Recreation skills are an important part of an autism curriculum. Our students need to learn how to play and enjoy a variety of activities. Many of our students would be content chilling on a therapy ball all of their break time. We need to push them beyond that. Our students need direct instruction on the skills needed to successfully engage in meaningful recreational activities. Sometimes simple supports can make all the difference. My kids love playing memory. Not only is this game great for social skills but it also build vocabulary and improves – you guessed it – memory skills. My students seem to do great with this until I fade myself out. I’ll turn around and a few minutes later the whole game is big mess of a pile of cards. How could anyone possibly remember where that Buzz Lightyear was now?
Last week when we played memory, I added a little bit of structure by drawing a grid around the cards with a dry erase marker. Don’t worry – dry erase marker easily wipes off of plastic table tops!
This helped keep my students organized by allowing them to visually see exactly where they should replace the card they choose. After this quick and simple support – they readily played in a group independently 🙂
What is your classroom’s favorite leisure activity?