I have found that having visual schedules in my house is a really good way to help my son Johnny who has Autism know what to expect, know what is expected from him/ her and as helpful reminders when trying to learn a lifeskill. A good friend who works in the early child education field taught me that when they are used ALL children benefit and learn and not just the special needs child. I have found that it my little girl who is only 2 understands and follows the PECs with her brother.
I use visual schedules in different ways at home.
Rules of the House posted on our fridge and upstairs in our upper hallway. This way when a challenging behaviour occurred I could quickly and without any fanfare lead Johnny to the schedule and show him the positive “better” choice first and then show what he should never do. In the beginning I was leading him back and forth quite a bit.
Hand washing routine hung directly above the bathroom sink and I say “it’s time to wash hands to pictures…” There are a lot of steps to remember and then when you have sensory distractions like the shiny taps, the drain, and fun water its easy to get “stuck” on one step and need prompting to move forward and finish. It also helped me re-enforce the “hand over hand” I was doing to show him exactly how to scrub his hands and then having him point to the right picture.
We want Johnny to be more independent and we understand that verbal prompting is the last and hardest to fade out. So we have decided to make many more visuals and hang them around the house.
- Tooth brushing Routine,
- Potty Routine
- Dressing and Undressing Routine
- Morning Routine for School
*Tip: If you are living in North America, Wallmart sells a laminator by 3M Scotch TL901 that is under $40 that is easy to use.
I find the Connect ABILITY website to be very useful for finding PECs to create visual schedules. It will also re-size them in various sizes as well.
Over the next few posts I’ll share other sources of PEC’s that I use and a really great App for the iPad that we use as well.
*PECs copyright Boardmaker Mayer-Johnson