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«У комунікації приховано набагато більше сенсів, ніж нам здається. Цей Довідник допоможе розкрити нові, додаткові смисли, коли в центрі уваги – людина та її різноманіття. І це стане першим кроком у формуванні нової етики спілкування».

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Олена Зеленська

Advice for parents traveling with children who have autism

08.03.2022

It is vital to inform the child of what the journey might be like. If you can, make a personalized social story explaining every part of the journey and containing photographs of the locations you’ll be at. It should also explain the social rules the child will need to follow along the way.

If you’ll be traveling by train, you should prepare your child for the rhythmic sound of the wheels and the fact that they might be surrounded by a large number of people. You can also bring along a blanket and make a makeshift fort which will help your child feel like they have their own private space.

Avoid places with bright white light, be sure to bring your child’s personal sensor devices such as a book, a song or a downloaded cartoon – anything that is familiar and will give a sense of security and peace. Give your child plenty of drinking water, at least one glass per hour. The same applies for bus travel.

If you’re traveling by car, if possible, prepare your child’s favorite music, download videos to your phone or tablet device, and bring along snacks such as cookies or drinks. If your child is on a diet, take something rarely allowed but that they are able to eat, and thus encourage them to be patient during the long journey.

Be sure to explain the safety rules (such as wearing a seat belt, stopping at the toilet, not distracting the driver) through a social story. Draw the child’s attention to picturesque landscapes, stop in safe places to walk, and do simple exercises whenever you can.

* Recommendations provided by Anastasia Stepula, an expert on the peculiarities of communication with neurodivergent people

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