Routines at home and school help children with special needs feel safe and secure. Consistently set expectations and knowing how to respond to them enables children with special needs to be:
- Responsible members of the family and classroom.
- Calm during unexpected changes.
- Resilient when faced with unpredictability.
- Thoughtful and ask for help appropriately.
- Adjust to changes in the environment stemming from maturity and physical growth.
Routines must be managed throughout the year. However special attention needs to be paid to consistently implementing the rules during summer, festive holidays and travel. Below are resources that provide guidance on how to do this:
Military Family Learning Network
- Minimizing Holiday Chaos: Routine Management for Children with Special Needs
- Planning for Your Child’s Special Needs: Managing Behavior at Home
- Planning for Your Child’s Special Needs: Holidays with Extended Family
- ABC Plan for Changing Behavior at Home & School
- Disciplining Your Child with Special Needs
- The Importance of a Daily Schedule for Kids with ADHD: Sample Routines & More
- 6 Signs Your Child Needs More Structure – How to Provide Structure So Your Child Thrives
- Using Visual Schedules: A Guide for Parents
- Keep Your Child with Autism Engaged with Structured Activites During the Summer Break
- Back-to-School: Tips for Parents of Children with Special Needs
- Coping with Crisis – Helping Children with Special Needs
Finally, remember, routines need to:
- Be flexible – it is ok to change them when needed.
- Not add stress to a child’s life.
- Take into account everyone’s role.
- Be based on consistent communication (for e.g. family meetings).