I can honestly say before 2020 I had never been to the CDC website and couldn’t imagine a life where I checked it weekly. 2020, you’ve changed a lot for me! While we learn as much as we can about safely returning to school in the fall we have to think about what school-based services will look like. It will likely be different for each and every district but the space we prepare will not look like classrooms of the past. We need to add COVID classroom signs to clearly identify what we expect from students.
If your area has low or lowering COVID-19 cases, you might be planning to return to school this month or next. I wanted to create some COVID-19 classroom signs for how that might look. I know teachers have been told to pull all their flexible seating like bean bags and pillows. Rugs have been removed. When we think about materials to use for speech therapy, they certainly need to be sanitized between students so many resources are out. No more stuffed animals or sensory bins.
Preparing your space for therapy.
When you’re setting up your space, consider which items the students will be able to access. Put a sign up that reminds them to wash their hands before they put their hand into a bin to select it.
Also, make sure you label supplies that are no longer accessible to kids but that you might have out for only your use. Consider a “dirty” bin where kids can put things when they are done using them and they need to be sanitized before being returned to their home.
Consider setting aside some reinforcing toys or activities and labeling it for each student. I went through the materials I already had and found things like Legos, sticker sheets, a fidget, and individual play dough cans that could be assigned to a student and not require cleaning between each session.
We will of course need classroom signs that reinforce that a mask must be worn and social distancing followed if possible. I suggest SLPs and teachers look at areas that kids normally congregate like the “library” and make sure to put reminder signs in those places. To read more about helping students with special needs tolerate wearing masks, check out this post.
Utilize digital resources that can be used on the computer or iPad, limiting the number of materials to be cleaned. This example is a book companion for There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed some books.
If your students sit at a desk, add a quick set of visuals to each student’s spot as a reminder.
Download all the pictured signs in this post for free in my COVID 19 Classroom Safety Signs packet.
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