Three Ways You Can Make School a Happier Place for Your Child with Autism
1. Support your child’s teacher and school
Remember that the teacher and you are on the same side! Acknowledge what a difficult job they have and provide as many resources to them as possible. At the beginning of the school year give your child’s new teacher an “all about my child” packet with information you think might help them better understand your child and Autism.
Don’t expect your child’s teacher to be perfect. Thank them and tell them you appreciate them regularly. Do your very best to work together and support their efforts!
When you disagree with something they have done approach them respectfully and calmly. It is important to advocate on behalf of our children but it can be done in a healthy, productive, non-offensive manner.
Volunteer at your child’s school in whatever way you can. Let them know that you are on their side.
2. Help your school accommodate your child’s sensory issues as much as possible
If your child is super sensitive to sound send ear defenders to school for him/her to use. Ask permission to send your child’s favourite fidgets to school or ask the school to provide their own. If your child enjoys deep pressure see if they can wear a weighted vest or use a weighted lap blanket at school.
Request that the school provide a safe, calm place for your child to go when they are overstimulated. Work with them to create somewhere for him/her to go when he or she is upset or agitated. This could be a corner in the classroom with a blanket and pillow or bean bag chair set up just for them or a designated room where they can run to.
Be creative and work together with your school.
3. Raise Autism Awareness
Find ways to help your child’s school understand Autism better. Brainstorm ways to help the other students be more accepting of special needs. Teach your child about his/her Autism so that they are more comfortable in their own skin.