Date
21 April 2019

Support participation and build confidence

Suggestion for implementing the strategy ‘Creating an inclusive learning environment that supports students with FASD in years 9–13’

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Recognise strengths and interests

Recognise strengths and interests

Design learning activities based around students’ interests.

Build flexibility into tasks so students can utilise their strengths and preferred ways of learning.

Foster confidence

Foster confidence

  • Ask students how they like to learn.
  • Use students’ interests and strengths as a basis for supporting them in choosing successful learning pathways.
  • Recognise and eliminate situations that students may find difficult or embarrassing because of their physical, behavioural, or cognitive differences.
  • Communicate success to the student, their parents or caregivers, and whānau.
  • Recognise avoidance strategies and provide support and encouragement.
  • Give students extra time to complete work.
  • Make learning supports, such as text-to-speech and word prediction available to all students.
  • Enable students to show their strengths and contribute their ideas in collaborative work, without the challenge of lengthy reading and writing tasks.
  • Give prompt and specific feedback frequently.

Build peer supports

Build peer supports

Identify when students with FASD might benefit from the support or companionship of a peer. For example, this could be:

  • a transition buddy who walks with the student from class to class
  • a homework buddy to call when they have questions about an assignment
  • a member of the sports team who will provide informal coaching and feedback in new situations, such as travelling on a bus for out-of-town games.

Help the student identify peers that they can ask for help. Make a diagram that illustrates who these people are in the student’s circle of support.

Foster inter­dependence

Foster inter­dependence

Psychologist, Dan Dubovsky explains the importance of providing a student with a "go-to" person to foster interdependence, rather than striving for complete independence.

Next steps

More suggestions for implementing the strategy “Helpful classroom strategies years 9-13”:

Return to the guide “Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder and learning”

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