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Small Changes, Big Impacts

21 February 2024

Edge Early Learning Centre Elanora share how implementing reasonable adjustments, through making small changes, has had a big impact on the successful inclusion of all children.

Educators in the Toddler environment at Edge Early Learning Centre were unsure how they could best meet the needs of twins, Olivia and Ella and ensure that they were included in the care environment. Both Olivia and Ella were nonverbal, often unengaged in activities with peers and regularly unsettled at the service.

Educators were committed to finding solutions. The educators engaged their Inclusion Professional, who suggested trying some calm down cards. This prompted educators to reflect and consider what resources the service already had available, and what resources or assistance they could acquire to support all children’s inclusion more holistically.

Observing children’s behaviour was key in identifying the sensory impacts of noise levels in the environment, and this led to the strategy of an indoor, outdoor program being offered to all children.

When noise levels were reduced, educators observed that the children were more settled and engaged in play experiences. Educators reflected with their Inclusion Professional on how they could further support children’s sensory needs and, how the children seemed to be seeking vestibular stimulation. The service purchased a rocker seat which children accessed to get the vestibular input they were seeking. As the noise levels reduced in the environment, educators observed the children needed to use the rocker seat less to regulate.

Educators collaborated with the children’s Allied Health Professionals, who provided opportunities for educators to build their knowledge and skills around alternative forms of communication. As a result, educators implemented visual cues in the room for all children to use throughout the day.

The Inclusion Professional and Allied Health Professionals supported educators to implement visual schedules for predictable routines and smooth transitions. Educators were also supported to access resources to implement Key Word Sign to support communication. A bank of core Key Word Signs has now been developed and displayed as poster next to the group time mat, for easy access for educators and children to practice daily.

The result of implementing these reasonable adjustments and small changes, has had a big impact on inclusion of all children in this environment. The environment is now calm, all children are settled and engaged, and educators are feeling confident that they are successfully supporting all children to be included.