Monthly Archives: May 2020

Getting dressed

We will continue to update this as and when we can.

It  can be hard for some people to get dressed. Having to process the order correctly and ensure they have what they need can use up a lot of brain power. Some days could be easy and other days it could take a long time.

To help with this, we are going to make some visuals that take off some of the pressure.

Labelling drawers-  Using visuals rather than having to rely n memory is one of the easiest ways to help relieve some of the pressure. Seeing where the items you need are, can make a huge difference.

Differentiated Alphabet Board

We have been looking at some resources to support pupils once they are in school.

As a teacher, I would print this out in black and white or give a small version to pupils to keep. Once the taught lesson to introduce how to use the letter, what sound it makes and what the letter name has happened. I would cover that letter with a coloured version. See picture below for example.

You may want to introduce vowels.

Your learners may prefer something more subtle.

You may want it to be colourful.

These are just some of our suggestions. We have included the PDF file below which contains all of these images.

Alphabet boards

 

Scottish Government’s Phased Approach Visualised

Many of our family and friends are visual learners. As we have has discussed many times before, visuals are easier to process and understand for many. We are currently visualising the Scottish Government’s phased approach to varying restrictions due to Covid-19.

Phase1 2 3 4

www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-framework-decision-making-scotlands-route-map-through-out-crisis/pages/4/

We are also making up communication boards to show what you can do during each phase.

Phase 1 Activities

What can i do in phase 2

Returning to School after Covid-19

Everyone is concerned about returning to school. We have made a wee booklet to help. We would also suggest that staff begin now by playing games online with pupils such as “Guess the staff behind the mask?” Take a picture wearing a mask and post  in on social media or make a booklet. Show pictures of staff wearing masks and staff not wearing masks. Encourage the children and young people to see the mask as something that isn’t scary. Many of our pupils will struggle with the change in physical appearance, but we will continue to update our blog with more ideas to support them.

 

Returning to school

Initiating Communication

Questioning and answering is an essential and natural part of communication. For some it can be difficult because the brain has to work too hard to process the information and then find an appropriate response. Having sentence starters can help.

We have made a pack of sentence starters that can be used as small cards or mini posters.

Questions

When I feel…I can…

Emotions can be a tricky business. We all experience them, but our experience of them differs based on our past and our interpretation of situations. Sometimes we can feel sad but it is a small emotion, other times it is all consuming. Our children and young people experience this too. We need to find ways to help them experience and feel those emotions, without them causing distress or trauma. Sometimes distractions are helpful to allow the opportunity to feel and process the emotion without confrontation or without the emotion being registered as a different feeling. How many times does embarrassment become anger?

We have decided to collate all of these resources into one post for ease of access. Each emotion has a list of suggestions, other words that are used to describe the emotion and a blank page to create your own coping strategies or distractions. We have included emotions such as calm and happy. It is important that we all know what we makes us feel calm and happy as that naturally becomes a coping strategy.

PDF Available below

Emotions

 

We spend more time with ourselves than we do with anyone else.

We spend more time with ourselves than we do with anyone else.

This may seem like an obvious statement, but it is important to consider what it means. How many times do we talk of others and say “if only they could see themselves the way others see them!” ? There are so many statements and quotes that you will find out there that go along the same lines. These are important.

If we are in a room full of people we don’t like, we feel uncomfortable and desperate to escape. If we spend more time with ourselves than anyone else, then what happens when we don’t like ourselves? We can’t escape.

We have to learn to be comfortable in our own skin. This comes over the course of a lifetime, but needs to start at a young age. Of course, as we grow and mature we recognise that we can change things we don’t like. We can learn to be more patient. We can restyle our hair. We can learn to play an instrument. There is an importance though in recognising when to stop changing. We often tell our children and young people, “not to change for anyone else”. The idea of how valuable it is to be comfortable in our skin.

What I like about me

This can be used by all ages and is important that as adults, we stop and take check of how we view ourselves. Focusing on even just one thing for each column and talking about it and the why it has been chosen will help. It can be used at home or at school. It could be used as something to be given to teachers as an introduction to children or as part of health and wellbeing lessons!

As adults, we want to build up our children’s self confidence. To do this, we must be honest. If they are a rotten dancer (yip that’s me), don’t tell them they are the best. Use statements like “I like how you moved your hand there”. Allow them to dance just because they want to and not so that they are the best. Let them dance without commenting on it! Join in with them and talk about how much fun you are having! By telling our children they are the best at everything, when they discover they are not, they can start to doubt themselves and us.

Build their confidence by telling them the things they truly are good at. Talk about their personality traits that matter. So often we talk about avoiding commenting on your child’s looks, but it is important to tell them- particularly as they get to their teenage years. If they have beautiful eyes, tell them that. Just make sure that it isn’t only their looks we talk about as ‘beautiful or handsome”.

If we teach them their value and continue to instil this in them as they grow, we are giving them something to fall back on when they fall our with friends, or are struggling to do long division or if a relationship breaks or they lose their job or there is another lockdown. Instilling in them, their worth is so important for today and every day of their lives.

 

 

Mental Health Awareness Week

Over the past couple of months, we have created and posted lots promoting positive mental wellbeing. We know there are so many people struggling and we aim to ensure that our children and young people grow up with a better awareness of themselves so that they can develop and use their own coping strategies. This will, hopefully allow them to have improved mental health as they grow to become adults. Mental wellbeing can deteriorate and any age, but with the right support, can also improve at any age. Below is something we have aimed at older children, teenagers and adults.

Take care!

improving mental wellbeing

Explaining Social Distancing

It can be very difficult to explain social distancing to anyone who finds it difficult to understand. We have created some resources to try to help. We are not going into details of Coronavirus and do not mention it. These resources have been created with the idea of returning to school. At the moment we are still following the Stay Home Save Lives advice so please continue to use this!

 

Social distance uk

 

 

 

Masks

Many of our families and schools have been in contact raising concerns about how some young people and children may react to having to wear a mask. There is so much uncertainty at the moment that everyone is feeling. Children and young people are feeling this too.

For some people, seeing someone wearing glasses for the first time or having their hair cut can have change the way they see the person and they may not recognise them immediately. Their brain is having to process too much at once. No matter how well they may know the person, change in look is a huge thing to process. Normally, saying “I am going for a hair cut” or ” I have had my hair cut/am wearing new glasses” etc can help with this transition.

Another way to help prepare for change is to make up games. Perhaps cut photographs up of people’s face. Cut the face into three and then swap noses onto different people or mouths or eyes.

We have also visualised a game using a mirror to help.

Mirror Game

Helping Around the House Visuals

We have mentioned in previous posts about the importance of using visuals to support independence. We have also looked at the importance of breaking down instructions. To help with this, we are making some resources to visualise activities to promote independence in helping around the house. Our PDFs are beside the photos in blue text and underlined.

Setting the Table

We have included a blank example and the visuals you may need to make your own. Not everyone uses place mats and napkins. Use what works for you and your family.

Set the Table

Setting the table

Set the Table Blank

table set

Washing the Dishes

Cleaning the dishes

helping at home 2

Dance Moves

Just a wee treat for you all! Anyone else had that experience of being at a party and the dance floor fills up when a certain song  comes on but you can’t figure it out. Here are some of our go to dances that are sure to get the dance floor busy! Why not learn one as a family?  More to follow!

PDF AVAILABLE HERE The Slosh

Macarena

The Time Warp

Resources From Home: Kitchen

We know how difficult (and expensive) working from home can be. So we have been looking at resources that can be made from every day items found around the house. Let us know what you think! Remember this isn’t about perfection – which is obvious if you look at our homemade resources – it is about the involvement and the engagement. It is about the fine motor skills in the cutting, writing and posting; It is about the processing of sorting into categories. It is about fun!

 

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