A Teacher’s Recipe for Success

   

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In effort to promote and maintain a level of excellence, there are some items that must be basic foundations in classes that serve students with autism. Promoting a basic foundation for your classroom will help you create structure in your student’s program. Classrooms serving students with autism should have basic items in place to help that student be successful in the school environment. Free downloads of some of these materials are on our Materials Page.  Detailed, step-by-step information about setting up your special education classroom is in the book How to Set Up a Classroom for Students with Autism (Second Edition). Below is a list of items that your classroom, which serves children on the autism spectrum, should have:

1. Schedule

A classroom schedule should be posted that reflects the following: independent work time, 1:1 (or 2:1) work time, small group instruction, social skills instruction, sensory play, structured play/structured recreation-leisure opportunities, fine motor work opportunities, personal management opportunities, limited large group activities.

Autism Communication Support Individualized Personal Sched   

2. An Effective Classroom Set Up/Engineered Environment for Students with Autism

An engineered environment created specifically to meet the needs of students with Autism is critical to the success of your classroom program. These items, such as visual supports, creating boundaries, individualization and organization should be seen, utilized and programmed into the daily operations of your class.

3. Data Collection System

A data collection system should be in place to measure each student’s IEP (Individualized Education Plan) objectives. IEP objectives will need to be measured using effective data collection methods. Data collection sheets should be ready for the start of school.

     

4. Written Plan for Classroom Roles and Responsibilities

Your classroom should have a posted written plan that designates the major responsibilities each staff member assumes. This plan should also include the areas of the classroom each staff member is responsible for during the instructional parts of the day. For example, running the art lesson, recording attendance, preparing the snack time lesson, supporting the language lesson, preparing the daily calendar, may be the types of responsibilities noted. (Please understand that sometimes responsibilities overlap or change). Classrooms serving students with autism require a great deal of teamwork; a plan in which responsibilities are clarified will positively contribute to the productivity of your team.

Roles and Responsibilities Chart (Autism and Special Education)

5.  Weekly Scheduled Debriefing Sessions

It is extremely important to meet with your team members concerning the needs and issues of your students. Your classroom team should have at the very least 1 weekly debriefing session before or after school. Suggested topics during this session are discussion of students, review and revising communication strategies, teaching strategies, behavior interventions, scheduling and classroom roles and responsibilities. Input from all staff members should be encouraged to help create a successful learning environment for staff as well as for students.

Debriefing Meeting Schedule and Notes Page (Autism and Spe  

6. 3-Step Prompting Series

To serve as a guide for making requests of students should be used consistently in the classroom. Posting this on the wall will help remind staff of the technique.

7. Language Based Techniques/Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC)

These techniques and strategies must be embedded in all activities throughout the child’s day. AAC methods can include picture symbol task analysis, picture exchange, natural aided language techniques, visual cues for behaviors, picture symbols, photographs, written words (if the child is reading), etc.

Autism Communication Support Opening Circle Board   This board is a place to show the students icons that represent what activities will occur during opening. Teach sequencing skills, making predictions, and communication skills with this support. Pinned By AutismClassroom.com  Autism Communication Support Opening Circle Board & Pictures. Pinned by AutismClassroom.com.Name Cards for Opening Circle Time.  #autism Elementary Special Education. Pinned by AutismClassroom.com.  Colors Chart for the Communication Support Opening Circle Board & Pictures.  #autism #specialeducation Pinned by AutismClassroom.com     Autism Communication Support Choice Board 

8. A Written Behavior Plan

A plan should be in place for each child’s targeted behaviors. If students have inappropriate behavior(s), there should be a plan for dealing with that behavior(s). All staff members in your class should have a copy of the behavior plans. The behavior plans can be very short or extensive depending on the needs of the student. Behavior plans can cover information as minor as “what to do when the child keeps taking of their shoe” to something as major as aggression, hitting, kicking etc.  In each case, you will want to conduct a Functional Behavior Assessment to develop a Behavior Intervention Plan. The behavior plans should be a written plan of action so that each member of your classroom team responds in the same way to a behavior. The app "Autism Classroom has tips for dealing with challenging behaviors.

ACipad72   

9.  Sensory Issues

Sensory issues should be addressed throughout the school day. Sensory issues should be identified for each child, when applicable, and programmed for and incorporated in the daily schedule.

Book ($20.95): How to Set Up a Classroom for Children with Autism
E-book ($10.00):How to Set Up a Classroom for Children with Autism

 

 

Welcome Families, Friends and Educators

Welcome to the newly designed AutismClassroom.com! This site is designed to provide assistance to educators who are educating children with autism and since parents are a child's first teacher, this site is for you too!  On this site you will find information about teaching children with autism and developmental disabilities, running a successful autism classroom, setting up spaces in the home and community for a child with autism, locate books and apps helpful in educating children with autism and find training options. We are the home of the books How to Set up a Classroom for Students with Autism (Second Edition), How to Set up a Work Area at Home for a Child with Autism, Lesson Ideas and Activities for Young Children with Autism and Colors Outside.  We are also home of the mobile apps Autism Classroom, Teens with Autism and Developmental Disabilities, Behavior Support for Autism, Colors Outside and Classroom Set Up for Autism & Self-Contained Classrooms.

We believe that access to quality information should be available to all parents.  We strive to provide practical and useful information that can help in the lives of those with autism and their families, friends and communities. See our products page here. 


The Pinterest Page with Pictures of Classroom Supports for Autism Classrooms can be found here.

   

 

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Designing Home Spaces

A parent and family centered page that helps families create and design successful spaces in their homes and communities for their child with autism.


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