Happy July! We are now on to Step 3! You have your classroom setup. Your structure is too die for. It’s visually defined. It’s predictable. Your room looks stunning. Now – what the heck are your kids going to do in this impeccably structured class? Here is where the schedule comes in. Oh that stinkin schedule. I have a serious love/hate relationship with making my schedule each year. It’s like a really annoying sudoku puzzle. There is some way for everything to fit but it’s getting there that is the issue.
One of the essential components of an autism classroom are the schedules. You need schedules for the kids and schedules for the adults in your room. Figuring out where and when each child is working throughout the whole day is tricky! It’s well organized chaos I like to think. Here’s the weekly agenda for Step 3: Schedules –
- Making the Schedule
- Adult Schedule
- Visual Student Schedules
- Mini Schedules
- Schedule Tips & Tricks
So first you need to get started on making the schedule. I like to make my schedule on excel in 15 minute increments. First I put in my specials (gym, music, etc.), lunch/recess, and inclusion. The things that are set in stone. From there I start to figure out staff lunched. This helps me see where I have large areas of time to program some center rotations. Once you make a rough draft – test it out! There are sometimes kinks you have not anticipated! This drives me nuts because I always want to print enough color copies for everyone and just be DONE with it, but you really do need to see how the schedule plays out in real time.
Here is my student-schedule from last year:
This looks complicated but it really does work. Basically, I do nothing whole group. The skills of my kids are too varied. But I do a lot of small group and pair work. My big recommendation is partnering up students whenever possible. I have 6 students that work in pairs and 4 that work one on one. My students rotate in pairs or individually between me and each of my two aides. While the ‘higher’ students rotate, the other students do independent work or have break time and vice versus.
For very detailed information on these rotations work, check out this post:
… and this one:
Seven Steps for Setting Up a Stellar Autism Room – Step 3: Schedules!
Summer of the Seven Steps 🙂