I am an Assistive Technology Specialist working in the Bay Area with over 20 years of experience. Recently, I had the opportunity of working with two different Early Intervention agencies under a grant from Ability Central, to look at tools that are the most beneficial for families.
Both agencies agreed that visual schedules were the most effective and in some cases, really life changing, for the families they worked with. They really helped the families to help their child understand what was happening, and helped to reduce a lot of difficult behaviors in the child. Having the children be able to see and understand what was going to happen, really helped those who had trouble with attention as the pictures don’t go away, as well as children who were still learning words and word meaning (receptive language). It also helped those children who had trouble with changes in their routine, as they could see and understand that a change was going to happen before it happened.
However, both agencies agreed that making all the visual routines was time-consuming for them, and for the families. They also were looking for something that was portable and durable. That is where SchKIDules Visual Schedules comes in. The pre-made magnetic symbols are a real time saver, and the board to hang up in the home to put the symbols on is great. The symbols are visually easy to understand as well. Because there is no velcro to deal with, the system is easy to wipe clean between uses to keep it clean for the children. For families and professionals that are looking to explore the use of visual schedules with their children or clients, this product is relatively inexpensive, and a great place to start.