Special Needs Students – Back-to-school Tips

Special Needs Students are transitioning into a new school year, which can be a bit tumultuous for all involved.  There are a few things that can be done to make this a stress free start to a new school year for special needs students.

#1.  Make School A Fun Activity

Go to the school as much as you can.  Weekly visits to the playground or lunch break visit will help your child transition.  Ask the principal beforehand and go for a tour around the class.  If your child has sensory issues, try new clothes and a school bag a few days before school starts.

#2.  Work Behind the Scenes 

If your child uses public transport, make sure that you are there the first week to see them on.  This will set your child’s mind at ease, especially when their lift is late.  It sets a child back two weeks if they experience this in the first week of school alone.

#3.  Familiarise your Child

With new faces, a child will always feel anxious.  Ask the teacher if you can show your child photos of the teachers and staff or meet them before school begins.  You can even take photos of the classroom, tuckshop and playground.

#4.  Map Out the Day

Ask your childs teacher about the daily routine, so you can discuss these with your child.  Let your child know that it is ok to feel a little nervous and that there are many people that they can talk to about it.

#5.  Encourage Expressing Feelings

Create a “meet and greet sheet” that you and your child can use, including things such as “what I am good at” and “what bothers me”.  Teachers can also use this concept with the students.

#6.  Have Fun Shopping for Back-to-school Things

Most parents don’t find this a fun activity at all.  Pick up some educational toys that are meant for special needs children to help with developmental delays. Make it fun to start school.