Power of the Pause Button

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power of the pause button for helping with student transitions

Lots of people working in special education struggle with their students transitioning from preferred activities to non-preferred activities, but have you ever tried using a pause button?

You might be asking yourself, what the heck is she talking about it?  Well, I went to a training in North Carolina, it was a TEACCH training.  It was a 5-day classroom-like training.  One of the things that they had taught us, that was so simple, it to use a pause button to get them to stop the preferred activity.  Students nowadays all know what a pause button is and does, so they recognize the symbol immediately.     For example, if the students are playing a board game and are not finished by the time Math is supposed to begin, the teacher places a visual “pause” button on or over the game and says “alright, its time to pause this game and start math”, students understand immediately that they will have a chance to come back to the game because it’s only paused and they don’t have to pick the game up either.  I use a giant storage container top with a large pause on top of it so that they can see through the container top to their “paused” game.

You don’t even need to have a visual prepared for this.  The student can be coloring a picture and its time to stop and you can simply draw a pause symbol in their paper, or on their desk or on a sticky note, or on a white board!   Oh the possibilities!   The pause button can go with you anywhere!!  How quick and easy, is that!!

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I am a High School, self-contained Autism teacher from Central New York, who is passionate about individualizing student learning. I am a mommy of three, lover of all things Disney, married to my best friend and addicted to chocolate!! I hope that you find great ideas and inspiration here, so welcome!!

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