Strategy 3: Design Learning Experiences that are Meaningful to the Child
What to do
- Identify the child's likes and dislikes
- Use the child's preferences to make learning more meaningful and fun
- Determine the child's preferred sensory learning channels (see box to right) and learning styles
- Use age appropriate activities and materials
- Establish routines around daily activities
- Decide ahead of time what words and concepts you want to focus on during each routine
- Use hand under hand techniques, especially when introducing new activities
- Promote active participation and/or partial participation.
Things to consider
- Are activities designed around what the child likes rather than something you want the child to do?
- Is the child positioned in a manner that is both functional and comfortable?Is the Does the position support the child's ability to accomplish a task and make it easier for them to work?
- Does the environment facilitate the child's use of residual vision and hearing?
- Are you using the child's most alert times to engage in activities?
- Are the cues you are using specific to and appropriate for the child?
- Are all team members using the child's preferred communication and learning method(s)?
- Are you promoting active participation?
- Are you balancing the physical load with the cognitive load?
Determining Sensory Learning Channels
- How does the child appear to take in information? (Sight? Sound? Smell? Taste? Touch?)
- How does the child react to sound?
- How does the child react to vision?
- How does the child react to touch?
- Does the child use more than one sense at a time?
- Does the child engage or disengage in response to particular sensory information? How do you know?