Behavioral Challenges in Children With Autism and Other Special Needs

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925 words
University of California, Santa Barbara
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The child is raised by a single mother. The child was born weighing 1.5 kg. The childs mother is a former drug addict. The mother is a low-income earner who struggles to pay monthly bills and fend for the child. The child has never seen his father and the mother spends a little time with the child. Apparently, the mother conceived the child when she was addicted to drugs. The mother used to be sexually promiscuous, and up to now, she is not even sure who fathered her child. There is a time when child protection services took the child from the care of the mother after numerous complaints from neighbors that the mother was not granting the child proper motherly care. There is a time when the mother wanted to give up the child for adoption. However, social workers and neighbors encouraged the mother to be strong and work hard in ensuring that the child is well taken care of.

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I chose to observe the child because I noticed that the child was socially awkward. The child experienced difficulties when it came to playing with toys and props. The child could only play with a few toys. The child played with the toys in a repetitive manner. The child refused to share his favorite toy during the playing process with other children, and when asked to share the toy, he would display outbursts. The child experienced difficulties when it came to sharing attention with other children during the playing process. The child exhibited exaggerated energy levels when it came to playing with his favorite toy. I observed that the child exhibited difficulties when it came to interacting with his classmates. When called, the child took a long time to respond; as a matter of fact, his response came after being called several times. The child had very little interest in people. The child had problems when it came to communicating; he was unable to communicate in a coherent manner. The child had problems when it came to playing social games; the child preferred playing alone and did not imitate actions of other children. The child failed to respond to smiles and other friendly gestures. The child exhibited moments of anger at other childrens behaviors (Van et al., 2015).

I observed both cognitive and social play in the child. In respect to cognitive play, I noticed that the child repeatedly played with his favorite toy and when asked to share the toy with other children, he would display outbursts. With regard to social play, I observed that the child was a solitary player. The child had a penchant for playing alone. As a matter of fact, the child disliked playing with other children. The child also exhibited parallel play and was very uncooperative when it comes to playing with other children (Baker, 2005).

On reflection, I think the child is suffering from autism. Autism in the child could stem from the fact that he was conceived when his mother was a drug addict and probably, his fetal development was interfered with. The autism was probably compounded by the fact that he does not receive proper child care from his mother. The autism was probably compounded by the fact that the child doesnt know his father. Autism in the child is evident with his difficulties in socialization. The child exhibits difficulties when it comes to freely interacting with other children. Autism is exemplified in the child by his communication problems. The child is unable to communicate in a coherent manner. Autism in the child is manifested by his inability to respond when summoned or his name called. A child with autism is likely to be totally detached from his peers and totally absorbed by objects such as toys. The autism that is manifested in the child could also have a genetic basis. Most cases of autism are associated with illnesses and metabolic disorders. It has been proved that children with autism have siblings, parents and close relatives who have learning disabilities, social skills that are impaired and language delays. There is evidence that suggests that people with autism also have brain abnormalities. Autism is also associated with malformations in the brain as well as brain lesions. Children with autism also exhibit high levels of intellectual impairment. Repetitive behaviors when it comes to playing with toys are associated with children who have autism. Children with autism also detest being interrupted when playing. Interrupting a child with autism who is playing is likely to make the child respond with outbursts. Autism is often accompanied by many medical challenges and conditions. Some of the medical challenges and conditions that are associated with autism include anxiety, mood problems, hyperactivity, sleep problems, immune dysfunction, and seizures (Cullinane, 2016).

What intrigued me about the observation is that the child behaved in a manner that was not normal when compared with other children. The child behaved in a strange manner, and he seemed not to realize that his behavior was different from that of the other children.

I learned that the child was probably suffering from a mental problem. Based on the manifestations of the child, I can confidently state that the child is autistic.


Cullinane, D. (2016). Behavioral challenges in children with autism and other special needs: The developmental approach. New York: Norton & Company.

Baker, J. (2005). The social skills picture book: Teaching play, emotion, and communication to children with autism. Arlington, TX: Future Horizons.

Van, H. J. L., Monighan-Nourot, P., Scales, B., & Alward, K. R. (2015). Play at the center of the curriculum. Harlow: Pearson.

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