Thursday, April 28, 2005

Team SmallBoy Update

Children with Asperger's, regardless of the degree to which it affects them, tend to respond better to visual cues. This means pictures, modelling behavior, and making checklists (with pictures if necessary or age appropriate). SmallBoy has had tremendous difficulty getting organized before bed and before school in the morning. Last night he and I sat down and made checklists. We used silly voices and gave each number a specific color (which I can't remember, but he will), so that he can associate that with the task at hand. I began to make him up the list on my color printer at work and could only remember the before school list, which, is actually the more important of the two lists.

1.) Get UP (it is important to get up before proceeding with the rest of the list)

2.) Get dressed (because going to school naked would just be plain silly)

3.) Put on socks & shoes (well, you don't want your feet to get cold, do you?)

3 1/2.) KISS MOM GOODBYE (the goal here is to have the first three done before Mom leaves for work, not to mention that I like to get a kiss goodbye to start my day)

4.) Check backpack (because going to school without your things would make the day a bit difficult)

5.) Put lunch in backpack (we do this after the initial check to leave a window of opportunity for double checking the backpack)

6.) Eat Breakfast (if it's on the list, he'll do it)

7.) Do your own breakfast dishes (this just sort of goes without saying, but helps to establish the routine of cleaning up after one's self)

After he gets the checklist complete and if there is time left, he is allowed to do a favored activity for a portion of the time left before leaving for school (eg: play GameBoy for 15minutes, read, watch morning cartoons, etc...)

I am taking the list home to put in a laminate covering so that he can check off each item as he finishes each day. There's only a bit of time left until school is out, but at least this will give us the chance to try it out. If these schedules work, then we'll know that we can do something to help structure his summertime activities.

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