Practical strategies and ideas for early years settings

  • Ask your QTVI or habilitation officer to conduct a premises / environment check (as below).
  • The child will need time to get to know and become familiar with the physical environment, other children, staff, routines and rules.
  • Child to sit near the front for story time.
  • Use the child’s name to secure attention before giving instructions.
  • Do not give too much information at once or offer too many options.
  • Give a verbal explanation of what is happening and describe what you are doing if necessary and appropriate.
  • Use The Developmental Journal for children with a Visual Impairment to track visual progress and development and find next steps.
  • If introducing a new concept or story, give the child time for pre-learning so that they can explore the story or object before it is presented to the rest of the group.
  • Give 1:1 demonstrations of tasks or activities.
  • Give the child time to explore new toys and activities.
  • Offer the child toys with good colour contrast and books that have clear, uncluttered illustrations.
  • Child to have own book and not share with others.
  • Transitions between activities can require preparation and planning. Give the child notice of a change of activity and of routine.
  • Offer the child activities that make use of and include all the senses.
  • Consider providing a secure, familiar place to play.
  • Check lighting issues in room. Use blinds or curtains to minimise glare.
  • Give the child an individual tour of the room and show where resources are kept.
  • It may be advisable for the child to go up and down stairs before or after other children.
  • Watch out for trip hazards – computer cables, bag straps.
  • Make wall displays uncluttered and colourful. Show them to the child 1:1.
  • Don’t change the room around too often.
  • Allocate a peg at the end of a row for coat and bag so that it’s easy for the child to locate.
  • Use a bright colour to differentiate the child’s bag from other bags of the same colour.
  • Make sure the play dough isn’t the same colour as the table.
  • Help the child move between rooms / toilet initially.
  • Try not to over protect the child to the extent of becoming a barrier between them and other children.
  • Plan ahead for trips out of school for accessibility and health and safety issues.
  • Plan and practice 1:1 procedure for fire alarm practice.