Using Workstations

Some children in school use a workstation which is based on the TEACCH philosophy that originated in the USA in the 1960s.

Individuals with Autistic Spectrum Disorder need structure in order to feel secure in what can be a very confusing world. A workstation is effective for many children because it incorporates structure, routine, visual cues and limits distractions.

This in turn helps to develop independence, organisational skills, the concept of working in an ordered manner, the concept of ‘finished’ and the generalisation of skills. It also contributes to the wellbeing of the children when they can succeed in completing their work.

How Does it Work?

Tasks are provided for the child in trays – usually located in a unit on the left hand side of a table (labelled ‘start’). The child removes the tray, completes the activity on the table and then returns it to the tray. The child then slots the tray into the unit on the right hand side (labelled ‘finished’). This continues until all activities are completed. Only tasks that the child can do independently are used and all necessary materials are organised in the tray.

What Does Success Look Like?

“I know what I am expected to do.”

“I can do it!”

“I have FINISHED!”

“I know how much work I have to do.”

“Look, I’ve done it all on my own!”