I created a customized 1-to-1 Japanese learning curriculum for a child with autism spectrum disorder who had displayed interest in Japanese culture but failed to achieve in the Japanese language program at the school.
To do so, I applied my own experience self-learning Japanese to N1 level, my experience working with children on the spectrum and supporting that student in particular, and my research and training in language learning and teaching to designing the course. I tracked his results and adjusted my approach in accordance with my ongoing research into the applied learning and teaching methodogy and how best to support learners on the spectrum in long-term learning goals.
As a result, the student was able to gain an understanding of the language and has started to use it in some situations, and the school is considering putting other students into the class to see if these methods will help those students as well.
In the process of creating and implementing this course and studying its effectiveness, I have made observations that are applicable to learning and teaching students with and without ASD, and in using online resources effectively while teaching students to develop their academic and linguistic skills by following and engaging with their interests in new and deeper ways. I hope my presentation will show my fellow educators the many ways they can use technology and students’ interests to help students realize their potential.
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