Upon walking into League School and looking into a classroom in the Transition Program you will find an emphasis on functional academics, communication, emotional regulation, and vocational preparation. As a head teacher in this program, I strive to help my students reach their greatest independence and prepare them for life after graduation. When choosing lessons and vocational opportunities for my students, I make every effort to find activities that will target multiple skills at a time.
Once a week the class works as a team to collect the recycling from the classroom and offices throughout the school building. This provides the students not only the opportunity to learn a vocational skill, but also to work on their communication and social interactions. It also prepares them for the potential to work with one of our community recycling sites. To start the class off, students each receive a visual checklist identifying how many rooms they are responsible for, ranging from 4-7 rooms each. Students will then take turns knocking on a classroom door and looking for a staff member to greet and request for their recycling bin. Students utilize various AAC supports to assist them in this interaction (i.e. augmentative communication devices, visual social scripts, etc.). Once they have gathered their bin they return to the hallway where the rest of their classmates are waiting, holding a bag for them to empty it in.
Many students with autism find it challenging transitioning, as well as socializing with both peers and staff. Collecting the recycling allows students to learn supports and regulating strategies that will benefit and assist them with these skills. It has been tremendous to watch the students work together and excel with what can be a very difficult task for them. My students never cease to amaze and surprise me with their potential. Each and every day I am not only teaching my students, but they are teaching me as well.