School Readiness program
Flinders researchers developed a School Readiness Program to help children with autism to enter mainstream school and the classroom – an often confronting and chaotic environment.
Make believe classrooms have been created at Inclusive Directions Flinders Therapy House to prepare children with autism for mainstream school. Students are gradually introduced to commonplace school experiences in mock classrooms, followed by school-based support during their actual transition.
The School Readiness Program builds on Inclusive Directions’ partnership with Flinders to collaboratively manage the University’s world-leading Early Intervention Program. It provides children with skills and knowledge through school-based experiences so they can enter school with confidence.
It also encourages language development, cognitive, social and emotional development as well as improved physical health by having a focus on the following key learning areas:
- Morning Routines
- Transitions as well as sitting on the mat and desks
- Managing distractions and conflict
- Care for self
- Ask and responding to questions
- Social Skills
- Making friends
- Break time behaviours
At completion of the program, children will:
- Successfully navigate morning routines and rituals of a class by demonstrating those skills with minimal prompting.
- Learn to transition between tasks, classroom spaces and rooms independently.
- Independently show appropriate behaviours during break times.
- Choose appropriate behaviour while sitting on the mat and at a desk.
- Manage distractions and disruptions with little to no prompting.
- Be able to ask and respond to questions asked individually and in group situations.
- Engage in social skill activities in a pair and group situations.
- Appropriately, with support, manage conflict situations.
The children will demonstrate understanding by:
- Following instructions after one telling.
- Sitting appropriately on the mat or at their desk.
- Asking and responding to questions independently.
- Ignoring disruptive behaviour.
- Seeking out other children to become friends with.