Monday, April 24, 2017

Around Town Round Up--Visual Reminders

Many students with autism are visual learners and research has shown that visual supports are an evidence-based practice. In fact, they can process visual information up to 2X faster than the neurotypical individual.  In contrast, research has shown that individuals with ASD take .4 to .9 seconds longer to process auditory information. Visual supports are used in almost all classrooms in numerous ways. This week's Around Town Round Up focuses on the use of visual supports for providing students with reminders for a variety of purposes. 

Some students needs a visual reminder to help them gather materials for class. These color-coded checklists are a great tool for building independence for students.

These desk cues provide a variety of visual reminder options including following directions to gather materials, redirecting behavior, or providing scripting sentence starters to make requests. The bottom example shows the flap covering the cues so they are not distracting when unnecessary. 

A visual cue ring is a great way to provide reminders without adding to auditory clutter within the classroom which can be distracting for peers. 

When using a visual cue ring keep in mind the following tips:

  • Put a contrasting border on the cue card to draw the eyes to it.
  • Avoid using pictures that tell the student what NOT to do. Give them a replacement behavior instead!
  • Use the cue ring for positive feedback or directions for preferred activities so that the student does not only associate it with negative feedback.

Laura Brown, Springfield City Schools

Visual reminders can be a great way to prime students for changes to the schedule or routine which can be challenging! Adding a "change" card to a visual cue ring is an efficient reminder that can be used "on the go" for unexpected changes while a larger change card can be used during a daily schedule review or morning message to review changes for the day. Students benefit from the change card reminder because it provides a predictable way to prime for life's unpredictable changes!
Emily Ottmar, Mad River Local Schools

Sometimes students need to be directly taught expectations during life skills activities. This is a great visual reminder to remind students to push the lever 3 times to get a paper towel. 

Anne Rosenbaum, Kettering City Schools
Older students benefit from visual reminders as well! This is a great example of a visual support for high school students to remind them what the cost of lunch will be each day.

Jennifer Jette, Vandalia-Butler School District

Visual reminders can be a great way to cue students during multi-step academic activities especially during math. Check out these great step-by-step reminders for solving word problems and telling time.
Taylor Ruef, Mad River Local Schools

Controlling voice volume can be a difficult and abstract concept to teach but these visual reminders are a great visual support!

Leslie Mann, Vandalia-Butler School District

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