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IntroductionAutism Spectrum Disorder ASD is a pervasive developmental disorder that affects certain parts of the central nervous system Attwood 2006 Barbaro Ridgway et al 2011 Dodd 2005 Volkmar Lord 1998 Wetherby Prizant 2000 Children with ASD are characterised by impairments in communication and social interaction and restricted andor repetitive patterns of behaviour interests and activities American Psychiatric Association APA 2000 APA 1987 as cited in Schopler Van Bourgondien et al 1993 Barbaro Ridgway et al 2011 Hill Frith 2003 Therefore the learning capabilities of a child with ASD can also be impacted as certain areas of the brain are responsible for communication and some cognitive functions can be affected Amaral Schumann et al 2008 Dodd 2005 Keating Spence et al 2002 Wetherby Prizant 2000 This paper will explore ASD in children aged 6 to 12-years-old and the effects it has on important areas of development in order to understand challenges and learning needs A discussion of the problems associated with acquiring specific life skills for children with ASD will follow subsequentlyOverview of ASDASD is a pervasive developmental disorder APA 2000 which comes under an umbrella term referring to a range of conditions that share common characteristics such as autistic disorder and Aspergers syndrome Attwood 2006 Barbaro Ridgway et al 2011 Dodd 2005 Volkmar Lord 1998 Wetherby Prizant 2000 Historically Kanner 1943 described autism as having three core features i impairments in reciprocal social interaction ii an abnormal development and use of language iii and repetitive ritualised behaviours and a narrow range of interest Amaral Schumann et al 2008 p 137 Barbaro Ridgway et al 2011 In addition to the core features of autism neurological differences are also present Akshoomoff nd as cited in Wetherby Prizant2000 DiCicco-Bloom et al 2006 as cited in Amaral and Schumann et al 2008 Minshew Williams 2008 In May 2013 a new version of
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