I received this list while attending one of my Autism group meetings a few years back and I have been following it ever since. I’m sharing because I think that it can help another parent, just as it has helped me.
Helping Your Child
Talk to your child, whether s/he appears to be listening, or not. People with ASD tend to have a great capacity to absorb information, yet may unable to consistently signal their interest and attention. Explain, clarify, narrate, read aloud, and assume the best. Avoid talking about your child as if s/he wasn’t present.
Be clear and literal in your speech. Avoid figures of speech and double meanings. Give directions fully and completely: Don’t assume anything “goes without saying.” For some children, words seem to be more understandable when they are sung rather than spoken.
Provide an organized structured environment. Children with ASD easily become anxious and need to know in detail what is expected of them, where things are, what is happening, and what will happen next. Prepare your child for new situations: minimize surprises.
Use visual explanations, visual cues, and visual reminders wherever possible. Many parents find that educational videos hold a child’s attention.
Help your child participate. Children with ASD profit from all the friends and everyday activities they can get. Since they do not automatically pick up on social cues, you will need to coach and help them along.
(From Autism National Committee)