**Mathematics Interventions**

for students with high functioning Autism/asperger's Syndrome

for students with high functioning Autism/asperger's Syndrome

Main Idea

With regard to neuropsychological characteristics, high functioning autism and asperger's have signigicant similarities and differences. "Further study by Macintosh and Dissanayake found minimal qualitative differences between HFA and AS, providing empirical evidence to support a unitary treatment of these disorders." For the purpose of this article, the two are combined and referred to as HFA/AS. A mathematics disability is shared by at least 25% of students with HFA/AS. There are several strategies that have been recommended for treating students with learning disabilities in mathematics.

Strategy #2: Direct Instruction

Strategy #4: Concrete-Representational-Abstract (CRA)

Why Do HFA/AS Students Struggle With Math?

Strategy #3: Goal Structure

Strategy #5: Integrated Behavioral Experiential Teaching (IBET)

Strategies for Building Comprehension and Enabling Participation

Conclusion

**Jeffrey b. donaldson and dianne zager**

Math concepts can be demonstrated through visual examples, but are often accompanied by sophisticated verbal instruction

Math terminology can be very complex and is challenging for students who struggle with processing the language of everyday interactions

Along with the verbal and representational expressions of a number, there is also the symbolic representation in the form of numerals

They may have motor skill deficits

Strategy #1: Self-Regulation

Self-regulation involves students completing checklists as they perform computations, with reminders for each step

Teacher feedback follows completion of the tasks

With self-regulation, student solution accuracy increased as their mood became more positive

Verbal feedback strategies, in which students are asked to repeat important directions that will strengthen the concepts, helps create structure and ensure that the student comprehends each step

Direct instruction is the use of systematic instruction that demonstrates how to perform tasks, prompts, and guides the learner, and reinforces correct responses

Direct instruction is suggested for teaching computation or problem solving because it takes a cognitive skill and breaks it into smaller steps

Accurate responses are rewarded; inaccurate responses are redirected, by redirecting a student, the teacher takes the student’s answer and reminds them of the mathematical concepts that apply to the problem.

Van Houten and Rolider used a direct instruction strategy for computation and taught students to match a numeral to a specific color to teach number names. Two thirds of the subjects tested demonstrating 100% accuracy 4 months posttest.

Goal structure utilizes goal setting and contingent rewards for completion of mathematics tasks

Students with HFA/ AS often have restricted interests, the key to students setting goals is that they must be invested in reaching it

Students demonstrated some improvement after setting personal goals for themselves, knowing that rewards were in store for strong performance

In CRA, students are first shown concrete examples (two halves of an apple), then a representation (a picture of two halves of a square), followed by the abstract depiction of the concept (the fraction 1/2)

CRA addresses the challenge in processing abstract concepts by using multi-sensory models

Students who were learning about word problems, with no previous exposure to word problems, performed at a mean level of 87% when using a CRA sequence

IBET has been developed specifically for the needs of the HFA/AS population in mathematics

IBET uses elements of direct instruction in its use of behavioral principles (rewarding students for accurate responses)

This strategy uses CRA in its emphasis on concrete presentation of stimuli first (often through real-life experiences, then a transition to photographic representations, followed by abstract symbols) to integrate skills in order to create a vivid concrete experience for the student

The goal of IBET is to utilize students’ direct personal experiences to make learning applicable through the combination of photographs, experiential learning, and reinforcement

Because students with HFA/AS are challenged in their processing of abstract concepts, CRA is a useful model of instruction for these students

Use a variety of manipulatives to help students generalize concepts across materials

If a student has ongoing difficulty with printing numerals, provide an alternative. Using number stamps or performing on the computer can enable a student to participate more effectively

Since many students enjoy using the computer, try to incorporate mathematical software that provides visuals that clearly explain and demonstrate concepts

If necessary, break up the instructional period into several discrete segments

Real Life Experiences

Cooking and baking:

measuring the

i ingredients

Counting change

at the grocery store

Using rulers and

tape measures

Article #

Article #

Embedded Instruction

It is similar to traditional teaching, the teacher implements instructional procedures designed to support the student's acquisition of the target skill

It differs in that the instruction is distributed across the activities that typically occur in the classroom setting rather than being presented one after another

Instruction is presented when teaching opportunities occur naturally during activities like music, movement, art, circle time, transition activities, and outdoor play

If a teacher has a student with HFA/AS in his or her classroom, there is a one in four chance that student will demonstrate difficulties with math

Depending on the difficulties the student demonstrates, a teacher may select interventions or strategies geared toward the specific age, instructional needs, and motivation of the individual student

Donaldson, J. B., & Zager, D. (2010). Mathematics interventions for students with high functioning autism/

Ontario Ministry of Education. (2015). Teaching and learning. Retrieved from

Su, H. F. H., Lai, L. and Rivera, H. J. (2010). Using an exploratory approach to help children with autism learn

asperger’s syndrome. TEACHING Exceptional Children, 42, 40-46.

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/speced/asdsecond.pdf

mathematics. Creative Education, 1, 149–153. doi:10.4236/ce.2010.13023

References