 ? What comes before 5? 

Tears and meltdown 

I start counting from 1-30

Meltdown gets bigger 

I assumed that the meaning of “before ” and “after” was understood , they had no idea what before or after meant – just as a child can say the words means in no way they are understood !

I explain before and after , then explain they are asking (in this case ) to say “add and subtract /greater and smaller ” in a different way . They understood the numbers not the phrase or words .

Just a thought xxx”


About neverblendin

David Watters, a graduate of Napier University, Edinburgh, Trinity College of Music, London and the Institute of Education, University of London, has worked internationally within education and Educational Management for more than 20 years. He has taught extensively within many socially and culturally diverse settings; most recently as a Head of Performing Arts within Further Education. He is a personal and professional development associate with The Pacific Institute (www.pacificinstitute.co.uk), personal coach, freelance writer and founding member of NBI Associates. He is a writer on social equality issues, is a key player in the Equal Love Campaign UK and author of the forthcoming book, NEVER BLEND IN which features key voices from the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community and which aims to inspire and encourage those who may lack self-esteem or who question their validity. David is currently promoting a youtube campaign"Give 'em Hope"and is asking individuals, couples and groups to make and share videos telling about the benefits of living with personal authenticity. He has shared a platform with Stuart Milk and Peter Tatchell and is a supporter of 17-24-30, The Trevor Project, Schools Out, The Terrence Higgins Trust, The Albert Kennedy Trust and numerous others. His background in arts and education, combined with a solid understanding of Cognitive Behavioural Strategies, and his passion for Equality Advocacy drive every aspect of his work as a personal development facilitator, motivational speaker and writer. View all posts by neverblendin

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