Camp should be a fun summer experience that all kids can enjoy. Sending your child to summer camp with new people and a new routine can be a scary thought for most kids. The difficulty of this transition is much more pronounced for kids with autism. There are ways to make this transition easier on kids with autism, so they don’t miss out on this fun, childhood experience.
Tips to transition to a camp setting for kids with autism:
- Meet the counselors, staff and new teachers before the program begins.
- Let the counselors, staff and new teachers know to what your child best responds, for example, first/then sentences, praise, or certain words.
- Explain any “triggers” that may cause your child with autism to have a tantrum.
- Take a tour of the facilities with your child before you send him for his first day.
- Show your child a schedule of what his day will look like at camp so he is not surprised.
- Read your child a social story about camp, following directions, and making friends.
Communication between parents and camp staff is critical for this transition. If everyone is on the same page and working together, summer camp should be a good experience for everyone! If you need help transitioning your child with autism into a new program this summer, contact our Applied Behavior Analysts for an appointment today.