VOICES: An Art Education Curriculum Accessible for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder
As the prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in children increases, it is important that art educators understand the characteristics and deficits associated with ASD in order to provide an accessible art curriculum for all. In considering the creation and implementation of an art education curriculum for students with ASD, the following themes emerged: accommodations and modifications, educator preparation, and ASD characteristics for differentiating a curriculum. Through a literature review and personal experience, an art education curriculum differentiated for students with ASD was created based on four themes that address areas of concern or interest for these students: identity, communication, feelings and moods, and community. Utilizing art elements and principles, these themes guide the creation of art lessons that offer access to an art education curriculum for students with ASD including art history, art production, aesthetics, and criticism. Accommodations, adaptations, and modifications are intertwined within each lesson, ensuring the curriculum is flexible enough to meet the individual needs of each student.