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TEACCH Workshop

Miriam Nadarajah,
Inclusion Advisory Teacher

What is TEACCH?
TEACCH is an evidence-based service, training, and
research programme for individuals of all ages and skill
levels with autism spectrum disorders. Established in
the early 1970s by Eric Schopler and colleagues, the
TEACCH program has worked with thousands of
individuals with autism spectrum disorders and their

Autism is presented as a culture: in

what ways do we adapt to interact
with people from other cultures?

Division TEACCH:

Treatment and
Education of Autistic and related
Communication-handicapped Children
Aims: The primary aim of the TEACCH programme is
to prepare Autistic people to live or work more
effectively at home, at school and in the community.
Improved adaptation: through the two strategies
of improving skills by means of education and of
modifying the environment to accommodate deficits.
Parent collaboration: parents work with
professionals as co-therapists for their children so
that techniques can be continued at home.
Structured teaching: it has been found that
children with autism benefit more from a structured
educational environment than from free approaches.

Learning Style
Some characteristics:
Stronger visual learners - may think in pictures rather
than words
Difficulties with sequencing
Narrow beam may focus on detail or area of interest
Difficulties with multiple perspectives joint attention
Theory of mind cannot mind read
More time is needed for processing
Time and organisational problems need predictability
with clear beginnings and ends
Problems with engaging attention and then
Difficulties with sensory over of under stimulation
may need breaks from stimulation to prevent outbursts

How would a person with autism

describe their learning style?
Show me, dont tell me.
Walk straight on up to the end of
this road, turn left and then take
the second left and its just there
on the right.

Give me time to process.

What is two plus two?

Use your
number line

Put two in
your head,
and count
on two

Are you
listening? Come
on, what is two
add two?

I am not a multi-tasker but rather

single channelled.
Have you eaten
your sandwich?
Finish your milk
Dont spill any
when you get
Line up when
youve finished

Lots of noise, light, heat, smells,

texture or other stimulation can
greatly disrupt me.

Details are my strength, concepts

and meanings give me more

They are wearing


What time of
year is it?
Why are they
wearing scarves?

If you do not organise and structure things for

me, I will do it myself and you will find it hard
to change what I have done.

I have a good memory, but not a

good sense of sequence.

Knowing what to expect is important to

me. I hate uncertainty and ambiguity.

If you dont tell me what to expect, I

will make my own assumptions based
on what occurred last time.



If you can help me make sense of

what you are requesting or what I am
doing, my performance goes way up.

The basic TEACCH principle is

Structured Teaching:

Physical organization
Flexible grouping
Curriculum adapted to IEP goals
Relaxation opportunities

Physical Organisation:
Develop areas based on the curriculum
Clear visual and physical boundaries
Material and contextual cues
Minimize distractions and stimulation:
Teaching and independent work areas
Establish a routine: associate activities
with specific areas or places

Examples in Camden:

Visual cues to indicate what will occur
and in what sequence

What work? How much work? Concept

of finished? What happens next?

Examples in Camden:

The Where and the What:

Schedule on wall
shows where to

Work system tells

what to do:

Activities with a clear



I know what to do and I

can see when Im

I can keep going for as long as I lik

Focus on independence not

next skill level
Teach the activity 1:1
Pupil can do at independent
work area
Pupil can do at group table
Ready for next skill level

Preparing for a schedule

Introduce a symbol which means a
change in the schedule
Introduce in a positive way by
substituting desired activity for
undesired activity
Even the unpredictable can be
made predictable!

Relaxation and leisure

As adults, we have a lot of leisure
time: they need to be good at it!
Balance curriculum with time for
relaxation/down time in specified
Encourage to choose activities for

5 a Day

Activities for any age, any level which will stimulate the
development of key skills!
Joint Attention


Introduce as focus early


Games in morning

Motor (hand actions)
easier than social (facial


Request using
May imitate peers more


communication system
May be more likely to Have categorical minds but
request from adult than need rules
Need to see many examples
Teach Basic Facial
before can generalise
Sorting activities
Enhances Theory of Mind
Start with colours then using
same materials sort by
different categories

High interest activities

(bubbles, lights)
Lots of noise/excitement
Teach them to show
rather than give: Show
me the
Pulling something out of
a bag with huge gasp
Sharing photos