Back to School 2023
Summer break can be tough for neurodiverse people due to a lot of time off. What can schools do to help autistic and neurodiverse students get back into school routine?
Develop positive relationships and build rapport. This can be as simple as talking with students about their summer break and their special interests. Also, allowing time for parents and teachers to meet in person prior to their neurodiverse child starting school. It helps making the transition smoother for day one.
Create a daily structure and routines to help neurodiverse children and students learn what to expect. Schools and families should be providing expectations and develop a routine for students from day one, so students comprehend the routine.
Schools should provide frequent communication to parents about their children’s time in school. When there is open communication and collaboration, various supports can be approached and changed anytime for neurodiverse students.
Allow more downtime with the TV or computer after school than you usually will during the school year for neurodiverse people. Then gradually reduce or eliminate screen time once school really gets underway.
Let neurodiverse kids stay up a little later the first week of school. In the second and third weeks, begin moving to an earlier sleep schedule.
Keep the summer fun going! Plan at least one activity for the first week of school in and out of school.
Transition supports for neurodiverse students include visual schedules, transition objects for younger neurodiverse students, first-then boards, checklists, providing choices, etc. These can be applied at home and school when getting back into school routine.
Any questions about ways to help autistic and neurodiverse students transition back into school? Share your thoughts and questions into the comments section!