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Basketball Activities for Children with Autism

Basketball Activities for Children with Autism


Welcome back to another installment of our series of how to improve the lives of individuals with autism through exercise Once again we have one of our exercise connections champions Noel here to show you one of his favorite sports basketball and I’m really excited that we have someone from NCPAD here, Ms. Allison, to help us out as well Allison can you tell everyone a little bit about yourself? Yes! I am an exercise physiologist with NCPAD. I’m helping to develop fitness and health promotion resources for people with disability Awesome, awesome! What we are gonna do is we’re gonna take you through basketball which as I mentioned is one of Noel’s favorite sports and plays on a team in his local community We are going to break down the skills of basketball and show you how we may put them or you may put them together in a classroom or in a gym environment like we’re in now So what I saw that was very challenging for the students when I was working at a school for children with autism is they would typically show, or demonstrate one type of visual support to explain the entire game of basketball and it may be something like we have which was only a basketball game photo so what we did at the exercise connection was develop a series of visual support cards to explain to the children, visually the skills of basketball and to better help them understand, visually what we were asking them to do So Noel is going to be the basketball player for today, right? Great! And Allison is going to be his support worker because it’s very important that you understand that your support worker plays a crucial crucial role in helping our kids have success in a gym setting or in a classroom and we’re gonna have the exercise cards at each station as we’ve shown through other examples in this series The exercise card not only helps the child or the adult on the spectrum but can be very beneficial to the support worker to showing them what you want them to do or teach to their student, right? Right Alright so we are gonna go through these three stations The first one Noel and Allison and myself are gonna do is bounce pass and catching a basketball Then the second one we’re gonna do is dribbling And the third one we’ll do is shooting the basketball Everyone’s favorite is making baskets, right? Right Are you ready? Ready! Are you ready? Yes! And so am I! So here we go to station one Alright the first station we’re doing is bounce pass and chest pass and one thing that I want you to recognize is Allison is holding a volleyball A volleyball or the sport of volleyball may be what engages your student and they don’t like to learn, let’s say the game of basketball but if volleyball engages them then use a volleyball or as you’ve seen in other series use a sensory friendly ball to start teaching our students the gross motor coordination So again we’re gonna use a volleyball for this example Now I’ve chosen Allison as the para-professional who may choose the amount but we’re gonna do three Chest pass Very good So here we go One Two Three Nice job! Awesome job! Next we’re gonna do Three One Two Three Four Nice job! Awesome! So again we’ve just broke down the game of basketball by teaching passing and again Allison did a tremendous job of leading and guiding Noel and Noel again was so important were the visual support cards and setting the expectation with the number of how many we wanted to do so in this next station now we’re going to take it one step further and we’re gonna do dribbling We are here at station two which is dribbling and what we are gonna show you is again Allison as as a para-professional is modeling and doing the exercise with Noel which is again a great way to get your children engaged if you stand there as the educator or as the para-professional or instructor and just point and tell them what to do that’s not that exciting Be a part of it Show them you’re engaged and you want them to succeed So that’s exactly what Allison is gonna do and they’re gonna do it together and they’re gonna go forward and then again to challenge their body and their brains they’re gonna do it backwards together Alright let’s see it Ready? Great job! And what you saw was you saw Noel for whatever reason he was holding on to the ball and dribbling it like this Not a big deal He still did it he’s still engaged but notice when he did it backwards he did it in let’s call it the correct way But either way he was still doing it he was still doing that motor planning and still engaging the activity and coach Allison ended with a very positive great job and high five We’re now gonna take you to station three We’re at our third and final station of shooting the basketball in the basket Everyone’s favorite part of basketball But what you’re gonna see now is because if you remember station one we did passing Coach Allison is gonna pass the ball to Noel and then Noel is gonna shoot it in the basket Again following the visual support cards and successfully completing it and breaking all of it down So here we go Go ahead Champ! Nice job Noel! Doesn’t miss! Nice job! Alright so we just took you through three different examples of how to break down the game of basketball And you can do the same thing with other sports Breaking it down making it successful and building the children’s confidence and self-esteem And not only that Remember if you are a teacher and you have para-educators working with you You are so dependent on them and we need great para-educators and empower them through the use of visuals let them know that they can do this even if they’re not exercise specialists but that relationship that positive activity like you saw with Allison clapping hands and being positive can make all the difference in the world for all of our children and students So we will see you next time

4 thoughts on “Basketball Activities for Children with Autism”

  1. As an adaptive PE teacher this gave me simple ideas – using a little dry erase board – Simple! Just hadn't thought about it. I have as many as 12 students at one time so using the few para-professionals will be a challenge, but it's a start. What a great video. Thanks!

  2. Where can I purchase the visual support cards you use? I found the Visual Exercise System cards, but I was wondering if you sold the large cards like the ones you use in this video.

  3. Just step on the free will of children… These children are forced to do sports to fulfill the selfishness of the parents.

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