Using Visual Supports: The Key to Encouraging Positive Behaviour in Children with Developmental Delays

ask silvia Feb 09, 2023

(Photo Rachel Tyrrel - The Colour Club)

I started working with some new families in early January. It has been exciting to get to know the little ones and find ways to bond with them before we start an early intervention programme.
Visual supports are among the first supports I encourage families and educators to use.

Although families and educators seem aware of visual supports, only some know how powerful this tool can be.

Today I want to share with you the importance of visual supports for promoting positive behaviour in children with developmental delays, including autistic children.

Visual supports can have such a big impact on increasing communication and understanding of routines and expectations. By providing clear and consistent visual cues, our little ones can feel more secure and in control. This can lead to a reduction in anxiety and minimize challenging behaviours. Plus, visual supports can be a powerful tool in promoting independence and decision-making skills, as children can see what tasks they need to complete and make choices about their day. 

Not only does it help to reduce confusion and frustration, but visual supports make it easier for children to see what activities are coming up and what is expected of them.

Incorporating visual supports into the daily routine can significantly promote cooperation and reduce challenging behaviours. People often underestimate the power of visual supports, but they're an incredibly valuable tool for our children.

They should not be phased out as children grow and their language improves but, instead, be used to support their learning and development. As children get older, they can be taught to use tools like calendars, written schedules, and to-do lists, helping them gradually become more independent.

But it all starts with incorporating visual supports into their lives in early childhood, so don't hesitate to give it a try!

I'll talk more about this PLUS nine other strategies to prevent challenging behaviour at my next Behaviour Masterclass. Teachers, SNAs, early years educators and parents who attended this Masterclass previously found it invaluable

Do you want to learn more about how to prevent problem behaviour and how to respond when they occur?

I often teach a Masterclass on preventing and responding to challenging behaviours.
This Masterclass is suitable for parents and educators of children with developmental delays, Down Syndrome, intellectual disabilities, speech and language delays and autistic children from 2 to 6 years of age.


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