8 Types of Visual Student Schedules

1. Object Schedules

  • Most basic and concrete type of schedule.
  • Use actual objects as the cue of what activities are to come.
  • Good for students with visual impairments, severe/profound cognitive disabilities, and early learners.

2. Picture Schedules

  • Pictures help our learners make meaning of the words we are telling by providing a visual representation of the activity.
  • Even readers benefit from the use of pictures.
  • Picture schedules traditionally start out on the wall.
    • Activities are lined up in the sequence they will be done.
    • Student physically moves the visual piece and matches it to the identical picture at the station they are working at.
    • After each activity is complete, visual piece is removed.

3. Color Coded Picture Schedules

  • adds an additional cue to discriminate between pictures

4. First Then Schedules

  • make it even simpler but just using two schedule pieces at a time to show first – then

5. Real Photo Schedules

  • use a combo of clipart images and real photos
  •  or use all real photos {great for older learners!}

6. Binder Picture Schedules

  • Laminate a piece of paper and put 1 or 2 long strips of velcro.
  • Order visual pieces on velcro.
  • Put finished pocket on inside cover.

7. Paper Picture Schedules

  • Can use paper schedules that have visuals or words, are laminated or paper, lots of options!
  • Biggest change: not bringing the physical visual piece with you.
    • Paper Schedules: students cross off each item with a pen or pencil
    • Laminated Paper Schedules: students cross off each item with a dry erase marker.

8. Written Paper Schedules

  • remove visuals and have only writing
  • great for your readers & higher functioning learners


  1. Good afternoon, I am a special education teacher who is looking to incorporate visual support for my student’s who are having some behavior issues/concerns to support them with negative verbal redirection. Would it be possible for you to email me a link(s) with the pictures and text to create a binder for each of my kiddos.

    This year seems to be a very challenging with 3-4 behavior students in grades K, & 1. I do like the variety of forms that you have but, was not able to access them individually.

    Thank you for any help or guidance that you are able to provide.

    Olenma C. Figueroa-Alvarez

  2. I am failing completly here as a mom of a now 16yr old boy with autism. He is not getting anything done, and needs constant do this.. did you do this?? I was thinking a daily checklist? Maybe laminated so that he has to check it off each day before he gets onto his laptop for playing games.
    Any suggestions??

  3. Yes! I love checklists! I think that would be very helpful. And you are not failing. Most 16 years need constant prompting 🙂 I think a daily checklist that is laminated with a visual would be great. Put a password on his laptop that only you have so he can’t get onto his laptop for games until he is done with his checklist. Add in some major motivation!

  4. Hi I am a teacher of students with visual impairments including a student who is blind. Can you show me more pictures of how you make or use object schedules with your students. The student is in high school but puts everythnig in his mouth. How do students manipulate the schedules to show finished?

  5. Hi Jennie, I will work on some posts about this and collaborate with a visually impairment teacher I work with!

  6. Timer apps can be very helpful. Some are like a pie graph and can really emphasize time ticking away. Perhaps give an amount of time for the completion of the tasks. If he needs additional time due to procrastination or distraction, an equal amount would come off of his computer time.

  7. Great suggestion!

  8. Hi there! I was wondering if you have any templates for purchase for the written paper schedules for readers. I will be working with 3rd grade students and would love for them to be able to cross off as they go through the day. I’m new to the site so I am not quite sure where to find everything yet. Thank you!!

  9. I don’t have any templates since it’s so specific to the student/classroom. Sorry!

  10. thank you for these examples and explanations of how to utilize each schedule.

  11. You’re welcome! Thanks for reading 🙂

  12. Hi I work with DeafBlind students and would like ideas for a schedule not with pictures, but with objects and a black background. Thanks

    • Hi Ofelia! I’ve seen miniature objects used on a black background. I’ve also seen patterns used instead (e.g., triangle felt is lunch time, circle felt is centers, etc).

  13. How can I get copies of the pictures or any ideas for visual-schedules in an academic setting?


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