AARC Tip of the Month - May 2017
End of the School Year Transitions
Picture of daisies with the test _AARC will be closed for the summer from May 23rd through August 4th_ 2017. We will reopen on August 7th. Have a wonderful summer__
End of the School Year Transitions

If your student is transitioning to a new classroom or school next school year, it is a good idea to plan for this transition ahead of time. Here are some tips for each situation:

Transitioning to new classrooms:
Speak with your child's education team about creating an opportunity to visit their new classroom with their current teacher before the school year ends. Venturing into the new classroom with their current teacher will help to keep the student calm. Allow the student to become comfortable with the new classroom and the new teacher at their own pace. Encourage them to explore the classroom and find things that they may be interested in. Try bringing a favorite toy or activity to the new classroom to let the student know that the new classroom will be a comfortable place to learn, much like their old classroom was. This "field trip" can be repeated as necessary to help the student become comfortable in the new environment.

Transitioning to new schools:
If your student is transitioning to a new school, walk around the whole building to give them an idea of where everything is. Look for places that are important to the student, such as the cafeteria, bathroom, library, classroom, etc. If your student is feeling overwhelmed, you can also create a map of the school for them to hold onto. Having a map may help the student feel more comfortable in the new school environment. If your student is feeling comfortable with their new teacher and their new school environment, try introducing key staff at the new school, such as the OT, PT, counselor, paraprofessionals, and the principal. A great way to help the student get to know the staff is to create a book for the student to take home over the summer that has pictures of the staff and information about what they do.
Upcoming Community Events:
Awareness event and fundraiser
Awareness event and fundraiser
Books of the Month:
The books of the month are available in the Special Education Service Agency (SESA) Library. Search for books on the  SESA website, or contact our Librarian, Anne Freitag, at  afreitag@sesa.org  or  907-334-1301 

Electronic books may be accessed from anywhere in the state. If you've used our ebooks before,  go to the login page here.  If you haven't, please contact Anne so she can set up a username and password for you.  
Click here for more information about ebooks.

You can also look for additional articles in a variety of databases by using SLED, which is available for free for all Alaskans:  http://lam.alaska.gov/sled
My New School: A workbook to help students transition to a new school
By: Melissa L. Trautman
Forward By: Brenda Smith Myles
Autism Asperger Pub. Co., 2010.
ISBN:   9781934575659

Description: "For many students with autism spectrum disorders, even relatively minor changes to their daily routines and schedules are overwhelming; imagine how traumatic moving to a new school would be! Written by somebody who truly knows kids, this interactive book addressed directly to the student takes a practical and honest approach to this anxiety-provoking subject by acknowledging the difficulties transferring to a new school can bring and engaging the students in a series of proactive activities designed to lessen his fears by resulting in tangible steps to take, to-do lists, checklists, etc. Whether the transfer is due to a typical transition between school levels, a family move, divorce or whatever, this book is sure to make the transition smoother." - publisher's website.
Unstuck and On Target! An executive function curriculum to improve flexibility for children with autism spectrum disorders
By:  Lynn Cannon [and others]
Paul H. Brookes Pub. Co., 2011.
ISBN:  9781598572032
Description: "For students with autism spectrum disorders, problems with flexibility and goal-directed behavior can be a major obstacle to success in school and in life. But flexibility and goal- setting can be taught just like any other skill-and this how-to manual equips professionals with simple, real-world ways to help students with ASD develop this critical aspect of executive function. A classroom-based intervention approach for high- functioning students ages 8-11, this innovative guide gives special educators and other service providers ready-to-use lessons that promote cognitive and behavioral flexibility in everyday situations, from compromising with peers to handling schedule changes. Take-home worksheets for each lesson strengthen the home- school connection and help students transfer their new flexibility skills to other settings. ... guide gives users clear instructions, materials lists, and modifications for each lesson, plus invaluable ... tips that help general educators reinforce the lessons throughout the school day. And with the included CD-ROM, it's easy to print all of the game cards, student worksheets, and other materials needed to conduct the lessons. Help students with ASD: handle unexpected events ; cope with disappointment and frustration ; keep an open mind ; navigate disagreements with friends ; set and achieve goals ; distinguish a "big deal" from a "little deal" ; learn how to compromise ; create a Plan B when Plan A doesn't work" - publisher's website.
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