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VISUAL SCHEDULES

What is a Visual Schedule?
A Visual Schedule (VS), is a visual support used in the classroom in order to help a student
transition from one activity to another independently.
Populations: Intellectual Disabilities (specifically Autism Spectrum Disorder), Traumatic Brain Injury
(TBI), and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
Who benefits?


Autism Spectrum Disorder:
Predictable and structured
- Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder are primarily visual learners.
- Decrease negative behaviors
TBI:
- Assists child with organization because of a deficit in short and long term memory.
ADHD:
- Improves organization

Other benefits that apply to all the disabilities:
- Autonomy/Independence
- Generalization
- Increase the ability to follow verbal directions

Steps of Instruction:
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Teacher instructs students to complete an assigned task.
Student will locate their activity schedule.
Student will remove current task that was instructed by the teacher.
Student will walk to designated work area.
Student will begin the task.
Once task is completed, student will return competed activity card.

Documentation: Teacher should document a student’s progress regularly. Develop a data sheet
for each student for easy tracking.

How to Implement a Visual Schedule:
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Identify the problematic transition behaviors.
Collect data on the problem behavior (e.g., frequency or duration).
Choose which type of VS to create (e.g., Between-Activity or Within-Activity).
Choose how the VS will be constructed and presented.
Choose a location for the VS.
Train the student on how to use the VS.
Add more pictures and/or words as needed.
Overtime fade the amount of prompts you use.
Make the VS age appropriate (can change as child gets older).
Generalize the skill in other settings and situations.

Create your own Visual Schedule

References
Banda, D. R., Grimmett, E., & Hart, S. L. (2009). Activity schedules. Teaching Exceptional Children, 41(4), 16-21.
Bowen, J. M. (2005). Classroom interventions for students with traumatic brain injuries. Preventing School Failure,
49(4), 34-41.
Bryan, L. C., & Gast, D. L. (2000). Teaching on-task and on-schedule behaviors to high-functioning children with
autism via picture activity schedules. Journal Of Autism & Developmental Disorders, 30(6), 553.
Ganz, J. B. (2007). Classroom structuring methods and strategies for children and youth with autism spectrum
disorders. Exceptionality, 15(4), 249-260. doi:10.1080/09362830701655816
Meadan, H., Ostrosky, M. M., Triplett, B., Michna, A., & Fettig, A. (2011). Using visual supports with young
children with autism spectrum disorder. Teaching Exceptional Children, 43(6), 28-35.
Stormont-Spurgin, M. (1997). I lost my homework: strategies for improving organization. Intervention In School &
Clinic, 32(5), 270.