Click image to enlarge
TEACCH Class Structure
All classes at Creaney ESC follow the underlying principles of TEACCH (Treatment and Education of Autistic and Related Communication Handicapped Children). The highly structured routine and visual supports inherent in this system have proved to be highly beneficial to all our students, not just those with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Teaching is highly individualised with each child’s learning program determined by an Individual Education Plan (IEP). IEPs are written at the beginning of each semester, in collaboration with parents, staff and relevant professionals.
Early Intervention Program
We offer an intensive Early Intervention Program based on the principles of Applied Behaviour Analysis for small groups of kindergarten and pre-primary aged children who have a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder. The program aims to equip these students with the skills necessary for entry into a mainstream Year 1 class. The transition to Year 1 is supported by a shared placement in the Pre-Primary year. Students spend 2 days a week at our Centre and 3 days at their mainstream school.
Creaney ESC offers a range of integration opportunities for our students. Students from the ESC may be integrated with Primary School classes for varying lengths of time depending on their individual needs and abilities. Reverse integration opportunities are also offered. Students from Creaney Primary join programs being run by ESC staff on the Centre site. Integration also occurs during break times when ESC students play within the Primary School playgrounds and vice versa. Joint activities (Sports Carnival, Lapathon etc) and joint programs (eg Living Eggs, PlayLinks) allow further integration opportunities for students from both campuses.
PlayLinks, an innovative, reverse integration program, was developed at Creaney ESC and is now receiving interest from schools around the state. This program teaches the senior students from Creaney Primary about interacting with Special Educational Needs students whilst working through certificate levels as ‘PlayLinks Monitors’. The monitors are responsible for the management of a structured play station within the ESC play area. They are taught the principles of positive behaviour management, Makaton sign language and Picture Exchange Communication Systems. As well as developing positive attitudes and knowledge of disabilities in the senior Primary students, the program also offers the ESC students more opportunities to interact with their mainstream peers.
Creaney ESC has Interactive Whiteboards in each learning space (8 in total). These are highly successful in supporting the learning of students in all areas of the curriculum. Centre staff have produced a large number of IWB resources specially designed for our context and have been able to share these resources with other schools.
Excursions and Community Access are an integral part of our learning program and are planned to supplement the curriculum and priority objectives set for each student. Excursions may be one-off activities that support a program of learning (eg to the Museum) or may be regular weekly excursions that focus on developing independence and functional generalisation of skills (shopping, transport training etc).
Life Skills programs
Life Skills programs give students the opportunity to practise learnt skills in real-life functional applications. All classes carry out cooking activities during which students are able to practise Maths, English, Communication, Science, Self-Management and Independence learning. Many classes also carry out regular shopping activities.
Therapy Focus Groups
Selected students take part in multi-disciplinary small group work with Occupational Therapists, Physiotherapists, Speech Therapists and Centre staff. These activities are aimed at building speech, gross motor and social skills in the students. This integrated approach leads to improved outcomes for our students and assists Centre staff in applying therapy techniques to classroom interventions.
Creaney ESC provides our Year 7 students with a Transition to High School program to ensure a seamless progression to their new school. Parents are provided with information and support in choosing a high school setting for their children. The Centre then works closely with the high schools in order to support the students in making the transition. General preparation lessons take place within the Centre and these are followed up by visits to the new school, supported by familiar Creaney ESC staff. Over Term 4, students gradually spend increasing time at the new campus with decreasing support from Centre staff. Transition programs are typically flexible in order to best suit the individual needs of the students and the destination school. Students from Creaney ESC transition to a variety of different schools including Duncraig ESC, Belridge ESC, Mirrabooka ESC and Gladys Newton School.
Creaney ESC teaches Makaton as its Language Other Than English. Makaton signing was chosen for its highly visual nature and as a means of supporting the communication of non-verbal students. All students take part in weekly Singing and Signing sessions.
During Term 3 all Creaney ESC students attended a weekly gymnastics program at Highflyers gym. Led by qualified trampolining and gymnastics coaches, the students work on a variety of gross motor and balance skills, using a range of equipment not available in a school context.
In Terms 3 and 4, all Creaney ESC students take part in weekly Drumbeat sessions. Run by Dr Annamaria Paolino, an accredited Drumbreat facilitator, this social development program works to increase social skills, self-confidence and self-esteem through drumming activities. Drumbeat is a hugely popular program which culminates in a series of successful performances at the end of year Concert.