Episode 097: 8 Key Ways to Build Rapport with Students with Autism


The whole team including the teacher, teacher assistant, administration staff and leadership team should work towards building a strong relationship with the student.   In our experience often the student only develops a strong relationship with the teacher. This is limiting as the student needs to be able to respond to other staff in the playground and often leadership teams are involved in behaviour management. 

A strong relationship with the student means that the student will be more receptive to teaching opportunities and will retain more information.

8 Key ways to build rapport

Excerpt from The Ultimate Guide to Home and School By Sue Larkey

Get to know the student and his or her interests (see student profile page 31).

Develop a summary profile of the student so everyone is aware of the student’s triggers.

Know the student’s name (students on the spectrum often don’t realise you are speaking to them if you don’t include their name).

Give students responsibilities or jobs particularly around their special interest.

Reward positive behaviour.

Reward the right behaviour.

Talk to students at the start of duty or a lesson. Don’t wait until something goes wrong.

Get down to their level. Bend down to their height or sit next to them. Some children in the younger years like to lie on the ground; you may need to lie down with them to engage them.

Want to learn more with Sue Larkey?

The Ultimate Guide to School and Home

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