Are There Any Books on How to Teach Piano to an Autistic Child?
I work at a school for children who are medium to low functioning on the autism spectrum. In my classroom, I work with a student who can only say a few words, but he loves music and music toys. He always claps to the beat of any song and is 12 years old. I feel as if one day he may be able to play an instrument. I was just wondering if there are any good books on teaching even the piano to a child who has autism. I know if I were to play a few notes on the piano he would be able to imitate me to a tee.
I don't know of any books specifically about teaching piano to kids on the autism spectrum. But I see there are many websites offering advice (such as this site!) and even some videos. Please read all my autism-related pages, and keep searching, and see where that takes you. Do you have a music teacher on staff? That person would be the logical one to get involved with this 12-year-old.
Alternatively, you can teach YOURSELF to play the piano, then share what you learn with him. I like your idea of showing him things to learn by rote; most children learn music very well this way. You can start with a small piece of a song, and gradually add more and more.
For understanding good hand shape and finger function, and how to use chords, I recommend reading through all of my beginner piano pages and music education pages for the many tips and exercises I present, then picking up the book "Perfect Start for Notereading."