Will your child have a new teacher in September?
With so many students with diverse needs in classrooms today, it can be challenging for the teacher to quickly become familiar with the challenges, needs and personalities of each of his or her students. Diagnostic reports, report cards, and school-based team meeting notes are often reviewed by the teacher prior to the beginning of a new school year, but it is understandable that factors critical for understanding what motivates and supports learning or that may trigger challenging behaviours can be missed in this process.
Several teams we have worked with in the province have created “one pagers” to summarize key variables that can be critical to understanding and effectively supporting the student with ASD. These can be particularly useful in settings such as high school, where a student may have several different teachers for a variety of subjects.
Parents, case managers or even the student himself can ensure that the one page summary of student needs and challenges can be personally delivered to each teacher. We have attached an example and a template that you can use to create your own one pager. Talk to your child about what he or she would like to see included.
Ideas we suggest include:
- A list of the student’s strengths and interests.
- A brief biography that lists friends, siblings, parents, pets, etc.
- A list of stressors and a description of behaviours that can indicate stress or anxiety.
- A list of adaptations or accommodations that support learning, social success and reduce anxiety.
- A photograph of the student.
Consider this tip to help support the development of a positive relationship with your child’s teacher this year and prevent potential problems!