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How to ease children with Autism back into the classroom for in-person learning

One of the main tips to practice with your child is wearing a face mask, experts say.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Several schools in Texas have slowly transitioned back to in-person learning. While this may be a step into normalcy, it may not feel that way for all students, especially children with Autism.

Children with Autism thrive when they're presented a set schedule. When remote learners head back to the classroom, Rodriguez said at a slow pace, with a calendar, parents should host a back to school countdown.

"[List] When kids are going back to school and where they are now and literally cross it off like everyday," Psychotherapist Annette Nunez said. "Now you have four more days before you start school, three more days, two more days, yay you're going to start school!"

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Next, it's best to show your kid what and who they can expect to see.

"Pictures of the school, go by the school," Rodriguez said. "Maybe take pictures of friends that they have and show them who they're gonna see. Maybe old teachers, old therapists that they're gonna see."

One of the main tips Rodriguez said to practice with your child is wearing a face mask so eventually it doesn't bother them.

"45 seconds, then a minute, then to two minutes because we really want to make sure that we're keeping our kids safe," Rodriguez said. 

Finally -- your emotions rub off on your kid -- so try to stay positive about in-person learning.

Rodriguez says it's essential that parents remember you can't control what happens on the outside world, but you can control what happens in the household.

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For the latest updates on coronavirus in the Coastal Bend, click here.

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