Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Strategies for FASD

Whole School Strategies (this represents a minimum)

• All staff in the school trained to understand how fasd affects students
• Substitute personnel trained to understand and deal with students with fasd
• Emergency support for substitute personnel and students if “the wheels fall off.”
• Teachers and aides with realistic expectations of functional development
• Ideal staff will have nurturing, flexible personalities and a sense of humour
• Full-time Educational Assistants
• Make student records easily accessible (understandable) to professionals within privacy limits
• Whole school behaviour expectations, eg. Tribes ™ or “With All Due Respect”
• Mark boundaries on floors, hallways if inappropriate touching and poking is a problem
• Direct supervision of all meals, snacks, recess, bathrooms, on the bus – 24/7 supervision
• Structure program as much as possible, no surprises, structure all routines and be consistent
• Buddy Program of fasd-affected student with unimpaired peer
• Direct supervision, if required, of all transit from place to place within the school
• Each fasd student should have an adult “buddy” within the school
• Be overcautious with safety — expect the unexpected — lock up all dangerous items
• Have these students “do in-school errands” (if capable) to use energy acceptably
• Prepare students carefully for assemblies, guest speakers or fire drills (provide ear protection)
• Communication books that go home and come back every day
• Work closely with parent(s)/caregiver(s) — “everyone on the same page” — “iron-clad” consistency
• The same teacher for more than one school year, minimizing transitions
• “Time-in” spots that are private, safe, easily supervised, low-stimulus and comfortable
• Aim for fun and enjoyment, enjoy good times with all students, Carpe diem.
• Staff need to learn to like the students with fasd as people
• Remember that students who are impaired teach life lessons to those who are less challenged
• Remember that students with fasd do not know why they do things, don’t ask!
• Foster interdependence not independence in the fasd affected, learn to use ‘external brains’
• When things are going poorly try something different, don’t try harder
• Life skills curriculum blending academic, daily living, personal/social and occupational skills
• Focus on helping students function well in the community with a minimal amount of supervision

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