At the end of my working-from-home day, I like to take a 10-minute walk across the field by my house. I do this walk alone, with no interruptions from music or my dog (my dog has no chill!) I use this time to transition from my work mindset to my home mindset.

Working and living in the same place can mean the two mindsets can get confused, so this 10-minute walk gives me this transition time. After my walk, I am ready to relax in my home with my family.

It really got me thinking about the transitions for children in schools, particularly with children who struggle with regulation skills. How do children transition from the classroom to the lunch hall, or from the playground to the classroom? A child may have had an active playground session and may find it difficult to get into the right mindset for the classroom.

When making transitions from one place to another in school try these tips to help:

  • Use a visual timetable and go through this with the pupil so they can understand where the ‘changes’ will take place.

  • A timer that counts down to the end of one activity and location and signals the start of something new can be useful for all pupils.

  • For younger pupils, a transition object can be helpful to have with them, especially from home to school e.g. stuffed toy or a photograph of a parent.

  • Let the children have a few minutes to themselves to let the mind transition.

What do you use in your schools to help your children transition from one place to another?

Speech and Language Link support a whole school approach to speech, language and communication needs. We support pupils’ communication needs from early years to secondary age, working with schools, speech and language therapists, local authorities, MATs and parents/carers. We believe that SLCN should be supported at every stage of a child’s life, transition being a key part of this.

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