Please find below a list of information websites, tips and resources to help you support your children with their additional needs, learning and self-esteem. It is quite common for children to have additional needs that span all these areas, so select the resources that meet the needs of your child, without worrying too much about the label or category they fall under. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses and these SEND strategies will be beneficial to many children, whether or not they have a diagnosis.
We hope that you find the links below useful. Please let us know of any which you use and you think would be valuable to have added.
A characteristic of a child with Autism is that they enjoy structure and routine. Some students like a specific place to work as well as working within set times of the day, time limits may be useful as it gives them a timetable to work todays. Autistic children may also respond to a visual timetable as they are able to tick off tasks as they have completed them.
At the moment, we are aware that routine has changed, it is important to still prepare them for ant changes. You may have seen an increase in their emotional expression, therefore you may find a 5 point scale to support children in managing their emotions.
- Affinity Support Group (Tiverton): https://en-gb.facebook.com/affinitysupportgroup/
- National Autistic Society: www.autism.org.uk
- Autism Speaks: https://www.autismspeaks.org/
Social stories and comic strip cartoons:
5 point scale:
As we know students can find social situations difficult to both navigate and understand. We find that students can benefit from a range of activities to support both their knowledge and understanding of these situations. It may be helpful to practice situations at home to make your child feel more confident.
It is important to provide your child with opportunities to practice their speech and also practise social skills in a familiar setting.
Continue to work on Speech and Language targets set by the Speech and Language Therapist.
The activities and links listed below are an aid that can be used to help develop both your child’s confidence in both communicating and interacting and also help you as a parent/carer by providing useful information.
From birth through to early childhood, children use their senses to explore and make sense of the world around them, and do this by using their touch, taste, smell, hearing sight primarily. Sensory exploration encourages children to use scientific processes while they play, create and investigate.
Sensory activities also allow children to refine their thresholds for different sensory information, helping their brain to create stronger connections to process and respond to sensory information.
Sensory activities are also commonly used for helping individuals with sensory processing disorders; including many people on the autism spectrum.
Some of the benefits of sensory play are:
- Listening and Attention
- Social skills
- Self-awareness and confidence
Each individual person will have a different interpretation of their senses and how they affect their body. Some people may be ‘hyper’ (over) sensitive or ‘hypo’ (under) sensitive, and this can be varied throughout all the individual senses.
We can use sensory exploration and activities to help create ‘coping strategies’ for anxiety and stress which can often be used at home and in the learning environment in most cases.
Touch; sand, water, ‘fiddle toys’, feathers, water beads, play dough
Taste; food tasting, ‘what flavour is it? Textures – soft/crunchy, ‘salty or sweet?’
Smell; smelly playdough, scent bottles/bags, scented paint, natural oils diffuser
Hearing; sound lottery games, music, ‘natural sounds’ CD, outdoor sound hunt, natural ‘rattle’ shaker bottles
Sight; ‘spot the differences’ games, oil timers/lava lamp, LED writing/drawing board,