Summer. School-free weeks are a great time for most kids. Parents don’t mind the lighter load that comes with no homework or after-school activities. But a relaxed schedule can be a challenge for children with autism and their parents.
Here are 4 ways you can improve your child’s day this summer:
Use a calendar to label “typical” summer days
Weekends, vacations and holidays. Then create a “typical day” schedule that follows the school schedule as much as possible in terms of lunch time and breaks. It can be very specific if you like, or it can be more vague. Make it very visual so your child can refer to it to get an idea of what is coming up.
Avoid developing bad habits
It can be tough to stick to a schedule during the summer, when you just want to relax and let go a little bit, but the more you can keep to a routine for meals and sleep, and continue to limit screen time, the more well-regulated your child is likely to be. Maintaining a routine and upholding normal house rules, even in the summer, can help prevent her from reaching her breaking point.
Recognize the warnings
It’s important to know the signs that your child is getting overloaded and remove him from challenging situations before a meltdown if possible. Sometimes the best thing you can do is step back and watch your kid, instead of talking a lot, because that’s not going to help.
Always stay positive
it’s more effective to reward good behavior than to punish bad behavior. hat can be challenging when your child is really pushing your buttons.You can make that praise concrete by using stickers and a reward chart. Give him or her a star every time he is flexible or completes a task in a timely manner or manages a transition well.