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ASD Preschool Class (Early Intervention)

Our teacher is Alicia and our SNA’s are Carolyn and Orla.

We love a calm environment with lots of structure and play. We love routine but our teacher is flexible in order to meet our individual needs. We use lots of visuals to help navigate our day in school and so we know what is happening next. Our teacher believes in following our interests and needs to support our learning journey. This helps us be our most successful.

Communication:

We all communicate differently. Verbal, gestural, visual (PEC’s and digital communication devices) and sign (lámh) languages are supported. Teacher really wants us to communicate as best we can.

Social Communication and Aistear:

Play is a very important part of our day. We love playing on the floor and at tables. We follow the principles of Aistear to support our social learning and language development. We learn to share and to take turns. We learn to interact with others during play and to play alongside others calmly.

Bucket Time (Attention Autism):

Bucket time is one of our favourite activities. It helps us learn so many skills to help with our communication. We develop our concentration, engagement, joint & shared attention and verbal or signing skills. Teacher does so many fun activities and we watch while sitting the whole time. We laugh and smile and predict. We let others know how excited we are while Bucket time is happening.

Sensory:

We love messy play and will often come home wearing the evidence of what we were playing with each day. Messy play is a great time for us all to be social together. It also helps regulate our sensory systems which calms us and helps us be happy and content.

We also love sensory bins. Again, sometimes we wear the evidence of the sensory bins. Sensory bins also help us be happy and calm through play. This is also a social time while we each have individual sensory bins. We also practice turn taking at this time.

The sensory room is a very important part of our day. We often are more social and vocal in the sensory room while interacting with our classmates and relaxing our sensory systems. Sensory activities support our healthy wellbeing.

Independence:

We are encouraged to be more independent according to our own individual abilities. We learn to do lots of things by ourselves. We also learn how to ask for help so we learn more new things over time.

Learning:

We all have one to one teacher time so we learn lots of news things according to our individual needs. We learn to sort, match and name colours, letters and numbers as well as improve our fine motor skills, language skills and numeracy skills etc. We do engagement tasks or sensory based tasks to encourage us to work with teacher, to stay in our chair and increase our concentration, improve our communication/language as well as our tolerance of demands by others. We also learn not to disturb others who are working with teacher as we all get a turn.

Teacher does lots of different activities to spark our curiosity and engage us to encourage our development of shared and joint attention. These activities also help us sit, improve our concentration and language development.

We also have story time and lots of books in our classroom. We can get a book anytime we want and we can ask for books to be read to us. Teacher also picks big books for us to enjoy. We sometimes have songs, puppets and objects to support the telling of the story and help us learn new words. We love nursery rhymes too.

We do art activities that support our stories and nursery rhymes. We use different materials in our art but we also love to paint. Sometimes we get paint on our clothes too but we have great fun. We love mark making with paint, chalk, crayons, pencils, and markers.

Sometimes we use our hands and fingers too!

We love musical instruments and exploring sounds. We have great fun trying different instruments and sharing.

We love songs and we often learn through songs too. Sometimes we have songs to help with literacy and numeracy – and also with social stories to help us socially, with our independence and going out into our community.

Outings:

We love exploring our community and going on trips. Sometimes we buy treats in the shop or go to the post office. They are short walks away. If we like to walk we might go to the playground. We love going on trips and our teacher likes to take us on a trip each term if possible.

Gross Motor:

We love playing in our yard and doing fun activities in our hall. We also love action songs. At different times throughout the year we do yoga and hip hop dancing. Different teachers come in for yoga and hip hop dancing and our teacher and SNA’s help us with these activities.

Parent/Teacher Communication:

Teacher sends home a communication book to let our parents know how our day went and our parents can let teacher know our news or how we were at home. Parents can talk to teacher regularly and they don’t have to wait for teacher to set up meetings. They can request meetings if they have anything they wish to discuss about us. Teacher will always let our parents know important news at the end of the day or she will phone after we go home.