Organizing Home School/Virtual School Classrooms-Part 2

October 13, 2011 at 1:31 pm Leave a comment

Setting up the classroom is fun, yet scary.  It should be done well before the school year starts and frequent trips with your child should be made into the space to establish a comfort level.  Rules should be posted clearly for the area and should be reviewed often.   I strongly suggest for our children with difficulties paying attention and distractibility, to hold school in a contained environment.  We initially worked in our kitchen, but with the dog running around, doorbell ringing, cars/schoolbus noises coming from the street, there was NO WAY that Joshua could attend to the task at hand.

We moved to a room that had natural light and was on the second floor-away from the noise of daily life.  As a side note, we used to have a one-bedroom studio and moved the classroom to the corner of the apartment most removed from outside stimuli.  The most important thing is not to have a big or small room, but to establish a clear border for your child.   If a room is situated in an open area, place a masking taped border in the area of the classroom.  Again, a clear and visual border is key to the success of the classroom.  Think about the usual kindergarten classroom with carpet squares or taped off sections to ensure the children stay within their limits.  Clear rules about the limits of the classroom are key here.

Open bookshelves are usually cost effective and easy to assemble.  The downfall to them is that their openness shows the colorful folders, markers, and containers that they hold.  We used a white sheet purchased for a cheap price.  Cup hooks were placed directly into the shelf and the sheet hung onto the hooks.  This set-up was an easy way to minimize the distraction of the bookshelves and my son’s desire to play with all of the items inside!

We use cardboard document boxes purchased at Wal-Mart to contain the items for each subject.  The markers and the visual schedule posted on my son’s desk are color-coded so that he can identify the color of the writing with that subject.   OT NOTE:  Having your child actually carry the boxes filled with the items for that subject is and excellent way to build in that “heavy work” which is so calming to little bodies.

More to come….

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Entry filed under: Aspergers, autism, Occupational Therapy, parents, School, Sensory Integration. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

Organizing Home School/Virtual School Classrooms – Part 1 What is Sensory Integration (SI)?

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