On July 13th, Dr. Antonio Rinaldi and I returned to Geylang East Library (venue provided for free by the National Library Board), where Dr. Antonio conducted two separate workshops for parents and teachers. Through a Powerpoint presentation, role plays, interactions with the audience, and the testimonial of a mum, Dr. Rinaldi explained how his approach, Dynamic Relationship Therapeutic Approach Created in Water (A.T.D.R.A., Italian), helped autistic children by transforming the perspectives and of parents and teachers.
Here is a summary of the key points for those who had missed the workshops:
For parents, acknowledge the impact of the loss of your dreams of a conventional family life with the diagnosis. For teachers working with autistic learners and the parents, please be empathetic to the latter's grief.
Recognise the negative cycle of waiting for the child to improve in order to be happy.
Embrace your love and strength as a couple who possess the power to make a positive impact on your child's life.
In order to produce a positive cycle to help the autistic child, parents and teachers need to focus on themselves and achieve their own happiness.
A core aspect is this quest for happiness is to establish an unconditional and empathetic relationship with yourself.
Only then will you possess the equanimity, clarity, and confidence of mind to guide the child/learner.
Coupled with an accurate understanding of the specific functioning of the autistic child (covered in the June 29 workshop), you will be able to execute appropriate strategies consistently to build a strong relationship with the child/learner.
Finally, we would like to thank our sponsor (that wishes to remain anonymous) for making Dr. Antonio's trip possible so that families, teachers, and professionals in Singapore can benefit from his sharing of his relationship-centred approach.