My non-SEN-parent friends seem to be a mix of ‘woo hoo’ and ‘boo hoo’ at sending their kids back to school. And it occurred to me that although I’m more ‘boo hoo’, I’m also a lot ‘uh oh’. I know I’m not alone!
Being parent to a child with dyspraxia, or any other SEN, means that we are not only going to miss our kids and worry about them in the usual parental way, there’s also the dread that the new school year brings.
Although I’m a positive person, my heart sinks at having to try to explain to the new teacher what dyspraxia is. And “yes, she does get tired in the afternoon”, and “did her balance cushion get passed over from last year?”. “Yes, I know you don’t want pencil cases in the classroom but she needs her special grippy pencils and pens”… Urgh!
But I also want to be positive because this is a new school year, and she has a lovely new teacher who I’ve met and seems very enthusiastic and communicative. And last year was so… not good, so I have to believe that this year is going to be fabulous. But how am I going to ensure a good start?
What’s the best way of explaining to the new teacher just how dyspraxia affects my child?
Well…Â I’ve been working on these handouts since before the school holidays and I’ve finally done it. 🙂
FREE Dyspraxia Handout for Teachers
Teachers are busy and have 1000s of things swimming round their brains when taking on a new class, so I’ve made sure these handouts are visual, memorable, but informative.
There are two handouts (boy and girl), and they get across the different ways in which dyspraxia affects our kids. I also added a box at the bottom where we can be more positive in telling the teacher what our kids like and don’t like.
I’ve left these boxes blank on the download but this is what we put on ours, just to give you an idea:
Working in small groups.
Reading books (especially funny fiction).
Using my imagination.
Typing my work using Clicker 6 on the computer.
Lined paper and my special pens & pencils to help me write.
Tasks to be broken up and written down for me.
Movement and sensory breaks to wake up my brain 🙂
I DON’T LIKE:
As you can see, I’ve used the ‘like’ box to both get over what my girl likes and how the teacher might engage her, but mostly ‘this is how we deal with stuff’.
I’m hoping the teacher will be grateful that she gets this information in a brief way, and it saves her from months of trying to work all this out. Which she probably doesn’t have time to do anyway! If we already have the knowledge then we should pass it along.
You can access these posters (without the watermark across the centre) by signing up to our mailing list–you’ll get the download link in the welcome email. It’s in PDF format and should print off perfectly on A4 paper, but letter paper works well too.
Sensory & Movement Break Ideas for Teachers
I’m also going to give the new teacher this free print out from Lemon Lime Adventures about Sensory Break Ideas. Again, it’s brief and I’m hoping it’ll be helpful to the teacher rather than me being overly pushy.
Movement and sensory breaks are especially fabulous for our dyspraxia kids because it’s like pressing their reset button and gets them refocused. The movement gets blood flowing to the brain so our kids can think better and should feel more alert.
So I hope all that helps.Wishing you all a positive year, even if you have to be pushy 🙂
Getting Your FREE Handouts
Don’t forget that you can access the posters by signing up to our mailing list (link at the very top of the page too). Our mailing list is just used to keep you updated on what’s going on at Dyspraxia Kids (new posts etc.). Your details don’t get passed on to anyone else.