We taught one of my students with Autism to use the calculator. He does not need picture choices like some of my other students because he is able to write words and numbers.
First we could hardly see what he was writing because he was not pushing the pencil on his paper hard enough. So our Occupational Therapist came up with a brilliant solution: a weighted pencil. They are about $25 and have helped several of my students.
The next problem we were facing was that this student was writing very large and did not recognize any boundaries given. We drew little boxes on the paper to try to get him to focus and stay within that limited space. Most of the time he didn’t care so much about his boxes. So this attempt failed.
I was trying to figure out another way to help him stay within the boxes we drew to be able to read his work. I knew I needed something that he could feel since the visual boundaries did not work.
Then I had an idea that I wanted to try. I wasn’t sure if it would work or not… I decided to take liquid glue to trace a box around the spot where I wanted my student to write his answers. I prepared his math worksheets for the next day.
This was a total success. It has been amazing to watch this student’s progress.Now I just have to remember to prepare his worksheets the day before so that the glue can dry. This is what I call thinking outside of the box!!!