The Autism Society Philippines (ASP) is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to the well-being of persons with autism spectrum disorder. The ASP has been in the forefront of providing services and training to families living with autism.

31 January 2011

What worked for Gabriel

By: Chelo Banal-Formoso


Chelo Banal-Formoso is mother to Gabriel, a 24-year old student with autism who is taking part in the Library Assistant Program at Centro Escolar University. He is currently taking a course on Children’s Literature.


Chelo is also the editor of Philippine Daily Inquirer’s (PDI) Learning Section. Her brother Conrado Banal, also a columnist of PDI was instrumental in paving the way for a more autism friendly mall environment in the Philippines.


Below are some of Chelo’s Practical Parenting Tips she gave as part of her testimonial together with other “super parents” during the Family Power Forum last January 21, 2011, at SM Skydome, North EDSA, as part of the 15th Autism Consciousness Week Celebrations.


1. Encourage language by asking him to “use his words”

2. Backward chaining in teaching him life skills

3. Placing him in an age appropriate regular classroom

4. Having a “Taking Notebook” with the teacher and with the tutor

5. Beginning with 2-hour attendance at start of school year, gradually adding an hour every week

6. Holding an autism awareness session in his class every year at school opening

7. Making partners out of his teachers and tutors

8. Taking advantage of every teachable moment

9. Teaching him to mastery

10. Allowing him to do what he enjoys doing – music, art, swimming, etc.

11. Making a decision to take him wherever we go as a family

12. Dressing him in the style the other guys of his age are wearing


My prayer for Gabriel is different from my prayer for his sister. I ask that he may be healed, that, no matter how late in my life, I may see him open up to all that this world has to offer….” Click here to continue reading “Engaging Gabriel,” courtesy of Philippine Daily Inquirer.

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