Classroom Supplies

The primary goal in the classroom is to keep a child focused, attentive, learning and successfully working on task. This is accomplished by:

  • Keeping the classroom and student structured on a schedule 
  • Organizing classroom spaces that promotes independence (stations)
  • Using sensory supplies for self-regulation
  • Incorporating positive behavioral interventions
  • Creating multi-sensory learning techniques
  • Using electronic learning mediums (computers, laptops, tablets, interactive boards, etc.)
  • Incorporating Visual charts/Information posted
  • Adding sensory activities

Multi-Sensory Learning:
A multi-sensory approach to learning is key as kids process information in a variety of ways. This includes exploring how a child learns best through the following senses:

  • Tactile/touch activities
  • Visual activities
  • Auditory/hearing (music)
  • Olfactory/smell
  • Gustatory/taste
  • Kinesthetic/motion
  • Vestibular/spinning
  • Proprioception/jumping


Visuals:
The use of visuals is of key importance as the brain can process pictures easier on left and right sides of the brain. Visual should be used as a picture schedule for the school day and the student should be positively reinforced while using it. This can be done by asking the student to tell you what is next on the schedule and promoting self-management skills by preparing themselves for the next class. It is important to incorporate the use of timers so that the child associates the visual and auditory input from it to ease the transition to the new activity.


It’s essential to incorporate visual charts for positive behavioral interventions for students to learn classroom rules and expectations. Children will work hard to earn a check mark, smiley faces or even a point to work towards a positive reward during the school day. Visuals can also be used as colorful tape on the floor to help reinforce physical boundaries or to promote the understanding of personal space with peer relations.


Visual Supplies

  • Visual schedules
  • Flip schedules
  • Timers
  • Check off charts
  • Chore charts
  • Desk information blockers
  • Positive reinforcer points earning cards on desk
  • FOCUS reminders
    • Identified points of focus
    • Select work stations
    • Responsibility charts
    • FOCUS cards – listening, looking, working
    • Focus visual timers
  • Seat cushions
  • Organizers for drawers/cubbies



Sensory Activities:
Sensory regulation is simply assessing how a child responds to information coming into the body through the senses and how it is interpreted by the brain as soothing/calming, alerting, or aversive. Sensory self-regulation is an important piece to every classroom. Sensory processing skills are evaluated around the basic five senses (hearing, sight, taste, touch, and smell). Then the other two sensory systems are assessed as well: Proprioception (joint sense of motion) and Vestibular (movement with spinning whereby the head experiences different planes of motion). Many students require nervous system support to assist with remaining calm, attentive, and focused at school. Sensory breaks should be added to the visual schedule to include the type of calming or alerting activity that is recommended. There are a variety of ways to incorporate this concept into any classroom. Consider having the following activities included in the layout of your classroom:


Sensory Calming Activities

  • Music headphones listening station
  • Light covers to decrease visual input
  • Lamps (safe & secured)
  • Floor mats
  • Meditation Music
  • Tent (quiet spot)
  • Throw Pillows
  • Tactile Activities (playdough, moon sand, squeeze balls, stress balls)
  • Bean bag chairs
  • Weighted items: vest, blankets, shoulder or lap buddy
  • Body sock
  • TheraBand
  • Therapy Balls (sitting, bouncing, slow rolling)
  • Therapy Ball Chairs
  • Vibrating Mats/Pillows
  • Pushing/Pulling Carts
  • Carrying weighted crate
  • Seat Cushions
  • Fidgets

Sensory Alerting Activities

  • Trampoline
  • Jump-o-line
  • Crash mats
  • Sit and spins
  • Fast swinging
  • Therapy Ball (fast rolling, bouncing)
  • Bright Lights
  • Bouncing
  • Spinning
  • Fast Tempo Music
  • Obstacle Courses
  • Fast Tempo Dancing
  • Shaking
  • Aerobics
  • Holla Hoops
  • Scooter Boards
  • Inflatables
  • Beat the Timer Games
  • Movement Breaks


Electronic Learning Activities:
Learning concepts reinforced through electronic tablets, videos, pictures, games, and apps also work well for both sides of the brain. There are apps available to reinforce math, reading, writing, science, or social studies concepts. If a video is shared, try reviewing it with five or less simple concepts and reinforce the skills through multi-sensory learning activities. The lights, sounds and positive feedback during games/apps are alerting to the brain. This input appeals to both the left and right sides to process information.

Organization:
A child’s brain thrives best when information is simple, structured and concise. It is best to have the classroom organized in a systematic way. Color codes for different subjects can also parallel to the same color label on a draw for supplies. This will allow for matching opportunities and association of the different learning concepts. Desk organizers and subject folders work well also. Promoting independence while the student moves through different activity areas/stations reinforces activity objectives and expectations for the student to meet daily.


Other Items:

  • Verbal Cards
  • Photo Books/Emotions Books
  • Social Stories
  • Time out Cards
  • Treasure Chest
  • Accountability Cards


The primary goal in the classroom is to keep a child focused, attentive, learning and successfully working on task. This is accomplished using these “10 Soaring Strategies - 4 Autism Classrooms”:

1. Multi-Sensory Learning
a. exploring how a child learns best through the 5 senses

2. Visuals
a. visual charts/Information posted
b. brain can process pictures easier
c. visual schedules
d. flip schedules
e. timers
f. check off charts
g. chore charts
h. desk information blockers
i. positive reinforcer points earning cards on desk


3. Sensory Activities (see sensory page for more detailed information)
a. sensory supplies for self-regulation
b. assessing how a child responds to information coming into the body through the senses
c. sensory experiences interpreted by the brain: soothing/calming, alerting, or aversive
d. “Sam’s Sensory Scale” used daily
e. Sensory Calming Activities
f. Sensory Alerting Activities


4. Electronic Learning Activities
a. computers, laptops, tablets, interactive boards, etc.
b. lights, sound and positive feedback during games/apps are alerting to the brain
c. appeals to both the left and right sides to process information


5. Organization 
a. keeping the classroom and students structured on a schedule
b. organizing classroom spaces that promotes independence (stations)
c. brain thrives best when information is simple, structured and concise
d. color codes and labels
e. desk organizers and subject folders
f. Promote independence via activity areas/stations
g. reinforces activity objectives/expectations for the student to meet daily

6. Classroom Management
a. Posted visuals of class rules and expectations
b. Token economies

7. Picture Schedules

8. Positive Behavior Reinforcers
a. incorporating positive behavioral interventions
b. treasure chest rewards

9. Social Skills
a. Peer relations
b. Character cards

10. Emotions Identification Systems
a. Picture cards to identity happy, sad, mad

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Autism Supplies & Training
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