How to organise preschool work for children with autism

How to organise preschool work for children with autism

Children with autism benefit greatly from learning in a structured environment. Order and routine will be your best allies when teaching children with additional needs.

Most preschools have a set daily schedule and have well-organised equipment for children, particularly Montessori preschools. Other preschools are more free play orientated, having a more flexible routine and environment where the learning is more child-led.

Regardless of which approach you use in your classroom, consider revising how you organise work for your student with ASD, as adding some more structure.

These strategies will help your students engage with the work and complete their work independently.

  1. Reduce physical clutter and visual clutter. Consider putting toys away and rotating toys every few weeks. This reduction in physical clutter will allow children to see the toys available, plus they might be happy to see new toys every few weeks. Having too many toys can easily distract children, particularly children that might have difficulties remaining on task.
  2. Organise equipment in trays or boxes so the child has all the materials needed for the task in hand when he gets the tray/box. If possible, label with pictures the trays and containers to help the child learn the name of the task or toys included, i.e. threading, pegs, cars, pouring, scooping, puzzle, etc. If your student is using PECS, make sure the pictures or symbols you use to label the work are the same as the ones available on his/her PECS book.
  3. If your student has difficulties remaining focused on a task, consider simplifying the tasks. Remove some of the work so that the child can finish the job quickly and successfully. For example, pegboards are normally presented with a bowl with many pegs. Remove some of the pegs; you might leave just a small amount so the child can finish the task easily. This will give the child a sense of achievement. You can add more pegs week after week as the child makes progress with this task.
  4. Consider having a quieter table for children who find it difficult to concentrate when working near other children. Find a quiet corner in the classroom, separated from distractions, if possible. Make sure you have space for 2-3 children at that table, as this will allow the child to do work with another child or a small group. Avoid isolating the child with the teacher or classroom assistant. We want to give the child the opportunity to work in a quieter place, but in the company of some peers.
  5. Consider having a mini schedule for work time. Some children work well just picking up work from shelves. Some others might benefit from a mini schedule. This way, they know what work needs to be done and how much work they have to do. You can also consider a choice board, where you give some work choices, but the child chooses what task he/she wants to do next.

I hope these ideas for organising preschool work for children with ASD help you working with your students. 

Are any of these ideas new to you? 

Which one would you like to try with your child?

Let me know in the comments below.

Silvia.

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Lámh Sign For Quiet

Sign Of The Week: Lámh Sign For Quiet

Sign Of The Week: Lámh Sign For Quiet

Hi there,

Welcome to the Sign Of The Week.

At this stage, you probably know that I am a huge advocate for communications systems, such as sign language, right?

But I don´t want you to just take my word for it.

There is tons of research out there, and I want to share the results of one of these studies. Listen to this…

Did you know that when you use signs with instructions, children are 4 times more likely to respond?

Yes, 4 times more likely! This was the finding of a study done by Carbone et al (2006) with children with autism. This study showed that speech and signs training produced four times the number of responses of speech alone training. The researchers explained in the conclusions that one of the reasons for this may be because of the visual cues that signs provide.

Using signs in the classroom (or in our virtual sessions with students) help our students see as well as hear what is being communicated, therefore, it contributes to greater understanding, which, in turn, contributes to more cooperation and learning in the classroom.

So, this week, I want to teach you a sign that you can use when giving instructions to your students.

This sign is QUIET.

You can use the QUIET sign to get your student´s attention before starting an activity, when you explain the “rules of circle time”, or even to teach children to use a “quiet voice” instead of a loud voice in the classroom.

So, the sign of the week, starting on Monday the 25th of January is QUIET.

Silvia Angel Education - Training For Teachers L?mh Courses

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Lámh Sign For Summer

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Sign of The Week – SUMMER.
Today you will learn the sign for SUMMER. I know, I know, it’s quite chilly outside for May. But we are officially in the sunny season, so let’s get ready to enjoy the outdoors as soon as the sun comes out…

read more
Lámh Sign For Quick

Lámh Sign For Quick

Sign of The Week – QUICK
It’s more fun and effective teaching quick and slow with movement and music activities, or if you are up for it, race with your students to see how “quick” they can run…

read more

Subscribe to my newsletter and learn a new sign every week, read one of my articles or watch my video blogs where I answer questions I receive from primary school teachers, special needs assistants, and early years educators of children with autism.

All Lámh signs used on this website are with reference to the official Lámh website. 

You can find more information, advice, courses, training, resources and research etc on the official Lámh website.

www.lamh.org

You Won’t Be Cold Anymore With Lámh Signs

Last year, I recorded one of Mr Tumble´s songs with Lámh sings. Many parents and teachers commented on how helpful that was, so I recorded an updated version of it so more teachers and parents can use it with their children.

Although the weather is cold, we must make sure children go out to play every day. A walk around the block or, if you are closer to nature like us, a walk by the sea or in the woods, will provide the best movement break for the kids.

The song I recorded for you it´s called “You Won´t Be Cold Anymore” by Mr. Tumble. It´s perfect for teaching children to dress appropriately for the cold weather. It also teaches signs for clothing items such as; coat, scarf, gloves and hat.
Enjoy!

Subscribe to my newsletter below to receive weekly sign videos and more articles to help you communicate better with your child.

You Wont Be Cold Anymore With Lámh Signs

Lámh Sign For Glove

Sign Of The Week: Lámh Sign For Glove

Sign Of The Week: Lámh Sign For Glove

Hi there,

Welcome to the Sign Of The Week.

It’s freezing outside 🌨… We would prefer to stay snuggled inside, but a walk around the block is the perfect break after home-schooling all morning.

Just wrap up and go out! And in doing that, you might use this great opportunity to teach children signs for clothing items, like the sign for GLOVES.

The sign of the week, starting on Monday the 18th of January, is GLOVES.

So, the sign of the week, starting on Monday the 18th of January is GLOVE.

Silvia Angel Education - Training For Teachers L?mh Courses

You may also like…

Lámh Sign For Summer

Lámh Sign For Summer

Sign of The Week – SUMMER.
Today you will learn the sign for SUMMER. I know, I know, it’s quite chilly outside for May. But we are officially in the sunny season, so let’s get ready to enjoy the outdoors as soon as the sun comes out…

read more
Lámh Sign For Quick

Lámh Sign For Quick

Sign of The Week – QUICK
It’s more fun and effective teaching quick and slow with movement and music activities, or if you are up for it, race with your students to see how “quick” they can run…

read more

Subscribe to my newsletter and learn a new sign every week, read one of my articles or watch my video blogs where I answer questions I receive from primary school teachers, special needs assistants, and early years educators of children with autism.

All Lámh signs used on this website are with reference to the official Lámh website. 

You can find more information, advice, courses, training, resources and research etc on the official Lámh website.

www.lamh.org

Christmas Signs

Many teachers and parents commented on how useful my Halloween signs compilation was. So, I decided to do something similar to help you learn Christmas signs.

In this Christmas video, I have included some additional signs that people often ask for, such as elf, sleigh, and star.
I hope this video helps you to continue learning signs and giving children with communication difficulties a voice.

There is no need to say that this year has been a rocky year for us all! We are facing many challenges that have changed our lives in so many ways.
2020 brought so many unexpected new things into our lives: masks, hand sanitizers, home deliveries and Zoom. Who would have said 12 months ago that the world was going to change so much?

May 2021 bring some new hopes to us all.
I wish you all a peaceful and healthy Christmas,

Enjoy the video.

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Signs For Christmas