Super Learning Week
World Autism Awareness Week and Super Learning Week shared the spot light at Birtenshaw School last week.
Super Learning Weeks are great fun and a time when we suspend the normal school timetable to focus in on a particular theme. During this last Super Learning Week young people at Birtenshaw School have experienced the cultures and traditions of five different countries – India, Brazil, Australia, Mexico and Africa!
It is true to say that everyone has had a great time and thoroughly enjoyed the range of different activities from cooking and tasting to dancing and samba drumming, to mask making and printing traditional patterns but such fun doesn’t come without its challenges for some of our pupils. Small changes to a daily routine can be difficult for a person with Autism to accept however with the right preparation and support from staff the children adapted really well and experienced new things which were a lot of fun.
The pupils have been looking at each country’s music, food, traditional dress, art and pastimes – it has been great learning some Brazilian football skills, Bollywood dancing, Indian henna designs, Australian art, Mexican food tasting and traditional African drumming and dancing!
By keeping the morning routines the same each day and introducing each country through our Literacy and Numeracy lessons the young people were slowly prepared for afternoons a little bit out of the ordinary. By using now and next boards and visual schedules the young people were able to anticipate the afternoons’ activities and found coping with the changes to the curriculum much easier to deal with.
Staff ensured each afternoon was filled with a range of different themed activities – each tailored to suit each classes’ abilities and sensory needs with breaks in between each session to give the young people time to prepare for the transition and their next activities for the afternoon.