Ar in Promoting Social Emotional Learning Among Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder in Malaysian Inclusive Preschool Classrooms
Most children begin emotional development at birth with expressing emotions, reading facial expressions and continue to develop skills of empathy and relationship building as they grow. However, children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) have a harder time with this development which includes having a difficult time understanding their own emotions. As in self-appearance domain stated in the framework of Kurikulum Standard Prasekolah Kebangsaan (KSPK), Social Emotional Learning (SEL) has been emphasised. It can help children with ASD to develop an awareness of emotions and build social relationships. Therefore, myriad of initiative on SEL are needed in inclusive classrooms to ensure an equal learning opportunities among the children especially those with ASD. Research has shown the positive effects of using visual supports to guide emotional development. This is because children with ASD respond better visually than they do by just listening. By using visual supports teachers can communicate better with them about their feelings and emotions. Over the decades, Augmented Reality (AR) is widely used in many fields such as education especially in helping Students with Special Needs (SSN). AR is a new technology that merges virtual objects with the real world. Fundamentally, it gives the real image of the world virtually and interactively. By adapting AR during teaching and learning process, children with ASD could learn to recognise, understand and express their feelings cum emotions more effectively. In the nutshell, AR is an evidence based learning tools in promoting SEL among children with ASD and applicable in Malaysian inclusive preschool classrooms.
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