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It gets worse with every IEP meeting.
Your child keeps falling further and further behind. You're desperate and willing to try anything, because your child deserves better.
But what's the answer, homeschool? You, a parent with no education background, teaching your nonverbal autistic student?
It seems impossible.
It's time to build a better future
Imagine watching your child walk across the stage to collect their high school diploma. Imagine helping them map out a fulfilling career. Imagine them living independently.
Thanks to technology, those things CAN happen!
But first, they must learn to read. They must receive an education.
Here's why I created Nonverbal Autism Homeschool
"An average parent, who will dedicate a couple of hours per day to their student, can achieve so much more than I can all day long in a group classroom."
- Ken Sims, MA Special Education
You can do this!
You're already more than qualified to teach your child.
You were their very first teacher and you're going to continue to guide them their entire lives. Nobody knows them as well as you do. You know their special interests. You know when to push and when they're finished. You know when they're being sneaky. You know extremely important things that can make or break any educational attempt regardless of background.
With Nonverbal Autism Homeschool, you also have the right curriculum, a library of instructional videos and schedule that guides you day by day.
Our parent teachers are additionally encouraged to attend weekly live Q&A sessions with Ken Sims, co-creator of Nonverbal Autism Homeschool and a special education teacher who has taught 1,000 special needs kids how to read. No matter what difficulties you're having with your student, after 30 years teaching special needs students, he's seen it all and he has the answer.
And, you'll receive support from me, a mom who has been there! I'm always here to answer AAC modeling questions, give homeschooling advice, answer tech questions, recommend toys, apps and support products, and even provide a shoulder to cry on if you need it.
Welcome to Nonverbal Autism Homeschool!
In just two hours a day, you can teach your child to read, communicate and develop a love of learning.
The Nonverbal Autism Homeschool was developed by Heather Anderson, a special needs mom who was disappointed in her son's academic progress in public school, and Ken Sims, a special education teacher who has a reputation for advancing kids from a certificate track to a high school diploma.
Together, we created this program for my son Tosh. After just two years, Tosh has advanced from having hardly any academic skills to reading at a second grade level, completing adapted 4th grade academics and using several methods of communication, including his AAC device.
Now, we've made this program available online to all families!
With Nonverbal Autism Homeschool, you'll receive one full semester of curriculum that focuses on reading and expressive language skills using a variety of communication modalities, including AAC devices. Curriculum also includes math, science, social studies and art. You'll also receive additional AAC instruction on how to model at home and include AAC in daily activities. If you're a Proloquo2Go or LAMP user, you'll benefit from core board cheat sheets and other tips and tricks specific to those apps.
All curriculum was created by teachers and speech language pathologists, and conform to state education standards. Our worksheets, task boxes, games and activities are carefully selected because they were created for nonverbal students, or they can be easily adapted to meet their needs.
You'll also receive weekly videos that review every single piece of curriculum and show you how to teach the material. And, you'll receive live support from Heather and Mr. Sims!
Each week, you'll download a bundle of PDFs and watch a few videos that last a total of 15 minutes. Follow the instructions and work with your child for about two hours a day, four days a week. That's all there is to it!
Nonverbal Autism Homeschool gives you exactly what you need: organized, proven curriculum, instructional videos and live support. You'll be ready to take on the week.
YOU WILL GET RESULTS!
This will work even if you're not a SAHM
I'm a single mom and I'm able to make it work! I can help you figure it out, too. I've been there, Sis. Been there, bought the t-shirt, still wearing it!
This will work even if your child already has a full schedule with speech, OT and ABA.
In fact, I recommend including all of your service providers in this program. Additional logins are available for your therapists so they can access weekly lessons. Our AAC materials are made for SLPs by SLPs, and can be used for sessions. Cut and paste is a modified communication tool frequently used in this program and could be included in OT. And, ABA therapists can use homework to build academic skills like increased attention and focus, and how to ask for breaks. I even supply tips each week on which assignments could be sent to therapy appointments.
This will work even if your child hasn't shown much interest in AAC before.
Our AAC activities are fun and inviting, and most don't require sitting still. Even when we use AAC while we read books, we find ways to make it silly.
The Nonverbal Autism Homeschool program focuses on three things:
This is the focus of our program. Each week you'll receive phonics, vocabulary, sentence building and reading comprehension curriculum tailored for nonverbal students.
Your child will learn the first half of the AAC Core 40 words! Each week includes at least three AAC activities. Proloquo2Go users receive core board cheat sheets!
Nonverbal Autism Homeschool also includes age appropriate curriculum in science, social studies and art that respects their intellects and makes learning fun.
Meet the creators
Heather Anderson is a former journalist and blogger at The Autism Oasis, where she provides information and support to autism families. When she enrolled her nonverbal autistic son in a homeschool program, Mr. Sims was assigned as her son's supervising teacher. Together, they taught him how to read, communicate expressively and enjoy learning.
Ken Sims, MA Special Education
Mr. Sims has been a special education teacher for 30 years. During that time, he has taught more than 1,000 disabled kids to read, and helped many of them continue on to earn high school diplomas. He is a full time special education teacher in Southern California, and is currently credentialed to teach K-12 special education and K-6 general education.
Literacy is a human right
According to CDC estimates, there are nearly 1 million people in the U.S. alone with severe, nonverbal autism. Sadly, many of them are functionally illiterate despite having normal or gifted intelligence.
Most public schools are not structured to teach nonverbal children to read, communicate and reach their academic potential. The reasons for this include:
- Group classrooms are overstimulating and make it difficult for autistic students to focus and sit still, skills that are required in school. However, schools don't have room or funding for 1:1, low sensory learning environments.
- Intelligence tests rely on expressive language to produce answers. This discriminates against students with expressive communication disabilities and produces false intellectual disability diagnoses.
- Expressive communication is required to prove academic mastery in school, and mastery in the form of testing is required to move forward academically. This forces kids with expressive communication disabilities to spend years stuck with age inappropriate curriculum.
- Parents lack the training to model AAC use at home. Many aren't even aware that they need to model.
We believe that every child, regardless of expressive or cognitive ability, can learn. Nearly all can learn to read and communicate.
Yes, education reform is needed. But by the time that happens, it will be too late for your student.
I know this system works: I used it to teach my son how to read!
My son, Tosh, is 9 years old and has nonverbal autism. Just two years ago, we met Mr. Sims when he was assigned to be Tosh's homeschool EF by our charter school.
At the time, Tosh couldn't demonstrate the ability to count beyond 7, he couldn't read, and he could barely write his name. He became agitated when asked to do any school work and couldn't attend to a task or listen to a teacher for more than a couple of minutes.
Under the direction of Mr. Sims, and with the support and coordination of his ABA providers, Tosh has made unbelievable progress. He is now reading at a second grade level and can write sentences using Proloquo2Go at a first grade level. Even though he requires significant accommodations, he is learning grade level math, science, social studies, literature, art and PE.
The image you see is a screen shot from Tosh's iPad, demonstrating one way we used AAC to learn grade-level vocabulary words and context. Mr. Sims allowed me to take a screenshot, print it and turn it in as work.
My son is not a genius. He's bright, but he also has severe physical, behavioral and learning challenges. I'm not the world's greatest teacher, either. But with Mr. Sims' help, we did it. And so can you!
Mr. Sims and I are very passionate about the rights of nonverbal autistic people. We are honored to create this program and can't wait to change the lives of kids like Tosh.
- Heather Anderson, Co-Creator
Nonverbal Autism Homeschool