Learn how visual aids can help a child with autism

A comunicação é uma das principais dificuldades de crianças com autismo, mas os suportes visuais podem ajudá-las na compreensão de mensagens e na explicação de necessidades.


Communication is a major difficulty for autistic, but visual aids can help a child with autism understand the messages and be able to explain their needs.

As we have discussed here, one of the biggest difficulties for people with autism is communication. Usually they need help explaining what they want. Thus, visual aids appear to be a good way to help people with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) communicate.

However, we must remember that we all need visual aids. For example, when we use a public toilet or when we cross a street. In these cases, the symbols with specific symbols help us make decisions. The educator and psychomotorist Beatriz Zeppelini explains that people with autism who benefit most from the use of visual aids.

“Visual pathways make more sense for people with autism. Many people with autism who have the ability to express themselves verbally have expressed that they learn more when the information is visual. That is because the brain area that is responsible for the visuals usually works better. In people with autism. Many have excellent visual memory, “he says.

Psychologist showing pictures to little boy with autistic disorder

What exactly are visual aids?

According to Beatriz Zeppelini, visual aids are any kind of visual item added in a given environment to make it easier for people with ASD to understand or minimize communication difficulties.

“The social skills group I develop with some children can be used to exemplify what visual aids are. Children sit in a wheel and must follow certain rules. For many people, images that remind them of the rules are not needed, but for these children, yes. There are several rules that explained through pictograms, such as remaining seated in the place, raising a hand to speak, among others, “explains the psychopedagogue.

Another example is the JADE application that uses visual supports, with specific images to perform the educational activities proposed on the platform. These activities, through images, stimulate the development of children with autistic spectrum.

Tela com exemplos de suportes visuais no aplicativo Jade
Image of the game Jade Autism with figures of t-shirts, hats, pants etc.

Individual assessment

Visual aids can used in basic everyday activities. To teach children to brush their teeth, for example, parents may use images that help their children understand that activity. Ideally, the responsible adult should provide the child with initial instructions had better understand the visual’s message.

For professionals, it is necessary to understand that children with autism are different from each other. Therefore, each requires a different need. Beatriz Zeppelini warns about the risks of generalizations.

“Every child with autism needs an individualized assessment. I can’t give a cake recipe and say that all people with autism need a certain technique. We need to track skills and difficulties, so we can plan, and we put the necessary supports “, he explains.

Visual aids and the child’s routine

Children with autism are generally more resistant to routine changes. Therefore, an interesting visual support is the agenda or activity boards. “Because these children have little flexibility, visual support can provide some predictability of routine. Using a schedule, for example, can minimize behavioral problems related to routine change. Using this feature gives the child a notion of what will happen on her day “, explains Beatriz.

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