Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Classmate Question on Learning to Communicate

A Classmate writes:

Hi Philip,
I just wanted to ask how you are taught or how you learn to speak sign language.  It seems hard to learn so I want to know how you learn it.  Also, how long did it take to learn what you know now?

Philip's response:

I do not know sign. I type my answers. My method of communication is Rapid Prompting Method. I learned when I was nine. I started by going to Austin, Texas to learn from Soma how to learn about lessons for kids my age. I was given lessons in math, science, history, and literature for the first time. My parents learned to teach me. I talked by pointing to letters on a letterboard to spell words. Later I learned to type. I still need an aide to help me stay focused and on task. This is because autism makes me captive to impulses. An aide helps me overcome my impulses so I can follow where my mind really wants to go. A lot of practice has gotten me far. I still have a long way to go.  People make my life better by politely helping me be peacefully included. I am always treated well at Heim. 


  1. Hey =) Are you working on typing without an aide? And does it have to be your mom or someone you know well or could it be anyone if they know what to do?

    1. i am not working on typing without an aide yet. mom is my best aide now. i need practice with each person i type with. this is because i am anxious at first with new people. i also make myself type better with people who believe in me because i am willing to work harder. typing takes so much energy from me but maybe it will be easier in time.

    2. The above comment is from Philip.