TEACCH is an evidence-based teaching program that is based on the idea that students with autism are visual learners, so teachers correspondingly adapt their teaching style and intervention styles to suit the individual. It is based on five basic principles:
1. Physical structure: daily activities are clearly defined by physical boundaries.
2. Consistent Schedule
3. Work system that promotes independence
5. Visual structure
All classes at Westminster ESC follow the underlying principles of TEACCH.
ABA is the application of the principles of learning, derived from psychology research, to improve socially important behaviours. It is an umbrella term for a collection of procedures and interventions designed to increase positive behaviours, teach new skills, generalise behaviours to new environments or situations and reduce behaviours that are harmful or interfere with learning. ABA involves using techniques such as discrete trial training (DTT), modelling, Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) and reinforcement systems.
All classes at Westminster ESC follow the underlying principles of ABA.
Westminster ESC runs a whole school bike riding program to promote a healthy lifestyle, develop road safety skills and use active travel as a viable form of transport. We have a range of tricycles, bicycles, balance bikes and modified bikes to allow all students to participate at their own level.
We begin with learning the essential bike control skills of braking, balancing and riding, along with putting a helmet on correctly and giving our bikes a basic safety check. We practice these skills while riding around the school grounds. The skills learnt also allow the students to ride around in traffic free environments such as the park and around the block at the weekend with family. With the use of balance bikes, we see many students migrating to 2 wheeler bikes and no longer needing training wheels.
Once students have grasped these essential skills along with improved motor skills, muscle development, coordination and confidence we focus on riding and situational awareness, providing students with the skills and competences to enable them to start riding on footpaths and shared pathways in low traffic environments.
Community partnerships have been formed, with Westminster ESC being part of the Department of Transport’s ‘Your Move’ program and participating in programs run by ‘People on Bicycles’ organisation and Cycling Australia.