I love when the work day experience takes a turn for the best. The ‘ah-ha’ moment when clarity and compassion combine. Hearts are softened and minds are opened.
When the reality that many of these students have never experienced a friendship shifts. Shifts to compassion and empathy. When as a team we all come together to remember that the human needs are present whether they have Autism or not. It is then in that knowing, we can look less at the academic abilities that they already have and more to the lack of social/communication skills that prevent them from successful interactions.
We as a team must look at the growth of the student not in relation to the test scores but in the ability to experience value in life; relationships, self-worth, successful experiences. To experience and express feelings about another person and to connect on a human level. And to always remember the process is more meaningful than often the result. In my opinion, that is meeting the needs of the student.
The shift. The ‘ah-ha’.