If you are a parent or caregiver of an autistic child, do you use visual schedules? My autistic daughter is non-speaking and visual schedules have been huge for us. And now that I am in a position to help, I have created many free visual printables for autism. These can be used for a visual schedule at home or at school. Or you can use them to set up a communication binder. Whatever the case may be, they were designed for families by a parent of a nonverbal autistic individual.
How to Set Up a Daily Routine
One way that you can use these free visual schedule resources is by setting up a daily routine.
For example, you can use the daily routine printable and combine it with the time to eat visual schedule and the bedtime routine printable. Or you can combine it with the homeschool schedule or preschool printable schedule. In fact, I would recommend starting with something simple and using these printables to start. You can use them with one of the provided charts or with a wall calendar. You can also try a dry erase board and use markers for a color coded calendar system.
Or, if your child benefits more from seeing a clock, you can also draw on a clock surface with a dry erase marker. Just be mindful of the noise that clocks make as they can be somewhat agitating for children who have auditory sensory issues.
How to Use Visual Printables for Life Skills
If your child is struggling with personal hygiene, you can also use my printable bathroom chart or my visual potty training cards. Or, for example, if you are looking to teach simple life skills, a great place to start is by incorporating chores with my weekly chore chart or with my updated chore cards.
Why are visual schedules beneficial?
Visual schedules are beneficial for autism because you are reinforcing their environment with structure. By providing them with this predictability, you are also reducing the anxiety around transitions. Let’s think about this for a second:
- Do you like your day structured?
- Do you have a routine that you follow?
- How about a daily planner?
I like to leave some room in my schedule for last-minute things, but otherwise I benefit from having a structured day. Or, at the very least, a set of routines that I follow from day-to-day.
Having this structure means that I can:
- Best use my time
- Plan out my week
- Conduct my business and work life around my family