iPad App: Cause and Effect Sensory Light Box

I recently purchased the iPad app ‘Cause and Effect Sensory Light Box’ for £1.49 and I would recommend it to any parent of children with autism and/or severe learning difficulties or teacher using iPads in the classroom.

The app has 21 different scenes with abstract visuals and high quality audio which encourage the development and awareness of touch through open-ended exploration and play.

All of the scenes have different responses to taps, strokes and multiple finger and hand movements. When the screen is touched, the audio and visuals will play and will stop when the screen is not touched.

I have used a similar programme on a PC at school which could be used on the interactive whiteboard. I would put the blinds on the windows down and turn the lights off for maximum effect. However the programme was not multi finger or hand compatible and did not have different scenes which made the programme not as enjoyable as this iPad app.

Here is a video showing Cause and Effect Sensory Light Box in use.

 

Link to the iTunes store: http://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/cause-effect-sensory-light/id533976433?mt=8

There are SO MANY great apps that can be used by children parents and teachers, can you recommend any?

Attention bucket for children with autism

After using the idea of an ‘attention bucket’ (which was passed on to me by colleagues at school) I looked further into the attention autism approach and found this inspiring video of a talk by the founder, Gina Davies.

The attention autism approach focuses on developing attention and listening skills and giving the children “an irresistible invitation to learn”.

Read more about Attention Autism here.

An attention bucket is a bucket full of motivating and exciting toys and gadgets which will be of high interest to the children. Gina suggests that the adult in front of the children with the attention bucket must be the most interesting thing in the room so everything else must be out of sight. I am currently thinking of new toys and gadgets to put into my attention bucket but this will depend on my new class. At the moment I have wind up moving toys, light up toys, a spinning top, toys that make noises and toys with balloons (e.g. balloon cars). Here are some of the items in my bucket:

The adult with the attention bucket demonstrates one toy at a time in front of the children, for example, winding up a toy snake and then watching the snake move. The reward must be intrinsic to the activity – the enjoyment of watching the snake.  If a child gets up out of their seat they are gently, non verbally guided back. This is to encourage attention and listening skills. Gina suggests using 5 toys in each short session. With my last class I usually had an attention bucket session once every morning and once every afternoon. Attention bucket activities are also good to use to refocus the group.

Related post: Attention Autism stage 1: attention bucket video and comments from creator Gina Davies

There is a lot of great information on Gina’s website Attention Autism

Many of my sensory attention bucket resources came from Sensory Toy Warehouse

First post!

Hello and welcome to asdteacher.com

This is my first post and it will hopefully be the first of many!

My name is Steph and I teach in a primary special school for children with autistic spectrum disorder and severe learning difficulties in the East London borough of Hackney.

I studied Early Childhood Studies combined with Special Needs and Inclusion Studies for my undergraduate degree followed by a Post Graduate Certificate of Education specialising in the teaching of Early Years.

I have worked with some amazing children over recent years who have inspired me to learn as much as possible about how to positively teach and support children with a ASD.

I have started this blog in order to contain all the information and resources I find valuable and interesting in one place. Knowing how useful and important this information is for me and teaching, it is likely that other education professionals, parents or anyone supporting children with ASD will also find this useful. I also wanted somewhere to express my thoughts and opinions and to share them with you so we can learn from each other.

Please leave a comment or you can contact me through twitter via @asd_teacher