When you ask any child in elementary school what the best part of school was, their answer is always RECESS! However, when your child has special needs or suffers from a disability, recess time might be more challenging for them than other students. Here are some of the most common issues that occur during recess and some ways to solve them:
Recess Is Too Loud!
Especially those who are auditory sensitive, the noise at lunchtime can be overwhelming. It’s important to talk to your child’s school to see what accommodations they can make for your child such as having them eat lunch and play in a secluded classroom, a separate area on the playground that’s quieter (such as the swings) or ask if your child is permitted to wear earplugs or headphones during lunch/recess.
Unsure Of Appropriate Behavior
For some disabled students having unstructured time can be more stressful than structured time. A lot of times they are unsure of what to do with themselves. Having a checklist of activities that they can do on rotating basis can be a good way to add structure. Activities such as counting birds, finding a grasshopper, playing jump rope, going down the slide 3 times, or volunteering to push someone on the swings are some examples.
Feelings of Unsafe
A lot of times people with disabilities are unsure if the playground equipment is safe for them to enjoy. Doing a walkthrough of the area with your child to let them know what is safe to do and not to do can be helpful. Also, show them where the monitors will stand so they know where they can contact an adult if they have feelings of being unsafe.
By implementing these tips and tricks, your disabled or sensory sensitive child should be able to enjoy recess and have more interaction with peers.