is important in the classroom, in the playground, as well as during excursions, camps and extra-curricular activities. The strategies to support this inclusion will vary from one student to another, dependent upon personality, existing skills, communication method, as well as developmental stage, amongst other factors. Strategies might include:
- Explicit teaching of social skills (eg appropriate ways to greet familiar/unfamiliar people)
- The use of role-plays
- Student partners/pairings
- Lunchtime schedules of activities and peer partners/mentors
- Facilitating social interactions through small group activities or community access activities
- Professional-led social skill development session/s.
The ABLES resource (discussed in the ILP and curriculum adjustments topic) includes personal and social capability skills assessment tools which can be used with students of any age. There is also a separate assessment tool relating to personal and social capability skills designed specifically for use with students with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Once assessed, the resource provides a report specific for that student which includes suggestions of strategies to support social learning.
In relation to bullying in particular, part two of this guide by Disability Advocacy NSW A Parent’s Toolkit – School Issues for students with disabilities has useful information and advice.
This Spectronics blog post has numerous suggestions on how to create communication opportunities.
For suggestions of social supports that are suitable for students with Autism Spectrum Disorder, watch Sue Larkey’s video below: