It's that time of year in Australia when parents who have kids starting school next year are really feeling nervous. Most schools have run a transition program of some sort. A lot of parents are buying uniforms, have been given the date for their childs Best Start assessment (in NSW), and are counting down until the end of preschool for the year. If you have an Autistic child, this can be a very nervous time. It was for me a year ago. We had MissG enrolled in a school I knew was fantastic, but I was still nervous. How would she cope with the noise? The teacher? Making new friends? Having to move around school in a large group? Having to be in a classroom with a large group? Would she remember to go to the bathroom? Would she eat? What would happen if she had a sensory overload?
We started preparing very early in the year, and I am happy to now be able to say that all our planning paid off. MissG has had a good year. Not without its hiccups, but a good year!
I thought I would share the links to the posts I wrote last year as we went through the process of getting ready. Here they are, all in one place for you to find easily and have a read through. Of course, not all kids are the same, what worked for us may not be right for you, but hopefully reading our experience will be helpful, even if it only triggers an idea for you that will work for your chid.
Part One- The Overview
Part Two- The Funding Application
Part Three- Kindergarten Orientation
Part Four- The Safe Hiding Space
Off she goes... To School
This is Autism Acceptance
This last link is to a post I wrote after MissG had been at school a few months. I'm including it because I think it is important to share what it looks like when the staff of a school truly accept our kids just as they are, and to encourage all of you to look for a school that will do this for your child. They are out there.
So there you are, our journey to "big school".
And as I publish this post I send out my best wishes to all of you who are making this transition over the new year. If you have questions or worries and would like someone to talk to, please do send me a message either by commenting her or by using the message box on the Facebook page.