Mornings were very fraught in our house until I made this visual timetable!
|A visual timetable might help your child with the morning routine|
I would despair at Mia who favoured playing the piano or drawing a Stegasaurus instead of brushing her hair or putting her shoes on.
Visual timetables are well-known for being useful for visual learners, and those with short term memory processing issues, as children with Down's syndrome or Autism. Your school should be using one with your child already.
But here's the secret...they work wonders for the whole family! How much easier to point to a chart, rather than think of what your children should be doing and ask them/ help them to do it. It provides a focus for the whole family and brings in an element of play to tricky activities.
So for us, the school mornings became less of a magical mystery tour, and much more manageable. They really helped when preparing Natty for transitions into school too.
There are many ways to make a visual timetable, even software that will do it for you. Here's how I made ours.
You will need
Photographs or drawings of the activities you want to concentrate on. (I printed mine free online)
Laminating sheets, adhesive book film or stiff card
A sticky-backed roll of Velcro
A small cloth bag or box
1) Select pictures for the key activities. These could be general stages in the morning routine, after school activities that take place over the week or tiny steps in one process such as using the toilet.
2) Cut the pictures to size then have them laminated if possible as they will last a lot longer that way, or glue onto stiff card.
3) Round the corners of each card.
4) Attach pieces of velcro to the back of each card.
5) Decide where you want your visual timetable to be located. Ours is in the bathroom but others find the kitchen, or near the front door helps.
6) When using the visual timetable, as each step is achieved successfully, the child pulls it down and places it in a small bag that you could hang nearby. This means that they automatically see which stage comes next, but putting the card away serves as a reward.
(Oh, by the way, the wash and brush your teeth cards are currently wedged behind the radiator, so nothing is perfect!)
"I'm off to make one for the days of the week, showing a different activity to distinguish each day..."