Communication and the outdoors

gofindit-collage

A few months ago I was fortunate to be contacted through this blog by Michael who works for National Autistic Society, and runs Forest School sessions. Micheal has started using our resource gofindit to maximise the benefits of sensory learning and kindly agreed to write about his experiences for this blog.

We try to make our sessions a holistic part of peoples support and for many people observations centre on their sensory processing. Differences in sensory processing, together with impaired communication can have a profound effect on the quality of life of some of our learners and we try to offer activities that can help us better understand their sensory needs.

I’ve found gofindit to be a great resource, not least because I can keep the cards in a pocket and if my plan goes awry and learners have completed activities quicker than I expected then I can always rely on gofindit to save the day!

The people who attend my sessions tend to often seek out sensory stimuli on their own initiative, sometimes being so absorbed by this that it is difficult to focus on other tasks, so gofindit has become less about encouraging sensory exploration and more about communication. I have been finding that gofindit is a good way to begin to gauge learner’s levels of comprehension of verbal and/or written communication.  Games of gofindit have been challenging the assumptions made about the level of comprehension and the best ways to communicate with the people who attend our sessions. This was very evident during last Friday’s session when a young man with very limited verbal communication amazed his support with his level of comprehension of received language whilst playing.

Find out more about the National Autistic Society
gofindit can be bought from the Sensory Trust Shop
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